News of the Church


Fireside Counsel: Be Faithful, Clean, Strong in Prayer

Young adults and other single Latter-day Saints throughout the United States and Canada were counseled to be true to their faith, stay morally clean, and learn the power of prayer during a special fireside June 23.

The fireside, broadcast via satellite from Temple Square, featured talks by President Gordon B. Hinckley, Second Counselor in the First Presidency; Elder Neal A. Maxwell of the Council of the Twelve; and Joanne B. Doxey, second counselor in the Relief Society General Presidency.

The fireside also included three video presentations in which young adults discussed their concerns about morality, prayer, and making decisions.

“My dear young friends,” President Hinckley said, “from the beginning of this work there has been opposition. There have been apostates. There have been scholars, some with balance and others with an axe to grind, who have raked over every bit of evidence available concerning Joseph Smith, the prophet of this dispensation. I plead with you, do not let yourselves be numbered among the critics, among the dissidents, among the apostates.”

He discussed two recently discovered letters—one purportedly written by Joseph Smith to Josiah Stowell in 1825, the other by Martin Harris to W. W. Phelps in 1830. “Assuming that [the letters] are authentic,” he said, “they are valuable writings of the period out of which they have come, but they have no real relevancy to the question of the authenticity of the Church or of the divine origin of the Book of Mormon.”

He urged any who have been troubled by press reports about the Martin Harris letter to “look deeper to the man who presumably wrote it and to the man who presumably received it—Martin Harris and W. W. Phelps.” He cited Martin Harris’ testimony as one of the three witnesses to the Book of Mormon, for which he endured poverty and persecution, dying “in full faith” at ninety-two. Brother Phelps also bore a strong testimony and lived a life of service in the Church. President Hinckley asked: “Would these two men have so … lived out their years in faith had there been any doubt about the way in which the Book of Mormon plates were received?”

President Hinckley also spoke briefly about the decisions his audience would face in life. “I can promise you that if you will make your decisions according to the standards of the gospel and the teachings of the Church, and if you will keep the faith, your lives will be fruitful of great good and you will know much of happiness and accomplishment.” (For the full text of President Hinckley’s address, see the “First Presidency Message,” on page 2.)

Speaking about morality, Elder Maxwell said that adultery “or anything like unto it” isolates the individual from God, from others, and from himself. “Diminished moral cleanliness,” he said, “means diminished service to mankind, because uncleanliness dulls the tastebuds of the soul and renders us less sensitive to others, to the beauties of life, and certainly to the promptings of the Spirit.

“Sexual immorality,” he continued, “is not only wrong itself, but, as few things do, it nurtures the deadly virus of selfishness.” To overcome the challenge of immorality in society today, Elder Maxwell suggested making decisions once—and only once. “Reprocessing the same temptation again and again is both unnecessary and unwise. … Knowing beforehand how we are determined to respond to temptation is vital,” he said.

Sister Doxey spoke about prayer. “We may have already discovered some truths about praying,” she said. “And yet, we desire a more perfect understanding of how to receive answers. Often we want concrete answers or a ‘quantitative analysis’ of what to pray for, how long to pray, and when to pray.”

Citing the example of the Brother of Jared, she encouraged the young adults to prepare themselves to receive answers to prayers. “You cannot afford to be casual in your communications with him who will be your guide and stay,” she said. “Don’t wait to establish the practice of speaking intimately with the Lord. … Only God knows our individual possibilities and limitations. He blesses us according to his plan for us, consistent with our need to grow. We must be sensitive to the whisperings of the Spirit, which often come in unexpected ways.”

[photo] President Gordon B. Hinckley, Second Counselor in the First Presidency, at the Young Adult fireside. (Photography by Eldon K. Linschoten.)

Freiberg Temple Dedicated, Saints Rejoice

It was something Church members in the German Democratic Republic a few years ago had never dared hope to see in their lifetime—a temple of God in their own land. But it became a reality as President Gordon B. Hinckley, acting under the direction of President Spencer W. Kimball, pronounced the dedicatory prayer on the Freiberg Temple.

He expressed gratitude “for all who have made possible its building—the officers in the government who have given encouragement and made available land and materials, the architects and builders, and all who have made possible this glorious day of dedication.”

He referred to the temple as “the offering of thy grateful sons and daughters,” and added: “Thou knowest how long we have prayed that we might have a temple in our midst.

“We are met here today as people of various nations bound by a common love for thee our Father and thy Son, the Redeemer of all mankind. We thank thee for the peace which makes this possible and for the hospitality of this nation in permitting us to join together in this house of sacred worship. Our hearts are touched by the bond of fellowship we feel one with another. Strengthen that bond, and may we reach out in a spirit of love and appreciation and respect for one another,” President Hinckley petitioned.

He asked for the protection of heaven upon the sacred edifice, and for the blessings of a loving Heavenly Father upon those who go there worthily. “May they reach out with love to their fellowmen, walking in righteousness and faith as becomes the Saints of God.”

The temple has already provided ample opportunity for Saints to reach out to others. It is built to serve some six thousand Church members in the German Democratic Republic and neighboring countries, but many, many more—89,789 visitors—toured the temple during the eleven-day open house before its dedication, in seven services June 29–30.

Many of the visitors waited in line for up to six hours, sometimes even during rainstorms. Crowds were so large that the hours of the open house had to be extended from 8:00 A.M. to after 10:00 P.M. on some days.

Visitors first entered the meetinghouse in the adjacent Freiberg Stake Center, where they were shown a locally produced slide show explaining the purposes of temples and discussing baptism for the dead. Guides and exhibits in the meetinghouse explained Church programs. Then the visitors entered the 8,000-square-foot temple. They were asked not to speak while inside it; as a result, the impression of peace and serenity they felt in the building was very strong. One guide noted that many visitors dabbed away tears from their eyes in the celestial room, and his wife overheard one older woman whisper, “This is just like heaven.”

“The reverence they showed for someone else’s religion was very, very genuine,” a Church member commented.

One Church member who attended the dedication recalled that she “practically cried for joy throughout the session.” Another German member, impressed by the “deep spirituality” of the service, wrote to a relative in the United States several days later: “We are still under the influence of this session of the dedication. The people were deeply impressed.”

Still another member noted that a handful of Czechoslovakian Latter-day Saints attended one of the dedicatory sessions and were visibly moved.

At services marking completion of the Freiberg Temple June 28, President Hinckley told those assembled that “five million five hundred thousand members of the Church from all over the world rejoice with members of the Church in this part of Germany in completion of this house of God.”

Church members, he said, “are taught to live in peace in the gospel of love and brotherhood. God is our Eternal Father. All of us are his children. We are all brothers and sisters, and it is our responsibility to help one another, to bring peace and brotherhood throughout the world. All that takes place in the temple will be done in that spirit.”

Elder Thomas S. Monson of the Council of the Twelve spoke, noting that “the pride of loving hearts of Church members in this part of Germany has gone into the building, along with their sacrifice. From the depth of my heart, I say, ‘Thank you.’”

Elder Joseph B. Wirthlin of the First Quorum of the Seventy, President of the Church’s Europe Area, also spoke. Other General Authorities attending the services included Elder Wm. Grant Bangerter of the Presidency of the First Quorum of the Seventy, Executive Director of the Church’s Temple Department; Elder John Sonnenberg of the First Quorum of the Seventy, formerly a member of the Europe Area Presidency and now Pacific Area President; Elder Hans B. Ringger of the First Quorum of the Seventy, one of Elder Wirthlin’s counselors in the Europe Area Presidency; and Presiding Bishop Robert D. Hales.

The June 28 services consisted of speeches, presentations, and the placing of the temple cornerstone. At the services, Herman Kalb, representing the German Democratic Republic’s religious ministry, presented a formal letter of welcome and appreciation to Church leaders. In return, he received a leather-bound, specially engraved letter from the Church expressing appreciation for government cooperation during construction of the temple.

Freiberg Temple

Nearly 90,000 visitors toured the Freiberg Temple prior to its dedication. (Photography by Tim Brosnahan.)

Ground Broken for Temple in Frankfurt, West Germany

“This is a day of prophecy fulfilled, of prayers answered, and of dreams come true,” said President Gordon B. Hinckley, Second Counselor in the First Presidency, at the July 1 groundbreaking for the Frankfurt Germany Temple. “It is a historic day.”

He referred to a prophecy of President Joseph F. Smith, who visited Europe in 1910 and said that temples would one day rise on the continent.

President Hinckley was in the midst of helping make the prophecy come true. He had just come from the dedication of the Freiberg Temple in the German Democratic Republic. The day after the groundbreaking for the Frankfurt Temple, President Hinckley dedicated the Stockholm Sweden Temple.

The Frankfurt Germany Temple will actually be located at Friedrichsdorf, a historic city twenty miles north of Frankfurt. The first temple in the Federal Republic of Germany (West Germany), it will be built on an elevated piece of property not far from an old French Huguenot church. It is expected to be completed within two years.

The groundbreaking drew hundreds of Latter-day Saints and other residents.

The Church had earlier faced religious and political opposition to building a temple in Friedrichsdorf, but President Hinckley told local officials that they would not regret allowing the temple to be built. It “will be a thing of beauty in this lovely area,” he said. “It will be a source of pride to local residents, who will come to speak of it as ‘our temple.’”

In addition to President Hinckley, other speakers at the groundbreaking included Elder Thomas S. Monson of the Council of the Twelve and Elder Joseph B. Wirthlin of the First Quorum of the Seventy, President of the Church’s Europe Area. Mrs. Reinhuber Andano, vice-chairwoman of the area government, spoke on behalf of local government officials.

Elder Monson said the new temple will be “a place of peace, a place of refuge from the storms of life.”

Elder Wirthlin said it will be “a shield and a protection to the city in the years that lie ahead.”

Mrs. Andano said the temple project has the support and blessings of the local government, and spoke of the groundbreaking as “a great and wonderful day for our city,” as well as for Church members.

She recalled earlier experiences with LDS missionaries and commented: “If the young people who represent your Church as missionaries continue to represent you as they have in the past, we are sure your Church will flourish and will be a blessing to this area.”

Saints Enjoying Blessings of Stockholm Temple

Tall, slender pines arrow skyward around the building, whose six spires stand still taller, harmonizing with their environment. Atop one of the spires a golden angel, trumpet to his lips, stands as herald for the purpose, and the era, of this building.

This is the Stockholm Sweden Temple. Like the worthy Saints who will serve within it, the temple bears unmistakably the stamp of the culture and environment that surrounds it. And yet it stands out because of its purposes.

“We thank thee for this sacred structure, for its beauty in a land where there is much that is beautiful, and for the great purposes for which it has been built,” said President Gordon B. Hinckley, Second Counselor in the First Presidency, July 2 in the dedicatory prayer.

Acting under the direction of President Spencer W. Kimball, President Hinckley prayed that the temple “be looked upon as thy holy house, a house of divine covenants and everlasting promises. May those who enter it cast off the cares of the world and labor here with an eye single to thy glory.

“Bless this nation where is found thy temple, and its sister nations … Save (them) from war and oppression, and may their people look to thee and open their doors and hearts to thy messengers of eternal truth. Tens of thousands have walked reverently through this sacred structure. May the impressions of their visits stir within them a desire to learn more of thee and thy purposes with reference to thy children. May they seek and find and learn.

“May the dedication of this temple usher in a new era for thy work in all of Scandinavia and Finland.”

In his remarks before offering the dedicatory prayer, President Hinckley told the 569 Saints who attended the first of eleven dedicatory sessions, “This is the most significant day in the history of the Church in Scandinavia.”

Elder Thomas S. Monson of the Council of the Twelve told the same group that “the temple represents the hopes and dreams of all Scandinavia and Finland. I feel the temple will be a beacon in our lives. It will be as the North Star to guide our future.” He said in a later session that despite difficulties in life, the temple endowment “will always guide us to the celestial kingdom of God.”

Other General Authorities participating in the dedicatory services included Elder Wm. Grant Bangerter of the Presidency of the First Quorum of the Seventy, Executive Director of the Church’s Temple Department; Elder Joseph B. Wirthlin and Elder Russell C. Taylor of the First Quorum of the Seventy, president and counselor, respectively, in the Europe Area Presidency; Elder H. Burke Peterson of the First Quorum of the Seventy, president of the Jordan River Temple; and Presiding Bishop Robert D. Hales.

The dedicatory sessions were attended by a total of 5,233 Saints. Four of the sessions were translated into Swedish, three into Finnish, two into Norwegian, and two into Danish. The temple will serve more than 17,000 Saints located in those countries, and in Iceland.

Interest in the temple was high among the Latter-day Saints’ neighbors as well. Some 47,609 visitors filed through the building during its open house period June 10–22. Of those, 2,200 bought a Book of Mormon, and 1,213 filled out referral cards indicating they wanted to know more about the gospel. More than half of those referrals came from within the Stockholm Second Ward’s boundaries, where the temple is located.

Visitors responded very positively to the peace and spirituality they felt within the temple. “Your thoughts change while you are in there,” one said. “It’s like being in heaven,” another commented.

Leaders from other churches, including the Swedish state church, as well as from government and business, visited the temple during a special tour June 10. Franklin Forsberg, United States ambassador to Sweden, and his wife were among the group. “It’s so simple and clean. The decorations are wonderful. It’s modern, yet traditional,” the ambassador commented.

The traditional appearance is not by accident. Swedish architect John Sjöström took pains to make the exterior of the temple harmonize in an area where the architecture had its beginnings centuries ago. The temple is located in Västerhaninge, one of seven urban districts of Haninge, a city about twenty kilometers southeast of Stockholm.

The view over wide fields and backwoods from the temple is captivating. The temple is surrounded by lawns with beautiful natural flowers, but just a few yards away, the forest begins with bilberry sprigs and pines. The building looks as though it might have been part of this setting for many years.

And yet it is something new. The day after the dedicatory services ended, hundreds of Church members stood in line patiently waiting to participate in temple ordinances. A new era had begun for the Nordic countries.

Correspondent: Birgitta Karlfeldt, Stockholm Second Ward, Stockholm Stake.

Stockholm Temple

Aerial view of the Stockholm Temple. (Photography by Stefan Hallberg.)

A Conversation about Video Resources Available to Families

Many members are unaware of the quantity and types of video materials available to them and their families through their meetinghouse library or Church distribution center. With this in mind, the Ensign recently spoke with Wayne B. Lynn, assistant managing director of Curriculum Planning and Programs of the Church Curriculum Department.

Q: With the advance of home videocassette recorders, how many Church video materials have been made available for home and family use?

A: The Church offers scores of films on videocassette, with more being made available all the time. These cover a wide range of topics, such as the First Vision, the restoration of the priesthood, Book of Mormon stories for children, and the lives of the prophets—to name only a few. Any of these or other general curriculum materials may be used by members for their own personal study or in teaching their families the gospel.

We have been challenged by President Spencer W. Kimball to make our homes the center of learning in the Church. The thrust behind each organization in the Church, and hence all of the materials produced for those organizations, is to help parents better teach their families. That includes all types of families, from single adults to parents with many children and grandchildren.

We try to produce as many high quality materials as we can and to make them available to anyone who wants access to them, at the lowest prices possible.

Q: How expensive are these videocassettes?

A: It used to cost about $150.00 to purchase a thirty-minute 16mm movie. Now we can put four or five movies on a videocassette and sell it for $15–20. This has put access to these materials within reach of many more families and has made them much easier for the local wards and branches to obtain. We encourage the local Church units to acquire these materials and make them available to their members.

But purchasing the cassettes is not the only way local Church units can add to their audiovisual libraries. Several times a year the Church broadcasts films over the satellite system for the stakes to record and make available to the wards and members. Thus, for no more than the cost of a blank tape, meetinghouse libraries can significantly increase their supply of audiovisual materials. Each stake library should have a schedule of future satellite broadcasts.

Q: What has been the response to the videocassettes?

A: It has been tremendous. The initial demand for the cassettes was so great that the supply we felt would last for a year was exhausted within a few weeks.

The Church has been producing new films on cassettes for about five years and has transferred nearly all of the existing Church produced 16mm films to cassette. As we produce new projects, we try to make the films applicable in a wide variety of situations. For instance, we make them the right length to be used in a class period and still leave time for discussion. The use and application of these materials in the home is practically limitless.

Q: Can families and individuals borrow video materials from their meetinghouse libraries?

A: Yes. Any videocassette or other software housed in the libraries are to be made available to families. The videorecorders that are standard Church equipment in the meetinghouses are to be used only within the building.

In the past few years we have found the need to change our concept of the meetinghouse libraries from merely a place to pick up pictures and chalk for a Sunday School lesson to a storehouse of information and resources for personal and family gospel instruction. We want the libraries to become an even better aid to parents in fulfilling President Kimball’s challenge to make the home the center of gospel teaching.

Q: With the rapidly increasing availability of these materials, how are members to keep up with what would be applicable to use for, say, a family home evening lesson?

A: Members need to become familiar with what’s available. The meetinghouse librarians should try to keep current lists of everything they have in their libraries, even though keeping the lists up to date is difficult. The new Salt Lake Distribution Center Catalog, which should be available in all meetinghouse libraries, has a comprehensive topical guide to all Church audiovisual materials. Thus, if you are teaching a family home evening lesson on preparing for baptism, for example, you have a ready list of all related audiovisual materials.

Q: Keeping up with all of this sounds like a big job for the librarians. Should audiovisual specialists be called to pick up the slack?

A: No. The librarians should be able to handle it along with their other duties.

Teaching Program Will Offer Help to Stakes, Wards

Stake and ward leaders will receive valuable help and encouragement in improving the quality of gospel teaching through a special videotaped program scheduled for use this fall.

The program, “Teaching—A Renewed Dedication,” will be broadcast via satellite September 8 for stakes with satellite receiving units to record. The videotape will be available by mail for stakes without satellite receiving equipment. It is suggested that the videotape be used within two to three weeks after it is received as the basis of a training session for stake and ward leaders. Within two to three weeks following the training session for stake and ward leaders, another training session should be held in each ward in the stake for teachers and members.

The ward-level meetings will be for all parents and prospective parents and for anyone who is serving or might serve in a teaching assignment in the Church or home, such as home teachers and visiting teachers.

The program is one response to President Spencer W. Kimball’s requests for greater emphasis on teaching in the Church, said Elder Carlos E. Asay of the Presidency of the First Quorum of the Seventy and Executive Director of the Curriculum Department.

In October of 1980 and again in April of 1981, President Kimball called on stake, ward, and branch leaders to “take a particular interest in strengthening and improving the quality of teaching in the Church. The Savior has told us to feed his sheep (see John 21:15–17). … We all need to be touched and nurtured by the Spirit, and effective teaching is one of the most important ways this can happen.” (Ensign, Nov. 1980, p. 46.)

The videotape, narrated by Elder Hugh W. Pinnock of the First Quorum of the Seventy and General President of the Sunday School, includes three vignettes on teaching. After each of the vignettes is shown, the videotape will be stopped and those viewing it will respond to discussion questions relating to the situation depicted.

“There are three key principles taught in the videotape,” said Elder Asay: (1) seek the Spirit; (2) love your students; and (3) prepare properly.

“The tape itself, we hope, will be stored in the meetinghouse library and receive continued use.”

The stake and ward showings of “Teaching—A Renewed Dedication” will be a prelude to ward and branch open houses to be held in January 1986 to familiarize members with the 1986 Church curriculum materials. One of the major purposes of the open houses will be to encourage and help improve the teaching of the gospel in the home. Open houses will help parents become more aware of what teachers are doing to assist them and what materials are available for purchase or on loan from the library.

Joseph Smith Letter on Virtue Obtained

An 1840 letter from Joseph Smith to a family in Philadelphia has come into the hands of a Utah collector.

The letter is a statement on virtue, akin to the teachings in verses 45–46, section 121 of the Doctrine and Covenants [D&C 121:45–46], said Brent Ashworth, the collector who purchased the letter.

The handwriting on the letter and the signature on the letter have been authenticated by Dean C. Jessee, an associate professor and research historian in the Joseph Fielding Smith Institute for Church History at Brigham Young University.

The letter was written in ink and is signed by Joseph Smith. Two additional lines are written on the lower left of the sheet, in pencil: “Phila. Penna., Feb. 1840.”

The book dealer from whom Brother Ashworth obtained the letter said the letter was written to a family named Wilkinson, non-members who later were baptized. The Prophet apparently stayed with the family the week after he had visited Washington, D.C., to appeal—unsuccessfully—to U.S. President Martin Van Buren for help in redressing wrongs committed against the Latter-day Saints. The Prophet Joseph Smith evidently spent several days in the Chester County, Pennsylvania, area. On January 20, he wrote a letter to his wife Emma from there. Elder Parley P. Pratt’s writings referred to the visit in Chester County, noting that Joseph Smith gave two public speeches there.

The brief letter begins with a short treatise on virtue and ends with a blessing on the family.

The text of the letter:

“Virtue is one of the most prominant principles that enables us to have confidence in approaching our Father who is in heaven in order to ask wisdom at his hand therefore if thou wilt cherish this principle in thine heart thou mayest ask with all Confidence before him and it shall be poured out upon thine head and thou shalt not lack any thing that thy soul desires in truth and again the Lord shall bless this house and none of them shall fail because they turned not away the servants of the Lord from their doors even so Amen.” (Original spelling and punctuation have been preserved.)

An 1840 letter by the Prophet Joseph Smith(click to view larger)

An 1840 letter by the Prophet Joseph Smith.

Policies and Announcements

The following letter from President Ezra Taft Benson of the Council of the Twelve has been sent to priesthood leaders.

The Primary stake board will no longer include a stake Primary Scouting director. Those currently serving as stake Primary Scouting directors should be released.

Ward Blazer Scout leaders will receive Scouting skill training at local Scout district roundtables. They will no longer attend stake Primary preparation meeting, but will continue to attend monthly ward preparation meeting.

Please discuss this policy change with stake and ward Primary presidents.

New Signs Mark Mormon Trail

When company after company of Mormon pioneers trekked across the central United States to Utah in the mid-1800s, they left a path that has become part of the nation’s history.

That path is now being marked with U.S. National Parks Service signs along the approximately 1,400-mile trail, through Illinois, Iowa, Nebraska, Wyoming, and Utah.

Hundreds of thousands of emigrants—not only Latter-day Saints, but also many others bound for points beyond Utah—followed the trail west in the 1800s. The Mormon Pioneer-Oregon Trail corridor also became the route for the first transcontinental telegraph and the overland mail in the United States.

The trail is being marked under the National Trails System Act. A total of 1,547 official National Parks Services signs are being placed along roads that follow or cross the Mormon Trail. Nearly half of them are impressive eighteen-inch highway signs.

The signs, inverted triangles with rounded sides, depict a cow skull trail marker on a dark background. Lettered around the edges are the words: “Mormon Pioneer National Historic Trail.”

C. Booth Wallentine

C. Booth Wallentine, a member of the Butler Twenty-third Ward, Salt Lake Brighton Stake, is chairman of the advisory council to the National Parks Service for the project.

Stakes in the Church

Stakes in the Church

The Church began this year with 1,507 stakes. The Iloilo Philippines Stake, organized from units of the Philippines Cebu Mission on January 20, became number 1,508, and the first created in 1985. By the end of the first quarter of the year, number 1,525 had been organized—the Snow College Utah Stake, on March 24. By the end of the second quarter of the year, number 1,543 had been organized, the Rochester New York Palmyra Stake, created June 30. From the beginning of 1985 until midyear, thirty-six new stakes had been created in the Church.

Eight Chapels Bombed in Chile

Six Latter-day Saint chapels in Chile were bombed July 4, and bombings were attempted at two more in what was apparently an anti-United States protest. There was no major structural damage to any of the buildings, and no one was injured.

Except for a chapel that had not yet been completed, members continued meeting in the buildings, said Erastus Trujillo, area physical facilities manager for Chile. Damage to the buildings consisted largely of broken glass and doors and marred paint, with some interior partitions damaged in one of them.

Five of the chapels were located in the Santiago area; two in Coronel and Lota, about 350 kilometers south of Santiago; and one in Antofagasta, about 1,500 kilometers north.

The bombings occurred the night of July 4, celebrated as Independence Day in the United States.

The Church has approximately 175,000 members in Chile. Elder A. Theodore Tuttle of the First Quorum of the Seventy, President of the Church’s South America South Area, worked with regional representatives and other Church leaders in the area to prepare a press release distributed to newspapers four days after they printed police reports of the bombings. The release reiterated that the Church is “an international Church, without affiliation to any nation or country, whose purpose is to preach the gospel of Jesus Christ.”

Many civic leaders have expressed their sorrow about the incidents to Church members. Coincidentally, two articles favorable to the Church were published in Chile that weekend, one in a Santiago newspaper and another in a magazine for microfilm users and processors, focusing on the Church’s genealogical efforts.

New Temple Square Tours Appeal to Visitors

A series of six new tours on Temple Square is successfully meeting the approval of visitors. Since the tours began May 13, nearly 75 percent more of Temple Square visitors spend part of their time there with a guide.

The new thirty-minute tours replace the old seventy-five minute standard tour. The new tours deal with six different subject areas, ranging from the life of Christ to historic sites on and around the square.

Signs at the entrances to Temple Square alert visitors to the six tours and allow them to pick the one—or ones—which suit their interests. The shorter tours allow visitors on a tight schedule to spend time they would not otherwise be able to spend with a guide. For other visitors, the shorter tours mean they can take more than one tour. Each tour offers guides an opportunity to introduce visitors to LDS beliefs and to bear testimony.

“We cover more of our message in a shorter period of time, and we do it more effectively,” explained Sam Park, recently appointed as an assistant director of visitors’ centers on Temple Square.

Tour guides used to conduct seventy-five minute tours about 60 times a day on Temple Square. Now they conduct about 190 of the half-hour tours each day.

Before the new program was started, 20 percent of the people who came to Temple Square took a guided tour. “As of June 1, it was 34 percent,” Brother Park said.

The new tours begin approximately every ten minutes. The tours are: “Historic sites,” “Life of Christ,” “Old Testament,” “Book of Mormon,” “Purpose of the Temple,” and “The Tabernacle Choir.”

The new tours give visitors the option to tailor their Temple Square experience to their own interests. This is important because Temple Square is the most sought-out attraction in the state for visitors to Utah and one of the most important attractions in the western United States, particularly for foreign visitors, Brother Park explained.

He said Church members will also find many things of interest in the new Temple Square tours. “We would like to reintroduce Temple Square to members,” who may avail themselves of the tours and who would find them a valuable resource in helping prepare friends or loved ones to accept the gospel, he said.

Appointments

Regional Representatives

Grant R. Ipsen, a Boise, Idaho, insurance salesman and financial tax planner, has been called as regional representative to the Rexburg Idaho and Rexburg Idaho College regions. He is a former mission president (Denmark), stake president, and high councilor.

Louis E. Ringger, a retired U.S. Steel executive from Orem, Utah, has been called as regional representative to the Milan Italy Region. Brother Ringger, a native of Switzerland, has served twice as both a bishop and a high councilor.

Stake Presidents

Willow Creek Colorado Stake (new, from a division of the Littleton Colorado Stake), Robert K. Bills, a telephone company executive; Santa Fe Argentina Stake, Luis Clemente Leonidas Coronel, an institute director; Manteca California Stake, Leonard Dee Wallace, a chemist; San Jose Costa Rica Stake, Milton F. Marin, a sales representative.

Bountiful Utah Mueller Park Stake, Craig L. Smith, an insurance executive; Calgary Alberta Stake, B. Kent Remington, a dermatologist; Citrus Heights California Stake, Victor L. Brown, Jr., Northern California area director for LDS Welfare Services; Ciudad Mante Mexico Stake, Rosalio Chavez Padron, a maker of doors and ornamental iron work for houses; Columbus Ohio East Stake, Kenneth G. Peterson, a department store data center manager.

Nephi Utah North Stake (new, from a division of the Nephi Utah Stake), James R. McKnight, city administrator; Newcastle-Under-Lyme England Stake, Robert Ian Burgess, an engineering company executive; Salt Lake Hunter South (new, from a division of the Salt Lake Hunter and Salt Lake Hunter East stakes), Morris L. Terry, a sanitation district equipment operator.

Mexico City Netzahualcoyotl Stake, Evaristo de Leon Gayoso, seminary and institute teacher; Oklahoma City Oklahoma Stake, Rodger Dean Duncan, president of a management consulting firm.

Araraquara Brazil Stake, Edson Lustoza Araujo, cardiologist; Barranquilla Colombia Stake (new), Libardo Rodriguez, a customs broker; Brigham Young University Thirteenth Stake, Dee F. Andersen, vice-president for administrative services at BYU; Buenos Aires Argentina Castelar Stake, Emilio Carlos Canga, principal Argentine accountant for the Presiding Bishopric Office; Iquitos Peru Sacha Chorro Stake (new, from a division of the Iquitos Peru Stake), Jorge Diaz Suarez, accountant; Mexico City Mexico Oriental Stake, Felipe Angel Alvarado Arias, home product distributor.

Price Utah North Stake, Kent C. Lowe, a dentist; Rochester New York Stake, Norman W. Burningham, a chemical engineer; Rochester New York Palmyra Stake (new, from a division of the Rochester New York Stake), Kay R. Whitmore, president of Eastman Kodak Company; Sandy Utah Cottonwood Creek Stake, Russell Elmer Tueller, land development company controller.

São Bernardo Brazil Stake, Joao Roberto Grahl, coordinator for the Church Educational System; São Paulo Brazil Interlagos Stake (new, from the São Paulo Brazil West and the São Paulo Brazil Santo Amaro Stakes), Walter Guedes de Queiroz, educational coordinator; São Paulo Brazil Santo Amaro Stake, Manoel Ricardo Castro, textile plant superintendent.

LDS Scene

E. Gordon Gee, formerly president of West Virginia University, became president of the University of Colorado on July 1. The university, with campuses in Boulder, Colorado Springs, and Denver, has an enrollment of approximately forty thousand full- and part-time students. Brother Gee has served as president of West Virginia University since 1981.

Two young Latter-day Saints will represent their states in the Miss America scholarship pageant in September. Gina Larsen, 20, is Miss Utah, and Nanette South, 19, is Miss Idaho. Miss Larsen is a daughter of Lorrin H. and Jean McQuivey Larsen of Provo, and a member of the Pleasant View Seventh Singles Ward, Provo Utah Sharon East Stake. Miss South is a daughter of David B. and Judy Bates South of Menan, and a member of the Menan Third Ward, Menan Idaho Stake.

Three thirty-second public service messages produced for the Church won the top award in their category for New Zealand Radio at the 1985 International Radio Festival of New York. The three radio spots, which won gold medals in preliminary competition to qualify for Grand Award consideration, emphasize relationships between parents and children. Ross Jolley, producer-director for New Zealand Radio, said the joint effort between the Church and his organization on the three-spot campaign produced the first-ever airing of religion-sponsored public service messages on New Zealand Radio. Curt Dahl was co-producer of the spots for Bonneville Media Communications of Salt Lake City.

Marvin M. Johnson, an oil company scientist, has been awarded the National Medal of Technology by United States President Ronald Reagan. Brother Johnson, high councilor from the Bartlesville Second Ward, Tulsa Oklahoma Stake, received the award for his work with a catalytic cracking process that produces about half the gasoline used in the U.S. each year.

Barbara Lockhart has been selected as president-elect of the American Alliance for Health, Physical Education, Recreation, and Dance. Sister Lockhart, a member of the Broomall Second Ward, Philadelphia Pennsylvania Stake, is a professor of physical education in the College of Health, Physical Education, Recreation and Dance at Temple University in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. She will serve as her organization’s president in 1986–87.

A Latter-day Saint boy has been chosen to represent 25,000 handicapped children of British Columbia in a service club’s fund campaign. David Stanton of the Coquitlam Ward, Vancouver British Columbia Stake, selected for the honor before his seventh birthday, is the youngest person ever chosen for the role.

Rayda Reed has been selected as one of one hundred outstanding first-year teachers in the United States by the Student Loan Marketing Association. Sister Reed, a teacher at Townsend Elementary School in Townsend, Delaware, was nominated for the new award by her school district. Sister Reed is second counselor in the Primary presidency of the Dover Ward, Wilmington Delaware Stake.

Ten San Diego (California) area stakes contributed more than $24,000 to the Children’s Miracle Network Telethon this year, contributing funds raised through their annual Primary drive. Brenda Terry, Primary president in the Poway California Stake, acted as spokesperson when the check was presented to local telethon anchorman Hal Clement, describing the Primary organization and explaining that in many cases children helped raise the money. During the past five years, stakes in San Diego County have raised $107,700 in their fund drives; the money has been used to provide facilities and equipment for the local children’s hospital. The nationwide telethon benefits children’s hospitals throughout the United States.