This post is Janet’s fault.
The Church has a new website for youth, launched today.
God be thanked for the matchless gift of his only begotten. Merry Christmas everyone.
I know, I know. There’s so much to love about the jolly fella. But he keeps getting in the way. Or not.
Tithing Settlement is a great part of the Christmas season.
Below is a forward I recently received about a perceived effort to eliminate the release time seminary system in an Idaho school district. The email is from a CES employee to parents of students in the school district encouraging them to oppose one of several proposed schedules currently under consideration that apparently would restructure the district’s trimester system and eliminate the class flexibility that enables the release time seminary program. It’s unclear whether preventing the Church from offering seminary during school hours was the intent of the proposed schedule at issue, but it nonetheless raises some interesting questions about the release time seminary program.
Last weekend I went to the penultimate game in Yankee Stadium, and the next night watched the last game on television, complete with its post-game wake. Over nearly 20 years I’ve attended meetings there, letting a place and a culture become an almost religious part of my life. Its a Temple of baseball.
In April, 1998, President Hinckley visited New York City to speak at a special fireside held in Madison Square Garden, and our stake provided a 100+ voice choir for the event. I remember thinking at the time that with all of the talented Church members in New York City, the choir should be permanent.
Soon after I was made a ward clerk 20 years ago this month, I walked into the clerk’s office to find a xerox copy of an article posted there. The article was the text of a letter, sent by one of my predecessors, to the Church’s membership department, and had somehow found its way to Sunstone. It was titled “A Religion of Clerks.” The author, Randal Quarles, has since served as Undersecretary of the Treasury.
Three excellent quotes from this week’s Sunday School lesson: Men and women who turn their lives over to God will discover that He can make a lot more out of their lives than they can.
Psalm 137 is one of those wonderful and paradoxical passages of scripture that contains within itself a universe.
About a year or so ago our stake made a move to improve fast offering receipts. The bishop supported this and urged everyone to donate to fast offerings and, in addition to the general admonition, he reinstituted Aaronic priesthood collection of fast offerings after church.
It happened not long ago. I started getting emails from something called the Cambridge Stake MSA. As is my habit with all mass mailings, I deleted the first few without reading them, but after a while I noticed them and realized that I didn’t know what MSA stood for. Turns out MSA is the “Middle Singles,” which is everyone 30-50 years old who isn’t married. In the eyes of the church, I am no longer a “Young Single Adult.” I’m just a “Single Adult.” I am now officially old.
“…brothers and sisters, there is another matter of which I’d like to mention before we close this glorious conference. We live in a new age. A time where information surrounds us. The internet has grown to be a regular part of many people’s lives. Email makes it easier to communicate… but I’m not going to give you my email address (crowd erupts with laughter).
Let’s flip through a church magazine that’s nearly a century old. The pages are slightly yellowed; there are a few stains on the cover and the staples are rusting.
Matt Evans and I went a few rounds at one of those other blogs over the reason behind falling LDS birthrates. Turns out we were both wrong.
So my very bright friend in Wisconsin has come up with something that should get us light years beyond the tired old Liahona-Iron Rod business. Here it is, in his words, not mine.
The techniques that Evangelicals use to convert Mormons to ‘traditional Christianity’ do not work. The same cannot be said for the method proposed by David L. Rowe in his new book. .
David O. McKay presented a dramatic contrast to his predecessors: an athletic, movie-star-handsome, clean-shaven figure who often wore a white double-breasted suit; contrasted to the dark-suited, bearded polygamists (or, in the case of George Albert Smith, son of a polygamist) who preceded him as Church President ever since Joseph Smith. In an age prior to professional image-makers, he instinctively grasped the importance of appearance, and coupled it to the substance of a professional educator to become an icon of Mormonism whose persona did much to change the negative image of the Church in much of the world.
Griping about endless crafts at Home, Family, and Personal Enrichment Meeting is a Bloggernacle staple. I’d like to try something different.
Sitting in Fast and Testimony meeting last Sunday, I started thinking about why I enjoy my ward so much, and it came down to the people in it.
It’s Friday morning, and the house is full of the feeling that something good is just around the corner. Nothing is, of course: I have no plans for tonight, tomorrow brings no particular respite from the daily round, the weekend provides no special bookmark in the text of my life, these days. Well, there is the adults-only session of Stake Conference on Saturday night, I guess. Still, though, Friday tastes good, like movies and loud music and books and beds and restaurants and release. Yeah, you could say I’m in love.
Which should we be more strenuously avoiding, and how? Clark Goble suggests that the Church in “the last decade and a half has focused on building on common ground. But that has also (IMO) had unfortunate doctrinal consequences on the population as well as I believe leading to the decrease in conversions the last 5 – 8 years.”
We have a lot of teachers around here. I am guessing that at least half of our perma-bloggers are somehow involved in teaching and probably huge chunks of our readership are or will be.
I posted the following you-know-where: I don’t have girl children, but I don’t let my boys wear tank tops or shorts above the knee.
When I was in graduate school, I had long hair and a beard.
Thought LDS dating rules were draconian? ‘Courtship‘ is the trendy new (old) thing among Christian fundamentalists.
Each month of this semester the Faculty Center at BYU is sponsoring a panel discussion of prayer. The participants are Julia Boerio-Goates (Chemistry), Thomas Griffith (University General Counsel), Roger Keller (Church History and Doctrine), and James Siebach (Philosophy).
Can y’all stomach a mission story right now?
JV is the kind of person one notices right away in an LDS chapel, the kind of person one remembers. I’d seen her at various stake activities after I moved with my new husband into our micro-studio apartment in a transient-urban ward; when we moved into student housing in the neighboring transient-student ward the next year, hers was one of the few familiar faces that greeted us that first Sunday. It was impossible not to like her instantly: JV is outgoing, exuberant, affectionate, interested, and an intent listener. She also happens to be African-American.