Category Archives: Mormon Church and Politics

Can’t we all just get along

I am a Canadian living in Canada, so I am an outside observer when it comes to the US election. It is crazy how long the campaign lasts for (here it is about two months), and how mean the tone has become.

I’ve recently read a BYU Speech by Hugh B Brown from 1968 called “God is the Gardener“. I don’t know what was happening at that time, but he commented that “our nation is engaged in an abrasive and increasingly strident process of electing a president.” Before getting into the meat of his speech, he made a couple of other comments:

Beware of those who feel obliged to prove their own patriotism by calling into question the loyalty of others. Be skeptical of those who attempt to demonstrate their love of country by demeaning its institutions.

and

Strive to develop a maturity of mind and emotion and a depth of spirit that will enable you to differ with others on matters of politics without calling into question the integrity of those with whom you differ.

and

At a time when radicals of the right or left would inflame race against race, avoid those who preach evil doctrines of racism. When our Father declared that we, His children, were brothers and sisters, He did not limit this relationship on the basis of race.

and

Patriots have never demanded of good men the hatred of another country as proof of one’s love for his own. Acquire tolerance and compassion for others and for those of a different political persuasion or race or religion.

It’s fascinating the words spoken almost 50 years ago would have such meaning today… A prophet, seer and revelator indeed!

October 2012 World Report of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

One of my favourite things about General Conference weekend is seeing The World Report. This is a “news” program that the Church puts together highlighting what has happened in the last 6 months. Normally I watch the broadcast between sessions of conference, but didn’t have a chance to. I just watched it earlier this week. As usual, it had the “standard” items, as well as some items that you sometimes don’t hear about.

The broadcast included segments on:

  • President Monson’s 85th birthday celebration
  • Elder Holland’s visit to Harvard
  • Elder Bednar’s trip to Mexico
  • Elder Oaks’ trip to India to create the first stake
  • Elder Christofferson’s trip to Eastern Europe and the Middle East
  • An update on the construction of the Rome temple including information about the visitors centre that will house the Christus and the apostle statues
  • Information on the dedication of the Kansas City Temple and the associated cultural celebration
  • Information on the Brigham City Temple dedication
  • Elder Holland doing the groundbreaking for the Provo City Center Temple
  • Information on the dedication of the Manaus Brazil Temple and the associated cultural celebration
  • Information on the Pioneer Day concert with Katherine Jenkins
  • Information about a new Family History Centre in Nauvoo
  • Elder Oaks’ visit to Notre Dame
  • Information about the candidacy of Mitt Romney for US President
  • Gail McGovern’s trip (President of the American Red Cross) to Salt Lake City
  • Pocatello Idaho brush fire and Mormon Helping Hands
  • London Olympics and Hyde Park Chapel and Visitors Centre
  • More information on the Christus and the apostle statues that will be in the Rome Temple Visitors Centre. The marble comes from Carrara Italy

The Mormon Newsroom has links to the full video, as well as individual segments. There are also links to other stories that the Newsroom has released about the segments.

Church leaders at Inauguration and National Prayer Service

I’m sure you’ve seen many reports about this, but President Uchtdorf and Elder Ballard represented the Church at the Inauguration of Barack Obama. They stayed over, and were there for the National Prayer Service as well. The Church Newsroom posted a couple of pictures, and the Deseret News covered it as well:

President Uchtdorf was very kind in his comments:

It was inspiring to be an eyewitness to this peaceful, impressive, transfer of power and the swearing-in of the first African American president. We pray for President Barack Obama’s success in these challenging times and join in his expressions of hope and optimism.

It was interesting seeing the nice picture of President Uchtdorf and Elder Ballard. Here were two Apostles of the Lord, standing in a crowd of over a million people. Probably very few knew who they were, and even fewer knew of their authority and calling.

Church Leaders to Attend Inauguration of President-elect Barack Obama

I was going to post something else today, but since it is Inauguration Day, I figured this was more timely. Last Friday the LDS Newsroom released information about their representation at a couple of inaugural events. Here is the entire release:

SALT LAKE CITY 16 January 2009 The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints will be represented at inaugural events for President-elect Barack Obama by President Dieter F. Uchtdorf, second counselor in the First Presidency, and Elder M. Russell Ballard, a member of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles.

The two leaders, who have been asked to represent the Church by Church President Thomas S. Monson, are scheduled to attend the swearing-in ceremony on January 20 and the National Prayer Service at Washington’s National Cathedral on January 21.

“It is always an honor for the Church to be represented at the inauguration of a new president,” said President Monson. “We send our best wishes to President-elect Obama and pray for the blessings of a loving Father in Heaven to be upon him and his administration.”

I know the events of today will be big news in the United States. I guess here in Canada people are excited, too, as it is expected that Canada-US relations will improve. I’m at work all day, so I’ll read a few things online, but I won’t be watching Obama take the Oath of Office.