Salt Lake City—The first Mormon missionaries to the Hawaiian Islands found themselves in for culture shock. Between confrontations with scantily clad and aggressive women, difficulties in learning the language, impatience with native habits, a flirtatious mission president, and infighting among one another, only the most stalwart of the American missionaries persevered. All of this
Salt Lake City—When Amasa Lyman, an early convert to the Mormon Church, embarked on his first mission in 1832, he likely had little idea what the future held for him. He would participate in Zion’s Camp (a para-military march in Ohio), spend time in jail alongside Joseph Smith in Missouri, serve as an apostle inside
In the News LDS LOBBYIST JOINS AFFIRMATION Bill Evans, a former LDS Church lobbyist who pushed for the church’s interests in Utah’s capitol, has joined the board of Affirmation, an independent Mormon LGBTQ advocacy group. Evans met with members of Affirmation and other LGBTQ groups as part of his efforts to promote LDS Church beliefs, such as
In the News MORMONS AND THE US PRESIDENTIAL ELECTION Although Mitt Romney is not a candidate for the US Presidency this year, Mormons continue to figure prominently in some analyses of how the election will play out as Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton square off. Libertarian candidate Gary Johnson, who has a real shot at
In the News CHURCH RESPONDS TO FORMER CONGRESSMAN Former US Congressman Tom Tancredo, a conservative Republican from Colorado, wrote a column for Breitbart on Saturday that accused LDS Church leadership of “moral incoherence” on the subject of immigration. Tancredo, a Donald Trump supporter, insisted that Mormon politicians in Washington, DC, acted at the behest of
In the News CLINTON PITCHES TO UTAHNS AS MORMON RUNS Hillary Clinton pitched the case for her campaign to Utahns in a rare op-ed published in the Deseret News this week at the same time a BYU graduate and Mormon announced his own independent run for President of the United States. Clinton spoke in language so familiar
The historical community in Walla Walla, Washington, commemorated a Mormon schismatic group known as the Kingdom of Heaven that was active from 1867 to 1881. The Kingdom was founded by William W. Davies, a disillusioned follower of Brigham Young who joined the Morrisite branch of Mormonism before forming his own group.
The LDS Church reposted its policy for handling child sexual abuse online this week, calling it a “gold standard” and touting their record in preventing abuse. The policy, first written in 2010, immediately generated some angry online responses as members shared first-hand experiences, including details of harrowing abuse, that directly refuted some of the claims in the church’s post. The statement that “preventing and responding to child abuse is...
In a meeting with members of the Navajo Nation, apostle Neil Anderson called the American Indians the “children of Lehi,” a reference to Mormon beliefs that Natives are Lamanites, the remnants of the Book of Mormon. While Anderson’s statement is perhaps not surprising, it comes at a time of an identity crisis for some Latter-day Saints who grew up being told they were Lamanites and descendants of Lehi. In...
The LDS Church staged a rare and unexpected press conference this week on LGBT issues and a desired religious-liberty exemption from anti-discrimination laws. The church began asking for input from church members on garments and got an ear full. Mitt Romney took his hat back out of the ring. And Signature staff are attending the Sunstone conference this weekend in sunny San Diego.