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Growth in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints bounced back a bit last year after taking a pandemic plunge in 2020. The global faith saw its overall membership rise by 0.8% during 2021 to top 16.8 million.Africa has led the way, accounting for 10 of the 14 fastest-growing nations in terms of Latter-day Saint growth the past two years.In …
 
He defeated a popular Democratic senator, arguing that three terms were enough, and then proceeded to serve more than twice as long (seven terms) — longer than any Republican in Senate history.During those 42 years, this conservative loyalist teamed up with a liberal lion, Sen. Ted Kennedy, to create the Children’s Health Insurance Program and the …
 
The FX/Hulu television series “Under the Banner of Heaven” has generated a social media storm among members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints as well as former members and religion observers.It tells the story of the gruesome 1984 murders of Brenda Lafferty and her 15-month-old daughter, Erica, at the hands of her husband’s two bro…
 
To say that leaders of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints often talk about religious freedom would be, well, an understatement.It is a common theme from the top apostles on down and appears to be a favorite topic of Dallin Oaks, first counselor in the governing First Presidency and a former Utah Supreme Court justice. Recently, Preside…
 
After bursting onto the scene in 2016 by releasing leaked videos of apostles for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints privately discussing a range of topics — from politics and piracy to same-sex marriage and marijuana — Ryan McKnight, with help from his colleague Ethan Gregory Dodge, set up a website called MormonLeaks, which gave way t…
 
It’s Holy Week for Western Christians, which culminates Sunday with Easter.The Holy Land is awash with pilgrims and tourists — including members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints — who are soaking in the sites of Jesus’ last days.It also signals the reopening of Brigham Young University’s Jerusalem Center for Near East Studies afte…
 
To Sonia Johnson, the effort to pass the Equal Rights Amendment in the 1970s and ‘80s was more than merely a single political cause. It was a turning point in her life.Leaders of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Virginia excommunicated Johnson from the Utah-based faith in 1979 for allegedly spreading false doctrine and working aga…
 
In January, Salt Lake Tribune columnist Gordon Monson stepped away from writing about the WNBA, NBA, NFL, NCAA, MLS, MLB and the alphabet soup of the sports world to comment on another acronym: LDS.A practicing and believing member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, he rattled off 20 reforms he’d like to see his faith undertake.Now…
 
Almost a year ago, noted Latter-day Saint historian and prodigious researcher D. Michael Quinn died at age 77.Quinn, who retained his belief in the founding events of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints until his death, was pressured to resign from Brigham Young University and subsequently excommunicated from the faith in 1993 as part o…
 
Taylor Kerby persistently feared he would fall short of God’s love — no matter how many prayers he offered, no matter how often he read or recited scriptures and no matter how pure he kept his thoughts.Growing up in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, Kerby fixated on living every commandment, avoiding a hint of anything that could be …
 
Members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-days Saints across the United States overwhelmingly lean Republican, vote Republican and identify as Republican.This week’s guest is not one of them.As national director of Latter-day Saints for Biden-Harris, Robert Taber strives to swing more members toward a different direction by campaigning for th…
 
The world watched last week as Russian troops invaded Ukraine. Caught in the crosshairs were more than 11,000 Ukrainian members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.In this special episode, Salt Lake Tribune journalists spoke with Latter-day Saints across Ukraine — and some fleeing the Eastern European nation — to learn about how they…
 
Coming into 2022, Brigham Young University faced a federal investigation about its discrimination against LGBTQ students, allowing heterosexual couples to exhibit “romantic behavior,” while forbidding the same for same-sex couples.Eventually, the Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights dismissed the investigation, saying the Provo school,…
 
Race is a fraught topic in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.For more than 125 years, the Utah-based faith denied Black members access to its priesthood and temples. That exclusion ended in 1978, but discrimination and racism have persisted. And, though the church has formed an alliance with the NAACP, and church leaders have strongly…
 
Today’s world seems more divided than ever on political solutions to seemingly intractable problems, and some such rifts have seeped into The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.Many members have entrenched themselves in their own partisan positions, choosing derision over dialogue by refusing to talk or even listen to other viewpoints. Oth…
 
Eugene England, a popular professor at Brigham Young University who died 20 years ago, probably is best known as the founder of Dialogue: A Journal of Mormon Thought.Last summer, Terryl Givens published the first full-length biography of England, titled “Stretching the Heavens: The Life of Eugene England and the Crisis of Modern Mormonism,” detaili…
 
On Jan. 15, after an undersea volcano showered the kingdom of Tonga with tsunami waves, flooding, rocks and ash, members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints sprang into action.The Utah-based faith provided tons of food, clothes, water and other household goods to the devastated islands. Church-owned Liahona High School became a welco…
 
For more than a dozen years, Devery Anderson, a white Latter-day Saint studying history at the University of Utah, was obsessed with the 1955 killing of a 14-year-old Black youth, Emmett Till.Anderson’s quest for details culminated in 2015, with publication of his book-length exploration, “Emmett Till: The Murder That Shocked the World and Propelle…
 
This season’s University of Utah football team was stocked with stars en route to its historic run to a Pac-12 title and the school’s first-ever Rose Bowl appearance.But the heart and soul of the squad was found in an unlikely, undersized, overaged Latter-day Saint receiver-return specialist whose affable, gregarious and lighthearted nature seemed …
 
Longtime Salt Lake Tribune sports columnist Gordon Monson usually writes about first downs, double-faults, 3-pointers and four-baggers. He is at home commenting on what takes place on basketball courts, football fields and baseball diamonds.Occasionally, though, he enters another arena — that of religion. A practicing member of The Church of Jesus …
 
Most people know that The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints practiced polygamy in the 19th century, but the Utah-based faith eventually abandoned it, beginning with a pronouncement in 1890 by church President Wilford Woodruff known as “the Manifesto.”Even most members, however, are unaware of Woodruff’s 1894 announcement, termed a “revela…
 
Some members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints believe that their church has become staid, legalistic and bureaucratic. They yearn for more of the mystical encounters espoused by church founder Joseph Smith and his early followers.In 2006, Utah attorney Denver Snuffer published “The Second Comforter: Conversing With the Lord Throug…
 
The U.S. Supreme Court recently heard arguments about a Mississippi law banning virtually all abortions after 15 weeks of pregnancy.Anti-abortion activists are cheering the possibility that the court could overturn the landmark Roe v. Wade decision, which granted women a constitutional right to abortion before fetal viability.The Church of Jesus Ch…
 
Leaders of nearly 200 nations met in Glasgow, Scotland, recently to discuss how to limit climate change.The Washington Post reports that they agreed to ramp up their carbon-cutting commitments, phase out some fossil fuels, and increase aid to poor countries on the front lines of global warming.To many Latter-day Saints, these are urgent, even relig…
 
Temple work may have slowed due to the pandemic, but temple-building is moving forward at an unprecedented pace.With The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints announcing multiple new temples at each General Conference, architects are busy designing these holy edifices for locales ranging from Argentina to Zimbabwe and scores of places in betw…
 
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