ALL the News about
Mormons, Mormonism
and the LDS Church
Mormon News: All the News about Mormons, Mormonism and the LDS Church
Posted 05 Aug 2001   For week ended July 27, 2001
Most Recent Week
Front Page
Local News
Arts & Entertainment
·New Products
·New Websites
·Mormon Stock Index
Letters to Editor
Continuing Coverage of:
Boston Temple
School Prayer
Julie on MTV
Robert Elmer Kleasen
About Mormon News
News by E-Mail
Weekly Summary
Submitting News
Submitting Press Releases
Volunteer Positions
Bad Link?

Local News

Angel For Snowflake Temple Placed
Attracted by the chance to see construction workers place a statue of the Angel Moroni on the steeple of the new Snowflake Arizona Temple, more than 200 people were on hand to witness the 7 a.m. event. Those watching applauded when the statue was put in place. The Snowflake Temple will be complete in November or December, and serve Church members in northern and eastern Arizona.

Vandals Hit Another LDS Chapel
Vandals spray-painted graffiti on a 97-year-old LDS chapel in tiny Levan, Utah, the latest act of vandalism against the LDS Church. But while the incident proves that small towns aren't immune from these acts of vandalism, what the Levan chapel experienced was light compared to other recent attacks.

Texas May Try Again in 1974 Mormon Missionary Murders
Prosecutors may try again to convict Robert Elmer Kleasen for the 1974 murder of two Mormon missionaries when he is released from an English prison in November. But Kleasen says he plans to move to Germany to live with his new German wife, after his release. Kleasen, who has a history of violence, was first convicted of the murder of Elder Mark Fischer in 1975, but was released in 1977 after evidence against him was thrown out. Now, prosecutors think they may have a case against him using DNA evidence.

David B. Magleby dean of Family, Home and Social Sciences
President Merrill J. Bateman has announced the appointment of David B. Magleby as the dean of the College of Family, Home and Social Sciences at Brigham Young University. He replaces Clayne L. Pope, who will return to full-time teaching and research. The appointment was effective July 1.

Asian High School Students Improve Their English
BYU-Hawaii's Division of Continuing Education, hosts over 150 Asian high school students during the second year of their English as a Second Language summer program. Students participating in the program this year are from Japan, Taiwan, Hong Kong, Korea, Beijing China and Shenzhen China.

BYU Kennedy Center seeks couples to teach in China
The David M. Kennedy Center for International Studies at Brigham Young University is seeking applications from qualified couples and individuals to teach at universities in the People's Republic of China.

Final Ricks enrollment shows overall increase
Enrollment statistics show the overall number of students studying at Ricks increased for the entire summer, but is down slightly for the third summer term that runs from July 16 to August 17.

Final Ricks enrollment shows overall increase
The last classes are now under way at Ricks College before it becomes known at Brigham Young University-Idaho.

Local News Briefs

Nauvoo Bell in Place; Traditional Angel Moroni Statue to be Placed
The 1/2-ton bronze-alloy bell was installed in the Nauvoo Temple bell tower on July 3rd and construction on the building continues ahead of the expected placement of a statue of the Angel Moroni on the Temple in September. reports that the statue will be a traditional, standing version, similar to those on recent LDS temples, instead of the flying, two-dimensional angel on the original temple. The temple's completion is still expected for this coming Spring.

Newport Beach Temple Awaiting City Approval
Local LDS Church officials believe that the city of Newport Beach will approve the construction of the Newport Beach California Temple, and Temple committee member Bob Wynn says approval will come quickly because of the building's size, "We believe the city officials are going to approve it because it is a smaller size, and therefore won't be the traffic generator that a larger temple would be," said Wynn, a retired city manager. Site plans, location, landscaping and the 17,500-square-foot building's height will soon be released, Wynn indicated.

Columbia River Washington Temple Progressing
After the placement of the statue of the Angel Moroni on the Columbia River Washington Temple spire June 27th, construction has continued on the Temple. Scaffolding around the spire has been removed and the granite facing on the exterior of the Temple continues to be put in place.

Sugar Hill Georgia Park Cleaned
Some 30 members of the Sugar Hill Ward spent four hours last weekend assembling 12 sets of aluminum bleachers, clearing weeds and picking up trash at E.E. Robinson Park. "Some of the members of our church work with Sugar Hill City Council members, and every year for the last five we have done a service project for one of the communities around here," said M Wisner, Elder's Quorum President. "This year, some of the Sugar Hill council members expressed an interest in us helping them out." Last month, the park's concession stand was destroyed and its children's play area was badly damaged by deliberately set fires which caused about $15,000 in damage, according to fire officials. The park, on Level Creek Road, also was marred by graffiti. No suspects have been identified and a reward of up to $10,000 has been offered by Georgia Arson Control Inc.

LDS Youth Help Build Home in Maryland
A group of 200 LDS youth joined the Pyle family, with assistance from Interfaith Housing of Western Maryland to help build a home for the family last weekend. The service project helped Tracy Pyle and her two sons get started on their home, which was built under the project's home building program. The program provides financial aid to purchase construction supplies and training to help them build their home. Groups of five families work on each other's homes until all five have been built. The 200 LDS teenagers arrived at the worksite at 8 am last Thursday and were divided into groups under the supervision of adults. By the end of the day the workers had built the home from just a foundation to the front and back walls of the second story. "It's an opportunity for [us] to help someone else," said Harold Virgin, a member of the Mormon group who served as a construction supervisor. "[The teens] learn and work together, " he said. "Most of all, they spend their time doing something constructive."

Western Maryland Youth Conference Takes on Service Projects
LDS youth from Western Maryland, West Virginia and Pennsylvania worked on a variety of projects as part of the Winchester Stake's annual youth conference. About 150 youth worked at the Frostburg pool sweeping the lot, landscaping and making a new pathway between the pool and the playground. Another 50 of the young people worked at the Frostburg Lions Field painting concession stands. Sam Johansen, 16, of Frostburg was responsible for getting the project together. "I called the Frostburg City Hall and found out if they needed a group of about 200 kids to help out with anything." He said, "I like working with kids that are my own age."

LDS Youth Help out in North Carolina
Of the 200 youth attending the Fayetteville, North Carolina Stake Conference, all of whom worked in service projects like community cleanups and nursing home visits, 18 were sent to the Habitat neighborhood, consisting mainly of houses built by Habitat for Humanity, for a service project. There, the youth put up a wooden fence between the community and nearby railroad tracks, Leader Lynn Bagley said the Church seeks projects to work on each year, "We found lots of different ideas," he said. Bagley adds that Habitat for Humanity's reputation led the leaders to contact them, "We know what great work Habitat does and decided to contact them." Bagley said.

Pioneer Day Celebrated with Service
LDS Church members in the Fontana Stake will recognize Pioneer Day with several service projects this weekend. They hope to assemble 100 kits for children removed from abusive homes. The kits, which will include hairbrushes, towels, soap, shampoo and other hygiene products; checkerboards and other games; and quilts stake members have made, will be donated to the Dr. Laura Schlessinger Foundation for distribution. Earlier this year the stake adopted a battered women's shelter and helped renovate it and has collected food for homeless shelters and toys for needy kids at Christmas.The Rancho Cucamonga Stake has also planned service projects this weekend. Stake members will meet at 7 am Saturday to plant greenery and clear brush on San Bernardino Avenue both along the curb an in vacant lots in town.

Twin Falls Ward Paints Neighbor's Home
Thirty members of the Twin Falls LDS 5th Ward showed up at 7 am Saturday to paint the home of 90-year-old John Stevens Jr., a retired Union Pacific Railroad employee. The ward painted the 36- by 24-foot home in just two hours as part of the annual Paint Magic volunteer project, which is now in its 16th year. Under the program, volunteers paint the home of seniors on fixed incomes who are physically unable to paint their homes."They sure made it look good," said Stevens. Under the program, a total of 20 homes were painted this year, bringing the 16-year total to 382 homes.

Smaller Crowd Attends Ogden Pre-Pioneer Day Festivities
As many as 50,000 to 60,000 people turned out Sunday, July 22nd for Ogden's 23rd Annual Lindquist Family Summer Pops Concert and Fireworks, however the crowds were "visibly fewer people" than at last year's event, which drew an estimated 65,000 people. Some Ogden residents claimed that the LDS Church's pioneer commemoration broadcast held the same evening accounted for the smaller crowd.

Pocatello Parade Float Winner for Holman and El Rancho Wards
Pocatello, Idaho held its annual Pioneer Days Parade on Saturday, July 21st, attracting floats from LDS Church wards and local businesses. The LDS Holman-El Rancho combined wards from the Pocatello North Stake won the parade's grand prize with an international space station design.

Young Women Raise $50,000 for Cochlear Implant
The Hyde Park First Ward young women have led the town in raising money to benefit resident Bonnie Jo Balls, who received a cochlear implant July 11th at the University of Utah Medical Center. Because of the surgery Balls is expected to regain normal hearing, lost more than 50 years ago when she was 4. The First Ward young women and Hyde Park residents have donated $36,000 so far, of the $50,000 in medical bills she faces. A fund-raiser held Friday, July 20th was expected to raise another $14,000 over the weekend. The fundraiser included a concert by musician Chris Carr aided by proceeds from concession sales, an arts and crafts boutique and book sale, and money raised from game booths.

Historic Thatcher-Young Mansion Dedicated
A Logan mansion that once housed LDS Apostle Brigham Young Jr. was dedicated on Tuesday, July 24th by President L. Tom Perry of the LDS Church's First Presidency. The mansion was restored during the past two years and will serve as the headquarters for the Alliance for the Varied Arts, which will hang art work in gallery rooms. The building also has classrooms, an attic outfitted for a children's story time place and an apartment for visiting dignitaries. The revival of the home is due to Logan resident Newel Daines, who wrote a letter to the LDS Church's First Presidency seeking their assistance with the home. In addition to the LDS Church, the George and Dolores Dore Eccles Foundation and the Emma Eccles Jones Foundation provided assistance to make the renovation possible. Brigham Young Jr. lived in the mansion for three years while he supervised Brigham Young College, which is now Logan High School.

Miracle of the Seagulls Re-examined
An article in the Ogden Standard-Examiner looks at the story of how Seagulls saved early Mormon pioneers from Mormon crickets that began to eat the pioneer's crops. The story says that the gulls ate the crickets, vomiting them up again to eat more, saving the crops so that the pioneers could eat. BYU professor Clayton White says that its not surprising that the gulls ate crickets, and that they still do that today. White also says that since the crickets' exoskeleton can't be digested by the gulls, they would have to regurgitate the shells at some point.

Council Bluffs Ward Division Makes Local News
The two wards in Council Bluffs, Iowa have been split, creating a third ward in the city, reports the Council Bluffs Nonpareil. "Our pioneer heritage is what has sustained the growth of the church in Council Bluffs," said Maury W. Schooff, president of the Council Bluffs Stake. "The original Council Bluffs Ward began in the late 1950s. Then in 1992 we divided that ward in two. Today we have three." President Schooff indicated that a site for a new 24,000-square-foot chapel has been purchased, construction dates have not been set. In the meantime, the new Greenview Ward will meet at the Iowa School for the Deaf.

BYU Professor Lectures on Brigham Young in Western New York
BYU professor Larry Potter gave a presentation on the live of Brigham Young in Pittsford, New York on July 24th. Potter's presentation celebrated the 200th anniverary of Young's birth and his Western New York roots. Young lived from 1828 until 1833 in the town of Mendon, New York, joining the Joseph Smith's fledgling church in 1830. He worked as a carpenter in the area and even worked on the Erie Canal. "Even members of our church, many are unaware that (Young) spent time in New York," said Toi Clawson, media coordinator for the Palmyra stake.

Deseret News Looks at Non-LDS Pioneers
The Deseret News looked at non-LDS denominations ahead of last Tuesday's Pioneer Day celebration, discovering that while the Catholic Church is the second largest in Utah, it was the Congregational Church that was the second to hold regular services in Utah. The Congregationalists started holding regular meetings in Salt Lake City in 1865. An accompanying article shows that the Reorganized LDS Church sent missionaries to Utah in 1863 and by 1870 Jews, Catholics and Episcopalians were holding regular services in Utah.

Humor on the Pioneer Trail
A senior librarian at the LDS Church's history library, Melvin L. Bashmore, has collected humorous tales from pioneer diaries over his 26-year career with the library. He has shared those tales with many during the past few years after he put together a collection of the stories titled, "A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to Utah: Laughable Incidences on the Mormon Trail," for which he received an award for merit from the Utah Humanities Council last year.

New Settlers Reviving Utah Town Named for GA
New settlers are buying land at the abandoned Utah town of Widtsoe and surrounding areas, reviving the town, named for former LDS General Authority John A. Widtsoe. But the new settlers are very different from the pioneers that originally struggled to eek out a hardscrabble life in the town. The new settlers move in with trailer homes or temporary quarters and only live in the town for the "nice" seasons, returning to their permanent homes when the weather turns nasty. Summering in Widtsoe is attractive because its location is near some of Utah's premier desert canyon scenery -- Bryce Canyon National Park is just south, with Capitol Reef to the east and Zion National Park an easy drive southwest.

West Bountiful Stake Wins Salt Lake City Parade
The LDS West Bountiful Stake took two of the top four awards handed out for Salt Lake City's annual Days of '47 parade, including the No. 1 prize, the Sweepstakes Award. The judges also added the Outstanding Animation Award to the float, titled "Sharing Roots From All Nations." About 110 floats were entered in the annual parade.

Provo Celebration Shows How Provo was Different
Provo held its Pioneer Day celebration on Monday, July 23rd in North Park, where pioneers erected the second fort in Utah Valley in 1850. Speaking at the Provo Parks and Recreation and Arts Council Annual Pioneer Day Extravaganza, Mayor Lewis K. Billings said Provo was seen as different from Salt Lake City when the pioneers arrived. "Provo was unique because it was not a dark and barren place, but it was a place for summer retreat with grassy meadows and a beautiful lake," Billings said. The Pioneer Day celebration included a flag ceremony, a classic car show, music and a Pioneer Village.

First Pioneer Day Held in 1849
The very first Pioneer Day was held in 1849, not 1848 as many assume. According to research done by the Daughters of the Utah Pioneers in the 1940s, no celebration was held in 1848 as the pioneers were still trying to merely survive. By the following year their lives were stable enough that they could hold a celebration commemorating their arrival in Utah.


[an error occurred while processing this directive]

Copyright 1998, 1999, 2000, 2001 Kent Larsen · Privacy Information