Portal:LDS Church

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The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints Portal



The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, sometimes referred to as the LDS Church or the Mormon Church, describes itself as the restoration of the original church established by Jesus Christ. It is classified as a Christian church; separate from the Catholic or Protestant traditions, though many of those denominations disavow the LDS Church.

The LDS Church teaches that God the Father and Jesus Christ appeared to Joseph Smith, Jr., called him to be a prophet and to restore the original church as established by Jesus Christ during his mortal ministry. This restoration is often referred to by members of the LDS Church as the Fulness of the Gospel of Jesus Christ, which they believe was had by prophets and righteous civilizations throughout the earlier history of the earth. Further, adherents believe the restoration included all elements that had been lost since the early days of Christianity due to apostasy. This restoration included the return of priesthood authority, new sacred texts, and the continual leadership of a prophet and twelve apostles. The LDS Church traces its history to Joseph Smith from Fayette, New York, on April 6, 1830. Soon after Smith's translation of the Book of Mormon, adherents were nicknamed Mormons.

Smith led the Church of Christ until he was killed in 1844. After a period of confusion during which the church was led by the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles and various claims of succession were made, Brigham Young led the largest group of Mormon pioneers away from the former church headquarters in Nauvoo, Illinois, eventually to Utah's Salt Lake Valley in July 1847. Young was sustained as the church's president at general conference in December 1847.

Now a more international organization, the LDS Church is headquartered in Salt Lake City, Utah, and led by its current president. The church annually sends tens of thousands of missionaries throughout the world, with over 85,000 currently in service. As of December 31, 2015, the church reported a worldwide membership of 15.6 million, with more than 50% living outside the United States.


Selected article

The Book of Mormon

The Book of Mormon is one of the sacred texts of the Latter Day Saint movement, named after the prophet/historian Mormon, who according to the text compiled most of the book. Published by the founder of the Mormon movement, Joseph Smith, Jr., in March 1830 in Palmyra, New York, the belief in the truthfulness of this book stands as the central dividing doctrine of the denominations in the Latter Day Saint movement from traditional Christian faiths. Adherents to its teachings are commonly referred to as "Mormons" or Latter-day Saints. The book asserts that it contains part of the history of three large ancient American civilizations, and that one of these, the Lamanites are "among the ancestors of the American Indians." The book declares that its purpose is to testify of Jesus Christ through the writings of ancient prophets of the Western Hemisphere who traveled there from ancient Israel, probably between 625-575 BC. It asserts that it was abridged and compiled by the prophet/historian Mormon, and his son Moroni in the 5th century, for "the convincing of the Jew and Gentile that Jesus is the Christ, the Eternal God." Joseph Smith is said to have translated the record by divine inspiration with assistance from the Urim and Thummim from gold plates, which he claimed were returned to the angel Moroni later on.

Along with the Bible, which is also held by Latter Day Saints to be the Word of God, the Book of Mormon is esteemed as part of the canon of churches that grew out of the Latter Day Saint movement, founded by Joseph Smith, Jr.

The crowning event of the Book of Mormon is the visitation of the resurrected Christ to the Nephites around 34 AD, shortly after his ministry in Jerusalem (3 Nephi 11-26). Every prophet in the book teaches about Jesus.

Selected picture

Mormon Tabernacle Choir
Credit: MoTabChoir01

The Mormon Tabernacle Choir, sometimes colloquially referred to as MoTab or Tab Choir, is a Grammy- and Emmy Award-winning, 360-member, all-volunteer choir. The choir is part of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS Church) and its funding is provided by the sale of albums, concert tickets, licensing of recorded performances, and donations.

Selected history

A statue commemorating Mormon handcart pioneers

The Mormon handcart pioneers were participants in the westward migration of members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints who used handcarts to transport their supplies and belongings while walking from Iowa or Nebraska to Utah. The Mormon handcart movement began in 1856 and lasted until 1860.

Motivated to join their fellow Church members in avoiding persecution but lacking funds for full ox or horse teams, nearly 3,000 Mormon pioneers from England, Wales, and Scandinavia made the journey to Utah in 10 handcart companies. For two of them, the Willie and Martin handcart companies, the trek led to disaster after they started their journey dangerously late and were caught by heavy snow and bitterly cold temperatures in the Rocky Mountains of central Wyoming. Despite a dramatic rescue effort, more than 210 of the 980 pioneers in the two companies died along the way. "Many a father pulled his cart, with his little children on it, until the day preceding his death."

Although fewer than ten percent of the 1847–68 Latter-day Saint emigrants made the journey west using handcarts, the handcart pioneers have become an important symbol in LDS culture, representing the faithfulness, courage, determination, and sacrifice of the pioneer generation. The handcart treks were a familiar theme in 19th century Mormon folk music and handcart pioneers continue to be recognized and honored in events such as Pioneer Day, Church pageants, and similar commemorations.

Selected Location

The Philadelphia Pennsylvania Temple

The Philadelphia Pennsylvania Temple is a temple of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS Church) in the Logan Square neighborhood of Philadelphia. Completed in 2016, the intent to construct the temple was announced on October 4, 2008, during the church's 178th Semiannual General Conference by LDS Church president Thomas S. Monson. The temple is the church's first in the state of Pennsylvania, and the first temple between Washington, D.C. and New York City. On November 19, 2009, the church announced that the temple would be built on Vine Street in downtown Philadelphia, directly northeast of Logan Circle. This location places the temple in the immediate vicinity of several prominent Philadelphia landmarks, and immediately across the street from the Cathedral Basilica of Saints Peter and Paul, head church of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Philadelphia.

Selected biography

Lorenzo Snow

Lorenzo Snow (April 3, 1814 – October 10, 1901) was the fifth president of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS Church) from 1898 to his death. Snow was the last president of the LDS Church in the nineteenth century and the first in the twentieth. The LDS Church was also in severe financial difficulties, some of which were related to the legal problems over plural marriage. Snow approached this problem first by issuing short term bonds with a total value of one million dollars. This was followed by emphatic teaching on tithing. It was during Snow's presidency that the LDS Church adopted the principle of tithing—being interpreted as the payment of 10 percent of one's income—as a hallmark of membership. In 1899, Snow gave an address at the St. George Tabernacle in St. George, imploring the Latter-day Saints to pay tithes of corn, money or whatever they had in order to have sufficient rain. Eventually, it rained in southern Utah. For the remainder of his tenure, Snow emphasized tithing in his sermons and public appearances. By April 1907, the members' practice of paying tithing had eliminated the church's debt.

Selected Anniversaries

Joseph F. Smith in the Sacred Grove

Selected Quotes

THIRD NEPHI
THE BOOK OF NEPHI
THE SON OF NEPHI, WHO WAS THE SON OF HELAMAN

Jesus Christ did show himself unto the people of Nephi, as the multitude were gathered together in the land Bountiful, and did minister unto them; and on this wise did he show himself unto them. Comprising chapters 11 to 26 inclusive.

CHAPTER 11 The Father testifies of his Beloved Son—Christ appears and proclaims his atonement—The people feel the wound marks in his hands and feet and side—They cry Hosanna—He sets forth the mode and manner of baptism—The spirit of contention is of the devil—Christ’s doctrine is that men should believe and be baptized and receive the Holy Ghost. [A.D. 34]

1 And now it came to pass that there were a great multitude gathered together, of the people of Nephi, round about the temple which was in the land Bountiful; and they were marveling and wondering one with another, and were showing one to another the great and marvelous change which had taken place.

2 And they were also conversing about this Jesus Christ, of whom the sign had been given concerning his death.

3 And it came to pass that while they were thus conversing one with another, they heard a voice as if it came out of heaven; and they cast their eyes round about, for they understood not the voice which they heard; and it was not a harsh voice, neither was it a loud voice; nevertheless, and notwithstanding it being a small voice it did pierce them that did hear to the center, insomuch that there was no part of their frame that it did not cause to quake; yea, it did pierce them to the very soul, and did cause their hearts to burn.

4 And it came to pass that again they heard the voice, and they understood it not.

5 And again the third time they did hear the voice, and did open their ears to hear it; and their eyes were towards the sound thereof; and they did look steadfastly towards heaven, from whence the sound came.

6 And behold, the third time they did understand the voice which they heard; and it said unto them:

7 Behold my Beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased, in whom I have glorified my name—hear ye him.

8 And it came to pass, as they understood they cast their eyes up again towards heaven; and behold, they saw a Man descending out of heaven; and he was clothed in a white robe; and he came down and stood in the midst of them; and the eyes of the whole multitude were turned upon him, and they durst not open their mouths, even one to another, and wist not what it meant, for they thought it was an angel that had appeared unto them.

9 And it came to pass that he stretched forth his hand and spake unto the people, saying:

10 Behold, I am Jesus Christ, whom the prophets testified shall come into the world.

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