suicideWatch the new Mormon Messages video “Sitting on the Bench: Thoughts on Suicide Prevention.” Every human soul is precious. Don’t give up. Show love to those who are struggling. Help guide people to resources that are available (see below).

Elder Ballard: “I say we keep our antennas up, we watch out for each other, we love one another, and we leave the eternal judgments to our Heavenly Father and to the Lord Jesus Christ who know all things.”

Resources about suicide:


LDS-Face-to-face-ArchuletaA live face-to-face event with David Archuleta was broadcast on June 24, 2014. It went to more than 34,000 video streams around the world and has since been viewed 100,000 times. The video is a great resource for youth events, family home evenings, or devotionals.

It was the first time the Church had ever done a live face-to-face event for youth. And it was very successful.

Returned missionary and former American Idol finalist David Archuleta spoke with youth in 91 countries doing two separate one-hour events, one in Spanish and one in English. The broadcast went to more than 34,000 video streams around the world, some in front of up to 80 youth on one stream at LDS meetinghouses and in homes.

Read more in the story “Watch David Archuleta Facebook Event That Touched Thousands.”

If you and your family haven’t seen it yet, I highly recommend it. The whole thing was authentic and spiritual. Bet you can’t keep dry eyes through the whole thing.

You may especially enjoy these excerpts:

Read more about the success of the #LDSface2face event.


joseph-smith-prophet-restorationThe movie Joseph Smith: The Prophet of the Restoration is now available on Netflix.

The movie was first shown in the Legacy Theater in Salt Lake City, then released on DVD, and how on Hulu, Amazon, and Netflix.

This movie was the first full-length motion picture the Church released on the Internet. The movie is about Joseph Smith, the founding prophet of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

Here are all the ways you can watch the movie:

I encourage you to watch family-friendly movies like this on Amazon, Netflix, Hulu, and Roku because the more you watch them, the more likely it is that these companies will continue to carry such movies.

Here’s a trailer to the movie:

Learn more about streaming Internet television.


Index of Resources to Learn About Missions now provides an index of resources to learn about different LDS Missions. It is a portal of resources about each mission, including mission blogs, groups, addresses, maps, interviews with returned missionaries, and LDS-friendly travel videos.

The list points to the resources prepared by Alex Balinski at

The resources are constantly updated with new mission blogs and interviews with returned missionaries from each LDS mission. It’s a great resource to learn about the countries, languages, cultures, and people from around the world!



LDS Church Statements on Moral Issues

In November, citizens in the United States will have the privilege and duty of electing people to political offices and voting on issues of public policy. The Church encourages its members to participate in the political process.

You can learn about the issues by researching information on the Internet, listening to debates, and talking with candidates.

lds-newsroomIn addition, the Church occasionally posts information at about particular moral issues on which it has taken a position.

The Church as an institution remains neutral regarding political parties and candidates. However, the Church also affirms its constitutional right of expression on political and social issues. You can find information about many of those issues at, particularly in the Topics and Background section.


Explaining Temple Garments (Mormon Underwear)

St. Louis Mormon TempleThis article is one in a series of articles about explaining our Mormon beliefs to our friends. See other articles in this series.

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has released an official video and explanation about the sacred clothing members wear in the temple and the sacred underwear worn by members under their everyday clothing.

Some members of the Church are caught off-guard when they are asked questions about why we wear garments, often referred to as “Mormon underwear.” Because the garment is sacred and important to us, we often don’t talk about it much in public. However, there are ways to respectfully explain why we wear the garment and why it is  important to us.

I encourage you to read the article about temple garments and watch the video below:

Watch video in Spanish.

Here are some additional resources with information to help you explain the wearing of garments to your friends–or even to your children:

  • Read “Garments Signify Sacred Promises” on Mormon Topics. Be sure to click on the portraits at the top of the page to watch Mormons explain what the temple garment means to them.
  • Read the topic “Wearing the Temple Garment” on You can find it in the menu on by clicking  Teachings > Gospel Topics > Temples. Then scroll down to the section “Wearing the Temple Garment.” (Click  View More to expand the page to see it.)
  • Read the article on the Church’s Newsroom, “Do some Latter-day Saints wear temple garments?
  • Watch the video “My Mormon Underwear.” It’s a video on the YouTube channel Understanding Mormonism, where a member of the Church posts videos explaining his Mormon beliefs in a simple, authentic way.

“Meet the Mormons” was a Success Opening Weekend

meet-mormons-movie-4The opening weekend of the film Meet the Mormons was astonishing.

  • The film was #10 in the nation in box office receipts.
  • It was #1 in 100 of the 317 theaters on opening day
  • It had the top per-screen average of the Top 20 grossing films in the country this week.
  • It had sold-out showings across the country, including New York City, Detroit, Miami, Salt Lake City, Las Vegas, Dallas, Phoenix, Anchorage, Honolulu, and various locations in California.
  • It has already earned the #45 spot on the list of the Top 100 documentary films of all time.
  • It earned $2.5 million during the opening weekend, and to date has earned $3.9 million. (The net proceeds are being donated to the American Red Cross.)
  • Today, the film expands to 333 screens, with more expected for next weekend.

Read the article “How ‘Meet the Mormons’ Became a Hit Movie In One Weekend” from LDS Living to see how members engaged in social media to spread information about the movie that contributed to its successful opening weekend.

If you haven’t yet seen the movie, I heartily endorse it. Find a theater near you at


morning-lightReligion is an important part of our social fabric and civil society. It calls on us to serve our fellow man, to focus more on family and to contribute to the common good of the community. What’s more, it provides the structure for the inner longing for meaning that many seek in life.

With a recent poll suggesting that religion is losing influence in America, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints knows that it’s more important than ever to strengthen faith’s role and prominence in society. The Church recognizes that this can’t happen without locking arms (as it has done for many, many years) with other faiths. Sure, differences in belief and opinion have and will continue to exist in our pluralistic society, but love for one’s neighbor surpasses these differences.

In that spirit, the Church has partnered with Faith Counts, an organization comprised of faith communities representing over 100 million Americans. Launched this week, its website ( includes videos and social media memes aimed at telling powerful stories about how faith inspires, empowers, motivates and comforts billions of people. You can find these stories on the website, Facebook, Twitter, YouTubePinterest and Google+. You can also share your own experiences about how faith has influenced your life.

Watch the video below, and then read the rest of the story on the Mormon Newsroom.


Young Women Video Shares Goodness

Young women and young men in Las Vegas, Nevada, made a #ShareGoodness video about their Mormon beliefs.

They got the idea from an Instagram video they made at EFY this past summer. They were also inspired to share their beliefs online because of Elder Bednar‘s recent address at BYU Education Week about using social media to flood the earth with the gospel.

Beginning at this place on this day, I exhort you to sweep the earth with messages filled with righteousness and truth—messages that are authentic, edifying, and praiseworthy—and literally to sweep the earth as with a flood.

–Elder David A. Bednar

Here is a list of other member-created videos I have shared. If you find other videos you think I should share, please post a comment below.


Activities Can Strengthen and Rescue Youth

youth-activitiesThe article “Strengthening Youth through Uplifting Activities” in the September Ensign explains the importance of well-planned activities and points out resources to help you plan them.

Successful activities provide youth with a wholesome setting to learn and live the gospel. They help youth prepare for their future roles, develop their talents and interests, learn leadership skills, and foster friendships as they interact with other young men and young women. Activities can provide opportunities for youth to perform meaningful service for others in the community. Activities can also help you build positive mentoring relationships with the youth.

Learn more about the LDS Youth Activities website, which can also be helpful in planning family activities.


Video: Utah Names Part 2, Boy Names

utah-boy-namesLast year, I shared a video “Utah Names,” which I found very funny. The makers have now released “Utah Names Part 2: Boy Names.”

Here’s the first video:

And here’s their latest video:

Find more quirky names at


Mormonism: A Christ-Centered, Global Faith

mormonism-christ-faithHere’s a simple video you can share with your friends to explain the make-up of the Church and what we believe.

Did you know that most Mormons live outside the U.S.? Or that the Church has more than 15 million members, spread throughout 29,000-plus congregations?

Watch “Mormonism: A Christ-Centered, Global Faith

Is there someone you know that you could share this with?


Meet the Mormons for Family Home Evening

meet-mormons-movie-4If you haven’t yet had the chance to see the new movie Meet the Mormonsconsider it as a family home evening activity Monday.

Thousands of people saw the movie over the weekend. If you were one of them, could you do one of these follow-up actions?

  • Invite a family member or friend to go see the movie with you.
  • Rate the movie and leave a short review at one or all of the following sites: Fandango, Rotten Tomatoes, Moviefone, IMDb, and Ok.

Remember that Meet the Mormons is our story.  It is not just a story about 6 families.  It is a story about all of us as members of the Church.  If you want people to know who we really are, go see the movie and then invite your friends.

Read other articles about the Meet the Mormons movie.

When you share information about the movie in social media, please use the hashtag #MeetTheMormons.



Meet the Mormons Movie Exceeds Expectations

meet-mormons-now-playingThe movie Meet the Mormons was the number one film in 100 of the 317 total locations on opening day, with sold out showings reported across the country, including New York City, Detroit, Miami, Salt Lake City, Las Vegas, Dallas, Phoenix, and various locations in California.

In the opening 24 hours, the movie ranked #10 nationwide in total box office sales.

The documentary-style movie Meet the Mormons portrays the personal stories of six diverse Latter-day Saints and their families. All net proceeds from the film will be donated to the American Red Cross.


Wordles for October 2014 LDS General Conference

For the last several years, I have shown wordles (word clouds) of the text from each general conference, which show the  frequency of use of words (except words like it, the,and and). More frequently-used words are in larger type size.

Below are two wordles showing an analysis of text from all the talks from the October 2014 general conference, including the General Women’s meeting. Other styles of this Wordle in higher resolution can be found here, courtesy of Connor Boyack.

See wordles from previous LDS general conferences.