Monday, March 31, 2008

Last Season: Battlestar Galactica

The final season of Battlestar Galactica is about to air starting April 4th on the SciFi channel.  It is a well done, award winning drama in a science fiction setting.  What makes it more intriguing is that the story is based on the Book of Mormon, in particular, it is the story of Lehi and his family fleeing Jerusalem and sailing for the promised land.

In the series, the twelve planets inhabited by humans (twelve tribes) are attacked and destroyed (as Jerusalem was destroyed at the time of Lehi).  Captain Adamah (Lehi) and his son Lee (Nephi) command a fleet of ships trying to find the promised land called earth, but their journey is often delayed because of  Lamanite-like cylons.   The Sacred Scroll (plates of Brass) tell of a woman leading a tribe to the promised land much earlier (Mulekites or Jaradites) and prophesies of the twelve tribes being reunited with this lost thirteenth tribe.

On their way to try to find the promised land, they return to the planet Kobol (from "Kolob").  Kobol is the birth place of humanity with a city called "Eden."   Humans lived on Kobol with the their gods ("The Lords of Kobol").  A conflict between the gods and "one jealous god" cause a "fall" to occur causing the humans to flee Kobol/Eden.  A return to Eden can only be accomplished by a sacrifice of blood.  Now much later in history, Commander Adamah (Lehi) sends a contingent that retrieves a Liahona-like device from Kobol in a bloody encounter.  The device is used to point the way to the promised land/earth. 

The series has prophets, competing religious ideas, resurrection (of cylons), healing, sealings, miracles, a council of the twelve, etc...

You may want to check it out, but it rather edgy.  It begins April 4th on the SciFi channel.

Mormon church will push for landmark status at massacre site

Mormon church will push for landmark status at massacre site

SALT LAKE CITY – The Mormon church said Friday it will seek National Historic Landmark status for Mountain Meadows, the southern Utah site where 120 people were massacred on their way to California in 1857.

The disclosure came during a meeting of descendants and representatives of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Carrollton, Ark.

"In December, the Mountain Meadows Massacre Descendants, the Mountain Meadows Association and the Mountain Meadows Monument Foundation had asked the church to pursue landmark status for the site, 35 miles northwest of St. George, Utah.

The announcement was a major shift after church leaders had rejected similar appeals in 1999 and 2007.

"This is a huge step forward," Mountain Meadows Monument Foundation President Phil Bolinger said.

Last fall, Bolinger presented letters and petitions from more than 1,200 descendants asking for landmark status.

Jensen said it had become obvious that the church needed to do something to ensure that those who died would be appropriately remembered. He said church President Gordon B. Hinckley endorsed the plan before his death Jan. 27.....

Arkansas members of the Fancher-Baker wagon train were headed for California when they were attacked during a stop at the meadow. After a weeklong gun battle, the group was tricked into a fake truce by a local church leader and killed by a Mormon militia on Sept. 11, 1857.

Descendants have been at odds with the church for decades over the meadows. They dispute the church's control of the gravesites and have accused it of largely keeping the massacre story out of its official history....

There are four known mass gravesites in the meadow and two monuments. A rock cairn marks the spot where the siege erupted, and a memorial wall inscribed with the names of the dead overlooks the valley.

Included in the discussions Friday were plans for a second memorial marking a mass gravesite at the north end, Norris said. Getting the area designated as a cemetery is also a possibility.

The three descendant groups and the church will work together to secure the landmark designation from the U.S. Interior Department. The process requires a review of the site's historic significance by the National Park Service and experts. The public can also comment....

Led by Capt. Alexander Fancher and John Baker, the Arkansas travelers were attacked and engaged in a week of gun skirmishes before a local church elder, John D. Lee, negotiated a truce between the pioneers and a band of Paiute Indians said to be the assailants.

But Lee's truce was a ruse. Wagon train members were beaten, shot at close range or had their throats slit as they marched single-file and unarmed across the meadow.

Seventeen children all under age 7 survived and were taken into Mormon homes. Two years later, they were returned to relatives in Arkansas.

Lee, the only person held responsible, was sentenced to death for the slaughter.

At memorial services marking the 150th anniversary last fall, high-ranking Mormon church official Henry B. Eyring expressed "profound regret" for the events at the meadows. The statement was seen by many as an apology.

Eyring also said the church regretted allowing the Paiute Indian tribe to shoulder much of the blame for the ambush.

A forthcoming book by church historians is expected to lay blame on rogue southern Utah church leaders who worked with Paiute Indians. Church officials maintain there is no evidence connecting then-church president Brigham Young directly to the massacre.

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Nashville Hotel Replaces Bibles with ‘Spiritual Menu’

Nashville Hotel Replaces Bibles with 'Spiritual Menu'

Hotel Preston in Nashville, Tenn., will replace Bibles with "spiritual menus" in all of its guest rooms, allowing guests to call room service to order their religious book of choice.

The book list includes the Quran, The Book of Mormon, the Torah, books on Scientology and the Bible.

Dr. Albert Mohler Jr., president of the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary and a Focus on the Family board member, wrote on his blog that the growing absence of Bibles from hotel rooms speaks to the secularization, sexualization and extreme sensitivities of the culture.

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

DNA study by Sorenson links most Native Americans

Ninety-five percent of Native Americans can trace their ancestry to
six "founding mothers" who arrived in the New World about 20,000 years
ago, says a study by Utah-based Sorenson Molecular Genealogy
Foundation and the University of Pavia, Italy.

The date is about when humans first arrived in the Americas, according
to the research.

The 95 percent figure is true whether today's Native Americans live in
North, Central or South America, adds the study.

The research was published online Wednesday by the Public Library of

According to the study, this is the most comprehensive research ever
into the genetic origins of Native Americans.

The finding does not mean that only six ancestral women reached the
Americas around 20,000 years ago, says one of the co-authors, Ugo A.
Perego, director of operations at the foundation based in Salt Lake

The research was based on studies of mitochondrial DNA, abbreviated as
mtDNA, which is passed only from mothers to daughters. If a woman
founder had only sons, her mtDNA would not have been passed down
although she would have descendants.

Also, a press release from the foundation notes, "The study also
confirms the presence of genetic subgroups of more rare, less known
and geographically limited genetic groups who arrived later." Those
groups are not detailed in the paper.

The scientists studied all available complete mtDNA data for Native
Americans, amounting to more than 200 samples.

The mtDNA passed along from the six founding mothers is related to,
but different from, mtDNA among today's northern Asians.

(The difference is because DNA changes over time. Using the known rate
of change, scientists calculated the 20,000-year figure.)

The relationship reinforces the idea that the earliest peopling of the
Americas happened because of a land bridge, called Beringia, that once
stretched between Alaska and Russia.

The land bridge allowed people to live between today's continents.
People and animals lived on Beringia probably for "a few thousands of
years," Perego said.

When the climate im- proved and the ice melted, people "found an open,
free corridor to go to America," he said.

"It appears that the migration was very rapid, and they reached
southern Chile very rapidly as well."

In America, they found a better climate and the population increased
rapidly, as reflected in the genetic information. "In the 20,000 years
between the time of arrival and today, many different sub-lineages

As the settlers moved south, they populated more and more of North,
Central and South America.

The study is titled, "The Phylogeny of the Four Pan-American MtDNA
Haplogroups: Implications for Evolutionary and Disease Studies." Its
authors are Antonio Torroni, the lead author and Perego's mentor, and
Alessandro Achilli and Antonio Torroni, all of the University of
Pavia; Perego and Scott R. Woodward of Sorenson Molecular Genealogy
Foundation; Claudio M. Bravi of Instituto Multidisciplinario de
Biologia Celular, La Plata, Argentina; Michael D. Coble of the Armed
Forces DNA Identification Laboratory, Rockville, Md.; Qing-Peng Kong
of the Kunming Institute of Zoology, Kunming, China; Antonio Salas of
the Hospital Clinic University, Alicia, Spain; and Hans-Urgent Brandel
of the University of Hamburg, Germany.

The nonprofit Sorenson Molecular Genealogy Foundation was founded in
2000 by the late James LeVoy Sorenson and by Ira Fulton, with Brigham
Young University in Provo providing a lab for testing genetic
information. It has grown tremendously since. Its Web site notes the
foundation is dedicated to building the world's foremost collection of
DNA and corresponding genealogical information.

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

"Mormons and American Life"

The Center for the Study of Religion and American Culture at Indiana University Purdue University Indianapolis will sponsor a conference entitled:

"Mormons and American Life"

Saturday, April 12, 2008
9:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.
IUPUI Campus Center, Room CE405
420 University Blvd.
Indianapolis, IN

The conference is free and open to the public, but seating is limited, so please call 274-8409 or email to reserve a seat.

Speakers and Presentation Descriptions:
1. Jan Shipps: "Reality History: Chronicling Convert Expectations and What Mormonism Delivered"

At key points across time, Mormon missionaries emphasized different parts of the Mormon gospel. The way they delivered the Mormon message also changed dramatically. This session will look at several of those key points, surveying what the people who joined the Mormon movement thought they were joining and comparing those expectations to the actuality converts found when they "gathered" with the LDS community in Kirtland, Nauvoo, the Kingdom in the "tops of the mountains" and, as in the past half-century, when they became members of local Mormon wards.

2. J. Spencer Fluhman: "Unmasking the American Religion: Early Anti-Mormonism and the Problem of Pluralism"

Americans have been simultaneously fascinated with and repulsed by Mormonism since 1830. This session traces the ways antagonists decried early Mormonism and argues that their critiques tell us much about changing perceptions of religion's relationship to the Republic.

3. Kathleen Flake: "Early American Priests and Priestesses: Gendered Office, Council and Kinship in Early Mormonism"

If Mormonism was, as Emerson quipped, the "after clap of Puritanism," its particular sound was John Winthrop's worst antinomian nightmare. This session seeks to answer the question how did a movement that purposefully set about making every member a prophet and prophetess sustain any order, much less secure the cooperation of thousands? Whether Joseph Smith avoided the atomizing of his movement into a thousand prophet-led pieces by creating three overlapping charismatic orders within the church, each order constituting a source of sacerdotal and social authority and a means of regulating the same, will be discussed. Particular attention will be paid to Smith's integration of women into these simultaneously liberating and constraining offices, councils, and familial kinships.

4. William Deverell: "West of Deseret: California, Mormonism, and the Coming of the Civil War"

This session explores national and regional controversies over Mormonism in the far West in the midst of rising sectional antagonism in the late 1850s. Pro-slavery sympathizers in the South "played the Mormon card" in their attempts both to divert attention from the slavery issue and discredit abolitionists and abolitionist sentiment. In the West, fears of Mormon territorial, theocratic, and economic expansion fueled debates about the future of California and that new state's relationship to the Great Basin and Deseret.

5. Sarah Gordon and Kathryn Daynes: "Convictions: Prosecutors, Defendants, and Marriage(s) in Territorial Utah"

This session excavates the surprising and previously unknown course of criminal law in the mid-1880s, revealing how prosecutors and judges attempted to craft a compromise in the "Raid" against Mormon polygamists. Over the course of multiple trials and appeals, Mormon defendant Joseph Clark of Provo first made new law, and then endured its undoing at the hands of the Utah Supreme Court. This process widened the gap between the Mormons and federal officials in other important cases, convincing the Saints that they had once again been the victims of double dealing. Yet Clark's story also reveals considerable doubt and disagreement among territorial officials, and a desire to reach a compromise that would reduce the strain on Mormon families as well as federal budgets.

Monday, March 17, 2008

Who Are the Children of Lehi?: DNA and the Book of Mormon

Who Are the Children of Lehi?: DNA and the Book of Mormon (Hardcover)
by D. Jeffrey Meldrum, Trent D. Stephens

Publisher: Greg Kofford Books Inc (December 11, 2007)

Book Description
Who Are the Children of Lehi? takes seriously the claims of the Book of Mormon that among the ancestors of the American Indians is a group of Israelites who crossed from the Old World to the New. This book also offers a clear, easy-to-follow interpretation of scientific data relating to Amerindian ancestry and genetics.

From the Inside Flap
How does the Book of Mormon, keystone of the LDS faith, stand up to data about DNA sequencing that puts the ancestors of modern Native Americans in Asia instead of Palestine? In Who Are the Children of Lehi? Meldrum and Stephens examine the merits and the fallacies of DNA-based interpretations that challenge the Book of Mormon's historicity. They provide clear guides to the science, summarize the studies, illuminate technical points with easy-to-grasp examples, and spell out the data's implications. The results? There is no straight-line conclusion between DNA evidence and "Lamanites." The Book of Mormon's validly lies beyond the purview of scientific empiricism--as it always has. And finally, inspiringly, they affirm Lehi's kinship as one of covenant, not genes.

About the Author
D. Jeffrey Meldrum, Ph.D., is associate professor of anatomy and anthropology at Idaho State University and an affiliate curator of vertebrate paleontology at the Idaho Museum of Natural History. His degrees are from Brigham Young University and the State University of New York at Stony Brook with postdoctoral experience at Duke University. Before coming to ISU in 1994, he was an assistant professor in the Evolutionary Morphology Group at Northwestern University Medical School and a repeat invited speaker at the Chicago Center for Religion and Science. At ISU, he teaches human anatomy, organic evolution, and primate studies. He is presently investigating the dynamics of the hominoid foot and the emergence of human bipedalism. Paleontological field experience has taken him to Argentina, Colombia, and the Intermountain West. Trent D. Stephens, Ph.D., is professor of anatomy and embryology at Idaho State University. His degrees are from Brigham Young University and the University of Pennsylvania. He taught anatomy for four years in the University of Washington's Medical School and has been teaching anatomy and embryology at Idaho State University since 1981 where he was honored as its Distinguished Teacher (1992), as the Sigma Xi Jerome Bigalow Award recipient for combining teaching and research (1992), and as an Outstanding Researcher (2000). Trent's research investigates the developmental origins of vertebrate form, the mechanism of the drug thalidomide in causing birth defects. He has published more than eighty scientific papers and books, including several leading textbooks for anatomy and physiology.

BYU Priceless

Learning the words to Rise and Shout $ 0
BYU license plate tee from bookstore $ 25
Stylish sunglasses $ 49
Dinner with date at the Pizza Oven before the game
$ 50
Below the knee length cargo shorts $ 55
Gold CTR ring in the language of my mission $ 150
Sony camcorder to tape the big game $ 399
Enjoying a good smoke at halftime

Friday, March 14, 2008

Indian DNA links to 6 'founding mothers'

Indian DNA links to 6 'founding mothers'

By MALCOLM RITTER, AP Science Writer

Nearly all of today's Native Americans in North, Central and South America can trace part of their ancestry to six women whose descendants immigrated around 20,000 years ago, a DNA study suggests.

Those women left a particular DNA legacy that persists to today in about about 95 percent of Native Americans, researchers said.

The finding does not mean that only these six women gave rise to the migrants who crossed into North America from Asia in the initial populating of the continent, said study co-author Ugo Perego.

The women lived between 18,000 and 21,000 years ago, though not necessarily at exactly the same time, he said.

The work was published this week by the journal PLoS One. Perego is from the Sorenson Molecular Genealogy Foundation in Salt Lake City and the University of Pavia in Italy.

The work confirms previous indications of the six maternal lineages, he said. But an expert unconnected with the study said the findings left some questions unanswered.

Perego and his colleagues traced the history of a particular kind of DNA that represents just a tiny fraction of the human genetic material, and reflects only a piece of a person's ancestry.

This DNA is found in the mitochondria, the power plants of cells. Unlike the DNA found in the nucleus, mitochondrial DNA is passed along only by the mother. So it follows a lineage that connects a person to his or her mother, then the mother's mother, and so on.

The researchers created a "family tree" that traces the different mitochondrial DNA lineages found in today's Native Americans. By noting mutations in each branch and applying a formula for how often such mutations arise, they calculated how old each branch was. That indicated when each branch arose in a single woman.

The six "founding mothers" apparently did not live in Asia because the DNA signatures they left behind aren't found there, Perego said. They probably lived in Beringia, the now-submerged land bridge that stetched to North America, he said.

Connie Mulligan of the University of Florida, an anthropolgist who studies the colonization of the Americas but didn't participate in the new work, said it's not surprising to trace the mitochondrial DNA to six women. "It's an OK number to start with right now," but further work may change it slightly, she said.

That finding doesn't answer the bigger questions of where those women lived, or of how many people left Beringia to colonize the Americas, she said Thursday.

The estimate for when the women lived is open to question because it's not clear whether the researchers properly accounted for differing mutation rates in mitochondrial DNA, she said. Further work could change the estimate, "possibly dramatically," she said

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Scriptures on PlayStation

From the Salt Lake Tribune:

An "inspired" home coder on the Internet who goes by the handle of "tsgeoman" has compiled all or most of the text of Mormon scripture from, the official Web site of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, so gamers can store it on their Sony PlayStation Portable game system.

That way, gamers on the go who get a sudden urge to quote from the Book of Mormon can stop their session of "Grand Theft Auto" to read scripture on the 4.3-inch screen.

You can download the library, which includes some 18,000 files, at
- Vince Horiuchi

Monday, March 10, 2008

Society for Mormon Philosophy & Theology Conference

The 2008 SMPT Annual Meeting will be held March 27-29 at The University of Utah in Salt Lake City, Utah.

Location: Languages and Communications Building (LNCO) and Orson Spencer Hall (OSH),
University of Utah, Salt Lake City

Thursday, March 27nd

3-5 pm
LNCO 1110
William Chamberlin Session
   "Rethinking Omniscience"
     Adam Kunz, Jeremiah Edwards, and Kenneth Merrill
   "Redeemers and the Redeemed"
     Stanley Thayne
   "Toward a Latter-day Saint Theology of Possibilities"
     Dennis Wendt
   Comments by Blake Ostler

7:30 pm
Related event:
Tanner-McMurrin Lecture, at Westminster College*
  "God as Hidden and God as Revealed"
     Stephen Davis

Friday, March 28th

9 am
OSH 104
"Searching for an Adequate Theodicy: Mormon and Process Theologies"
    David Paulsen
105 am
LNCO 1100
"A Broken Mirror Image: Original Sin in LDS Theology"
    Sheila Taylor
11 am
LNCO 1100
Author Meets Critics:
   Blake Ostler's Exploring Mormon Thought, vol. 2

2 pm
Presidential Address
    James Faulconer, President of the Society
2:25 pm
Panel: "Authority and Church Doctrine"

4 pm
LNCO 1100
"Rethinking Atheology"
    Brian Birch

7:30 pm
LNCO 1110
Plenary Session
"Philosophical Theology for Mormons: Suggestions from an Outsider"
    Stephen Davis

Saturday, March 29th

9 am
"Opposing Lehi's Theodicy"
    Dennis Potter
10 am
"Shall We Dance"
    Pat Debenham
11 am
LNCO 1110
Author Meets Critics:
   Mormonism in Dialogue with Contemporary Christian Theologies

2 pm
LNCO 1110
"The Mormon Credo"
    Dan Graham
3 pm
LNCO 1110
"Conscience and the Light of Christ"
    Richard Sherlock and Grayson Weeks

4 pm
LNCO 1110
Concluding Plenary Session
"Lehi's Theorem and Schelling's Fundamental Law of Opposites"
    Jad Hatem
5:20 pm
LNCO 1110
Business Meeting
    (SMPT Members)

   *sponsored by Westminster College and the Tanner-McMurrin Lectureship,independently of this conference.

For more information, contact SMPT Secretary Benjamin Huff at

Conference Poster (PDF, 932 KB)

Study Calling Utah Most Depressed, Renews Debate on Root Causes

Excerpts from an article from ABC News by Russell Goldman The full article can be read here:

Two Studies Find Depression Widespread in Utah


A recent study by Mental Health America, the country's oldest independent mental health advocacy organization, ranked Utah the most depressed state in the country.

Another survey released last week by drug distribution company Express Scripts found that residents of Utah were prescribed antidepressant drugs more than those of any other state and at twice the national average.

According to MHA, some 10.14 percent of adults in Utah "experienced a depressive episode in the past year and 14.15 percent experienced serious psychological distress. ... Individuals in Utah reported having on average 3.27 poor mental health days in the past 30 days."

The reason for Utah's mass depression, however, is unknown.

"The truth is, we don't know why," said Dr. Ted Wander, spokesman for the Utah Psychiatric Association.

Neither study was broken down by gender, but nationally women are twice as likely to be diagnosed with depressive disorders as men, experts told ABC News.

Psychiatrists point to several factors that could contribute to Utah's high levels of depression: limited mental health resources, restricted access to treatment as a result of cost, poor quality of resources and a varied list of other factors, including an underfunded educational system and a culture deeply rooted in the Mormon faith.

"Availability to resources, a lack of professionals and barriers to treatment, including the ability to pay all drive up instances of depression," said Dr. Curtis Canning, a Logan-based psychiatrist and former president of the Utah Psychiatric Association. "But there is also -- especially when it comes to women and girls -- a cultural factor."

Seventy percent of Utah's residents are Mormon. When Express Scripts issued its first national survey of prescription drug use in 2002, it sparked a heated debate across Utah about what, if any role, the church played in the state's high dependence on antidepressants such as Prozac and Zoloft.


"In Mormon culture females are supposed accept a calling. They are to be constantly smiling over their family of five. They are supposed to take supper across the street to an ill neighbor and then put up with their husband when he comes home from work and smile about it the whole time. There is this sense that Mrs. Jones down street is doing the same thing, and there is this undercurrent of competition. To be a good mother and wife, women have to put on this mask of perfection. They can't show their tears, depression or agony," Canning said.

"Obedience, conformity and maintaining a sense of harmony" are unspoken but widely recognized behaviors, which all contribute to what he calls "the Mother of Zion syndrome."

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Days Saints, however, says the high number of prescriptions is a result of people receiving the drugs they need in Utah more than in other places.

"I don't think it's clear that there's a crisis in Utah," said Brent Scharman, a psychologist and the assistant commissioner of LDS Family Services, a church network that provides counseling. "You've got one camp that says there is more depression and another camp that says we just have more consumers." Scharman said studies on organized religion and depression found that religious people were generally happier than nonreligious people, and that held true for Mormons.

"It always boils down to the issue of what influence the LDS lifestyle has on the depression phenomenon," he said. "Non-LDS and some LDS people say this is a kind of driven lifestyle and that we push too hard and smile too much. But studies show, and those living it out see, that religion is good support. It creates a positive network and helps people get through crises and deal with long-term problems.

"Are there people who feel 'I'm not living up to the LDS ideal,' or 'I'm not living up to my family's expectations'? Absolutely, there is no question. But having done counseling outside the LDS community, I saw people there, too, who were depressed because of perfectionism," he said. "I wouldn't say it is any worse here than in more diverse communities."

The MHA study evaluated information from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, each of the 50 states and Washington, D.C., and factored in suicide statistics to determine each state's "depression status."

Sunday, March 09, 2008

The Deseret News has started  it's previously announced website:  As time has gone on, the Deseret News has become a more serious source of rigorous news and information dealing with the church.  More than just a faith promoting site, continues this tradition by offering a wide breadth of news & information that should appeal to a wide audience.

The site provides a more sophisticated approach that includes information and materials that will appeal to those who are intellectually minded. For example the current issue covers a speech given by Dr. Richard Bushman talking about U.S perceptions of the church.  It talks of the "Revisiting Thomas F. O'Dea's 'The Mormons' symposium" and announces an upcoming conference on Mormon literature.  Another column covers highlights from "The Bloggernackle" including a discussion on Mormon feminism.

It also contains a good set of reference material.  Easy access to an online copy of the well regarded Encyclopedia of Mormonism is available.  The "Mormon Q&A" section takes critical questions about the church seriously and deals with them head on with articles from FAIR (The Foundation for Apologetic Information and Research).

But the site will have an appeal beyond that which is scholarly.  You can find the latest Mormons appearing on American Idol, genealogical information, or a report on the latest Handcart Trek. 

All in all, it appears to be a great website in an accessible format that should have a wide appeal to members of the church.

Thursday, March 06, 2008

Mormon Tabernacle Choir director resigns

Craig Jessop, music director of the Mormon Tabernacle Choir, resigned unexpectedly on Tuesday night. The decision by Jessop, who became the choir's director and conductor in 1999, stunned members of the choir. He said he intended to remain active in music, including teaching, and hoped to spend more time with his family.

"LDS officials declined to comment, beyond what Jessop said in his resignation letter. Jessop did not return calls."  He "arrived around 9 p.m. and read a short letter that said he was 'at a major crossroads of life.''... He then walked out, leaving the choir in stunned silence."

"He scheduled a short rehearsal for some members Saturday, but didn't show up, according to several who were there. Without warning, he also failed to attend Sunday morning's broadcast of "Music and the Spoken Word," which is unusual."

"After Jessop's Tuesday night announcement, LDS officials named associate director Mack Wilberg as the choir's interim director. By this morning, they had removed Jessop's biography from the choir's Web site."

Read the entire article here.

Tuesday, March 04, 2008

President Clinton goes to the temple

"I was in the offices of the new Kirtland Temple Visitor Center last Thursday when the call came through. According to the mayor's office, Bill Clinton was coming to Kirtland on Saturday — to hold a rally and to tour the Temple. This would make Clinton the first US President to tour the Temple since James Garfield."

Continue the article here.