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7 May 2013

Angel Moroni Statue Placed on Ogden Temple

May 7, 2013

Mormon Newsroom

As renovation of the Ogden Utah Temple continues, construction crews placed an angel Moroni statue atop the new temple spire Tuesday morning. The 14-foot, 2-inch figure is the same statue that topped the temple before it was closed. The statue was removed at the beginning of the project and completely reconditioned.

The addition will bring the height of the renovated temple to just under 190 feet. The statue is made of fiberglass coated with gold leaf, supported by a steel structure and weighs nearly 800 pounds.

The temple was closed in April of 2011 to remodel and architecturally change the appearance and the grounds. An artist’s rendering of the completed project is included below.


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Ogden’s Mormon temple gets its angel back

May 7, 2013

Salt Lake Tribune (Utah)

The fiberglass Angel Moroni — covered in gold leaf and blowing a trumpet — was removed when the temple renovation began in April 2011, according to a news release from the Salt Lake City-based Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. The statue then was reconditioned and returned to its former home.

On Monday, crews erected the spire. On Tuesday, they added the iconic angel to the 190-foot edifice.


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“Book of Mormon” tickets on sale in June

May 7, 2013

Denver Post (Colorado)

Local theatergoers might want to get their keystroke muscles in shape. Single tickets for the second coming of “The Book of Mormon” national tour go on sale to the public June 10, Denver Center Attractions announced Tuesday evening. Shortly after last year’s Denver dates sold out a matter of hours, clogging the box office website, the show’s producers promised a return engagement for October. They kept their word; the show runs from Oct. 22 to Nov. 24 at the Buell.


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Elizabeth Smart: Mormon teaching on sex stopped me from escaping kidnappers

May 7, 2013

Washington Post (DC)

What role did Mormon culture play in Elizabeth Smart not running away from her captors during her nine-month kidnapping in 2003?

Speaking last week to a panel on child sex trafficking at Johns Hopkins, Smart examined that question, and said that the conservative religious culture of her upbringing affected her sense of self-worth after her rape and her unwillingness to attempt escape.

“I felt like my soul had been crushed. I felt like I wasn’t even human anymore. How could anybody want me or love me or care about me? I felt like life had no more meaning to it.”


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Mormon Helping Hands Volunteers Help Beautify Canyon Country Park

May 7, 2013

Santa Clarita News (California)

Painting park fences and digging holes is not how most people like spending their Saturday mornings, but that is just what two hundred and fifty-six men, women and children did on Saturday, April 27th.

Gathering at the Canyon Country Park, 256 volunteers in the Mormon Helping Hands program donned bright yellow vests, grabbed paint rollers and shovels and got to work painting three quarters of a mile of fencing, planting 300 hundred shrubs, and moving six truckloads of mulch.


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Federal officials investigate after Molotov cocktail thrown into Ogden, Utah, Mormon church

May 7, 2013

Fox News

Federal officials in Utah are investigating after a Molotov cocktail was thrown through the window of a church in Ogden.

The Deseret News reports (http://bit.ly/13ZQPQK ) the device was thrown into a meetinghouse of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints sometime Sunday night.


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Why Mormons Have the Lowest Rates of Interfaith Marriage

May 7, 2013

Religion News Service

According to Naomi Schaefer Riley’s new book Till Faith Do Us Part, 36% of American marriages are now interfaith (when all brands of Protestantism are lumped together). This is up from 15 percent in 1988 and 25 percent in 2006.

But there’s a significant outlier to the national trend toward intermarriage. My own part-member family notwithstanding, Mormons are the least likely of any religious group to marry outside the fold, at just 12%.


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Mormon Prom set for this Saturday

May 7, 2013

Stafford County Sun (Virginia)

Are the Mormons building an Ark? No. It’s a cruise ship.

The Fredericksburg Virginia Stake of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is transforming their Fredericksburg building into a cruise ship inside and out as they host the 2013 regional “Mormon Prom.”

Over 1,700 Mormon youths ages 16-18 from McLean to Massaponax are invited to board the “Belle of the Berg” gangplank to attend a formal dance in accordance with the ideals these young people are encouraged to maintain.

D. Michael Kitchens, president of the Fredericksburg Stake, said, “I am amazed and pleased with the tireless efforts of the Mormon Prom committee. They have worked for countless hours to create a magical evening for these outstanding young people.


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New Mormon chapel opens in Fairfield Place

May 7, 2013

Houston Chronicle (Texas)

Cypress-area members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints who were driving across town to go to church now have a chapel in their own community.

The Fairfield Chapel of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints opened the second weekend of April at 21521 Fairfield Place near Houston Premium Outlets and Salyards Middle School.

The 19,500-square-foot chapel will serve Fairfield, Bridgeland and other nearby communities.


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A life spent teaching in both earthly, spiritual matters

May 7, 2013

San Antonio News-Express (Texas)

As a longtime professor of oral pathology and a tireless leader in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, Dr. Alvin Van Schiess influenced hundreds of lives, his son said.

“He set a wonderful example,” Wynn Schiess said of a man who taught at the University of Texas Health Science Center and was both a bishop and part of a regional governing body for his church. “You couldn’t ask for a better person.”


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Expert gives advice on how to branch out on family knowledge

May 8, 2013

News Transcript (New Jersey)

Nowadays, Reiss said, looking at records from Europe does not involve an initial trip to the area like it used to. With the Internet, he said, it would be a waste to travel to Europe first. It is better to be prepared with a wealth of information before the trip. “The Mormon church is very strong on identifying your ancestors and has a procedure where people can be converted to their church after their death,” Reiss said. “They have a strong database, because the idea is that people will collect the names of their ancestors [when they convert] so they can be converted.”

The Mormons, Reiss said, hold many records from Europe for this purpose and will allow the public to request records.

Reiss recommended the church’s website, www.familysearch.org, and a Mormon church in East Brunswick that allows researchers to come in and request records from Utah, where the Mormon efforts are based.


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A controversial Broadway play on the Virgin Mary closes Why?

May 7, 2013

Religion News Service

Exhibit A: the hit musical “Book of Mormon,” a barbed parody about Mormon missionaries that is still going strong on Broadway and on the road. And there was the award-winning play “Doubt,” which dealt with the clergy sex abuse scandal in the Catholic Church and was adapted into an equally acclaimed 2008 movie.


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‘We should never give up hope’: 5 other missing-child stories with happy endings

May 7, 2013

NBC News

Mitchell is serving a life sentence, his wife 15 years. Smart has since worked as a television commentator and an activist for abused children. She got married last year to a man she met on a Mormon mission in France.


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Who am I? Data and DNA answer one of life’s big questions

May 7, 2013

The Verge

Ancestry.com’s headquarters are nestled at the foot of a mountain in Provo, Utah, just 45 miles from downtown Salt Lake City. Founded in 1990 by Paul B. Allen (not the Paul Allen of Microsoft) and Dan Taggart (both Mormon graduates of Brigham Young University), the company was initially known as Infobases, and distributed Latter-day Saints (LDS) publications on floppy disk. From its earliest days, Ancestry.com was a software company, selling disks of LDS archives for around $300 out of Allen’s car. By 1995, the two were putting their wares online. Ancestry.com quickly became a leading destination for online genealogical research. Though the tools to create online family trees, indexes, and records were free, actual scanned images of historic documents were behind a paywall, and the company made much of its money through subscriptions. Today, an all-access membership to the service costs $359 a year — around $30 a month — for its over 2 million paying subscribers.


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Missing Women: Why Did It Take So Long to Escape?

May 7, 2013

Discovery News

Smart said she grew up in a Mormon family and was taught through abstinence-only education that a person whose virginity was lost before marriage was considered worthless. She spoke after a forum on human trafficking at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore about a school teacher who urged students against premarital sex and compared women who had sex before their wedding nights to chewing gum.


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Kidnapping Survivors: What Happens When They Go Home

May 7, 2013


In a similarly well-publicized case, 14-year-old Smart was abducted at knifepoint by Brian David Mitchell from her bedroom in Salt Lake City in 2002, as her sister watched. Mitchell proceeded to take her as a prisoner in his home, aided by his wife Wanda Barzee. For the next nine months he raped, drugged and otherwise tormented Smart until her rescue. In the years since being freed, the young woman has been a high achiever, founding the Elizabeth Smart Foundation to prevent crimes against children and becoming a leading advocate for missing persons. She’s also served as a Mormon missionary in Paris, where she met the Scottish-born Matthew Gilmour; the two married in 2011.


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Abstinence laws hurt victims of sex crimes

May 7, 2013

Perth Now (Australia)

Eight years on, having survived the terrifying ordeal and recently married, Smart has a message for fundamental religious zealots – abstinence laws make victims of sex crimes feel dirty and at fault.

Smart should know, she grew up in a Mormon family where people who had sex outside of marriage were considered worthless and frequently compared to used pieces of chewing gum.


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