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The Wealth of the Church, DezNat, Holland and Oaks Speeches among the Top Stories of the Year

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The best and biggest year

As the calendar moves into the new year, here’s a look back at some of the top stories about or about the church we reported in 2021:

• Billionaire ad tech Jeff T. Green, arguably the wealthiest native of Utah, give up his church membership.

• In a controversial address, Latter-day Saint Apostle Jeffrey R. Holland urged Brigham Young University faculty to stop targeting “Friendly Flame” in Church Catechism against same-sex marriage.

• After James Huntsman’s tithing case, we look at the legal actions accusing the church of fraud in its financial transactions.

• Statues of the Angel Moroni are increasingly disappearing from the temples, ritual contests come, even the word “Mormon” is banished. We discover whether the church is in danger of losing its identity.

(Illustrated by Christopher Cherrington | The Salt Lake Tribune)

• The apostle Dieter F. Uchtdorf caused a stir – not from the pulpit but politically – when his name appeared in federal reports indicating that Donate to Joe Biden’s presidential campaign and other Democratic candidates.

• For decades, the church has handed over Utah Member Data to help the state plan – until this year. It decided not to do so in 2021 because COVID-19 has hampered the accuracy of those numbers.

• Historians D. Michael Quinn, who was ousted from the faith as part of ‘September 6’ but remained a believer throughout his life, dies at the age of 77.

(Francisco Kjolseth | The Salt Lake Tribune) These are some of the Twitter posts by user #DezNat who claim that they are defending The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints from “those people.” apostate”.

• We dig into the trenches of online battlegrounds to report on #DezNat, self appointed warrior those who defend church doctrines and practices with disparaging writings that sometimes include ridicule, bullying, and threats.

• After the apostle Dallin H. Oaks’ landmark Easter sermon on the Constitution, experts weigh in on this”dangerous times” in American history.

• The church’s flagship school finds itself at the center of many news stories. At the center of this question looms: Is it the Provo field to be “too free”? Some students, alumni and mainstream members say yes – at least when it comes to LGBTQ, issues of race, religion and politics.

Top from the news

The weekly newsletter also resonates with entries that attract tens of thousands of readers, including:

• The growth of the Church slowed down Cliffs of COVID in 2020, with the number of baptismal conversions halving and the record number of new children falling by almost a third.

(Christopher Cherrington | The Salt Lake Tribune)

• A Saint-Day law professor argues that top church leaders should fight back Donald Trump “big lie”, ”Especially after a poll found that 46% of US members wrongly believe that the 2020 election has been stolen.

• The same legal scholar wondered aloud Will the IRS ever punish the church? after a Utah-based faith-allegation whistleblower amassed a $100 billion account for “rainy days” that went to – but was never spent on – charity. To date, there has not been a public report from the tax authorities about this allegation.

• Church real estate affiliates bolster their profits by a few million dollar acquisitions in eastern Washington and Hawaii.

• “X-Files” followers know that “the truth is out there” and David Duchovny fans know that he does too the latest novel, “Truly Like Lightning”,” which the central character transforms into an “original” franchise of Mormonism complete with polygamous wives. This ambitious book contains a hilarious interview about baptism, a gripping spin on faith fundamentalists and, well, lots of profanity.

Latest from The Tribune

(Dennis Cook, AP) Then-Sen. Harry Reid appeared at a press conference on Capitol Hill in Washington in 2006. Reid died this week at the age of 82. He appeared on the podcast “Mormon Land” earlier this year.

• Former Nevada Senator Harry Reid, who rose to the position of majority leader in the Senate to become the highest-elected Latter-day Saint in American history, third death at the age of 82.

The church hailed Reid as a “dedicated and competent public servant who devoted himself to his family, his faith and his country.”

“We are grateful for his tireless service in each of these aspects of a good life,” it said in New information posted. “We pray that Sen. Reid’s loved ones will be blessed and continue to be at this time of tender parting and in the years to come.”

In one of his last lengthy interviews, the Democrat appeared on our “Mormon Land” podcast, where he talked about the siege of the Capitol, Joe Biden, Donald Trump, Mitt Romney and the needed by top church leaders to warn members not to associate with the “edge” of the group and cause.

Listen audio file.

• Author James Goldberg, a self-described Sikh-Jewish-Mormon, has launched a new youth novel. “Bollywood Lovers ‘Club“It is about a Sikh girl and a Latter-day Saint guy navigating dating, college applications, and family expectations.

Goldberg, who is trying to foster a “Mormon renaissance” in writing and art, says too many Latter-day Saint authors overlook their own culture.

Read story.

• “The Good Shepherd” pokes fun at the church’s wealth, but the satirical musical has one serious goal: to get members to talk about the best way to use the money.

Playwright David Nolan said: “If enough people are talking about the fact that the church should do more with their insane wealth,”… it has the power to literally save lives. ”

Read story.

• A recent Sunday school lesson on “The Family: A Manifesto for the World” seems “out of place”, argues a BYU political scientist, especially since polls show most Most young Saints support same-sex marriage.

The lesson and call to change government policy to reflect this manifesto seems to be “aimed at rekindling… the culture wars rather than ending them,” writes Richard Davis. “…Bringing back the culture wars is unlikely to help the church retain young people who have no problem with same-sex marriage.”

Read his comment.

• A 24-year-old missionary in Africa who became the 11th full-time Latter-day Saint to die this year.

Tshimaa Anaclet Tshiama, from the Democratic Republic of the Congo and serving in the Abidjan East Mission of Ivory Coast, died on December 19, possibly from an undiagnosed medical condition.

(Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints) Elder Tshiama Anaclet Tshiama died at the age of 24 while serving in the Abidjan East Mission of Ivory Coast.

Read story.

• A retired church historian has helped solve the puzzle of who else is buried in unmarked graves near the pioneer prophet Brigham Young in Salt Lake City.

Read story.

• Religious News columnist Jana Riess explores new poll that shows many young Latter-day Saints continue to attend church and youth activities but say they too have been harmed by religion .

Read her pillar.

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https://www.sltrib.com/religion/2021/12/30/latest-mormon-land-church/ The Wealth of the Church, DezNat, Holland and Oaks Speeches among the Top Stories of the Year

Mike Sullivan

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