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In the News

A look back at Church news highlights from 2021


Here’s a collection of some of the news and events of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints that have been covered by the Church News in 2021.

January

January — New Church magazines — the Liahona for all adults around the world and For the Strength of Youth for young men and women — are delivered.

Jan. 3 — In a video message, the Primary general presidency encourages children, parents and leaders to create at-home Primary experiences.

Jan. 4 — Elder Ronald A. Rasband of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles participated in the inauguration of Utah Gov. Spencer Cox.

Jan. 8 — The leaders of 105 missions — including the new Mozambique Beira Mission — were announced. They began their service in July.

Elder Gerrit W. Gong of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles speaks during a worldwide devotional for young adults on Sunday, Jan. 10, 2021.

Elder Gerrit W. Gong of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles speaks during a worldwide devotional for young adults on Sunday, Jan. 10, 2021.

Credit: Screenshot YouTube

Jan. 10 — Elder Gerrit W. Gong of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles and his wife, Sister Susan L. Gong, speak in a Worldwide Young Adult Devotional.

Jan. 11 — An 18-month renovation project on the Church Office Building plaza is announced.

Jan. 13 — The Young Men and Young Women general presidencies encouraged bishops to work with youth leaders to help youth complete four actions in January.

Jan. 14 — President Russell M. Nelson marked the third anniversary since being set apart as President of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Sister Wendy Nelson reflected on those three years in a Church News video.

Jan. 14 — Elder Rasband and his wife, Sister Melanie Rasband, spoke to missionaries worldwide in an online devotional.

Jan. 15 — The First Presidency released a statement condemning violence and lawless behavior, following political unrest in the United States and the Jan. 6 siege of the U.S. Capitol.

Jan. 15 — President M. Russell Ballard, Acting President of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, asked local Church leaders in the United States and Canada to look for youth conference and camp opportunities in 2021.

Jan. 19 — Senior Church leaders, including President Nelson, received COVID-19 vaccinations and encouraged members to safeguard themselves and others “through immunization.”

President Russell M. Nelson receives the first dose of the COVID-19 vaccination on Tuesday morning, Jan. 19, 2021.

President Russell M. Nelson, president of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, received the first dose of the COVID-19 vaccination on Tuesday morning, Jan. 19, 2021.

Credit: The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

Jan. 19 — Elder David A. Bednar of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles spoke in a BYU devotional about recognizing miracles.

Jan. 19 — A new name and the location of the Tooele Valley Utah Temple — now the Deseret Peak Utah Temple — were released.

Jan. 26 — The 2021 Seminaries and Institutes Annual Training Broadcast was held. Relief Society General President Jean B. Bingham spoke.

Jan. 27 — Elder Quentin L. Cook of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles and his wife, Sister Mary Cook, spoke in a virtual BYU–Idaho devotional.

February

Feb. 1 — The Church presented a large donation to city leaders in San Pedro Sula, Honduras, that is expected to benefit more than 20,000 people affected by Hurricanes Eta and Iota.

Feb. 4 — Primary General President Joy D. Jones shared how she can #HearHim in a video released by the Church.

Feb. 9 — President Ballard encouraged BYU-Pathway Worldwide students to get an education despite challenges.

President M. Russell Ballard speaks to BYU-Pathway Worldwide students during a devotional broadcast on Tuesday, Feb. 9, 2021.

President M. Russell Ballard speaks to BYU-Pathway Worldwide students during a devotional broadcast on Tuesday, Feb. 9, 2021.

Credit: screenshot byupathway.org

Feb. 13 — Elder Angel Abrea — Latin America’s first general authority — died at age 87.

Feb. 14 — Elder Jeffrey R. Holland of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles and three general Church leaders answer questions about dating, marriage and other issues in a Q-and-A devotional for young single adults in Lubbock, Texas.

Feb. 20 — President Nelson, Elder Ulisses Soares of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles and the Primary general presidency share messages during Friend to Friend, the first Face to Face-style event designed for and hosted by children.

Seven-year-old Brianna Villsnill from Salt Lake City, Utah, stands behind a table set up for a rock activity on Thursday, Jan. 21, 2021, at the Church’s Motion Picture Studios in Provo, Utah.

Seven-year-old Brianna Villsnill from Salt Lake City, Utah, stands behind a table set up for a rock activity on Thursday, January 21, 2021, at the Church’s Motion Picture Studios in Provo, Utah.

Credit: The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

Feb. 21 — Elder Neil L. Andersen of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles and his wife, Sister Kathy Andersen, spoke in a devotional for French-speaking Church members worldwide.

Feb. 25 — Elder Dieter F. Uchtdorf of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles and his wife, Sister Harriet R. Uchtdorf, spoke about technology in missionary work in a worldwide devotional for missionaries.

Feb. 25-27 — RootsTech was held virtually for the first time, and featured classes in multiple languages with presenters in international locations. Elder Bednar, Elder Gary E. Stevenson and Elder Dale G. Renlund of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles taught about temple and family history work during the pandemic. Elder Holland and his wife, Sister Patricia Holland, returned to southern Utah for RootsTech Family Discovery Day.

Elder Jeffrey R. Holland of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles and his wife, Sister Patricia Holland, record a presentation in St. George, Utah, as part of RootsTech Connect Family Discovery Day Saturday, Feb. 27, 2021.

Elder Jeffrey R. Holland of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles and his wife, Sister Patricia Holland, record a presentation in St. George, Utah, as part of RootsTech Connect Family Discovery Day Saturday, Feb. 27, 2021.

Credit: The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

Feb. 26 — Elder Soares and Sister Reyna I. Aburto, second counselor in the Relief Society general presidency, shared messages of peace in a special devotional for Native American Latter-day Saints in the Chinle, Arizona, region.

Feb. 26 — Latter-day Saint Charities announced a $20 million donation to United Nations International Children’s Emergency Fund to help ensure safe, fast and equitable access to COVID-19 vaccines across the globe, making them the single largest private sector donor to date to support UNICEF’s Access to COVID-19 Tools Accelerator and the vaccines arm of the ACT Accelerator called the COVAX Facility.

Feb. 26 — BYU released findings from its diversity and equity survey designed to “root out” racism on campus.

Feb. 28 — In a sacrament meeting address to missionaries of the Salt Lake Temple Square Mission, President Dallin H. Oaks, first counselor in the First Presidency, and his wife, Sister Kristen Oaks, spoke on what sets the Church apart from other Christian churches and what doctrines help missionaries teach with the Spirit.

President Dallin H. Oaks and Sister Kristen Oaks pose for a photo following their sacrament meeting remarks to missionaries of the Salt Lake Temple Square Mission on Feb. 28, 2021.

President Dallin H. Oaks and Sister Kristen Oaks pose for a photo following their sacrament meeting remarks to missionaries of the Salt Lake Temple Square Mission on Feb. 28, 2021.

Credit: President Russell M. Larsen

March

March 1 — In a letter to priesthood leaders, the Church announced an update to the Stake Seminary Graduation Guide.

March 5 —  Presiding Bishop Gérald Caussé thanked the United Nations International Children’s Emergency Fund (UNICEF) and members and friends of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints for combined efforts in combatting COVID-19.

March 5 — The 2021 Heritage Tour by The Tabernacle Choir and Orchestra at Temple Square was postponed until 2022, the second time the European tour has been delayed by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Elder Jeffrey R. Holland of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, Presiding Bishop Gérald Caussé, Young Women General President Bonnie H. Cordon, and Chad H. Webb, administrator of Seminaries and Institutes, prepare to record a devotional from a studio at the Church Office Building in Salt Lake City on Feb. 19, 2021. The devotional was broadcast to young adults in Europe and Africa on March 7.

Elder Jeffrey R. Holland of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, Presiding Bishop Gérald Caussé, Young Women General President Bonnie H. Cordon, and Chad H. Webb, administrator of Seminaries and Institutes, prepare to record a devotional from a studio at the Church Office Building in Salt Lake City on Feb. 19, 2021. The devotional was broadcast to young adults in Europe and Africa on March 7.

Credit: Scott G Winterton, Deseret News

March 7 — Elder Holland, Bishop Caussé and Young Women General President Bonnie H. Cordon addressed young adults in the Church’s Europe, Europe East and Africa areas. The devotional was broadcast in 17 languages.

March 7 — President Ballard — along with Elder Brent H. Nielson of the Presidency of the Seventy, and Sister Sharon Eubank, first counselor in the Relief Society general presidency — presented a devotional for Latter-day Saint young adults in North America.

Relief Society General President Jean B. Bingham waves to participants of the fifth annual International Women-in-Diplomacy Day symposium. The event was held virtually on Monday, March 8, 2021.

Relief Society General President Jean B. Bingham waves to participants of the fifth annual International Women-in-Diplomacy Day symposium. The event was held virtually on Monday, March 8, 2021.

Credit: The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

March 8 — President Bingham gave a keynote address that kicked off the 5th Annual International Women-in-Diplomacy Day event.

March 9 — The Church announced that three pageants planned for 2021 — the Hill Cumorah Pageant, the Nauvoo Pageant and the British Pageant — would not be held this year because of COVID-19 pandemic limitations and precautions.

March 9 — BYU Law School marks 50 years since President Harold B. Lee announced plans to build a law school at Brigham Young University.

March 11 — Six women were called as the first international area organization advisers for the Church in the Europe Area. Others have been called to serve in the Philippines and Caribbean areas.

March 12 — The First Presidency announced modifications to the ongoing renovation of the Salt Lake Temple, as well as a planned upgrade of the Manti Utah Temple.

Visitors walk near the Salt Lake Temple during the 191st Annual General Conference of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Salt Lake City on Sunday, April 4, 2021.

Visitors walk near the Salt Lake Temple during the 191st Annual General Conference of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Salt Lake City on Sunday, April 4, 2021.

Credit: Jeffrey D. Allred, Deseret News

March 14 — The Church launched the 2021 Easter initiative with the hashtag #StartingToday.

March 14 — President Oaks, Sister Oaks, Elder D. Todd Christofferson of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles and his wife, Sister Kathy Christofferson, spoke to young adults in Latin America and Spain.

March 14 — Elder and Sister Rasband led a devotional broadcast in a dozen languages for young adults in Asia and the Pacific.

March 15 — The Church announced a new phase for reopening of temples, Phase 2-B, which allows youth and other members with limited-use temple recommends to participate in proxy baptisms. 

March 15 — BYU’s women’s cross country team won the 2021 NCAA championship in Stillwater, Oklahoma. Their victory marked the fifth all-time national title for the Cougar women runners, and the first since 2003.

BYU Cross Country Team wins the NCAA championships Monday, March 15th 2021 in Stillwater, Oklahoma.

BYU Cross Country Team wins the NCAA championships Monday, March 15th 2021 in Stillwater, Oklahoma.

Credit: Jaren Wilkey, BYU

March 17 — The second annual Youth Music Festival was broadcast, taking viewers on a “worldwide musical tour” with messages of hope and light.

March 21 — Elder Soares and his wife, Sister Rosana Soares, addressed Portuguese-speaking young adults in Brazil, Africa and Europe, in a devotional and question-and-answer session.

March 21 — Ardeth G. Kapp, former Young Women general president, turned 90 years old.

March 24 — The Church announced it will attempt to preserve Minerva Teichart murals in the Manti Utah Temple.

An associate at the new Deseret Industries in Houston, Texas, helps customers on April 15, 2021.

An associate at the new Deseret Industries in Houston, Texas, helps customers on April 15, 2021.

Credit: The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

March 24 — The first Deseret Industries outside the western United States — located in Houston, Texas — was dedicated and opened to the public.

Lloyd Newell records several upcoming portions of “Music & the Spoken Word” inside the Conference Center in Salt Lake City on Wednesday, April 7, 2021. Newell is celebrating his 30th anniversary as announcer of the Tabernacle Choir at Temple Square.

Lloyd Newell records several upcoming portions of “Music & the Spoken Word” inside the Conference Center in Salt Lake City on Wednesday, April 7, 2021. Newell is celebrating his 30th anniversary as announcer of the Tabernacle Choir at Temple Square.

Credit: Scott G Winterton, Deseret News

March 25 — The First Presidency’s 2021 Easter message was released.

March 26 — Latter-day Saint Charities released its annual report, which included more than 3,600 projects in 160 countries.

March 31 — Lloyd Newell celebrated 30 years as announcer of “Music & the Spoken Word.”

April

April 1 — New Area Seventies were sustained in the leadership session of the 191st Annual General Conference, rather than a weekend session.

April 3-4 — The 191st Annual General Conference was broadcast from the Conference Center Theater, making it the third virtual general conference. Eight new General Authority Seventies were called, as was a new Primary general presidency. President Nelson announces 20 new temples. The priesthood session held on April 3 was the last one of its kind as the Saturday evening session was later announced as canceled, then restored as a general session.

April 4 — The Church News celebrated its 90th anniversary of publication in the Deseret News.

April 6 — Elder Holland and Rev. Andrew Teal, chaplain and lecturer at Oxford University’s Pembroke College, offered a keynote dialogue at BYU’s 31st Annual International Society Conference.

Elder Jeffrey R. Holland shares a light moment with the Rev. Dr. Andrew Teal during a public conversation on Latter-day Saint beliefs and doctrine at the University Church of St. Mary the Virgin at the University of Oxford on Thursday, Nov. 22, 2018.

Elder Jeffrey R. Holland shares a light moment with the Rev. Dr. Andrew Teal during a public conversation on Latter-day Saint beliefs and doctrine at the University Church of St. Mary the Virgin at the University of Oxford on Thursday, Nov. 22, 2018.

Credit: Simon D. Jones, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

April 8 — Elder Stevenson explained how to respond to three fears graduates might be facing, during the online BYU–Idaho commencement exercises.

April 9 — Elder Cook offered the keynote address at the virtual commencement exercises of Ensign College, addressing the topic, “The Foundation for Happiness.”

April 15 — President Oaks explains in a #HearHim video why one should act on an impression, no matter how unusual.

April 15 — In a worldwide missionary devotional broadcast, Elder Holland explains why a divine missionary companionship should include the Holy Ghost.

April 22 — Elder Gong shared how an education provides BYU graduates with a firm foundation, during his commencement address.

April 22 — The Sunday School general presidency members shared their first Facebook and Instagram posts.

Carthage Jail in Carthage, Illinois.

Carthage Jail in Carthage, Illinois.

Credit: The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

April 22 — The Church announces that 22 Church historic sites will reopen to the public in May.

April 23 — In a letter from the Missionary Department, all missionaries and prospective missionaries were encouraged to be vaccinated. Missionaries choosing not to be vaccinated will be assigned to serve in their home countries. 

April 24 — Sister Sharon Eubank, first counselor in the Relief Society general presidency and president of Latter-day Saint Charities, gave the opening keynote address at the Utah Coalition Against Pornography annual conference

April 26 — “Joseph Smith Papers, Documents Vol. 12: March-July 1843” was released.

April 29-30 — BYU Women’s Conference, which was held entirely online, celebrated its 45th anniversary. Speakers included Elder Rasband, members of the Relief Society, Primary, Young Women, Young Men and Sunday School general presidencies. A special service broadcast and Sister to Sister event were also held.

Sister Michelle Craig, middle left, smiles at the start of the BYU Women’s Conference Sister to Sister event on April 30, 2021, with Sister Sharon Eubank and Sister Susan Porter. The event was moderated by Irene Caso, left.

Sister Michelle Craig, middle left, smiles at the start of the BYU Women’s Conference Sister to Sister event on April 30, 2021, with Sister Sharon Eubank and Sister Susan Porter. The event was moderated by Irene Caso, left.

Credit: Nate Edwards, BYU Photo

May

The Manti Utah Temple of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is pictured in Manti on Saturday, May 1, 2021.

The Manti Utah Temple of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is pictured in Manti on Saturday, May 1, 2021.

Credit: Spenser Heaps, Deseret News

May 1 — President Nelson announced plans to preserve pioneer craftsmanship of the Manti Utah Temple and construct a new temple in nearby Ephraim.

May 2 — Elder Stevenson and his wife, Sister Lesa Stevenson, taught how vision and balance can lead to spiritual strength and peace, in a worldwide devotional for young adults.

May 6 — Based on area presidency direction and approval, eligible members of the Church anywhere in the world may now be considered for a senior service mission, according to a letter from the First Presidency.

May 6 — The First Presidency gave approval for areas to establish gathering places for young single adults based on local needs. A limited number of stakes have also been approved to participate in a pilot test of young single adult initiatives in 2021.

May 6 — President Nelson, a world-renowned former heart surgeon, received an honorary doctoral degree from the University of Utah.

May 7 — Sister Wendy W. Nelson — a retired professor of marriage and family therapy, published author, and former nurse and psychologist — received an honorary degree of humane letters and offered the keynote address at Utah Valley University’s 80th commencement exercises

May 15 — Ground was broken for the Deseret Peak Utah Temple.

May 16 — Elder Soares testified to a young adult audience that Jesus Christ is the source of peace and joy in a challenging world, in a BYU–Idaho devotional broadcast from the Church Office Building.

May 17 — The Church announced a $4.15 million donation for COVID-19 relief to India.

May 19 — The First Presidency released sites and renderings for temples in Vanuatu and Kiribati.

May 21 — A statue of the First Vision was unveiled at the Philippines MTC as part of a countrywide celebration of 60 years since missionary work began in the nation.

Elder Taniela Wakolo, a General Authority Seventy and Philippines Area Presidency, speaks at the unveiling ceremony of the First Vision statue at the Philippines Missionary Training Center on Friday, May 21, 2021.

Elder Taniela Wakolo, a General Authority Seventy and Philippines Area Presidency, speaks at the unveiling ceremony of the First Vision statue at the Philippines Missionary Training Center on Friday, May 21, 2021.

Credit: The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

May 24 — The First Presidency announced a discontinuation of time-only marriages in temples.

May 25 — The First Presidency announced that 60 temples will resume offering all ordinances for the first time in more than a year.

May 27 — In a missionary devotional broadcast, Elder Renlund offered 14 principles on receiving personal revelation.

May 27 — Elder Soares shares how an experience as a mission president taught him to #HearHim.

May 28 — Brussels bombing victim Mason Wells graduated from the U.S. Naval Academy.

May 29 — Elder Cook dedicated the Temple District of Nauvoo.

Elder Quentin L. Cook of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and Elder LeGrand R. Curtis Jr., a General Authority Seventy, walk through the Temple District of Nauvoo on Saturday, May 29, 2021.

Elder Quentin L. Cook of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and Elder LeGrand R. Curtis Jr., a General Authority Seventy, walk through the Temple District of Nauvoo on Saturday, May 29, 2021.

Credit: Jeffrey D. Allred, Deseret News

June

June 3 — Latter-day Saint Charities announces a $5 million donation in grants to nine refugee resettlement agencies.

June 4 — President and Sister Oaks spoke during a devotional broadcast to Church Educational System teachers and administrators and their spouses. 

June 5 — The groundbreaking was held for the Tallahassee Florida Temple.

June 6 — During the one-hour presentation titled “Supporting Children and Youth: A Broadcast for Parents and Leaders,” President Ballard, Elder Cook and general organization leaders provided suggestions to parents, leaders and quorum and class presidencies for reengaging in the Children and Youth program following a pandemic year.

During a one-hour presentation, titled “Supporting Children and Youth: A Broadcast for Parents and Leaders” and broadcast on Sunday, June 6, 2021, President M Russell Ballard and Elder Quentin L. Cook of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles speak to parents, leaders and quorum and class presidencies about the Children and Youth program.

During a one-hour presentation, titled “Supporting Children and Youth: A Broadcast for Parents and Leaders” and broadcast on Sunday, June 6, 2021, President M Russell Ballard and Elder Quentin L. Cook of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles speak to parents, leaders and quorum and class presidencies about the Children and Youth program.

Credit: The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

June 7 — The Church announced that the Saturday evening session of general conference would be discontinued.

June 10 — Elder Christofferson highlighted five ways the Book of Mormon helps missionaries become stronger disciples of Christ, during a worldwide missionary devotional broadcast.

June 11 — In his remarks during the 56th annual Mormon History Association conference, Elder LeGrand R. Curtis Jr., Church historian and recorder, outlined plans to restore the Hill Cumorah site to more closely resemble what Joseph Smith would have experienced there in the early 1800s.

June 12 — Ground was broken for the Syracuse Utah Temple.

June 13 — Elder Andersen, President Bingham and Sister Eubank host a Face to Face for single adults ages 31 and older, on the grounds of the Logan Utah Temple.

Relief Society General President Jean B. Bingham, Elder Neil L. Andersen of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, and Sister Sharon Eubank, first counselor in the Relief Society general presidency, wait for filming to begin for a Face to Face event for single adults age 31 and older on the Logan Utah Temple grounds in Logan on Monday, June 7, 2021.

Relief Society General President Jean B. Bingham, Elder Neil L. Andersen, of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, and Sister Sharon Eubank, first counselor in the Relief Society general presidency, wait for filming to begin for a Face to Face event for single adults age 31 and older on the Logan Utah Temple grounds in Logan on Monday, June 7, 2021.

Credit: Kristin Murphy, Deseret News

June 13 — NAACP President and CEO Derrick Johnson, who was joined by Elder Rasband and Elder Gong, spoke during a sacrament meeting held in downtown Salt Lake City.

June 14 — The First Presidency and leaders of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People announced education and humanitarian initiatives as part of an ongoing collaboration between the two organizations.

June 15 — Elder Christofferson spoke at Ensign College’s first in-person devotional since the pandemic began.

June 15 — Elder Renlund and his wife, Sister Ruth L. Renlund, highlighted Joseph Smith’s contribution to American democracy in their joint keynote address at the Brigham Young University Law School’s 2021 Religious Freedom Annual Review.

June 21-23 — Elder Holland and Sister Eubank participated virtually in the 2021 AMAR Windsor Dialogue Conference, speaking about the mental and emotional health of millions in refugee camps — and the support they need in expressing religious faith.

June 23 — The Provo Missionary Training Center welcomed new missionaries for the first time in 15 months. The MTC in Ghana did as well the next day.

Jessica Chandler and Elizabeth Trommlitz help Sister Adelyne Ward with her luggage as she arrives at the Provo Missionary Training Center in Provo on Wednesday, June 23, 2021.

Jessica Chandler and Elizabeth Trommlitz help Sister Adelyne Ward with her luggage as she arrives at the Provo Missionary Training Center in Provo on Wednesday, June 23, 2021.

Credit: Kristin Murphy, Deseret News

June 24-26 — The 2021 Seminar for New Mission Leaders was held virtually for the second year, with 109 companionships participating from around the world.

June 26 — Ground was broken for Helena Montana Temple less than three months after it was announced.

June 28-29 — Elder Cook spoke at the Notre Dame Religious Liberty Summit.

June 29 — The Family History Library opened again after being closed due to COVID-19 restrictions and a remodel.

People line up for the reopening of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints’ Family History Library in Salt Lake City on Tuesday, July 6, 2021. The library reopened after being closed 16 months.

People line up for the reopening of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints’ Family History Library in Salt Lake City on Tuesday, July 6, 2021. The library reopened after being closed 16 months.

Credit: Kristin Murphy, Deseret News

June 30 — The New Zealand Missionary Training Center opened for in-person training.

June 30 — Latter-day Saint soccer star Olivia Moultrie, 15, became the youngest player ever to sign with a National Women’s Soccer League squad.

June 30 — Construction began in the Philippines on the first For the Strength of Youth camp in Asia.

July

July 1 — President Oaks was honored for his lifelong support of God, family, freedom and country at the Freedom Awards Gala by America’s Freedom Festival at Provo.

July 5 — The Kyiv Ukraine Temple opened for Phase 1 operations, making it the last temple to reopen since all temples were closed in late March 2020. President Nelson marked the occasion with posts on social media.

July 5 — Elder Koichi Aoyagi, an emeritus general authority, died at age 76.

President Russell M. Nelson and his counselors, President Dallin H. Oaks, first counselor, and President Henry B. Eyring, second counselor, attend a First Presidency meeting, held daily Tuesday through Friday, at the Church Administration Building in Salt Lake City on Wednesday, June 16, 2021. The Church Administration Building was constructed between 1913 and 1917.

President Russell M. Nelson and his counselors, President Dallin H. Oaks, first counselor, and President Henry B. Eyring, second counselor, attend a First Presidency meeting, held daily Tuesday through Friday, at the Church Administration Building in Salt Lake City on Wednesday, June 16, 2021. The Church Administration Building was constructed between 1913 and 1917.

Credit: Jeffrey D. Allred, Deseret News

July 8 — Part 1 of the Church News series “Inside Church Headquarters” on the important role of councils in the Church, is published online.

July 9 — Elder Christofferson explained why the Hill Cumorah Pageant was a blessing and why it ended, during the Hill Cumorah Pageant Commemorative Devotional broadcast.

July 12 — Adjustments to temple ceremonial clothing, which were announced in January 2020, are now available globally.

July 15 — The site for the Yorba Linda California Temple was announced.

July 16 — The 175th anniversary of the Mormon Battalion mustering is marked.

The Mormon Battalion Center at San Diego, California.

The Mormon Battalion Center at San Diego, California.

Credit: The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

July 19 — President Oaks declares that the pioneer legacy is one of inclusion, during his keynote address at SUPer DUPer Day at This Is the Place Heritage Park.

July 23 — Utah Gov. Spencer Cox declared the day as President M. Russell Ballard Day.

July 23 — Elder Rasband was the Days of ’47 Parade grand marshal.

July 23-Aug. 8 — More than a dozen athletes with connections to the Church competed in the 2020 Summer Olympics in Tokyo, Japan, which had been postponed due to COVID-19. Following the opening ceremonies, President Nelson shared a Facebook post encouraging Olympic ideals in one’s personal life. USA gymnast MyKayla Skinner won silver on vault and New Zealand’s Valerie Adams celebrated her bronze in shot put at the 2020 Summer Olympics in Tokyo, Japan. In total, five athletes with connections to the Church won medals.

Mykayla Skinner of the United States, poses after winning the silver medal for the vault during the artistic gymnastics women’s apparatus final at the 2020 Summer Olympics, Sunday, Aug. 1, 2021, in Tokyo, Japan.

Mykayla Skinner of the United States, poses after winning the silver medal for the vault during the artistic gymnastics women’s apparatus final at the 2020 Summer Olympics, Sunday, Aug. 1, 2021, in Tokyo, Japan. (AP Photo/Natacha Pisarenko)

Credit: Natacha Pisarenko, Associated Press

July 26 — Peru’s outgoing president and many of the country’s most influential religious leaders gathered on the grounds of the Lima Peru Temple to pray for their country

July 27 — Following additional study and prayer, the First Presidency announced that the Saturday evening session of general conference would continue, albeit in a different format than in the past.

July 30 — Elder Soares encouraged youth in the Caribbean to learn to listen to and recognize the Holy Ghost, during the concluding devotional of a For the Strength of Youth conference.

August

Aug. 1 — Elder Clark G. Gilbert, General Authority Seventy, began his appointment as commissioner of the Church Educational System. That same day, President Brian K. Ashton began his appointment as president of BYU–Pathway Worldwide, filling Elder Gilbert’s former position. 

Aug. 1 — 66 area seventies were released, a modification to the Church’s timing of releasing such leaders.

Aug. 6-8 — The Abundant Life Conference was held for single adults in the North America West Area and held in person and virtually in locations in California, Oregon, Washington, Alaska and Hawaii. President Oaks spoke in Seattle, Washington. It was the first time a member of the First Presidency had addressed a public audience outside of Utah in 17 months. Elder Bednar and his wife, Sister Susan Bednar, spoke at the opening devotional from Oakland, California. 

Elder Mark A. Bragg, General Authority Seventy, and his wife, Sister Yvonne K. Bragg, left, talk with President Dallin H. Oaks, first counselor in the First Presidency of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and his wife, Sister Kristen M. Oaks, right, before a crowd of young singles during the Abundant Life Conference, Sunday, August 8, 2021, at the Bellevue South Stake Center. The weekend-long conference, which was held for single adult Church members in the North America West Area…

Elder Mark A. Bragg, General Authority Seventy, and his wife, Sister Yvonne K. Bragg, left, talk with President Dallin H. Oaks, first counselor in the First Presidency of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and his wife, Sister Kristen M. Oaks, right, before a crowd of young singles during the Abundant Life Conference, Sunday, Aug. 8, 2021, at the Bellevue South Stake Center. The weekend-long conference, which was held for single adult Church members in the North America West Area, included workshops, a service project, a concert, and various speakers.

Credit: Genna Martin, for the Church News

Aug. 7 — Ground was broken for the Salvador Brazil Temple.

Aug. 10 — BYU–Idaho marks 20 years since its transition from Ricks College to a four-year university.

Aug. 12 — In a letter to Church members around the world, the First Presidency urged all Latter-day Saints to wear masks and get vaccinated.

Aug. 12 — Elder Soares dedicated the Mesa Arizona Temple Visitors’ Center.

Aug. 14 — A 7.2 magnitude earthquake struck the west end of Haiti; all missionaries were reported safe and the Port-au-Prince Haiti Temple wasn’t damaged.

Sister Harriet Uchtdorf and Elder Dieter F. Uchtdorf of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, make hearts with their hands and hold them toward the audience after Elder Uchtdorf delivered the keynote address at BYU Education Week in the Marriott Center on Tuesday, Aug. 17, 2021.

Sister Harriet Uchtdorf and Elder Dieter F. Uchtdorf of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, make hearts with their hands and hold them toward the audience after Elder Uchtdorf delivered the keynote address at BYU Education Week in the Marriott Center on Tuesday, Aug. 17, 2021.

Credit: Scott G Winterton, Deseret News

Aug. 16-20 — BYU held its annual Education Week. Elder Uchtdorf shared five messages all of God’s children need to hear, in his keynote address. The Young Men and Young Women general presidencies spoke about implementing the Children and Youth Program.

Aug. 21 — The groundbreaking was held for the Pittsburgh Pennsylvania Temple.

Aug. 21 — Following the earthquake, Elder Soares and Sister Aburto spoke to Latter-day Saints in Haiti about viewing trials through the eyes of faith.

Aug. 22 — President Ballard addressed Manti Utah Temple workers in a devotional.

Aug. 23 — During the BYU annual University Conference, Elder Holland asked faculty to defend the university’s unique mission and to offer love and hope to LGBTQ students while upholding God’s commandments. BYU President Kevin J Worthen announced the creation of an Office of Belonging.

Aug. 24 — In the first missionary devotional delivered in person by a member of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles since the COVID-19 pandemic began, Elder Bednar spoke to a combined live and virtual audience of elders and sisters from the Missionary Training Center in Provo, Utah.

Aug. 24-Sept. 5 — The 2020 Paralympic Games in Tokyo were held. About a dozen athletes with connections to the Church competed. Three athletes won medals.

In a #HearHim video and blog post released Aug. 26, 2021, President Henry B. Eyring, second counselor in the First Presidency, describes how he hears the voice of the Lord.

In a #HearHim video and blog post released Aug. 26, 2021, President Henry B. Eyring, second counselor in the First Presidency, describes how he hears the voice of the Lord.

Credit: The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

Aug. 26 — President Henry B. Eyring, second counselor in the First Presidency, shared in a video how listening to his mother helped him to #HearHim.

Aug. 26 — Former Utah Gov. Michael Leavitt became president of the Tabernacle Choir at Temple Square.

Aug. 27 — Elder L. Whitney Clayton, emeritus General Authority Seventy, and Gary B. Porter were announced as counselors to President Leavitt in the Tabernacle Choir presidency.

Aug. 27-29 — Elder and Sister Andersen traveled to Church historic sites in the eastern United States, met with community leaders and addressed missionaries. 

Elder Neil L. Andersen and Sister Kathy Andersen pose in front of the historical Joseph and Emma Smith home at the Priesthood Restoration Site in Oakland Township (Susquehanna), Pennsylvania, on Sunday, Aug. 29, 2021.

Elder Neil L. Andersen and Sister Kathy Andersen pose in front of the historical Joseph and Emma Smith home at the Priesthood Restoration Site in Oakland Township (Susquehanna), Pennsylvania, on Sunday, Aug. 29, 2021.

Credit: The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

Aug. 29 — Elder and Sister Christofferson spoke at a Logan Utah Institute devotional, cautioning listeners against traps of reasoning claiming students’ peers.

Aug. 29 — Elder and Sister Rasband spoke to young adults about how to find answers to their questions, during the Orange County Multi-Stake Institute Devotional.

Aug. 29 — Hurricane Ida struck Louisiana. Thousands of Latter-day Saint Helping Hands volunteers worked to remove debris.

Aug. 31 — Elder Dean M. Davies, General Authority Seventy, dies at age 69 following a battle with cancer. President Nelson and his counselors in the First Presidency honored Elder Davies at his funeral on Sept. 4.

The casket is brought out after the funeral for Elder Dean M. Davies in North Salt Lake, Utah, on Saturday, Sept. 4, 2021.

The casket is brought out after the funeral for Elder Dean M. Davies in North Salt Lake, Utah, on Saturday, Sept. 4, 2021.

Credit: Spenser Heaps, Deseret News

September

Sept. 1 — Following weeks of unrest and conflict in Afghanistan and the U.S. withdrawal of troops from the nation, the Church shared how Latter-day Saint Charities provides urgently needed help to thousands of Afghan refugees in Germany, the United States and Qatar.

Sept. 3-12 — Elder Bednar traveled to the Europe Area, becoming the first senior leader of the Church to travel in person on an international assignment since last year’s COVID-19 onslaught.

Sept. 7 — Elder Cook spoke on four principles that set a foundation for eternity, during a talk broadcast to BYU–Idaho faculty and staff.

Sept. 9 — President Nelson turned 97 years old.

Sept. 9 — In a #HearHim video, Elder Christofferson shared an experience he had in the Sacred Grove as a teenager.

Sept. 10 — BYU’s Museum of Art marks 20 years since its signature piece — Carl Bloch’s painting “Christ Healing the Sick at Bethesda” — arrived on campus.

Sept. 11 — To commemorate the 20th anniversary of the 9/11 tragedies, the Tabernacle Choir and Orchestra at Temple Square presented a 30-minute special entitled “9/11, Coming Together.”

Members of stakes in the West Jordan, Utah, area, including a Tongan stake, work on the Big Bend Project, cleaning the area and removing invasive thistle species, on Sept. 11, 2021.

Members of stakes in the West Jordan, Utah, area, including a Tongan stake, work on the Big Bend Project, cleaning the area and removing invasive thistle species, on Sept. 11, 2021.

Credit: Royce Bair

Sept. 11 — Church members all over the state of Utah and the United States gathered for a National Day of Service and Remembrance to commemorate the 20th anniversary of the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks.

Sept. 11 — Groundbreakings were held for the Nairobi Kenya and Neiafu Tonga temples.

Sept. 12 — Elder and Sister Bednar taught young adults how to find answers to their own questions — ask, seek and knock — during a Face to Face event.

Sept. 13 — The Pocatello Idaho Temple opened its doors for open house tours — the first public look at a temple in 590 days.

Sept. 13 — Elder Rasband spoke at the G20 Interfaith Forum in Bologna, Italy.

Elder Ronald A. Rasband, of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints’ Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, second from right, poses for a photo with other religious leaders during the G20 Interfaith Forum in Bologna, Italy, on Monday, Sept. 13, 2021.

Elder Ronald A. Rasband, of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints’ Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, second from right, poses for a photo with other religious leaders during the G20 Interfaith Forum in Bologna, Italy, on Monday, Sept. 13, 2021.

Credit: Jeffrey D. Allred, Deseret News

Sept. 14 — Elder Renlund explained how the doctrine of Christ leads to a “happily ever after,” during a BYU campus devotional.

Sept. 15 — President Nelson launched an Instagram account in Spanish — the first Spanish-only social media account by a senior Church leader.

Sept. 21 — Elder Gong invited full-time missionaries to focus on preparing three needful things to become faithful and valiant in their missionary service, during a Provo MTC devotional.

Sept. 21 — The Tabernacle Choir returned to Temple Square for its first practice in the Conference Center following a forced 555-day pause.

Sept. 21 — FamilySearch finished digitizing its 2.4 million rolls of microfilm, a milestone 83 years in the making.

Billions of historical family history records are available to the public with the completion of a microfilm digitization initiative. The final rolls of film have just been scanned.

Billions of historical family history records are available to the public with the completion of a microfilm digitization initiative. The final rolls of film have just been scanned.

Credit: The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

Sept. 22 — The First Presidency directed all temple patrons and workers to wear face masks at all times in the temple.

Sept. 24 — In the Beehive House, the bedroom and office of President Joseph F. Smith, refurbished to look as they might have appeared when he received the vision of the redemption of the dead on Oct. 3, 1918, opened to the public. 

Sept. 24-25 — President Bingham and Primary General President Camille N. Johnson toured parts of Historic Nauvoo and Carthage Jail, presented at a leadership instruction for area Relief Society and Primary leaders, spoke to missionaries serving at the site, and explored their ancestral connections to the city.

Primary General President Camille N. Johnson, left, and Relief Society General President Jean B. Bingham pause for a photo outside of the Sarah Granger Kimball home during a tour in historic Nauvoo, Illinois, on Saturday, Sept. 25, 2021.

Primary General President Camille N. Johnson, left, and Relief Society General President Jean B. Bingham pause for a photo outside of the Sarah Granger Kimball home during a tour in historic Nauvoo, Illinois, on Saturday, Sept. 25, 2021.

Credit: The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

October

Oct. 2 — “Inside Church Headquarters: The Power of Councils,” a 22-minute documentary created by the Church News, was released.

Oct. 2-3 — The 191st Semiannual General Conference was held. For the first time since the pandemic started, the conference returned to the Conference Center auditorium and music was performed live by the Tabernacle Choir and a multicultural choir. The Saturday evening session was not intended for any particular group. Six General Authority Seventies were released and given emeritus status. President Nelson announced 13 new temples and that the Provo Utah Temple would undergo reconstruction.

Oct. 5 — Elder Holland received the Rural Legacy Leader award during the One Utah Summit at Southern Utah University.

Oct. 5 — Elder Uchtdorf counseled Church-endorsed chaplains to partner with the Master Healer and lift others, during the annual Chaplain Ecclesiastical Endorsement Training.

Detail of the Daughters of Utah Pioneers monument in Salt Lake City’s Yalecrest neighborhood honors Utah’s silkworm industry. An 80th anniversary celebration of the monument was on Saturday, Oct. 9, 2021.

Detail of the Daughters of Utah Pioneers monument in Salt Lake City’s Yalecrest neighborhood honors Utah’s silkworm industry. An 80th anniversary celebration of the monument was on Saturday, Oct. 9, 2021.

Credit: Jan Hemming

Oct. 9 — President Eyring pointed to the then-unseen successes of Utah’s silkworm industry, during his remarks at the 80th anniversary celebration of the Daughters of Utah Pioneers monument in Salt Lake City’s Yalecrest neighborhood.

Oct. 9 — Ground was broken for the Casper Wyoming Temple.

Oct. 15 — The Hill published “Religion and the G-20: with faith, we can move mountains,” an op-ed column written by Elder Rasband.

Oct. 16 — Elder Holland taught missionaries of the Utah St. George Mission to teach with the Spirit.

Oct. 17 — President and Sister Nelson — and Elder and Sister Uchtdorf — shared “heartland” counsel to Latter-day Saints in Kansas and Oklahoma. Earlier in the day, the Church announced a $2 million donation for a FamilySearch center at the First Americans Museum in Oklahoma.

Oct. 17 — Elder Soares addressed young adults’ concerns about commitment, loving those who disagree and other issues during a devotional in the Mesa Arizona Red Mountain Institute.

Oct. 19 — BYU–Hawaii President John S.K. Kauwe III — the first native Hawaiian to take the helm of the university — was officially inaugurated by Elder Holland. COVID-19 restrictions had delayed the official inaugural ceremonies.

President John S.K. Kauwe III and his wife, Sister Monica Kauwe, pose for a photo with students dressed in traditional garb as part of the Inauguration Parade in honor of his official installation as the 11th president of BYU–Hawaii on Tuesday, Oct. 19, 2021.

President John S.K. Kauwe III and his wife, Sister Monica Kauwe, pose for a photo with students dressed in traditional garb as part of the Inauguration Parade in honor of his official installation as the 11th president of BYU–Hawaii on Tuesday, Oct. 19, 2021.

Credit: Monique Saenz, BYU–Hawaii

Oct. 19 — At a BYU conference, Elder Bednar and Elder Gong invited mutual understanding and respect among Latter-day Saints and Muslims.

Oct. 20 — A national survey found that members of the Church have far deeper feelings of community trust and connection than other religious groups.

Oct. 21 — In a #HearHim video, Elder Rasband shared how he heard the voice of the Lord through the scriptures when he received a mission call he didn’t expect.

Oct. 24 — The Tabernacle Choir at Temple Square performed a live Sunday broadcast of “Music & the Spoken Word” for the first time since March 2020.

Choir conductor Mack Wilberg leads a rehearsal of Tabernacle Choir at Temple Square as they perform their first Sunday morning music since the pandemic started at the Conference Center in Salt Lake City on Sunday, Oct. 24, 2021.

Choir conductor Mack Wilberg leads a rehearsal of Tabernacle Choir at Temple Square as they perform their first Sunday morning music since the pandemic started at the Conference Center in Salt Lake City on Sunday, Oct. 24, 2021.

Credit: Shafkat Anowar, Deseret News

Oct. 25-31 — President Ballard, Elder Holland and Elder Cook traveled to the British Isles, reflected on their time there as missionaries, visited the Scottish Parliament, and met with missionaries.

Oct. 26 — Elder Rasband spoke in an Ensign College devotional on standing as witnesses of God.

Oct. 29-30 — Elder Christofferson and Sister Aburto spoke in the first Forum on Religious Freedom in the Southern Cone.

Oct. 30 — The groundbreaking for the Pago Pago American Samoa Temple was held.

Oct. 31 — Elder Gong dedicated the Winnipeg Manitoba Temple, the first temple dedicated in over 20 months.

Elder Chi Hong (Sam) Wong, General Authority Seventy, Elder Gerrit W. Gong of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles and Elder Arnulfo Valenzuela, General Authority Seventy, stand for a portrait at the Winnipeg Manitoba Temple in Winnipeg, Canada, Saturday, Oct. 30, 2021.

Elder Chi Hong (Sam) Wong, General Authority Seventy, Elder Gerrit W. Gong of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles and Elder Arnulfo Valenzuela, General Authority Seventy, stand for a portrait at the Winnipeg Manitoba Temple in Winnipeg, Canada, Saturday, Oct. 30, 2021.

Credit: Daniel Crump, for the Deseret News

Oct. 31 — Elder Soares addressed five concerns of young adults in a devotional held in the São Paulo Temple Visitors’ Center.

November

Nov. 1 — The 10 Giving Machine locations across the United States were announced, including three new ones.

Nov. 6 — Missionaries were transferred from Ethiopia to Kenya due to civil unrest.

Members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints wait in line for the dedication of the Pocatello Idaho Temple on Sunday, Nov. 7, 2021, in Pocatello, Idaho.

Members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints wait in line for the dedication of the Pocatello Idaho Temple on Sunday, Nov. 7, 2021, in Pocatello, Idaho.

Credit: Drew Nash, for the Deseret News

Nov. 7 —  President Ballard dedicated the Pocatello Idaho Temple, with Elder and Sister Andersen also in attendance.

Nov. 12 — President Oaks called on religious leaders and organizations to come together and seek peaceful resolution to the “painful conflicts between religious freedom and nondiscrimination” in a historic address offered from the Dome Room of the Rotunda at the University of Virginia.

Nov. 12-20 — Elder Andersen offers healing balm in visit to Ecuador and Colombia.

Nov. 14 — Elder Holland called on young adults to be “a fortress of strength” inside the Church and out during a devotional at a West Jordan, Utah, Institute of Religion.

Nov. 14 — Elder Uchtdorf spoke at a Volkstrauertag commemoration event at Fort Douglas Military Cemetery in Salt Lake City.

Nov. 15 — FamilySearch announced a limit of 300 for personal temple ordinance reservations.

Nov. 16 — In a devotional address, President and Sister Oaks taught BYU–Idaho students how faith in the Lord is synonymous with trust in the Lord.

Nov. 16 — During a visit to South Africa, Elder Rasband participated in a Face to Face event with other general Church leaders, their wives, and youth and young adults spanning 32 countries across the Africa Central and Africa South areas.

Nov. 18 — The Church launched its annual #LighttheWorld Christmas initiative, themed “Light the World with Love.” A new video as well as a daily service calendar and children’s service calendar were released.

Men and women perform a traditional dance number for the “Luz de las Naciones” broadcast on Nov. 20, 2021.

Men and women perform a traditional dance number for the “Luz de las Naciones” broadcast on Nov. 20, 2021.

Credit: The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

Nov. 20 — The annual “Luz de las Naciones” — or “Light of the Nations” in English — was prerecorded and broadcast this year and was a celebration of Christ’s light — offering hope and direction.

Nov. 23 — The last of the Giving Machines in the United States opened for donations.

Nov. 23 — Selected stakes, districts and missions move to a new online process for issuing temple recommends.

Nov. 24 — Renderings of the redesigned Provo Utah Temple and the new Smithfield Utah Temple were released.

Nov. 25 — Elder Stevenson offered four “missionary pillars of gratitude” during a Thanksgiving devotional at the Provo MTC. 

Elder Gary E. Stevenson of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, left, and his wife, Sister Lesa Stevenson, poses for a group photo with other missionaries during the service project at Provo Missionary Training Center on Thanksgiving afternoon, Thursday, Nov. 25, 2021, in Provo, Utah.

Elder Gary E. Stevenson of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, left, and his wife, Sister Lesa Stevenson, poses for a group photo with other missionaries during the service project at Provo Missionary Training Center on Thanksgiving afternoon, Thursday, Nov. 25, 2021, in Provo, Utah.

Credit: Shafkat Anowar, Deseret News

Nov. 26 — The First Presidency’s annual Christmas message was released.

Nov. 26 — Storm Arwen, packing the worst winds to hit the British Isles in four decades, pummeled the eastern coasts of Scotland and northern England, prompting Church members to provide service to those most affected by the storm.

December

Dec. 2 — Ensign College opens the Ensign Center for Employer Connection.

Dec. 3 — BYU announced that its annual Women’s Conference will be canceled in 2022 while options are explored for 2023.

Elder M. Michael Fauber, injured in a Dec. 3 shooting near Birmingham, Alabama, is photographed with his parents, David and Rachel Fauber, after returning home to Dayton, Ohio, on Dec. 21, 2021.

Elder M. Michael Fauber, injured in a Dec. 3 shooting in Birmingham, Alabama, is photographed with his parents, David and Rachel Fauber, after returning home to Dayton, Ohio, on Dec. 21, 2021.

Credit: Provided by the Fauber family

Dec. 3 — Elder M. Michael Fauber from Dayton, Ohio, serving in the Alabama Birmingham Mission, was hospitalized after he was shot multiple times.

Dec. 5 — The First Presidency’s Christmas Devotional featured President Eyring, Elder Renlund, Sister Michelle D. Craig, first counselor in the Young Women general presidency, and Elder W. Mark Bassett, a General Authority Seventy.

Dec. 7 — Elder Cook spoke in a BYU–Pathway Worldwide devotional about achieving righteous, worthwhile goals.

Dec. 7 — Elder Andersen spoke in a BYU devotional about making time for Christ.

Dec. 9 — New Mission Directory feature, which allows returned missionaries to share their contact information with their mission leaders, was released.

Dec. 10 — The Church announced the creation of the Rwanda Kigali Mission, which will open in July 2022.

Dec. 10-11 — Tornadoes tore through the Midwest United States. Afterward, Church members responded to the destruction.

Dec. 11 — The groundbreaking for the Bacolod Philippines Temple was held.

Dec. 12 — President Oaks presided at the rededication of the Mesa Arizona Temple.

Elder Gerrit W. Gong of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles and President Dallin H. Oaks, first counselor in the First Presidency, wave to Latter-day Saints outside the Mesa Arizona Temple following its first rededication session on Sunday, Dec. 12, 2021, in Mesa, Arizona.

Elder Gerrit W. Gong of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles and President Dallin H. Oaks, first counselor in the First Presidency, wave to Latter-day Saints outside the Mesa Arizona Temple following its first rededication session on Sunday, Dec. 12, 2021, in Mesa, Arizona.

Credit: Kristin Murphy, Deseret News

Dec. 13 — The First Presidency released an update on the Salt Lake Temple renovation project.

Dec. 14 — President Oaks champions the blessings of religious freedom in an address to students in Rome.

Dec. 15 — The English version of the General Handbook received its final update of revisions and is completed.

Dec. 16 — President Nelson invited all to “make room in your heart” this Christmas for those struggling to feel the Savior’s love, in a video message posted on social media.

In a video message released Dec. 16, President Russell M. Nelson invites all to help others feel the Savior’s love.

In a video message released Dec. 16, President Russell M. Nelson invites all to help others feel the Savior’s love.

Credit: The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

Dec. 17— The Tabernacle Choir, Orchestra and Bells at Temple Square and Gabriel Trumpet Ensemble returned to the Conference Center to film the 2022 Christmas Concert.

Dec. 19 — President Oaks testified of Christ during the “Witnesses of Christmas” concert in Europe.

Dec. 20 — More than 50 Church meetinghouses were opened as shelters in the Philippines after homes were damaged and power was knocked out by Typhoon Rai.

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