In case you missed it: 60 temples reopening for proxy work by end of July, 3 MTCs begin to reopen, plus 7 other stories

During the week of May 23-29, Church leaders announced 60 temples will resume offering all ordinances this summer and three missionary training centers will reopen beginning in late June.

Elder Quentin L. Cook of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles traveled to Nauvoo, Illinois, to dedicate Temple District of Nauvoo. Elder Dale G. Renlund of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles offered 14 principles on receiving personal revelation to missionaries, and Elder Ulisses Soares of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles shared an experience as a mission president in a #HearHim video.

In this week’s Church News podcast, the newly sustained Primary general presidency shared their experiences being called. Brian K. Ashton has been appointed the new president of BYU–Pathway Worldwide by the Church’s Board of Education.

Returned missionary and Brussels bombing survivor Mason Wells graduated from the U.S. Naval Academy, and two artwork creators shared the message that Christ’s love is within anyone’s grasp

Find links and read summaries of these nine articles below.

1. 76% of temples will be open for proxy work by the end of July. Here’s what you need to know

Baton Rouge Louisiana Temple
Baton Rouge Louisiana Temple Credit: The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

The First Presidency of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has announced that 60 temples will resume offering all ordinances for the first time in more than a year. After closing all of its temples worldwide in late March 2020 because of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Church continues to reopen its temples and their operations in a careful and cautious four-phase plan.

On Tuesday, May 25, the Church released a list of the 60 temples where all living and proxy ordinances can be performed, beginning in either June or July. In all, at least 129 of the Church’s 168 dedicated temples worldwide — or 76.8% — will be designated for proxy temple work by the end of July.

See the list of temples moving to Phase 3 this summer and how some temples are increasing capacities for groups of participants, plus changes to time-only marriages in the temple

2. 3 of Church’s 10 MTCs to resume limited on-site training in June

Missionaries walk along the walkway outside the Missionary Training Center in Provo, Utah, before the center closed because of the pandemic.
Missionaries walk along the walkway outside the Missionary Training Center in Provo, Utah, before the center closed because of the pandemic. Credit: The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

Fourteen months after closing its 10 missionary training centers worldwide due to the COVID-19 pandemic, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is preparing to reopen three teaching facilities for new missionaries, leaders announced in a news release Monday, May 24.

In a phased and cautious approach that adds on-site training to its online teaching, the Provo, Ghana and New Zealand MTCs look to invite a small number of missionaries to train on location beginning in late June. 

Find out more about the MTC reopening

3. Elder Cook dedicates Temple District of Nauvoo — reflecting on the past, looking forward in his first public travel since COVID-19

Elder Quentin L. Cook, of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints’ Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, walks the grinds near the temple during a tour the Historic Nauvoo in Nauvoo, Illinois on Saturday, May 29, 2021.
Elder Quentin L. Cook, of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints’ Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, walks the grinds near the temple during a tour the Historic Nauvoo in Nauvoo, Illinois on Saturday, May 29, 2021. Credit: Jeffrey D. Allred, Deseret News

Reflecting on the “devoted service and exceptional sacrifices” of early Latter-day Saints during a “tender but turbulent” time in Church history, Elder Cook dedicated the Temple District of Nauvoo on Saturday, May 29.

The historic homes, landscapes and pavilions — located just west of the Nauvoo Illinois Temple — “help us remember” and “provide moral courage and spiritual strength” to visitors, said Elder Cook.

Discover more about the dedication of the Temple District of Nauvoo and why the district matters to Latter-day Saints

4. Elder Renlund offers missionaries 14 principles on receiving personal revelation

Elder Dale G. Renlund of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles speaks to full-time missionaries in a devotional posted Thursday, May 27, 2021, on their online portal.
Elder Dale G. Renlund of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles speaks to full-time missionaries in a devotional posted Thursday, May 27, 2021, on their online portal. Credit: Screenshot

Drawing from personal experiences, scriptures and teachings from past and present Church leaders, Elder Renlund shared 14 principles on personal revelation in a Thursday, May 27, online devotional — principles that can help missionaries to feel and recognize the Spirit.

“Revelation is a life skill, not just a temporary way to be an effective missionary,” Elder Renlund said. “As we use the gift of the Holy Ghost in this way, we will find that the Holy Ghost becomes a companion who can be relied upon, trusted and depended on more. You can receive revelation.”

Explore the 14 principles of this life skill

5. How an experience as a mission president taught Elder Soares to #HearHim

In a video released May 27, 2021, Elder Ulisses Soares of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles explains how he hears the Lord's voice.
In a video released May 27, 2021, Elder Ulisses Soares of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles explains how he hears the Lord’s voice. Credit: The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

When Elder Ulisses Soares was serving as a mission president in Portugal, he prepared a talk for missionaries in a zone conference and felt good about his message. The morning of the conference, a feeling of doubt came. In the latest #HearHim video and blog post released Thursday, May 27, he described how the Lord guided him to verses of scripture that completely changed his talk. 

Watch the video and find out more about his experience

6. Get to know the new Primary general presidency and learn what they know now after serving in their new calling

Episode 32 of the Church News podcast features Primary General President Camille N. Johnson and her counselors, Sister Susan H. Porter and Sister Amy A. Wright.
Episode 32 of the Church News podcast features Primary General President Camille N. Johnson and her counselors, Sister Susan H. Porter and Sister Amy A. Wright. Credit: Church News graphic

During the Saturday afternoon session of April general conference, Latter-day Saints sustained a new Primary general presidency.

This episode of the Church News podcast features Primary General President Camille N. Johnson and her counselors, Sister Susan H. Porter and Sister Amy A. Wright. They talk about who they are, what it is like to be called and sustained as a general officer, what they love about Primary, and what they know now after a few weeks of serving in their new callings.

Listen to the Church News podcast and read about their experiences

7. Meet the new president of BYU–Pathway Worldwide — a former member of the Sunday School general presidency

Brother Brian K. Ashton, second counselor in the Sunday School general presidency, speaks at a BYU campus devotional on Dec. 5, 2017.
Brother Brian K. Ashton, second counselor in the Sunday School general presidency, speaks at a BYU campus devotional on Dec. 5, 2017. Credit: Gabriel Mayberry

Brian K. Ashton has been appointed the new president of BYU–Pathway Worldwide by the Church’s Board of Education.

President Ashton takes the helm of the Church’s online learning program following BYU–Pathway’s current president, Elder Clark G. Gilbert, being sustained as a General Authority Seventy during the April 2021 general conference and appointed the new commissioner of the Church Educational System.

Read more about the new president

8. A survivor’s victory: Brussels bombing victim Mason Wells graduates from the U.S. Naval Academy

Mason Wells was commissioned an ensign in the U.S. Navy on May 28, 2021, after graduating from the U.S. Naval Academy. Wells was injured in the 2016 Brussels bombing while serving a full-time mission.
Mason Wells was commissioned an ensign in the U.S. Navy on May 28, 2021, after graduating from the U.S. Naval Academy. Wells was injured in the 2016 Brussels bombing while serving a full-time mission. Credit: Provided by Mason Wells

Life for newly commissioned U.S. Navy officer Mason Wells could aptly be described as fluid. Change is everywhere for the 24-year-old sailor. On Friday, May 28, Wells became a 2021 graduate of the United States Naval Academy. He exchanged the midshipman’s shoulder boards on his uniform for the bold, single-striped shoulder boards of a Navy ensign. And after four years of saluting every officer he passed outdoors, he’s now on the receiving end of a few salutes. 

He is also changing his mailing address from Annapolis, Maryland, to Pensacola, Florida, where he will soon begin pilot training. Even his marital status is changing. In a few days he will wed fellow Navy grad Cassidy Hilton — whom he baptized — in the San Diego California Temple. 

Catch up with Mason Wells

9. Artwork creators: Universal message that Christ’s redeeming love is within anyone’s grasp

The finished piece — “Within Our Grasp,” by artist Jay Bryant Ward — as featured in Elder Dieter F. Uchtdorf’s Feb. 25, 2021, missionary devotional.
The finished piece — “Within Our Grasp,” by artist Jay Bryant Ward — as featured in Elder Dieter F. Uchtdorf’s Feb. 25, 2021, missionary devotional. Credit: Culley Davis

Culley Davis remembers cycling on the back roads west of Utah Lake one Saturday four years ago, mulling what a featured illustration might look like for planned projects focusing on the Atonement of Jesus Christ and the Savior’s life and teachings.

The hope: a visual creating an impression of the Savior and His deep, abiding love offered to each individual and an illustration both personal and inviting. He had commissioned Utah artist Jay Bryant Ward, and the two had been tweaking the projects’ titles and moving away from images of pain and suffering of the Crucifixion.

Coming suddenly to mind, he envisioned an image of the Savior’s outstretched hand and another hand reaching up to grasp His.

Find out more about their art