In case you missed it: President Nelson honors Elder Davies, stories from the life of President Ballard, plus 7 more stories

During the week of Aug. 29-Sept. 4, President Russell M. Nelson honored Elder Dean M. Davies, a General Authority Seventy, for his valiant ministry. President M. Russell Ballard’s biography reveals an “ordinary man” who has had “some remarkable experiences.” Elder David A. Bednar of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles spoke to missionaries about “the power of godliness” in covenants and ordinances. 

During an institute devotional in Logan, Utah, Elder D. Todd Christofferson of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles issued a warning to “Gen Z” to forgo moral relativism. Elder Ronald A. Rasband of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles taught young adults how to find answers to important questions. An article on Face to Face events looks at how the interactive question-and-answer sessions have connected Church leaders with various audiences.

Missionary Training Centers across the globe continue to slowly reopen for onsite training. In this week’s Church News podcast, former Utah governor and current Tabernacle Choir president Mike Leavitt discussed how music can succeed where government can’t. And Latter-day Saint Charities continues to provide aid to Afghan refugees.

Find links and summaries to these nine articles below.

1. President Nelson honors Elder Davies

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

As a “courageous disciple of Jesus Christ,” Elder Dean M. Davies served with “unusual unwearingness” and “unparalleled skill, patience and persistence,” said President Russell M. Nelson during Elder Davies’ funeral on Saturday, Sept. 4. Elder Davies, a General Authority Seventy and former member of the Presiding Bishopric, died Tuesday, Aug. 31, at age 69.

Read more tributes to Elder Davies’ ministry and more about his life of exemplary service

2. Photos and stories from the life of President Ballard

President M. Russell Ballard, Acting President of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, in his office in Salt Lake City on Tuesday, March 13, 2018.
President M. Russell Ballard, Acting President of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, in his office in Salt Lake City on Tuesday, March 13, 2018. Credit: Ravell Call, Deseret News

In his new biography, “Anxiously Engaged: A Biography of M. Russell Ballard” by Susan Easton Black and Joseph Walker, President Ballard describes the “remarkable experiences” that shaped him into a special witness of Jesus Christ. 

Learn more about the life of this veteran Church leader

3. Elder Bednar speaks to missionaries in the MTC

Elder David A. Bednar, of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, speaks at the Missionary Training Center in Provo on Tuesday, Aug. 24, 2021.
Elder David A. Bednar, of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, speaks at the Missionary Training Center in Provo on Tuesday, Aug. 24, 2021. Credit: Spenser Heaps, Deseret News

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 on Aug. 24 from the Missionary Training Center in Provo, Utah. 

Elder Bednar encouraged missionaries to strive to obtain “the power of godliness” through regular participation in sacred ordinances.

Find out more about his counsel to missionaries

4. Elder Christofferson calls on ‘best of Gen Z’

Elder D. Todd Christofferson of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles sits beside Sister Kathy Christofferson at a Logan Utah Institute devotional Sunday, Aug. 29, 2021, at The Spectrum in Logan, Utah.
Elder D. Todd Christofferson of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles sits beside Sister Kathy Christofferson at a Logan Utah Institute devotional Sunday, Aug. 29, 2021, at The Spectrum in Logan, Utah. Credit: Troy DeSpain

Mindful his audience of some 9,000 young adult Latter-day Saints in Logan, Utah, are counted among the generation labeled “Gen Z,” Elder Christofferson cautioned against traps of reasoning claiming their peers.

Learn more about his warning to young adults

5. Elder Rasband speaks to young adults in Orange County, California

Elder Ronald A. Rasband and his wife, Sister Melanie Rasband, speak at the Orange County Multi-Stake Institute Devotional over videoconference on Aug. 29, 2021.
Elder Ronald A. Rasband and his wife, Sister Melanie Rasband, speak at the Orange County Multi-Stake Institute Devotional over videoconference on Aug. 29, 2021. Credit: Screenshot, Valerie Walton

When faithfully living the gospel, joy can be found in praying with questions and receiving answers from Heavenly Father. But sometimes one’s questions can sidetrack spiritual progress.

Elder Rasband shared with young adults in California how to find answers to their questions and to what sources they should look for those answers. 

Read more about Elder Rasband’s message

6. A look at the history of Face to Face events

Elder David A. Bednar and his wife, Sister Susan Bednar, answer questions during a Face to Face event for youth broadcast from the Church Office Building in Salt Lake City on May 12, 2015.
Elder David A. Bednar and his wife, Sister Susan Bednar, answer questions during a Face to Face event for youth broadcast from the Church Office Building in Salt Lake City on May 12, 2015. Credit: The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

The interactive question-and-answer sessions began in 2014 in an effort to connect youth worldwide with Church leaders and with each other. Since then, Face to Face events have expanded to other audiences. 

As the Sept. 12 Face to Face event with Elder and Sister Bednar approaches, here is a look back at previous Face to Face broadcasts and their topics, locations, audiences and international reach. 

Learn more about these unique events

7. Current status of missionary training centers

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

The Provo Missionary Training Center has started to expand its on-site training of new missionaries to those learning new languages, while the England and Mexico MTCs will begin on-site training in September and October.

Find out the status of the Church’s 16 MTCs across the globe

8. Former Utah Gov. Mike Leavitt on his role with the Tabernacle Choir

Former Gov. Mike Leavitt joins the Church News podcast to discuss his current role as president of the Tabernacle Choir.
Former Gov. Mike Leavitt joins the Church News podcast to discuss his current role as president of the Tabernacle Choir.

This episode of the Church News podcast features President Leavitt talking about his new role, the strengths of his wife, Jacalyn, who will serve with him, and what the coming months look like for the choir amid the continuing COVID-19 pandemic.

Listen to the podcast

9. Providing aid to Afghan refugees

Volunteers at Ramstein Air Base in Germany organize items for Afghan refugees donated by Latter-day Saint Charities.
Volunteers at Ramstein Air Base in Germany organize items for Afghan refugees donated by Latter-day Saint Charities. Credit: The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

Following weeks of unrest and conflict in Afghanistan and the U.S. withdrawal of troops from the nation, Latter-day Saint Charities continues to provide urgently needed help to thousands of Afghan refugees in Germany, the United States and Qatar.

Learn how the Church is helping