Portal:LDS Church

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For a topic outline on this subject, see Outline of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints Portal



The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, sometimes referred to as the LDS Church or the Mormon Church, describes itself as the restoration of the original church established by Jesus Christ. It is classified as a Christian church; separate from the Catholic or Protestant traditions, though many of those denominations disavow the LDS Church.

The LDS Church teaches that God the Father and Jesus Christ appeared to Joseph Smith, Jr., called him to be a prophet and to restore the original church as established by Jesus Christ during his mortal ministry. This restoration is often referred to by members of the LDS Church as the Fulness of the Gospel of Jesus Christ, which they believe was had by prophets and righteous civilizations throughout the earlier history of the earth. Further, adherents believe the restoration included all elements that had been lost since the early days of Christianity due to apostasy, this restoration included the return of priesthood authority, new sacred texts, and the continual leadership of a prophet and twelve apostles. The LDS Church traces its history to Joseph Smith from Fayette, New York, on April 6, 1830. Soon after Smith's translation of the Book of Mormon, adherents were nicknamed Mormons.

Smith led the Church of Christ until he was killed in 1844, after a period of confusion during which the church was led by the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles and various claims of succession were made, Brigham Young led the largest group of Mormon pioneers away from the former church headquarters in Nauvoo, Illinois, eventually to Utah's Salt Lake Valley in July 1847. Young was sustained as the church's president at general conference in December 1847.

Now a more international organization, the LDS Church is headquartered in Salt Lake City, Utah, and led by its current president, the church annually sends tens of thousands of missionaries throughout the world, with over 85,000 currently in service. As of December 31, 2015, the church reported a worldwide membership of 15.6 million, with more than 50% living outside the United States.


Selected article

Brigham Young led the LDS Church from 1844 until his death in 1877.

The history of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is typically divided into three broad time periods: (1) the early history during the lifetime of Joseph Smith, Jr. which is in common with all Latter Day Saint movement churches, (2) a "pioneer era" under the leadership of Brigham Young and his 19th Century successors, and (3) a modern era beginning around the turn of the 20th century as the practice of polygamy was discontinued.

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints traces its origins to western New York, where Joseph Smith, Jr., founder of the Latter Day Saint movement was born and raised. Joseph Smith gained a small following in the late 1820s as he was dictating the Book of Mormon, which he said was a translation of words found on a set of golden plates that had been buried near his home in western New York by an indigenous American prophet. On April 6, 1830, in western New York, Smith organized the religion's first legal church entity, the Church of Christ, the church rapidly gained a following, who viewed Smith as their prophet. The main body of the church moved first to Kirtland, Ohio in the early 1830s, then to Missouri in 1838, where the 1838 Mormon War with other Missouri settlers ensued, culminating in adherents being expelled from the state under Missouri Executive Order 44 signed by the governor of Missouri. After Missouri, Smith built the city of Nauvoo, Illinois, near which Smith was assassinated, after Smith's death, a succession crisis ensued, and the majority voted to accept the Quorum of the Twelve, led by Brigham Young, as the church's leading body.


Selected picture

Latter Day Saints in popular culture
Credit: Kevinalewis

Mormons have been portrayed in popular media many times. These portrayals often emphasize controversy such as polygamy or myths about the The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS Church) and other Latter Day Saint movement religions. Arthur Conan Doyle's detective novel A Study in Scarlet is one such portrayal that caused controversy. Mormons viewed the portrayal of the Danites in the book as highly erroneous, being yet another instance of anti-Mormon antagonism in popular media, the second half of the story, The Country of the Saints, is set in the United States and includes an appearance by Brigham Young.

Selected history

Map of Mormon Trail

The Mormon Trail or Mormon Pioneer Trail is the 1,300 mile (2,092 km) route that members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints traveled from 1846 to 1868. Today the Mormon Trail is a part of the United States National Trails System, as the Mormon Pioneer National Historic Trail. The Mormon Trail extends from Nauvoo, Illinois, which was the principal settlement of the Latter Day Saints from 1839 to 1846, to Salt Lake City, Utah, which was settled by Brigham Young and his followers beginning in 1847. From Council Bluffs, Iowa, to Fort Bridger in Wyoming, the trail follows much the same route as the Oregon Trail and the California Trail; these trails are collectively known as the Emigrant Trail. The Mormon pioneer run began in 1846 when, Young and his followers were driven from Nauvoo, leaving to establish a new home for the church in the Great Basin, that year Young's followers crossed Iowa. Along their way, some were assigned to establish settlements and to plant and harvest crops for later emigrants, during the winter of 1846–47, the emigrants wintered in Iowa, other nearby states, and the unorganized territory that later became Nebraska, with the largest group residing in Winter Quarters, Nebraska. In the spring of 1847, Young led the vanguard company to the Salt Lake Valley, which was then outside the boundaries of the United States and later became Utah, during the first few years, the emigrants were mostly former occupants of Nauvoo who were following Young to Utah. Later, the emigrants increasingly comprised converts from the British Isles and Europe.

Selected Location

The Manhattan New York Temple

The Manhattan New York Temple is the 119th operating temple of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS Church). It is the second "high rise" LDS temple to be constructed, after the Hong Kong China Temple, and the third LDS temple converted from an existing building. (The previous two being the Vernal Utah Temple and the Copenhagen Denmark Temple.) The announcement of a temple in New York City was made on August 7, 2002. News coverage was swift and widespread. Several months before, on March 24, 2002, at a special regional conference broadcast from Manhattan to surrounding stakes and districts, LDS Church President Gordon B. Hinckley told those in attendance that he expected a temple to be built in the area in the next two years. It was widely assumed that this was in reference to the previously announced temple in Harrison, New York, construction of which had been delayed for several years, the need for a temple in the area became apparent during the previous decade when local Mormon membership tripled to more than 42,000 members.

Selected biography

James E. Faust

James Esdras Faust (July 31, 1920 – August 10, 2007) was an American religious leader, lawyer, and politician. Faust was Second Counselor in the First Presidency of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS Church) from 1995 until his death, an LDS Church apostle for 29 years, and a general authority of the church for 35 years. Faust was accepted by common consent as a member of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles on September 30, 1978, and ordained an apostle on October 1, filling the vacancy created by the death of Delbert L. Stapley. He served in the Quorum until being set apart as Second Counselor in the First Presidency to church president Gordon B. Hinckley on March 12, 1995. He remained in that position until his death on August 10, 2007.

Selected Anniversaries

Peter Whitmer log home

Selected Quotes

Answers to certain questions on the writings of Isaiah, given by Joseph Smith the Prophet, at or near Far West, Missouri, March 1838.

1–6, The Stem of Jesse, the rod coming therefrom, and the root of Jesse are identified; 7–10, The scattered remnants of Zion have a right to the priesthood and are called to return to the Lord.

1 Who is the Stem of Jesse spoken of in the 1st, 2d, 3d, 4th, and 5th verses of the 11th chapter of Isaiah?

2 Verily thus saith the Lord: It is Christ.

3 What is the rod spoken of in the first verse of the 11th chapter of Isaiah, that should come of the Stem of Jesse?

4 Behold, thus saith the Lord: It is a servant in the hands of Christ, who is partly a descendant of Jesse as well as of Ephraim, or of the house of Joseph, on whom there is laid much power.

5 What is the root of Jesse spoken of in the 10th verse of the 11th chapter?

6 Behold, thus saith the Lord, it is a descendant of Jesse, as well as of Joseph, unto whom rightly belongs the priesthood, and the keys of the kingdom, for an ensign, and for the gathering of my people in the last days.

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