A Look Back at the Church of Jesus Christ in 2022 – Church Newsroom
To borrow a phrase from scripture, leaders and members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints were “anxiously engaged” in good causes in 2022. The faith’s humanitarian and welfare work was constant. Apostles and other leaders ministered and made meaningful connections around the world. And more houses of the Lord opened for worship.
The summaries, video and photos below show — though it is only a glimpse — the many ways members of the Church blessed God’s children everywhere.
Humanitarian and Welfare Outreach
Jesus teaches His followers to “love thy neighbour” and to “be one.” The Church does this, in part, through its important humanitarian and welfare service. These projects are often done in collaboration with trusted organizations who help get resources to individuals in need.
This year, to mention only a few items, the Church of Jesus Christ gave US$32 million to the World Food Programme, $10 million for polio and maternal and neonatal tetanus vaccinations to Rotary International and UNICEF, $5.1 million to the American Red Cross and another $5 million to UNICEF’s global malnutrition program.
Both the institutional Church and everyday Saints provided relief to Ukrainian refugees; tsunami survivors in Tonga; storm victims in Kentucky, Florida and South Africa; and war victims in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. They helped bring electricity to a Navajo community in Utah. They engaged with Sikhs in a service project in the United Arab Emirates. They partnered with the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People on community service projects for mothers in Memphis and those who need healthy food in San Francisco. And right now, Light the World Giving Machines are collecting funds to buy food and other items for those in need in 28 locations around the world.
In 2021, the Church’s donations added up to nearly $1 billion and its membership gave 6.8 million hours in service. Similar numbers for 2022 will be released next year.
The Prophet’s Preaching
President Russell M. Nelson turned 98 in September, becoming the oldest president in the history of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. He announced plans to build 35 more temples (see here and here) — bringing the total to 300 in operation or under construction. He rededicated the house of the Lord in Washington, D.C. He welcomed guests to Temple Square from Dubai, Egypt, the Gambia, New York and Saudi Arabia. He spoke to young adults worldwide, as well as to Saints in California, Nevada, Utah, Western Canada and 48 countries throughout Europe.
At the October general conference, the prophet assured Latter-day Saints that despite the abundance of sobering news in the world, “so many wonderful things are ahead. In coming days, we will see the greatest manifestations of the Savior’s power that the world has ever seen. Between now and the time He returns ‘with power and great glory’ (see Joseph Smith—Matthew 1:36), He will bestow countless privileges, blessings and miracles upon the faithful.”
The Travels of the Apostles and General Officers
The Apostles continued to be, as scripture describes, a “traveling high council.” Only a few of many examples are below.
President Dallin H. Oaks of the First Presidency spoke at a religious freedom conference near the Vatican. President Henry B. Eyring rededicated the Tokyo Japan Temple. President M. Russell Ballard dedicated a monument to Black pioneers in Utah and dedicated a Smith family monument in Massachusetts. Elder Jeffrey R. Holland spent 10 days ministering in Germany, Finland and Sweden. Elder Dieter F. Uchtdorf visited Ukrainian refugees in Poland and rededicated the Hamilton New Zealand Temple. Elder David A. Bednar spoke to the National Press Club in Washington, D.C. Elder Quentin L. Cook led several United States Supreme Court justices through the temple in the nation’s capital. Elder D. Todd Christofferson visited Central Africa and attended the unveiling of a statue of the Prophet Joseph Smith at a university in India.
Elder Neil L. Andersen dedicated Cabo Verde’s first house of the Lord. Elder Ronald A. Rasband met the president of Mozambique and ministered in Brazil. Elder Gary E. Stevenson dedicated the Rio de Janeiro Brazil Temple and represented the Church at a conference in Indonesia. Elder Dale G. Renlund spoke to young adults worldwide about Volume 3 of “Saints” and dedicated the Belém Brazil Temple. Elder Gerrit W. Gong visited the presidents of Panama and Costa Rica. Elder Ulisses Soares delivered a historic address to world religious leaders in Kazakhstan, in addition to visits to Cuba and Puerto Rico.
The 15 General Officers (Relief Society, Young Women, Young Men, Primary and Sunday School) were also engaged globally. A few examples: New Relief Society General President Camille N. Johnson spoke on religious freedom in Iowa, ministered to new mothers in Chicago and helped unveil Light the World Giving Machines in Kansas City. Primary General President Susan H. Porter joined Sister Michelle D. Craig of the Young Women General Presidency on a visit to Ghana. Brother Ahmad S. Corbitt of the Young Men General Presidency spoke to Church-endorsed chaplains on the dangers of activism against the faith. His fellow counselor Brad Wilcox, along with Milton Camargo of the Sunday School General Presidency, visited four countries in Central Africa. And former Relief Society General President Jean B. Bingham joined Young Women General President Bonnie H. Cordon in Asia.
Other Notable News
The Church published four important resources this year:
The Church published a statement on the importance of water conservation, and two Church leaders (Bishops Gérald Caussé and L. Todd Budge) spoke on the need for environmental stewardship. The Church also voiced its support for the United States Respect for Marriage Act.
Finally, the Tabernacle Choir at Temple Square redefined its mission to broaden the reach of its music and influence. This will include foreign-language versions of “Music and the Spoken Word,” shorter and more frequent travel and recruitment of qualified Latter-day Saint singers from Mexico, Central America, South America, West Africa, the Philippines and Asia to join the Choir at the April 2023 general conference.
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