8 Ways to Find the True Spirit of Christmas

What is the True Spirit of Christmas? December comes just once a year. If we’re not careful it can pass us by in a frenzied whirlwind of ribbons, packages, and parties. Or, for some, it may seem like a month just like any other. Nothing special. Neither of those scenarios sound like a fun Christmas!…

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Riverside Service Honors ‘Miracle of the Quails’

The Camp of the Poor Travel back with me 176 years. The year was 1846. The October morning was cold and biting. Imagine over 600 people camped out right here on this riverbank. They were sick and shivering. They didn’t even have blankets. Food was scarce. They were starving. This group of Saints included the…

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Battles with Grief: Then and Now

Memorial Service This summer my family and I participated in a memorial service at Smith Family Cemetery in Historic Nauvoo for the martyrdom of the Prophet Joseph Smith and his brother Hyrum Smith (June 27, 1844).1 The service included prayer, music, scriptures, and quotes all crafted into a dramatic retelling of that fateful June-day when…

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Mastering Mountains

Happy first anniversary to On this Day in Church History! I wrote my first post on this day one year ago. To celebrate, I took a look back at my posts from last year. Here are three stories that inspire us to master the mountains in our lives: Fearless Faith “Where is your faith? Where…

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Holding Together

Long-distance Engagement “You want to postpone the wedding?” I asked my fiancée. “We need more time,” he said. “We need to get to know each other better. We need time to plan and prepare.” We had set a date for the end of February, but now he wanted to move the wedding all the way…

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Hitting Rock Bottom

I had hit rock bottom. The month had begun with a birth, but had ended with a death. My second son was born, but my grandma was gone. I gathered my newborn in my arms and traveled halfway across the world and back so that I could attend the funeral. Upon my return to Germany,…

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My Life in Ruins

For the past two years we have lived in a village in Germany called Isenburg—tucked in the middle of a forest and nestled under a castle ruin. Every day driving home we passed under an ancient stone archway that served as the entrance to the castle grounds. On the hill directly above our house is…

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