BYU Gymnastics Wins “Mannequin Challenge”; #TrueToHim; and More!


LDS Church Donates $200,000 To Jewish Refugee Resettlement Group

screen-shot-2016-11-08-at-1-15-21-pmFounded in 1881, the HIAS (formerly the Hebrew Immigration Aid Fund) originally helped Jewish immigrants fleeing from Russia and Eastern Europe. Today, HIAS has taken on the cause of refugees, supporting the resettlement of the tens and thousands who are now entering the United States.

The Church has pledged $200,000 in money, gifts, food, and furniture to the HIAS. It is also offering pro-bono legal services and assistance reuniting refugees with their families.

“The work that we do at HIAS comes out of the Jewish experience as refugees ourselves,” said Mark Hetfield, the agency’s president. “We know that Mormons, too, have endured the refugee experience. That makes this donation to help us help the refugees of today all the more meaningful.”

Read more at Times of Israel.

Anti-Semitism Is Off The Table — So Why Is Anti-Mormonism Okay?

BYU Gymnastics McMullen

Between the threats of a “Mormocaust” and snide remarks about a non-existent “Mormon Mafia,” Latter-day Saint slurs are at an all time high this election season.

While Mormons take the criticism in stride, the media continues not to take the remarks seriously. According to Federalist writer Bethany Mandel, if it were, for example, Jews instead of Mormons, the media would be outraged.

Mormonism does not have a history of persecution anywhere near as vast or severe as that of Judaism — but LDS history paints a bloody stain on early American history. From Boggs’ “extermination order” to the “Haun’s Mill Massacre,” insults over Latter-day Saint peculiarities has translated to bloodshed in the past. So why is it okay to poke fun at Mormons today?

Mandel argues that it isn’t, that all religious slurs should be off the table.

Read more at The Federalist.

#TrueToHim Shares Stories And Testimonies of Latter-day Saints Struggling With Gender Issues

screen-shot-2016-11-08-at-1-13-49-pmFollowing the launch of the official Church website Mormon and Gay, another LDS-geared website focusing on gender issues and sexual orientation was launched this past week.

#TrueToHim offers a platform to address questions related to sexual orientation and gender issues, and aims to uplift and inspire through the sharing of stories and testimonies. The site is curated by NorthStar, an organization dedicated to supporting and affirming the faith of Latter-day Saints.

Stories on the site come from people of every gender and background. Married and unmarried, men and women, all at various different stages in their life’s journey. Some of the stories come from advocates, those who wish to create a safe and loving environment for people of all sexualities and genders. Others come from the individuals themselves, or people close to them.

Watch videos and read stories at #TrueToHim.

ESPN Dubs BYU Gymnastics Winner of “Mannequin Challenge”

The cameraman pans around figures, still as stone, like a scene from an elaborate gymnastics department store. But these aren’t mannequins, its the Brigham Young University gymnastics team.

The “mannequin challenge” is the latest craze to take the internet by storm, and according to ESPN, the BYU gymnastics team wins hands down.

“We’ve been treated to some pretty entertaining ones so far (even the Pittsburgh Steelers got involved), but we can officially shut this whole thing down because the BYU gymnastics team just won it, “said ESPN. “Not only did the entire squad participate at practice, but many of them did it while performing various moves on the balance beam and bar. It’s seriously the most impressive thing you’ll see all week.”

See for yourself.
(spoiler alert: it’s impressive as heck.)

Gabriella is a psychology major, Westfalia-dweller, and expert bean-eater. Having spent the majority of her life living in the great Latin-American metropoles of Guatemala and Mexico, Gabriella continues to grapple with the eccentricities of suburban living.