EP 505 – Stumping for Advent

Christmas is upon us! What is Advent? What does 2020's Light the World campaign entail? Why hasn't the Church recognized Joe Biden's victory?

Happy December! And with this most magical of months comes the Light the World campaign. Take time this Christmas season to #LightTheWorld through acts of service and compassion. You can even follow along with our daily Light the World blog, focused on a daily scripture.

As part of the 2020 Light the World campaign, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints released a companion video to last year’s stellar “The Christ Child.” Now we get a special behind-the-scenes look at this terrific production. You can watch it below.

Fun things we didn’t know: John Foss, the actor who portrays Christ in the Church’s Bible Videos series, wrote and directed “The Christ Child.”

Jared Gillins knows about Advent. He’s celebrating it. He’s all in on Advent. Learn more about how Latter-day Saints can embrace a liturgical calendar in this episode.

The First Presidency’s Christmas message is up, and the Christmas Devotional will be this Sunday, December 6. December 6 is also a very important day in one of the best countries in the world.

How great was the #GiveThanks campaign about offering up public proclamations of gratitude? It was an uplifting day to spend the week of Thanksgiving, and while the campaign is over, the need to be grateful is not! In an op-ed for the Salt Lake Tribune, one author rails against #GiveThanks as if Latter-day Saints are offering up gratitude over social media as a replacement for doing anything actionable to thwart the COVID-19 pandemic. President Nelson never said being grateful would end the pandemic. He simply said keeping a perspective of thanks will make life that much easier.

Also, many of our fellow lovers of thanks don’t, um, have a sense of humor, as evidenced to the reactions to Geoff’s comments on the Church’s official Facebook page. The Church reverted the logo from the green #GiveThanks one to the “standard” logo, and Geoff’s tongue-in-cheek remark was lost on many. MANY.

Unfortunately, one thing for which we cannot be grateful is the need to close temples. All temples closed globally earlier this spring while many have slowly crept open again in the intervening months. We were only two temples away from having all of them reopened in some capacity when the Church issued its weekly temple status update. This time, however, a handful of temples have been downgraded from phase 2 to phase 1, and some have paused operations altogether. Wear a mask, people.

The Deseret News published an interesting article about influencers. What is an influencer? It is someone who runs a social media account or a blog (or maybe a podcast!) and builds a personal brand out of it in an effort to monetize. It’s mommy blogs 2.0. There’s nothing wrong with having some hustle, but what about mixing these for-profit endeavors with preaching the gospel? There’s some interesting content to discuss there.

After recent presidential elections, the First Presidency has typically issued a statement of congratulations and support to the incoming president-elect. These statements have historically come out within days of the election. However, this time around, the Brethren have said nothing about Joe Biden. Why?

The Church Has Yet to Congratulate President-Elect Biden

Neon Trees’ Tyler Glenn had a stroke! He’s recovering, but the story is not the one you see depicted in television and film. There was no limp half of the face. No slurring. No symptoms, really. He only learned of his condition after one of his eyes started feeling foggy.

Lastly, how about the incredible story of the “monolith” in Utah! Officers from the Utah Department of Public Safety spotted the structure—hidden deep in the Utah desert—prior to Thanksgiving. No one knows why this metal structure is there or how it got there.

Unfortunately, despite efforts by the state government not to disclose the monolith’s location, enterprising explorers found it and in the process destroyed plants, left behind garbage, and even deposited human waste in the area.

As of the time of recording, the monolith is suddenly gone. No more! In its place, a small pyramid.

Update! Now there’s a similar monolith in Romania!

Merry Christmas! Please consider supporting us on Patreon!

Intro Music: “We Three Kings” by R.Tists for Christmas
Outro Music: “Deck the Halls” by Rue Royale

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