Our 11 Favorite Mormon Moments from 2016

Little-Known Facts About the Church's 150th Temple

"Many of you remember in 2010 when the temple was burned to the ground. It was literally nothing but ashes," Elder Larry Y. Wilson of the Second Quorum of the Seventy said. "But, when I look around me today, I am reminded of the phrase in Isaiah . . . 'To appoint unto them that mourn in Zion, to give unto them beauty for ashes'" (Isaiah 61:3).

On March 20, 2016, the Church dedicated its 150th temple—the Provo City Center Temple. Here are a few things you might not have known about this sacred building that rose "like a phoenix out of the ashes," as Elder Holland so poetically stated.

More than half the temple is underground.

Because the temple was designed with the intent to preserve as much of the historical integrity of the Provo Tabernacle as possible, most of the expansion of the temple occurred below ground. The Provo City Temple consists of four levels: two underground and two above ground. 

The temple contains multiple inscriptions of "Holiness to the Lord, the House of the Lord."

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Photo from Mormon Newsroom.

This unique underground entrance makes the Provo City Center Temple rare in another way as well. Instead of just one inscription of "Holiness to the Lord, the House of the Lord" over the main temple entrance, the Provo City Center Temple has three such inscriptions: one above the south, underground entrance; one above the south, street-level entrance; and one above the east door, which used to function as the main entrance to the tabernacle.

The temple has a stained glass picture of Christ rescued from a Presbyterian church.

Inside the main, street-level entrance of the temple hangs a vivid and luminous stained glass depiction of Christ cradling a lost lamb. This stained glass is 120 years old and originated from a Presbyterian church in New York. A member of the Church bought and donated this artwork for the temple. Despite its age, the stained glass was in excellent condition, save for two strips of glass that were missing in the top and the bottom. The Church commissioned a local artist to repair and replace the missing pieces.

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Image from Mormon Newsroom.

The temple is filled with Columbines.

Many temples integrate themes or motifs that add to their beauty as well as their unique culture. For instance, the Provo City Center Temple carries throughout its walls a theme and depictions of columbines—one of God's simple, yet beautiful creations that celebrate the unique flora of Utah County.

Read more fascinating facts about the Provo City Center Temple here.

LDS Mom of Neon Trees' Singer Responds in Perfect Way to Son's Controversial Music Video

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Photo posted on Tyler Glenn's Twitter account with this message: "My mom has the kind of love for me that you can feel in the atmosphere. Unrelenting and pure. I love you mom."

When Neon Trees' lead singer Tyler Glenn decided to distance himself from the Church, he did so in a public way, with a solo video he titled "Trash."

In response to Tyler Glenn's controversial video, his mother Deb Glenn posted this heartfelt and beautiful response, demonstrating how we can love and accept those who disagree with us while still standing strong in our faith.

The following is NOT up for debate: please read carefully.
I have waited a few days to respond to my son Tyler's new video. I viewed it and don't like it. I find it sacrilegious. I find it upsetting. I find it dark. I love my son.
I tried changing the perspective. What is it that he is saying, why this depiction, why this imagery? I know Tyler, I know his heart. I have seen and felt the marginalization of the LGBT+.
I've been on this journey since he came out to me personally nearly 3 years ago. Our conversations have been deep, revealing, life-changing. Since the November 5th LDS policy, we have talked, shared thought deeper, and seen first-hand his personal pain. The man in the video drew upon some very serious pain, a lifetime of pain. It's not pretty.
This is NOT about me or my personal faith in God or my belief in the Church. It's about a young man who in the public eye has discovered himself and doing something with the pain that is real.
I do not want to justify his action turned into what he feels is art. But I do say as my faith has taught me is to love one another. To find fault, to finger point, to hate, to loathe, to judge without understanding is wrong.
The scripture in D&C 121:
42 By kindness, and pure knowledge, which shall greatly enlarge the soul without hypocrisy, and without guile—
43 Reproving betimes with sharpness, when moved upon by the Holy Ghost; and then showing forth afterwards an increase of love toward him whom thou hast reproved, lest he esteem thee to be his enemy;
Everyone has an opinion on this subject. But I choose to follow the prompting of this scripture. I am a woman of faith who will not turn my back on a friend or loved one no matter what they think or how they act.
I choose to act on my faith in God and seek ways to understand, lift, and love. Tyler knows that my husband and I stand with him at the ready to carry him if necessary.
All my love,
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