The darkness and chillness of Christmas

Wikimedia Commons

  Christmas hath a darknessBrighter than the blazing noon;Christmas hath a chillnessWarmer than the heat of June;Christmas hath a beautyLovelier than the world can show:For Christmas bringeth Jesus,Brought for us so low.(Christina Rossetti [d. 1894])   … [Read more...]

Christmas greeting

It's from Wikimedia Commons, of course!

  I would like to wish everybody out there a wonderful, joyous Christmas. For those who abominate religious faith and loathe Christmas -- such people exist; I've encountered a few of them personally -- I wish you a reasonably decent Thursday.  Posted from Bountiful, Utah    … [Read more...]

On the eve of Christ’s nativity

the star of the Magi

  Lift up your head and be of good cheer; for behold, the time is at hand, and on this night shall the sign be given, and on the morrow come I into the world, to show unto the world that I will fulfil all that which I have caused to be spoken by the mouth of my holy prophets. 3 Nephi 1:13   Posted from Bountiful, Utah   … [Read more...]

Two fun prank videos for Christmas Eve and/or Christmas day

Lewis quote about family meals

  Okay.  You've eaten, you've read from the gospel of Luke, you've done all of the usual Christmas Eve stuff, and now you're just talking, reminiscing, laughing, praising President Obama, and so forth. Here are a couple of really funny pranks.  Take a look! If the conversation flags, share these with your family or f … [Read more...]

“Both religion and science require a belief in God”

Planck's stuff

    “Both religion and science require a belief in God. For believers, God is in the beginning, and for physicists He is at the end of all considerations… To the former He is the foundation, to the latter, the crown of the edifice of every generalized world view.” “There can never be any real opposition between religion and science; for the one is the complement of the other. Every serious and reflective person realizes, I think, that the religious element in his natu … [Read more...]

The Church of the Annunciation

The modern Annunciation Church

  As I'm in the habit of pointing out, Christianity isn't a European or American religion.  It began in the Middle East, and, for a very long time, its center of gravity was in the eastern Mediterranean.  So, in that spirit and in the spirit of Christmas, here's a photograph of the magnificent modern Roman Catholic Church of the Annunciation (or Basilica of the Annunciation, كنيسة البشارة) in the Arab city of Nazareth in northern Israel, which was dedicated by the late Pope … [Read more...]

“Intellect and Affection: How to Be a Faithful Mormon Intellectual”

The temple on the Bountiful bench

  Everybody is, or ought to be, busy with Christmas Eve, Christmas preparations, and family right now.  But some of you, when you get a chance, will perhaps find this relatively short new essay from the estimable Ralph Hancock quite interesting and thought-provoking: For the record: I like what he's written here very … [Read more...]

An apostolic testimony of Christ

image of SLC temple from Wikimedia Commons (as if the Church would be unhappy with my using a photograph from ITS site!)

   A selection from a speech by Elder Melvin J. Ballard, who served as a member of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles from 1919 until his death in 1939:  I recall an experience which I had two years ago, bearing witness to my soul of the reality of his death, of his crucifixion, and his resurrection, that I shall never forget. I bear it to you tonight, to you, young boys and girls; not with a spirit to glory over it, but with a grateful heart and with … [Read more...]