LDS Inc. (Part 15)

LDS Inc. (Part 15) December 21, 2019


Official LDS Pres res?
President Russell M. Nelson’s  very private home in the Avenues of Salt Lake City, with the Wasatch Mountains in the background, is quite difficult for the public to approach.  (Wikimedia Commons public domain image)


Lately, in my informal little series of blog posts on the theme of “LDS Inc.,”  I’ve included photographs of the relatively humble homes of recent Church presidents.  Some critics have claimed that such photographs are irrelevant, but I regard them as highly relevant:  They visibly support the important proposition that, unlike certain Renaissance cardinals and popes and evidently unlike some television evangelists, the leaders of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints are not becoming wealthy off of the tithes and offerings of faithful Church members.


Windsor Castle
The home of President Dallin H. Oaks, first counselor in the First Presidency, is located in West Valley City, Utah.  For obvious PR reasons, he has tried to conceal it with trees. (Wikimedia Commons public domain photograph)


Another response, though, has been to note that I’m not showing the homes of current Church leaders but, rather, those of long past leaders.  Apparently some people imagine that the homes of the prophets and apostles suddenly became gigantic and lavish upon the death of the immediately prior president of the Church, Thomas S. Monson, which occurred way back in 2018.  (A color photograph of President Monson’s home — color photography was virtually unknown in that distant era — was featured in “LDS Inc. [Part 13].”)


The Alhambra at sunrise.
President Henry B. Eyring, second counselor in the First Presidency, recently moved into this newly completed home in a secluded location at the south end of Salt Lake Valley.  The sere mountains of the Wasatch appear in the background.   (Wikimedia Commons public domain photograph)


Now, one might think — and I would of course say — that I haven’t posted photographs of the homes of current Church leaders out of respect for the privacy of living persons.  But that obviously can’t be true; my motivations are never honest, honorable, or good.  And, as it happens, Church leaders did suddenly become shameless plutocrats back in distant 2018 and their homes did suddenly become enormous palaces in that bygone era before internet transparency.  (Witness the accompanying photographs that I reveal here for the very first time.  They will eventually appear in my explosive forthcoming Letter to an AIA Architect.)


Ballard's Buckingham
As a young man, Elder M. Russell Ballard, currently Acting President of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, served a mission in England. His continuing love of that country is visible in the design of his new Bountiful, Utah, home, which sits at the end of this obscure and unfrequented cul-de-sac.
(Wikimedia Commons public domain photograph)


Here are some helpful new materials on LDS Church finances:


“How the Church of Jesus Christ Uses Tithes and Donations”


“Church presiding bishop details how tithing and donations are used: ‘It’s about building a reserve of the church, and ultimately, all of those funds will be used for church purposes,’ Bishop Gérald Caussé says”


“LDS Church fund unlikely to face IRS backlash, experts say”


“Global Effort to ‘Light the World’ Generates Donations for Charities: Giving Machines in 10 locations”


Neuschwanstein Castle
Obviously nostalgic for his homeland, Elder Dieter F. Uchtdorf, formerly second counselor in the First Presidency, recently constructed this rather German-looking home at the base of the Wasatch Mountains.   (Wikimedia Commons public domain image)


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