Mormon News Report: 29 June 2017

Mormon News Report: 29 June 2017


 
LDS Church updates policies for Church Employees (multiple)
Let’s get the basics out of the way first. The LDS Church has updated quite a few policies for full-time employees. Among the major ones making news: Women employed full-time with benefits are now eligible for 6 weeks of paid maternity leave. Women and men are also eligible for one week of paternity leave to bond with a newborn or adopted child. And if that wasn’t enough, here’s where things get a bit nutty – women are now permitted to wear dress slacks or pantsuits, men are now allowed to remove suit jackets “”for hot weather and movement throughout the building,”” and in one of the more dramatic moves by the Church Office Building (COB), men are now allowed to wear “”light colored dress shirts”” in place of the traditional white shirts.While these changes are definitely a story in Mormondom, in my mind, the coverage is even more interesting. The Deseret News, for example, is short, sweet, and to the point. Trent Toune covers the major changes, quotes from a release from the COB (which includes a quote from Elder Quentin L. Cook), and keeps it at a business level.Peggy Stack at the Tribune gets a bit more in depth, gathering a quote from an employee at the COB speaking on the condition of anonymity, an Operations Supervisor at the BYU Testing Center as well as a former LDS Family Services employee. Stack also does a good job of looking at the history behind many changes in employment policies while one works for the LDS Church, highlighting some of the major milestones.It all goes back to the different demographics each publication is gearing towards. The Deseret News is notoriously conservative and orthodox, and I would assume their reader base wants to know just that – the facts. However, the Tribune does have a demographic that does skew more liberal, more progressive in their Mormon approaches, and more secular. Both Trent and Peggy are excellent reporters, and I don’t mean this to disparage each of them, but when stories like these happen, it really shows me how important it is for Utah to be a “two-newspaper town.”
Elder Larry J. Echo Hawk, General Authority Seventy and member of the Pawnee Nation, spoke at an LDS Business College devotional on June 27th where he “talked about the connection between his Pawnee Indian ancestors and the Mormon Pioneers.” Sarah Harris of the Church News (via the Deseret News) recaps his talk.
Rep. Chaffetz (R-Utah) leaves Congress on June 30, 2017. (Photo property of U.S. government)
Via “Blasting News,” which totally sounds like the most credible name for a site reporting on the news, and feels desperately like a group trying to capitalize on #socialmedia and #HowDoYouDoFellowKids. The snark isn’t very good, the hashtags are annoying. Here’s what you need to know – Jason Chaffetz (fellow Mormon) is stepping down from his House seat, and there will be a special election on November 7th. The Democrats won’t pick up his seat – Utah is notoriously Conservative Republican in their voting (aside from a few pockets). From the piece: “While some may associate Utah’s deserts with John Ford westerns or Coyote and Road Runner cartoons, the city of Provo is home to Brigham Young University, a strong supporter of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, and the largest religious university in the United States. Most BYU students are Mormons, which is not an optimal student body for Democrats who steadfastly oppose vouchers and other forms of government funding for private schools. #Special Election.” Also, in other news, water is wet, the sky is blue, Mormons gonna Morm and exMormons still gonna Morm.
Via the Fiji Broadcasting Corporation: “The Ministry for Rural and Maritime Development and National Disaster Management yesterday received fourteen 10,000 liter water tanks from the Latter Day Saints Church as part of the Post Rehabilitations Works on Koro Island.”
Photo by Russ Garcia, CC via Flickr, http://bit.ly/2sjG3er
Hands down, Doug Fabrizio is the best interviewer in Mormonism. When he covers Mormonism, that is. Today (Thursday), he’s interviewing Kristin Hodson, MSW, LCSW (friend of The Cultural Hall), Jennifer Finlayson-Fife, PhD, and Chris Duce of the “Celestial Sex” podcast on sex in Mormonism, and the complexities surrounding it. The podcast of the show will be available on the RadioWest feed tomorrow.