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Highland 28th Ward History for the Year of 2022

Highland Utah Central Stake (2000091)
Highland 28th Ward (433861)

–Insert Summary about year —

History approved by Bishop Jeff Anderson on February 15, — Year —

Table of Contents

Highland 28th Ward – Calendar

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Sunday School's Report for the Year

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Primary's Report for the Year

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Young Women's Report for the Year

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Young Men's Report for the Year

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Relief Society's Report for the Year

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Elder's Quorum's Report for the Year

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Ward Committee's Reports for the Year

Ward Missionaries Report for the Year

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Ward Hope and Help Committee's Report for the Year

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Ward Service Committee's Report for the Year

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Ward Emergency Committee's Report for the Year

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Highland 28th Ward Blog

Bishopric Message – January 2022

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Dear Friends and Ward Family,

Sacrament Meeting on December 26th was wonderful to hear which hymn is your favorite and why then to sing the song as a congregation.  From the stand, we witnessed many tears as the spirit bore witness of the Love the Savior has for us.  His love is all-encompassing.  Because of his love for us we have the potential to return.

I wanted to share one of my favorite hymns.  There are many fond memories of hearing my father and his six brothers sing this hymn when the family would gather, “Brightly Beams Our Father’s Mercy”.

First, he shows his light of mercy:  Brightly beams our Father’s mercy, From his lighthouse evermore, But to us, he gives the keeping Of the lights along the shore.

Second, he tells us that sin is dark.  Sin doesn’t need to keep a grip on us if we but look toward him:  Dark the night of sin has settled; Loud the angry billows roar.  Eager eyes are watching, longing, For the lights along the shore.

The last verse of this song along with the chorus has always had profound meaning to me as the Lord asks us to always be watchful as we shine his light in a troubled world:  Trim your feeble lamp, my brother; Some poor sailor, tempest-tossed, Trying now to make the harbor, In the darkness may be lost.

Let the lower lights be burning;  Send a gleam across the wave.  Some poor fainting, struggling seaman You may rescue, you may save.

2022 is here.  With a new year, we have the opportunity to start a new. 

Last week I thought a lot about how I hear him.  I listened to the messages from our Prophet and the Twelve on how They hear Him.  Each gives a different explanation of how they hear Him.  Might I ask the question; how do you hear him?

I hear him as I look outward toward others.  It is a wonderful blessing to be a Bishop because it provides a means to look outside myself, setting my own needs aside for the moment and extending a hand of friendship and love to others.  This is when I feel of His love.  Impressions come and I do my best to ack on these impressions.  I also hear him when I take a moment, silence the noise around me, and am still.

Might I ask, How do you hear him?  Are you willing to share your impressions?  I would love to have you respond and tell us how you hear him.

I testify that he is there.  He is aware of you and loves you.

Love,

  • Bishop Jeff Anderson
  • Highland 28th Ward
  • 801-372-2072
  • bishopjeffanderson@gmail.com

Ward Blog: www.highland28th.org

“Stay Humble, Work Hard, Be Kind, and Forgiving”

5th Sunday Gospel Discussion

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Dear Friends and Ward Family,

Attached is the letter from the Area Presidency inviting us to organize and plan for the instruction to the ward for the upcoming 5th Sunday, January 30th.  Will you please take some time this week to review the information on the Utah Area Website – https://utah.churchofjesuschrist.org and prepare to discuss the following 3 questions:

1. How does aligning with prophetic counsel bless us and help us draw closer to the Lord?

2. What does it mean to place the Lord and sacred covenants at the center of our lives, and how will that protect us from distraction, deception, and spiritual desensitization?

3. How will these principles help our wards and members become more unified and find more joy in living the gospel?

We have also attached the Utah Area: Vision, Priorities, and Measures as an additional tool of reference.

In this past week in the “Come Follow Me” Lesson we covered Moses 7 which is a continuation of the story of Enoch.  The lesson references a section that describes God weeping for his children.  (verses 28 – 40).  Enoch inquires of the Lord as to why God and the heavens weep. 

I would like to suggest a podcast titled: “Real Talk – Come, Follow Me”.  At about 6 minutes into the podcast, John Fossum paraphrases the story and explains why god is weeping in the scripture.  I encourage you to listen to this podcast in preparation for this 5th Sunday’s Discussion.

32 The Lord said unto Enoch: Behold these thy brethren; they are the workmanship of mine own ahands, and I gave unto them their bknowledge, in the day I created them; and in the Garden of Eden, gave I unto man his cagency;

33 And unto thy brethren have I said, and also given commandment, that they should alove one another, and that they should choose me, their Father; but behold, they are without affection, and they bhate their own blood;

37 But behold, their sins shall be upon the heads of their fathers; Satan shall be their father, and misery shall be their doom; and the whole heavens shall weep over them, even all the workmanship of mine hands; wherefore should not the heavens weep, seeing these shall suffer?  <https://abn.churchofjesuschrist.org/study/scriptures/pgp/moses/7?lang=eng>

The hosts unpack what it means that God weeps with us, and they give suggestions on how to minister more powerfully.  Their Invitation: When was the last time you cried?  How does knowing God weeps with you give you comfort and strength?  <https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uo32gCNMR-E&t=50s>

I testify the Lord is aware of you.  He is with you in the trenches of your life.  Please look to Him, take Him into your trust, lean on Him, and feel of His love.

I testify the Lord is aware of you.  He is with you in the trenches of your life.  Please look to Him, take Him into your trust, lean on Him, and feel of His love.

I love you and pray for you always,

  • Bishop Jeff Anderson
  • Highland 28th Ward
  • 801-372-2072
  • bishopjeffanderson@gmail.com
  • Ward Blog: www.highland28th.org
  • Dave Summers, Ward Executive Secretary
  • 801-361-9224
  • dlsummers135@gmail.com

“Stay Humble, Work Hard, & Be Kind”

John Fossum joins “Real Talk – Come, Follow Me” this year.  John is a seminary teacher that taught my two older children at Pleasant Grove High School and is a cozen of mine. 

Bishopric Message – February 2022

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Dear Friends and Ward Family,

There has been one overwhelming spiritual impression the Lord has blessed me with these last few years.  This impression has been difficult to explain or put into words.  It is easy to put a title on it, but not so easy to understand or truly comprehend unless you have experienced it or been blessed to see others experience it. 

The Joy of Receiving Forgiveness

We have all made mistakes in our lives.  Some mistakes are so huge that we can’t foresee a way to be forgiven.  The shame and the guilt we feel can carve a scar deep into our souls.  These experiences affect us and become part of us.  In our classroom of life, they teach us wonderful, painful lessons, but do not define who we are to become.  The offense of another can have the same effect on us, especially when trust is broken and the chasm of mistrust over time is so deep, the scar so raw, the pain has cut to our very core.

10 I, the Lord, will aforgive whom I will forgive, but of you it is required to bforgive all men.

Doctrine and Covenants 64:10

and

34 And they shall teach no more every man his neighbour, and every man his brother, saying, Know the Lord: for they shall all aknow me, from the least of them unto the greatest of them, saith the Lord: for I will forgive their biniquity, and I will remember their sin no more. 

Jeremiah 31:34

My experience is that receiving forgiveness and forgiving ourselves is much harder than forgiving others of their mistakes.  Here are a few stories from my life that demonstrate to me why.

Back in high school, I remember losing my temper with a good friend.  He wasn’t doing anything wrong.  He was simply interrupting me or doing something that irritated me at the time.  I lost it, pushed him up against the lockers hard.  I remember the details of what I did to him as if it was yesterday.  The interesting part about this event is that I don’t remember any detail about what irritated me.  Years later I have asked him for his forgiveness for what I did to him and he responded by saying he doesn’t even remember what I described to him as happening.  It didn’t scar him, it scarred me. 

This next story is a little harder to share because I’m still ashamed of my actions.  I was 13 and I was so excited for my brother to receive his mission call.  I was the only one home when the postman delivered the mail.  I couldn’t hold back the excitement when I saw the letter from “The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints” addressed to my older brother. 

I can hear your gasp as you read the words that I write.  Yes, I opened my brother’s mission call.  The feelings of shame still flood my heart as I write.  Let’s continue the story. 

My dear kind father who hated contention, who never raised his voice with me with the exception twice, this was one of those times.  I was being a lazy teenager laying on the floor watching TV.  When he got the news that I had opened this letter, his anger came out in a rage and this rage hit the roof.  He came over to me at the peak of this rage and kicked me in the side and broke two of my ribs.  Seeing me in my discomfort his rage immediately stopped and his kindness and compassion quickly returned.  Just the other day my brother and I discussed our father and the few very justified times in our father’s life when he spoke harsh words or actions.  We remember these times as learning experiences in our classroom of life but don’t hold any resentment toward our father for his losing his composure.  As we discussed the opening of his mission call, it was evident to me that my brother didn’t even remember that it was I that opened it. 

My father has now passed.  He experience a stroke about 3 years before his death and during those three years his temperament changed and his emotions were easier expressed as the stroke removed this filter from his mind.  My brother and I both experienced times during the last three years of my father’s life where our Father asked for our forgiveness of these few times when he lost his control in reaction to things that we had done in our lives. 

It is clear to me that my father remembered the details of his actions and had not felt forgiven or had not forgiven himself for his actions.  As we reflect on these events in our lives we have forgiven him years ago yet he held on to his guilt and shame and we still hold on to the guilt and shame of our actions.

One last story.  This past month, Heather and I, along with our two older children had the opportunity to be present when someone else experienced the Joy of receiving the forgiveness of another.  Many of you know that we traveled with Olivia our 19-year-old daughter to Philadelphia to meet her birth parents.  We adopted Olivia when she was about 5 weeks old and she has always wanted to meet her parents. 

We set up a meeting in a neutral location and arrived early.  When Olivia’s birth mother, Megan, arrived it was clear that this was not easy for her.  Her guard was up but she softened quickly as we all embraced and as we expressed gratitude to her for allowing us to raise the child she brought into the world.  She sat across the table from Olivia and they asked questions of each other allowing us to put some input in at times.  At one point, Megan leaned to ask for Olivia’s forgiveness for giving her up for adoption.  Olivia was so sweet with her response, “You have nothing to be forgiven of.” 

The next day Olivia went to the salon to receive a hair treatment with Megan.  When they were finished, I heard Megan say, “This is the best day of my life!” 

Thank you, Megan, for the future you gave her and the blessing she has been in our life.  There are two miracles that happened that day.  The true miracle is the growth Olivia has experienced by being so quick to forgive.  And, the joy of forgiveness Megan has received by accepting her forgiveness.  I can only imagine the years of pain that have been released.

I testify that the Joy our Savior wants us to feel comes from forgiving others.  Yet, he knows that even more Joy can be achieved when we receive forgiveness and allow ourselves our own forgiveness.  His Joy is great and he wants us all to experience it.

Love,

  • Bishop Jeff Anderson
  • Highland 28th Ward
  • 801-372-2072
  • bishopjeffanderson@gmail.com
  • Ward Blog: www.highland28th.org
  • Dave Summers, Ward Executive Secretary
  • 801-361-9224
  • dlsummers135@gmail.com

“Stay Humble, Work Hard, & Be Kind”

Coming back to Church

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Dear Ward Family, 

I’m writing you to discuss several housekeeping items for us as a Ward. 

The Stake Presidency, through discussion with our Area Authority, has decided to lift all restrictions on Ward’s returning to the 2nd hour in person.  This includes returning to normal administration of the Sacrament.  

We will return to our in-person 2nd hour starting Sunday, February 20th.  Lifting restrictions allows us to gather together and strengthen each other.  What a wonderful blessing it will be to meet together as a ward family.  As your Bishop, I encourage all to come to renew your covenants as we partake of the sacrament together.  The Administration of the Sacrament at home will require Bishop’s approval.   

If you or a member of your family show any symptoms of a cold, the flu, RSV, or COVID, please stay home and take care of yourself.  Know that you are missed and are here to help. 

Here is the Sunday Schedule for this week: 

Sunday, February 13th Schedule: 

  • Relief Society – 11:30 am – Sunday, February 13th – Zoom (A) 
  • Elder’s Quorum  – 11:30 am – Sunday, February 13th – Zoom (B) 
  • Young Women – 11:30 am – Sunday, February 13th – in-person – the Skousen’s Home 
  • Young Men – 11:30 am – Sunday, February 13th – in-person (Relief Society Room) to ordain the Young Men advancing to a new office in the Priesthood. 

Sunday, February 20th we will be back in full, primary included. 

We look forward to seeing everyone in person and being uplifted by being together. 

Love, 

  • Bishop Jeff Anderson 
  • Highland 28th Ward 
  • 801-372-2072 
  • bishopjeffanderson@gmail.com 
  • Ward Blog: www.highland28th.org 
  •   
  • Dave Summers, Ward Executive Secretary 
  • 801-361-9224 
  • dlsummers135@gmail.com 
  •   
  • “Stay Humble, Work Hard, & Be Kind” 

Save the Date – Updated February 12th

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Upcoming Schedule: 

  • March 13: General Melchizedek Priesthood Meeting 
  • April 2-3: General Conference 
  • April 21: Ward Counsel with the Stake Presidency at 8:10 pm 
  • April 24: 28th Ward Conference – Updated again & again 
  • May 21-22: Stake Conference 
  • May 22: Seminary Recognition 
  • June 20: Young Women’s/Men’s Camp (Heber Valley Camp) 
  • July 8: Camp Liahona (All YM/YW turning 18+) 
  • August 14: Back-to-School Fireside 
  • October 1-2: General Conference 
  • October 15-16: Stake Conference 

Baptism of Castle Adams Garner

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Castle Adams Garner was Baptized and Confirmed a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints by his father, Thayne Garner on Saturday, February 12, 2022, at 10:30 am in the Highland Utah Central Stake Center. Please congratulate him if you get a chance.

Congratulations Castle, it was wonderful to share this event with you and your family.

Bishop Anderson

Baptism of Pearl Elizabeth McDaniel

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Pearl Elizabeth McDaniel was Baptized and Confirmed a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints by her father, Kenton McDaniel on Saturday, March 12, 2022, at 10:00 am in the Highland Utah Central Stake Center. Please congratulate her if you get a chance.

Congratulations Pearl,

Bishop Anderson

Baptism of Hank Bradford Durfey

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Hank Bradford Durfey was Baptized and Confirmed a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints by his father, Devan on Saturday, April 16, 2022, at 10:00 am in the Highland Utah Central Stake Center. Please congratulate him if you get a chance.

Congratulations Hank, it was wonderful to share this event with you and your family.

Bishop Anderson

Baptism of Bliss Eileen Adams

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Bliss Eileen Adams was Baptized and Confirmed a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints by her father, Paul Adams on Saturday, April 16, 2022, at 10:00 am in the Highland Utah Central Stake Center. Please congratulate her if you get a chance.

Congratulations Bliss, it was wonderful to share this event with you and your family.

Bishop Anderson

Bishopric Message – April 2022

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Dear friends and neighbors,

I was discussing with some co-workers this morning about people that have influenced them in their lives. 

In the spirit of April, it reminded me of my friend Russ.  He is lighthearted, has good moral character, is a great listener, is NOT judgmental, is really down to earth, is very knowledgeable, and has a firm grasp on reality.  He has always given me great incite on the future.

They say that hindsight is always 20/20 (relating to correct eye vision).  I’m not sure this is true!  It really depends on the perspective you use to look back. 

If I’m farsighted, then I might only see the events that I connect to from a distance, missing the messages from those closest to me. 

If I’m nearsighted, I might only see the events of the day or those that are directly related to me and can’t see the full picture.  “I can’t see the forest because of the trees.” 

Looking back at this past month with an eye focused on controlling everything in my life, I might see all the chaos in the world: the Russian invasion of Ukraine, inflation with price increases everywhere, the political posturing of elected officials, increasing interest rates, and/or the fear of the unknown.  These are all changes that we don’t have control over.  This perspective allows anxiety to take hold of us and leads us down a path of pain and regret.

I choose to look back with an Eternal perspective, looking back using the view of our Lord and Savior.  Listening to our Prophets to see more clearly the path He has prepared for us while turning down the volume of all the things the world would have us waste our time worrying about. 

The path might include doing a good job at work, meeting your boss’s expectations, finishing a large school project early, connecting with others, loving through kind words and actions, finishing honey duelist, thinking of others before yourself, expressing love and gratitude to those close and to the stranger in the store, and acknowledging all the good in the world. 

Some say this is being optimistic, but it is more than optimism.  It starts with what lens you choose to use to focus your perspective while being willing to see and understand the perspectives of others.  Being willing to listen without judgment, acknowledging the viewpoint of the other as their truth regardless of your opinion.

Tell me and I forget, teach me and I may remember, involve me and I learn. – Ben Franklin

Tune in and listen to my good friend Russell, this weekend.

Love,

Bishop Jeff Anderson

“Stay Humble, Work Hard, & Be Kind”

Why I Believe – Youth Fireside – May 1

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We are happy to announce that the “Why I Believe” that we announced would be cancelled for this Sunday is back on.  Brother Lloyd Newell (voice of Music and the Spoken Word) will be speaking.  7:00 pm this Sunday on the Facebook page “My Road to Hope and Peace”

https://www.facebook.com/events/1021483235120916

Also, we are excited to invite the youth of the north half of the mission to a special fireside being presented by the Full Time missionaries.  They will be sharing what it is like to be a missionary, how to help the missionaries and most importantly how to prepare to be a successful and happy missionary.  See the attached announcement for more information. [this meeting will be in person only]

With gratitude,

Spencer Woolley – Executive Secretary to the Orem Utah Mission Presidency

Stake Conference – May 21 & 22

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Update Stake Conference Schedule:

The next Stake Conference for the Highland Central Stake will be held on May 21-22, 2022. The theme of the conference is Divine Worth.

There will be four sessions of this conference:

  • May 21, 4:00 pm – Priesthood Leadership (Highland Central Stake Center)
    • All Melchizedek and Aaronic (adult & youth) Priesthood Leadership
  • May 21, 7:00 pm – Adult Session (Highland Central Stake Center)
    • All Stake members ages 18 years and older are invited to attend
  • May 22, 8:00 am – Youth Session (Highland Central Stake Center)
    • All Youth who turn 12 this year to 18 and their Adult Leaders are invited to attend
  • May 22, 10:00 am – General Session (Highland Central Stake Center)
    • All Wards are invited to attend in person at the Stake Center if desired.  All others are invited to connect to the broadcast online

Temple week is May 17-21. You are encouraged to attend the Temple as often as you can
during this week in preparation for Stake Conference.

 

Bishopric Message – May 2022

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What a wonderful Ward Conference.  It was wonderful to rub shoulders with our stake leaders and receive guidance from our Stake President. 

The theme of the conference, “Practical Application of the Holy Ghost in Your Life” 

I want share some of the thoughts I had while preparing for our conference.  The Stake President invited each Bishop to select our own topic.  I chose, “We are a Covenant Making People”. 

A covenant is different than a promise.  A promise is a one directional statement, like, “I promise to do the dishes.”  It is one sided, one party making a statement of agreement to another.  The other party has no responsibility to the promise.  The giving party has all the responsibility to perform. 

A covenant is different than a contract.  Contracts have time and performance criteria.  The party that receives the contract agrees to complete  something within a defined expectation of quality and by a defined timeline or due date.  A contract defines a payment at the completion of the promised action.  Performance before payment then completion and closing of the contract 

A covenant is much more than a promise or a contract.  A covenant is a unilateral promise between two or more parties without a completion date.  It contains promises from all parties to perform regardless of the performance of the other.  Blessings are awarded independently and collectively.  

Our personal covenants made in a Temple of the Lord, can provide us with spiritual power and allow us to ‘enter into the rest of the Lord’ as we keep our covenants.   

In the temple we learn more about this mortal classroom of life, what is expected, enduring this estate well, keeping our first estate, and about the need for opposition.   

23 …. wherefore they would have remained in a state of innocence, having no joy, for they knew no misery; doing no good, for they knew no sin. 

24 But behold, all things have been done in the wisdom of him who knoweth all things. 

25 Adam fell that men might be; and men are, that they might have joy. – 2 Nephi 2: 23-25 

Even the ‘Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil’ is in opposition to the ‘Tree of Life’ 

15 …it must needs be that there was an opposition; even the forbidden fruit in opposition to the tree of life; the one being sweet and the other bitter. – 2 Nephi 2:15 

The messages of the world today are misleading, manipulative, and deceptive – replacing good as evil and evil for good. 

20 ¶ Woe unto them that call evil good, and good evil; that put darkness for light, and light for darkness; that put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter! – Isaiah 5: 20 

7 The full soul loatheth an honeycomb; but to the hungry soul every bitter thing is sweet. – Proverbs 27:7 

We need to be true to our covenants and show conviction to following our Savior, Jesus Christ by showing love, one to another.  Accepting others, respecting their agency to choose, by simply loving them. 

13 But behold, that which is of God inviteth and enticeth to do good continually; wherefore, every thing which inviteth and enticeth to do good, and to love God, and to serve him, is inspired of God. – Moroni 7: 13  

In Moroni chapter 7, Mormon addresses us of this time as peaceable.  We of the church need to remain peaceable.  Everyone wants to be treated fairly, feel safe, and have a sense of purpose.  These all start with been seen and heard.  Beware of anger and a forceful voice because it leads to the breakdown of communication and does not convey love and acceptance.  Speaking at someone with a loud or angry voice doesn’t produce an environment where trust can be established. 

Mormon continues: 

3 I would speak unto you that are of the church, that are the peaceable followers of Christ, and that have obtained a sufficient hope by which ye can enter into the rest of the Lord, from this time henceforth until ye shall rest with him in heaven.  – Moroni 7: 3 

Ben Franklin said: “Whatever is begun in anger, ends in shame.”  – Ben Franklin 

His rest comes upon us as we move forward with faith, being obedient to his commandments keeping our covenants, and testifying of truth.  Then He reassures us by providing peace, love, and joy. 

I testify that as we learn more about our covenants and keep them the Lord blesses us with his covenant to provide us with the ability to always have his Spirit to be with us, forgiveness of sin (Repentance & Forgiveness / Spiritual Death), and Eternal Life (Physical Death).   The Savior knows of your challenges and wants you to place them on Him and allow His atonement to be active in your life.

We love you, 

Bishop Jeff Anderson, Highland 28th Ward 

“Stay Humble, Work Hard, & Be Kind”  The S

Baptism of Eva Castleberry

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Eva Belle Castleberry was Baptized and Confirmed a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints by her father, Joshua on Saturday, May 7, 2022, at 10:30 am in the Highland Utah Central Stake Center. Please congratulate her if you get a chance.

Congratulations Eva, it was wonderful to share this event with you and your family.

Bishop Anderson

Graduating 2022 Seniors, 

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Dear 2022 Seniors, 

Thank you for your willingness to speak on Mother’s Day.  Your messages were wonderful and your testimonies so strong.  This time of transition in life can be overwhelming and scary.  I pray that you will embrace this time, be patient with yourself as you figure things out and know that you are strong. 

I encourage you to consider two opportunities I present to you.  Both could provide some spiritual support and guidance as you journey beyond high school and take your first step into an adult world. 

First, please see the announcement provided in the link below for FSY opportunities for all Seniors in high school this year.  Even though our Stake is not invited to attend FSY until 2023, the Church has provided the option for all Seniors in High School (as a one-time exception) to sign up and attend FSY this summer!  https://www.churchofjesuschrist.org/youth/childrenandyouth/fsy/about/graduating-senior-approval-instructions This is a GREAT opportunity for you. 

Second, Attached is an invitation to a very special class. It is called “Finding Strength in the Lord Through Emotional Resilience”, which has been recently and currently taught to adults in our Stake and is now being offered to individuals that are currently Seniors, those that graduated last year, and those who will become Seniors this fall.  

Through experience, we know life is sometimes hard and these series of classes and materials will help provide us with the tools to find strength to overcome these trials and challenges through finding hope, faith, and love through our Savior Jesus Christ. The class will help and assist all of us to fight through emotional battles and challenges like loss of a loved one, depression, addictions, anxiety, loneliness, adjusting to college life, adjusting to missionary life, and even just dealing with life itself.  Please review the attached invitation for more information on how to register for this class. As this class is intended to start on Sunday May 15th, 2022, we would like to encourage you to register as soon as possible.  

Thank you so much for your love and support.  We love you and bless you in all your endeavors.  

Love, 

Bishop Jeff Anderson, Highland 28th Ward 

“Stay Humble, Work Hard, & Be Kind” 

Baptism of Hank Budinger

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Hank Kris Budinger was Baptized and Confirmed a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints by his father, Joshua on Saturday, June 11, 2022, at 10:30 am in the Highland Utah Central Stake Center. Please congratulate him if you get a chance.

Congratulations Hank, it was wonderful to share this event with you and your family.

Bishop Anderson

Teaching in the Savior’s Way Broadcast with Elder Dieter F. Uchtdorf

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Please joining us in viewing this wonderful Broadcast: Teaching in the Savior’s Way with Elder Uchtdorf
Elder Dieter F. Uchtdorf of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles will speak in a special broadcast, “Teaching in the Savior’s Way,” on Sunday, June 12, 2022. 

This unique event is for all members of the Church who teach either in their calling or in their home. Elder Uchtdorf will share principles meant to help every member find joy and success in teaching the gospel and increase their ability to better teach in the Savior’s way.

Beginning June 12, the event will be available for two weeks onbroadcasts.ChurchofJesusChrist.org, during scheduled times on the Church satellite system, and on-demand indefinitely in the Gospel Library and on YouTube. 

https://newsroom.churchofjesuschrist.org/event/teaching-in-the-saviors-way-churchwide-broadcast

Camp Liahona – 2022

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—– CAMP LIAHONA SUMMARY —–

  • What: Camp Liahona
  • Theme: “Fight for the Light” (I.e., know who you are and whose you are, be proud of your heritage, be converted, stand up for your faith, write it down, own it!)
  • When: Meet at Stake Center on Friday 7/8/22 at 11am. Back at Stake Center on Saturday 7/9/22 between 1-1:30pm
  • Kickoff (Friday): Meet at 11am at Stake Center to get instructions, receive T-shirts, and divide into camp groups
  • Camp Agenda (Friday): Fun activities and service opportunities on Friday afternoon, then water games, followed by evening fireside with a special guest speaker, and concludes with Bishops’ campfire chats
  • Camp Agenda (Saturday): Spiritual workshops followed by a Morningside presented by President Kent to wrap up camp
  • Food: Participants will be provided lunch at the Stake Center, and dinner & dessert, and breakfast up at camp. If you have a participating youth or adult leader with food allergies, you will need to coordinate with them so that they can bring their own food.
  • Transportation: Buses/transport vehicles are not in the budget. Each ward must ensure that all participants have transportation to and from the event. Please ask one priest and one young woman from each ward to coordinate this.
  • Headcount: Please let us know as soon as you can how many people will attend from your ward.
  • Bishop’s Assignment: conduct a breakout “Bishop’s Campfire Chat” with your ward youth (combined YW & YM) for approximately 45 minutes. Bishops choose format (whether a prepared message, testimonies, and/or participation by YW President. It’s up to the Bishop)
  • Sleeping Arrangements: YM will be in separate campsites from YW. Individuals are to provide their own tents/camping gear for the overnight stay. Aspen Lakes does not have cabins but it does have enough campsites to host us comfortably. We recommend that Bishops and Young Women Presidents assign one priest and one young woman to coordinate equipment and tent assignments.

—– CAMP LIAHONA DETAILS —–

THEME

Fight for the Light! We are beloved sons and daughters of our Heavenly Parents, with a divine destiny. They have a work for us to do, so let’s… 

1) Find out what we’re up against in this fallen world, 

2) Realize we are influenced by others for either good or for bad but we also have power to influence others for good or bad,

3) Keep our covenants & keep a record of our life experiences! Let us stand up for who we are and Whose we are. Let’s defend the faith. Jesus Christ is our Model. He is the Light of the World. Let’s Fight for the Light.

PERMISSION FORMS

Please have a parent of each youth attendee complete and sign a safety/waiver form and deliver them to Chris Crump (Stake YM’s Secretary) or Lisa Johnson (Stake YW’s Secretary).

CAMP LIAISONS

Two missionary couples, Elder & Sister Veenker and Elder & Sister Williams oversee camp operations and are delightful people.  If you have specific concerns about the facility, please reach out to President Russ Larson (stake YM president) at 801-815-6600 (mobile), and he can contact the camp liaisons, if necessary.

INVITEES

Youth:

·      Ages 15+ as of 1/1/2022 (i.e., turning 16 this year, and older)

·      Note about visitors: Please make us aware of any friends or family of your youth who will be visiting and would like to attend Camp Liahona with your ward youth. As long as they are old enough, we welcome them to come but we need to know beforehand for headcount purposes

Adult Youth Leaders:

·      Stake Presidency (and their wives)

·      Bishops (and wives, if desired)

·      Ward Young Women Presidents (and husbands, if desired)

·      Stake YW/YM Presidencies

·      Selected leaders, as invited

DAILY ITINERARY

Friday Agenda: Begins at 11:00am at the Stake Center

·      Welcome, Announcements, Introduction to theme: Dom Wilkinson & Zandri Killpack (SYC Chairpersons)

·      Lunch: Hoagies & Chips

·      Assignments into groups: Dom & Zandri

·      Handout t-shirts

·      Instructions for travel to Camp Aspen Lakes

·      Load up & head out

FRIDAY ARRIVAL AT CAMP ASPEN LAKES

·      1:00pm to 1:15pm: Arrive and park cars

·      1:15pm to 1:50pm: Locate assigned campsites and set up your tents!

·      1:50pm to 2:10pm: Camp Orientation and instructions for activities

·      2:10pm to 2:20pm: Walk to Service Activity Stations (activity #1)

·      2:20pm to 2:50pm: Service Activities (activity #1)

·      2:50pm to 3:00pm: Return to Camp Pavilion for Water Sports!

·      3:00pm to 4:30pm: Water Sports! (activity #2—Zipline dunk, 9-square wtih water balloons, canoeing, swimming, etc)

·      4:30pm to 4:40pm: Rotate to First Dry Activity Station (activity #3)

·      4:40pm to 5:25pm: First Dry Activity (activity #3) 

·      5:25pm to 5:35pm: Rotate to Second Dry Activity Station (activity #4)

·      5:35pm to 6:20pm: Second Dry Activity (activity #4)

·      6:20pm to 6:45pm: Return to campsites, dry off, and clean up for dinner & evening devotionals

·      6:45pm to 7:30pm: Dinner – Costa Vida!

·      7:30pm to 8:30pm: Special Fireside Guest Speaker — Dr. Kerry Muhlestein, BYU Director of Egypt Excavation Project

·      8:30pm to 8:45pm: Walk to ward Bishop’s Youth Chat sites (each ward will have its designated spot)

·      8:45pm to 9:30pm: Bishops Youth Chat

·      9:30pm to 9:45pm: Back to Pavilion for Ice Cream!

·      9:45pm to 10:15pm: Ice Cream Party! (with music!, ends with group prayer)

·      10:15 to 10:30pm: Back to campsites for wind-down and teeth brushing

·      10:30 to 11:00pm: Quiet time, bed prep, bathroom visits, personal prayers, journal entries, etc.

·      11:00: Night night!

Saturday Agenda at Camp Liahona

·      7:00am to 7:15am: Wake Up!

·      7:15am to 7:50am: Breakfast (cold breakfast for speed and budget)

·      7:50am to 8:00am: Return to campsites

·      8:00am to 8:30am: Break down tents, load equipment on vehicles

·      8:30am to 8:40am: Walk to Workshop Station #1

·      8:40am to 9:20am: Workshop #1 – (Scouting Report, Influencer, Covenants & Personal Journal)

·      9:20am to 9:30am: Walk to Workshop Station #2

·      9:30am to 10:10am: Workshop #2 (Scouting Report, Influencer, Covenants & Personal Journal)

·      10:10am to 10:20am: Walk to Workshop Station #3

·      10:20am to 11:00am: Workshop #3 (Scouting Report, Influencer, Covenants & Personal Journal)

·      11:00am to 11:15am: Meet at Amphitheater, hand out snacks/drinks

·      11:15am to 12:00pm: Concluding Devotional by President Kent

·      12:00pm HEAD HOME!

·      1:00pm to 1:30pm Arrive back at Stake Center

PACKING LIST

Please make sure that each youth packs the following:

·      Overnight toiletries

·      Personal medications

·      Sleeping bag and pillow

·      Roll up sleeping pad

·      1 change of outdoor clothes for Saturday, i.e. shorts, pants, shirt, and/or sweatshirt/jacket

·      Rain poncho, just in case

·      Shoes / sandals, to get dirty & protect feet

·      2 pairs of socks

·      Modest swimsuit, cover-up (if desired), towel

·      Small sunscreen/bug spray/chapstick

·      Fanny pack

·      Small flashlight·      Optional: hydroflask / water bottle
Please let a member of the Stake YM Presidency know if you have any questions. 
Thanks. 
Stake Young Men’s Presidency

Sharing the Gospel – July 31, 2022, Fifth Sunday

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Wards and branches throughout the world are invited to dedicate the fifth-
Sunday meeting on July 31, 2022, to the topic of “Sharing the Gospel.” In harmony

with the prophetic direction given in the recent April general conference and the
scheduled worldwide broadcast for leaders on June 25, 2022, we invite bishoprics
and branch presidencies to focus the July 31st fifth-Sunday meeting on the following
two objectives:

  1. Help each young man prepare for and serve a full-time mission, and help each
    young woman who desires, to prepare for and serve a full-time mission.
  2. Help each member share the gospel of Jesus Christ in normal and natural ways
    by acting upon the principles of love, share, and invite.
    To help leaders prepare, an outline with videos and other resources can be
    accessed here and on share.churchofjesuschrist.org.

Read the Book of Mormon in 100 Days Challenge

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The Young Women and Young Men have taken on the challenge to read the Book of Mormon in 100 days.

Young Women started the challenge on July 24, 2022.

Young Men excepted the challenge on July 31, 2022.

Reading Schedule

DATEYOUNG WOMEN (Day)YOUNG MEN (Day)
July 24, 2022Start
July 31, 2022Day 8Start
August 15, 2022Day 23Day 16
August 31, 2022Day 39Day 32
September 15, 2022Day 54Day 47
September 30, 2022Day 69Day 62
October 15, 2022Day 84Day 77
October 31, 2022Day 100 – FinishDay 93
November 7, 2022Day 100 Finish
Keep on Track

Bishopric Message – August 2022

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Let’s use the Lord’s new way of moving forward of “Love, Share, Invite”.  These steps are sequential, one leads to another.  These steps are the recipe for the long game, which lasts a lifetime.  Let’s apply this concept to everything we do in our lives and in our church service.

The Lord knows that as we do his will, in his way, we will have increased Joy.  He wants us to bask in this Joy! 

Let’s take advantage of this reset that the Lord has provided us with, don’t get stuck in the ways of the past.  Let us find better ways to fulfill our stewardship.  Doing things the right way is not always the fastest way, this might even feel slower which seems harder, but it isn’t harder.  It is more rewarding for all.

King Benjamin taught his people this important truth: “And see that all these things are done in wisdom and order; for it is not requisite that a man should run faster than he has strength. And again, it is expedient that he should be diligent, that thereby he might win the prize; therefore, all things must be done in order” (Mosiah 4:27).

Have Faith and Lean on the Atonement of Christ.  Place on Christ’s atonement your fears, anxiety, doubts, and insecurities.  He wants to take it from you.

Don’t listen to the craftiness of man, but lean on him that is mighty to save.  Don’t let the world place shame upon you.  Shame comes from the devil, the father of all lies.  Do NOT look upon the large and spacious building for those within us the pride of the world to place shame upon you and tell you that you are not good enough. 

You are good enough if you continue on the covenant path, always turning toward him (Repentance and Forgiveness) and trusting in his mercy.

  • D&C 64: 9-10:
    • 9 ​Wherefore, I say unto you, that ye ought to ​​​forgive​ one another; for he that ​​​forgiveth​ not his brother his trespasses standeth condemned before the Lord; for there remaineth in him the greater sin.
    • ​​​10 ​I, the Lord, will ​​​forgive​ whom I will forgive, but of you, it is required to ​​​forgive​ all men.

Why does the Lord limit his forgiveness in this scripture or is he really limiting his forgiveness?  Extending forgiveness to others is a prerequisite for his forgiveness.  Think about this for a minute.  Let the spirit teach you truth.

Challenge for the Youth

Read the Book of Mormon in 100 days.  Start your day with scripture and you will find your day goes smoother.  The anxiety and worry you feel will be reduced, and challenges will feel more manageable.

Pray often and keep a prayer in your heart, asking for forgiveness so the spirit of the Lord, the Holy Ghost, can dwell with you throughout your day. 

Find a few minutes during the day to quiet your mind (turn off the distractions of the world) and ponder the things you read.  Then notice the feelings of love that come from the spirit.  Acknowledge them and thank the Lord in prayers for blessing you with his spirit.

27 ​​​​Peace​ I leave with you, my ​​​peace​ I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be ​​​troubled​, neither let it be afraid.

John 14:27

Love,

  • Bishop Jeff Anderson
  • Highland 28th Ward
  • 801-372-2072
  • bishopjeffanderson@gmail.com
  • Ward Blog: www.highland28th.org
  • “Stay Humble, Work Hard, & Be Kind”

BUILDING CLEANING AND MAINTENANCE – THIRD BLOCK WARD

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This is the responsibility of the final Ward to meet in the building each week to prepare the building for weekday use which includes, funerals, and is directed by the building Physical Facilities Representative (PFR).

After Sunday meetings:

  • Pick up loose debris in the Chapel and throughout the building (Young Women)
  • Restrooms: Women’s Restrooms, Two Common Restrooms, Mother’s Room, (Young Women)
  • Men’s Restrooms (Young Men)
  • Clean sacrament preparation room including empty waste bin after Sacrament Meeting (YM Teachers)
  • Stack chairs, in every room (Young Men)
  • Empty wastebaskets (Young Men)
  • Ensure that solid diapers are removed from the building. (Adult Leaders)
  • Turn off lights and Lock doors before leaving (Bishopric)

Leadership Meeting Schedules & Attendance Expectations

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As of September 2022

Sunday Worship Schedules

  • Sacrament Meeting – 11:30 am to 12:30 pm (Every Sunday)
  • Sunday School – 12:40 pm to 1:30 pm (1st & 3rd Sundays)
  • Elders, Relief Society, YM, YW – 12:40 pm to 1:30 pm (2nd & 4th Sundays)
  • Primary – 12:40 pm to 1:30 pm (Every Sunday)
  • Bishop to Ward – 12:40 pm to 1:30 pm (5th Sunday)

Leadership Meeting Schedules & Attendance Expectations

  • Bishopric Meeting – 8:30 am (Every Sunday)
  • YM Presidency Meeting – 9:00 am to 9:45 am (Every Fast Sunday) YM Adult Advisors & YW President
  • Fast Offering Collection – 9:45 am to 10:30 am on Fast Sunday – Collection starts at 10:00 am
  • Ward Counsel – 9:45 am to 10:30 am (2nd & 4th Sunday)
  • Ward Youth Counsel – 9:45 am to 10:30 am (3rd Sunday) YW President, YM Quorum Presidents & YW Class Presidents
  • Leadership Interviews – 10:00 am to 11:00 am (1st Sunday) Organizational Presidents
  • Temple Recommend Renewals – 10:30 am to 11:15 am (Every Sunday) – Counselors
  • Bishop’s Youth & Temple Recommend Interviews – 10:30 am to 11:15 am (Every Sunday)
  • Bishop’s Interviews – 1:45 pm to 4:00 pm (Every Sunday), Scheduled by Executive Secretary
  • YM’s & YM’s Activities Nights – 7:00 pm or TBD (Thursday Nights) 
  • Bishop’s Interviews or 7:00 to 8:00 pm (Some Thursday Nights), Scheduled by Executive Secretary

Other meetings scheduled as needed:

  • Correlation Meeting with Elders and Relief Society
  • Stake Bishopric Counsel / Bishop’s Counsel – 7:00 am (3rd Sunday)

Stake Conference – October 15-16, 2022

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Dear Ward Members,

Stake Conference – October 15th & 16th

Please come participate in our Stake Conference and receive some instruction from the visiting seventy.  You have two main options on for attending:

  • Attend in person at the Highland Utah Central Stake Center or
  • Attend in person to the broadcast in the Hollowcrest Building. This is the building on the corner of SR-92 (Timpanogos Highway) and 6400 West.
  • There will be limited broadcasting connections with Bishops approval which can be accessed by clicking on our Sacrament Meeting link found on the ward blog.  You will need to get an approval code from the Bishop.

See the letter from the Stake Presidency Attached.

We hope to see many of you in person.  Please plan on attending.

Love,

Bishop Jeff Anderson

“Stay Humble, Work Hard, & Be Kind”

Tithing Declaration

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Dear Ward Members,

The term “tithing settlement” has been changed to “tithing declaration.”  This change emphasizes that the primary purpose of this interview is to provide members with an opportunity to declare their tithing faithfulness, not to “settle” an account. The focus should be on the member’s covenant relationship with Heavenly Father and on teaching the spiritual nature of tithing, especially to children and youth.

We learn in the temple about the wonderful principle of “Return and Report”.  We are shown how we receive guidance and direction from our Father in Heaven.  We are also shown by example how our Savior returns and reports progress on the direction he has been given. This reporting enables the Father to provide acceptance, praise for a job well done, and when needed, give further direction.

What a blessing it is to conduct Tithing Declarations this year as we meet together and support each other.  This is your opportunity to return and report.  

Please contact Brother Dave Summers to schedule a family Tithing Declaration appointment.

Thank you for all that you do to support the Lord with his work. 

Love, 

  • Bishop Jeff Anderson
  • Highland 28th Ward
  • 801-372-2072
  • bishopjeffanderson@gmail.com
  • Ward Blog: www.highland28th.org
  • Dave Summers, Ward Executive Secretary
  • 801-361-9224
  • dlsummers135@gmail.com

“Stay Humble, Work Hard, & Be Kind”

Stake Blood Drive – October 22nd

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To Our Stake Members –

We have the opportunity to provide a great service in donating blood at our upcoming Blood Drive on Saturday, October 22at the building on 10962 North 6400 West, Highland.

The Red Cross needs blood! The need for blood is increasing and the number of donors is decreasing. Blood that is donated is essential to helping trauma patients, those battling diseases like cancer, loss of blood during a surgery just to name a few. You never know when you or someone you know will need this gift, and what a great gift to share.

Making an appointment to help save lives is easy!

Click on this link to make an appointment: Click here to make an appointment

We are wanting to minimize walk-ins so we are asking appointments be made online.

·         If you need help scheduling your appointment or have questions regarding your donation, you can call our Red Cross rep, Anita Kay at (801) 367-2331. She will be happy to help in any way!

·         If you have questions about your eligibility, call 1-866-236-3276 and follow the prompts to Donor Eligibility.

·         Before you donate, eat, drink water and bring picture ID.

We need you, we appreciate you and most of all we thank you!

We hope you will sign up! 

Brother Vince Powell

Each presenting donor will receive a $5 gift card via email to merchant of choice

Orem Utah Mission – Digital Missionary Training: Thursday, November 10th at 7:00 pm – Online

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Please plan to attend the Orem Utah Mission – Digital Missionary Training:

Please forward this email to any you believe would benefit from this training.

Finally, as the Utah Orem Mission Presidency we offer to come speak in your Ward when we are available and not already scheduled to speak in a Stake Conference.

Please work with the Mission Executive Secretary Brother Spencer Woolleyuomexecsec@gmail.com

NOTE: You canunsubscribefrom these emails by clicking on the“Unsubscribe”link below.

You canSUBSCRIBEto these emails here:https://www.utahdigitalmissionaries.com/
Scroll to the bottom of the page and fill out the form.

Ward Choir Practice – Each Sunday after Church

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The holidays are coming and the Ward Choir is preparing for the Christmas program.

  • When: Each Sunday at 1:30 pm
  • Where: The RS Room

Bring your holiday spirit and come sing with us.

Christmas Celebrations

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Dear Friends and Neighbors,

We would like to invite everyone in our neighborhood and community to attend the following events this Christmas season.  Please invite all your friends and neighbors to join us in celebrating the birth our our Savior, Jesus Christ.

Ward Christmas Breakfast, Saturday, December 10th @ 9:30 am to 11:00 am at the Heritage Park Church Building (10390 North Alpine Highway)

Ward Christmas Party

Ward Sunday Christmas Program, Sunday, December 18th @ 11:30am 

Community Christmas Carol Celebration – Stake Christmas Sing-a-long, Sunday, December 18th @ 6:00 pm at the Stake Center.  

Christmas Day Program, Sunday, December 25th @ 11:30 am (Sacrament Meeting only)

FSY Conference – Summer 2023

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Highland 28th Ward 

Dear Parents and youth of the Highland 28th Ward.

I’m sending out this email to let you know of the opportunity the youth have to attend a FSY Conference this coming summer.  The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints has created a world wide FSY “For the Strength of Youth Conference” program modeled after the EFY conferences of the past and are offering all youth the opportunity to attend every other year.  

The youth in our Stake are eligible during the summer of 2023.  In August 2022, our Stake leaders elected to have our Stake youth have the opportunity to attend the conference on a individual basis, which means the Stake is not determining the week and location for our youth to attend.  This is good news as it allows for families to be flexible in their planning for their youth to attend.  This also means that each attendee will be responsible for registering themselves and picking a location and a week to attend.

If You have a desire to attend with a friend or extended family member that is also eligible to go this summer, please identify this other individual as someone you would like to share a room with.  This seems to be the only way to keep the youth connected to one another as part of their registration.

We don’t want anyone to miss out on this wonderful opportunity and hope that you will take full advantage of FSY by being prepared to register and attend.   

Eligibility: Youth turning age 14 and should not be older than 18 by December of 2022 should plan to attend.  Registration will begin early in 2023.

Dates: summer of 2023: May 29th to August 12th

Things to do to prepare for FSY in the Summer of 2023.

  1. Each youth needs approval from their Bishop to attend before they can register.  This was completed on November 28, 2002.
  2. Each of youth that is planning on attending needs to have an individual church account linked to their membership record.
    1. Please setup a youth account now so you are prepared when registration opens up.
    2. There may be situations where a youth is approved but is unable to register because his or her account is not set up properly.  Ensure that youth know their usernames and passwords prior to registration.  For more information about youth account issues, visit the Account Error Resolutions page.
  3. Registration will start in January of 2023.
  4. Please plan now by communicating with those that you would like to go with you to FSY. 
  5. Visit the FSY website for more information. 

Registration begins early 2023. Go to the Stake Assignments page to find out when and where your stake is invited to attend. See the Registration Timeline for important dates for 2023.

I’m making an assumption that all the youth in our ward have a desire to attend.  If you are not going to be attending please let me know asap so I can remove you from approval list.  

We hope that every young man or young women in our ward will have the desire to participate.  

  • Bishop Jeff Anderson

      “Stay Humble, Work Hard, & Be Kind”

      Christmas is such a Wonderful Time of Year

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      Highland 28th Ward 

      Dear Friends and Neighbors,

      Christmas is such a wonderful time of year.    We hope you are spending quality time with your families and loved ones, celebrating the birth of our savior, Jesus Christ.  

      Please come join us Sunday for the Ward Christmas Program as we worship the Savior’s birth through hymns and special musical numbers from members of our ward and the choir.

      We meet together often to be strengthened by each other in spirit and in ward.  What a better way to embrace the Christmas season than through beautiful music.  Please bring your family,  friends, and neighbors to enjoy this sabbath day.  

      Ward Christmas Sacrament Service, Sunday, December 18th @ 11:30am.

      Sunday evening, the Stake has prepared a Community Christmas Carol Celebration with music and a sing-a-long.

      Community Christmas Carol Celebration – Sunday, December 18th @ 6:00 pm at the Stake Center. 

      Christmas morning is always a special time for families to be together.  Because this Christmas falls on a Sunday, we have simplified our service to Sacrament Meeting only.  Please come join us Christmas morning to partake of the Sacrament and worship him through hymns and narration, capped off with the traditional Hallelujah Chorus duet on organ and piano.

      Christmas Day Program, Sunday, December 25th @ 11:30 am (Sacrament Meeting only)

      We wish you a Merry Christmas.

      Love,  

      Bishop Jeff Anderson

      Highland 28th Ward

      bishopjeffanderson@gmail.com

      Ward Blog: www.highland28th.org

      Highland 28th Ward Christmas Program

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      Sunday, December 18, 2022

      Primary: “Were you there”

      Ella Scoville: Piano solo “It came upon a Midnight Clear 

      Sister Rencher and the Violinists: “O Little Town of Bethlehem” 

      Young men and Young Women: “Picture a Christmas” 

      Erik Lund: Piano solo “The First Noel” 

      Chante Engh & Kayta Brookhart: Harp and Viola duet “Silent Night”

      Ward Choir: “O Come Emmanuel” 

      Message from the Bishop

      Christmas Sunday Sacrament Meeting Program

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      Come and join us Christmas morning as we worship our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ with music and Narration.

      Program

      Saint Nicholas of Myra was a Byzantine Bishop who lived over 1800 years ago in what is now present day Turkey which at that time was part of the Roman Empire.  Saint Nicholas was known for his kindness and generosity. The story goes, there was an impoverished family with 3 daughters.  The father had no money to pay for his daughters wedding dowry.  However when it came time for his daughters to find a husband, gold bags would miraculously be found in the home.  Saint Nicholas had provided the gold in order for these women to find suitable husbands.  It was said that he would throw the bags of gold through the window, or even down the chimney.  As the women dried their stockings by the fire, sometimes the gold would land in the stockings.  And so was the filling the stockings on Christmas Day was born.  Over the years Saint Nicholas became known as Santa Claus and his legacy of giving gifts was celebrated throughout the centuries on December 6th, the feast day of Saint Nicholas.  As a Bishop he would hold a curved cane called a pastoral staff. During the middle ages in order to keep children well behaved during Mass parents would distribute sweet sticks which they would bend to make them look like the pastoral staff.  Thus the candy cane was born.  Marin Luther eventually decided to move this tradition of giving gifts to December 25th.  Giving gifts was Christ-like therefore the name Christmas was born.  

      We all have fond memories of Christmas as a child.  Those magical times when we were young with our eyes all aglow and found it hard to sleep that night. We knew that Santa was on his way.  How many of us would stay up late that night to see if reindeer really knew how to fly?  

      The Christmas Song (Words are found in your program)

      We are going to jump ahead to 1940s with a carol that came out as Americans were in the midst of World War II. The lyrics resonated with soldiers longing to be home, “If only in my dreams.”  It came out of a time when we had servicemen fighting a war in Europe against tyranny and one day a year, maybe, the serviceman got a breather from fighting and had a chance to reflect on the happy times and the things they would like to get back to.

      I’ll be Home for Christmas (Words are found in your program)

      And in the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent from God unto a city of Galilee, named Nazareth, To a virgin espoused to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David; and the virgin’s name was Mary. And the angel came in unto her, and said, Hail, thou that arthighly favoured, the Lord is with thee: blessed art thou among woman. And the angel said unto her, Fear not, Mary: for thou hast found favour with God. And, behold, thou shalt conceive…and bring forth a son, and shalt call his name JESUS. Then said Mary unto the angel, How shall this be? And the angel answered and said unto her, The Holy Ghost shall come upon thee, and the power of the Highest shall overshadow thee: therefore also that holy thing which shall be born of thee shall be called the Son of God. For with God nothing shall be impossible. And Mary said, Behold the handmaid of the Lord; be it unto me according to thy word.

      Stars were Gleaming (CSB 37, Words are found in your program)

      And it came to pass in those days, that there went out a decree from Caesar Augustus, that all the world should be taxed.  Mary and her new husband Joseph traveled to Bethlehem to be identified and counted for the census.  And so it was, that while they were there, the days were accomplished that she should be delivered.  And she brought forth her firstborn son, and wrapped him in swaddling clothes, and laid him in a manger; because there was no room for them in the inn. 

      O Holy Night (Words are found in your program)

      And there were in the same country shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night.  And, lo, the angel of the Lord came upon them, and the glory of the Lord shone round about them: and they were sore afraid. And the angel said unto them, Fear not; for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, which is Christ the Lord.  

      Far, Far Away on Judea’s Plains 212

      And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger.  And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying, Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men.  The shepherds hurried to the stable where they found Mary, Joseph and the baby Jesus.  And when they had seen Jesus, they made known abroad the saying which was told them concerning this child. And all they that heard it wondered at those things which were told by the shepherds.  

      It Came Upon a Midnight Clear 207

      The Spirit guided a just and devout man named Simeon to the temple on the same day Mary and Joseph brought the baby there.  Simeon had long known by revelation that he would see his Savior before his death.  When Simeon saw the baby Jesus, he cradled him in his arms…and blessed God, and said, Lord, now lettest thou thy servant depart in peace, according to thy work; For mine eyes have seen thy salvation, which thou hast prepared before the face of all people; a light to lighten the Gentiles, and the glory of thy people Israel.  And there was one Anna, a prophetess…served God with tastings and pryers night and day.  And she coming in that instant, gave thanks likewise unto the Lord, and spake of him to all them that looked for redemption in Jerusalem.  

      What Child is This? (Words are found in your program)

      When wise men from the east saw a new star over Bethlehem, they knew the prophecy had been fulfilled: And, lo, the star, which they saw in the east, went before them, till it came and stood over where the young child was.  When they saw the star, they rejoiced with exceeding great joys.  And when they were come to the house, they saw the young child with Mary his mother, and fell down, and worshipped him: and when they had opened their treasures, they presented unto him gifts; gold, and frankincense, and myrrh 

      The First Noel 213

      For unto us a son is given; and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counselor, the mighty God, the everlasting Father, the Prince of Peace.

      Please stand for the Hallelujah Chorus played by Sister Skousen and Sister Sell 

      Wise men and women still seek after Jesus.  If we prepare ourselves, like Anna and Simeon did, we too will know our Savior.  With the angels, we rejoice in the peace and good will the gospel brings.  Like the shepherds, we can tell everyone the good news of the gospel.  Sometimes, the greatest miracles begin in humble circumstances, like a lowly stable.  Like Mary, we know that with God, nothing is impossible. 

      Silent Night 204 (Closing Hymn)