Thursday, July 23, 2015


Tomorrow is the 24th of July.

 For those who live outside of Utah, the 24th of July (Pioneer Day) is celebrated to mark the day in 1847 when Brigham Young led the first group of Mormon pioneers into the Salt Lake Valley.  One of the largest and most important events of this "holiday" is the parade on South Temple in downtown Salt Lake City.

The 24th of July parade was first held on July 24, 1849. It was then known as the "Pioneer Days Parade" up until 1931. From 1931 to 1946 the parade was known as the "Covered Wagon Days Parade". Since 1947, the parade has been known by its current name Days of 47 parade. This parade began as a simple remembrance of the pioneers trek to Utah with those with pioneer heritages rode in covered wagons down main street.  Today it has now become over a 3 hour long parade with beauty queens, governments officials riding on the back of expensive convertibles and businesses using it as a form of advertising. Also, the President of the Church, the prophet rides at the beginning of the parade and waves to the parade goers. Last year, I think President Monson was too ill and President Uchtdorf filled in for him. He is always a crowd pleaser.

For those who are not aware, the Church gives the assignment to 40 different Stakes and Wards to design, create and build floats for the parade each year. The Church gives each Stake tithing money to be used to build the float. Our stake was given a budget of 6000.00 dollars to build ours. The costs of some of floats range from $5,000 to $30,000 depending on the level of intricacy in decorations (I think the Church caps how much the Stake can use for the float.. but many members with financial means are known to donate some of their own money). Even if each ward stays under their budget, when you times 6000.00 dollars by 40 stakes.. that is close to a quarter of a million dollars. It is not for me to judge, but I wonder if our tithing money could be spent helping those in need.. instead of decorating the streets of Salt Lake for a 3 hour parade.

Putting the aside the tithing money used to create these floats adorned with dragons, giant octopus and whales to commemorate our proud pioneer heritage; the time spent to create these floats, and in my opinion once again, could be better spent serving others. Our Stake Chairman personally told me that he alone spent over 300 hours working on our float. Combined with all of the committee members from our stake, I would estimate we spent over 500 hours working on our float. Instead of working on our Stake Float for the parage, we could have helped hundreds of people in our neighborhood who are in desperate need of help.

In case you will miss the parade tomorrow, I took a few photographs of all of the floats for this years parade.

 Below is the float for Brigham Young University.  Instead of the oxen pulling the covered wagons, the float depicts a pair of cougars, the BYU school mascot at the helm.

BTW: Please notice the misspelling of the word Education. ( It reads: Educaton.. instead of Education.) Whoops.. of all the words to misspell.

Here is one more float promoting a Temple Challenge to do more Family History Work.

Anyway, I could share more photographs of more of the floats, but I didn't want to "rain on anyone's parade" and spoil the surprise for those planning on attending the parade tomorrow.

I did think this one below was well done. The pioneer man stands about 9 feet tall to give you an idea on scale and the sculptures on the float.


Jen said...
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Jen said...

This is the first time I have ever wept over a blog post.

We were looking at homes for sale in our town this week, one of which we could put a 10% down payment on and still be under budget for one of these floats.

Unknown said...

The folks at BYU should learn to spell the word "educaton".

Anonymous said...

How do you know that it was tithing money that was used? (As opposed to investment income)

Sally said...

Heaviness of the heart is an understatement. We (LDS) as a whole are still stuck in Babylon. I love Hugh Nibleys' book- Approaching Babylon. We are celebrating instead of remembering they were under a Covenant Curse for 3-4 generations and as a Church still under Condemnation.

You take amazing photos.

Ryan said...

Seriously, you got problems. The LDS does not need your approval to build a float to celebrate their exile to Utah. If you are this emotionally disturb, it is pretty safe to say you are not living in reality.

Ryan said...

It represents perfectly the brain damage that you have to have to attend that school.

Ryan said...

Try a personal relationship with reality, better than allowing lies to control your emotional state of mind.

Ryan said...

Who cares, you have to be pretty dumb to keep on giving money to a corporation that has a long history of spending money on things other helping poor and needy.

The insane people are the ones that keep giving money to the LDS Corp thinking they are actually obeying a law of heaven so they can avoid some eternal consequence for not paying the LDS Corp. Talk about living in fear. Talk about being brainwashed and delusional.

Anonymous said...

Ryan. My question was said tongue in cheek....and said more for the sake of discussion. Folks need to wake up to what the LDS church is doing with donations. Investment income from tithing (in my view) is still the Lord's. Yet its treated as though we somehow tricked the system and now use it to get gain.

Trevor said...

Ryan: Come on man. Who's the one with problems? How about you contribute to the discussion here instead of dumping your dose of negativity on every single comment? You don't know anything about jenheadjen.

Rob said...

You ought to be ashamed of yourself, Bare Record. You are just like Judas who complained that Jesus allowed Mary to use the costly anointment to anoint him prior to his death! (Yes, I'm being sarcastic).

I've seen enough suffering of the poor LDS (mostly outside of the US) that when I see things like this, I just see them rolling over the bones of the poor in the developing world. Yes, it's that bad. I wonder how the members in Zimbabwe, where the welfare budget of a ward for an entire year is about $120 (and yes, food costs just as much as it does here), would feel about $6,000 spent on a float celebrating the exile of the Saints from Nauvoo...which incidentally occurred because they were being greedy with their money.

Anonymous said...

While I'm sure you are correct with your points of how the Church could and should spend their money, if you believe that they are merely a corporation with a pious church label, then you should not be surprised or even scornful of what is going on. A tree ultimately bears fruit after its kind. You can't tell an apple tree to give you oranges (even if it calls itself an orange tree). It seems like a very "fruitless" and frustrating approach to me.

As you have not outed yourself in your ward as one who disagrees with the corporation, why not simply accept the church's actions for what they are and walk a mile in the parade with them, as Christ is wont to do? "Baring record" of them is fine and all, but ultimately it will become quite obvious by the fruits that come forth.

It's a tight rope to walk, of course. How does one warn his neighbor without judging or cursing the accused party? An example of an approach that concerns me is where the 77 Truths guy ( says he was compelled by the Spirit to tell the world that Elder Nelson is the Mormon antichrist. Words do not come out of our lips or into text without repercussions. Have you ever heard of the curse put out by Sidney Rigdon in the Salt Sermon? Did you notice the language of the "Extermination Order" from Governor Boggs? Did you notice the language put out by the church in the Proclamation to the Family a few years ago? Did you notice the effort put forth by the church in regards to Proposition 8? Did you see how quickly gay marriage became the law of the land after that?

It is the Father's work to show the Gentiles their weakness. It will become more and more obvious and the great work comes to light. I'll let Him do it and try to keep from making myself an accuser in the process, taking Joseph's words to heart when he says, "The righteousness of man is sin because it exacteth over much; nevertheless, the righteousness of God us just, because it exacteth over nothing at all, but sendeth the rain on the just and unjust, seed time and harvest, for all of which man is ungrateful."

Anonymous said...

CHI Book 1, 14.4.9:

Stake presidents and bishops should inform those who contribute tithes and other offerings that these contributions cannot be refunded. This policy applies also to missionary contributions that are prepaid.

When tithes and other offerings are given to the Church, they belong to the Lord, to whom they are consecrated. The essence of all such contributions is that they are freewill offerings, made without reservation of purpose, retention of control, ownership in any form, or expectation of any benefit by the donor other than the Lord's blessings. It is therefore improper to refund contributions given to the Church. Doing so would violate the spirit of freewill offerings. In some countries, refunding contributions could also cause legal and income tax complications for both the contributor and the Church.

Anonymous said...

lemuel? Is that you?

Anonymous said...

Are you sure this is tithing money used for the floats. Could not have someone donated money to the church with the instructions that the monies be used to celebrate this holiday. You claim not to judge, but clearly you are. As with most who judge un-rightjustly, you are coming to conclusions without all the necessary facts required to make property judgement.

Reading some of you blogs, you tend to ass-u-me much. I'm not sure why you remain a member. Is it not time to take your new baptism and run with it, leaving the so called "apostate church" behind. Why not become a devoted follower to the one who has been so quick to make judgement without all of the facts. You will serve each other well.

People like you aren't happy in life, so you bring others down. Your negative attitude makes is very clear that Christ is not in your life. You claim to seek for the comfortor. However, with all this hate, is it any wonder why you haven't received. Wake up and love others in their short comings. After all, we all haven't reached your clear level of perfection.

Michael said...

"Your negative attitude makes is very clear that Christ is not in your life."

This statement is ridiculous.

If you've actually read the blog, you'd see many posts that are very uplifting and have nothing to do with the "apostate church".

I see no reason a member in good standing can't ask legitimate questions about where tithing funds are used. The Church doesn't have carte blanche to do whatever it wants, regardless of what you seem to think.


Since my wife was on our stake float committee, she received a reimbursement check from the Financial Clerk. The check says: The CORPORATION OF THE PRESIDING BISHOP OF THE CHURCH OF JESUS CHRIST OF LATTER-DAY SAINTS. I assume that money distributed through the wards and stakes originate from the tithing money and not from financial gains/investment money. I don't think investment money passes through the hands of the bishops. However, correct me if I am wrong.

As you know people who donate money need to read the small print on the donation slip. It says "Though reasonable efforts will be made globally to use donations as designated, all donations become the Church's property and will be used at the Church's sole discretion to further the Church's overall mission." If donated by someone specifically for the floats, most likely that money was mingled with tithing funds, missionary, and welfare money.

Actually... it is you who assume a lot. I am actually quite happy. If the blog posts are so troubling to you, I would suggest to refrain from reading them.



Anonymous said...

the error in your assumption(s) is that all monies donated to the church, outside of the investment arm, are all identified as tithing. i've written checks on both the ward and stake level for years. monies taken in are often identified for separate purpose and use, each allocated into a separate account. money for missionaries and welfare don't go into the tithing account. monies for girls/boys camp, flag fund raiser, christmas party, or service project don't go into the tithing account. when monies are donated they are allocated separatly based on the purpose of the donation. when a check is written for scouts, girls camp, floats, a check is written out of the general account but allocated out of that specific account, not the tithing account.

its assumptions like this, based on ignoance, that's the primary reason want-to-be restorationalist have short term success. tickling people's ears with part/assumed truths and then making promises that won't ever come true. why, because they themselves don't understand. how's that promised baptism by fire working out? has your group been allocating the new order of tithing property?

the organization of the church is, has been and will be full of errors. but no one in their right mind should expect everything to be done the way everyone wants it to be done. trying planning an event with your family and notice the conflicting opions. wake up and make the best of it, you will be much happier.

cart blanche yourself


I think we both agree that tithing money should not be used for the floats...since you are arguing the fact that the money comes from other sources.. Your comments sound as if you are certain that all the money used for the floats are specifically donated for that purpose. Since there is little to no transparency on how Church finances are collected and then allocated..then we might both be guilty of making assumptions. :)

Thanks for your comments.

John and Jennifer said...

We had a pretty simple parade in Logan. I would love to see all of 48 floats in a large picture like the BYU, temple, and Indian float. If you can add the others to your blog, I would enjoy seeing them.

It looks like there could be a better use of money, but they are beautiful.