Thursday, January 4, 2018


This has been an eventful week.. An ending of one year and the beginning of a new. An ending of one era with the death of President Monson, and the beginning of a new era of Church Leadership. An era is defined by Webster as a span of time defined for the purposes of chronology or historiography, as in the regnal eras in the history of a given monarchy.

This week started with a hike up in the mountains with a few others who braved the cold winter air.
Photo taken 12/31/2107 on Sunday morning, New Year's Eve.

Photo of the last Sunrise of  2017.

These photos were taken on the last day of 2017, which happened to fall on a Sunday. Most people might think it crazy to wake up in the middle of the night to hike to a summit to see the sunrise. Grateful that my daughter is not one of them and was willing to come with her Dad. As we were  heading up the canyon, we saw two moose standing next to the road, probably startled to see humans braving the winter cold. They represented to me Nature's two witnesses that we indeed hiked that morning.

Much has happened this past year. It has been a difficult year for many. One of the reasons for hiking on New Year's Eve was to leave up on the mountain all of the things we would rather forget about 2017 and look forward to the upcoming new year of 2018. Each of us carried up a block of wood to be placed in a fire on the summit. The piece of wood represented something different to each of us. For some it might have been a grievance, or a sin that they would like to leave behind.  For another, it represented the willingness to sacrifice all.  I learned alot from this hike. I am grateful for experience.

Some interesting things have and will happen in this first month of the year.

For starters:

In this month of January there will be two full moons. Both of these full moons will be Supermoons. Supermoons occur when the moon is at it's closest point to the earth making the Full Moon brighter and larger. The first full moon was called the Wolf Moon and happened on Monday night, January 1st.  The next Full Moon will be on January 31th.  This will be a Blue Moon, a name given to the second full moon that occurs in the same month. However, this particular Blue Moon will not look blue, but will likely look red because it will cause a total lunar eclipse, also known as a Blood Moon.

Photo taken on December 31, 2017

Photo taken on January 1st, 2018.. The Wolf Moon.

Another big event this month has been the passing of President Monson

There have been alot of media articles and tributes to President Monson over the past 24 hours. He was loved and adored by many. He was a gentle and kind man.  One of the articles mentioned three things that we will be remembered by... his warm fuzzies, his ear wiggles, and his eye rolling about the fire  he started when he was 8 years old.  I might add that he has been known for his motto of "to the rescue" and helping the widows. I think all will agree that he will be remember most by the stories he told in conference and his incredible memory to share events from his life.

Shortly, the new President of the Church will be selected. The Church members will then refer to him as the new Living Prophet.  The LDS based newspaper outlet released this story on how the process of how the Prophet is selected.

"The senior member of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, who is the man who has served in the quorum the longest, presides in a meeting where quorum members determine one of two outcomes: should the First Presidency be reorganized or should the church continue to be governed by the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles for the time being?
"Following a discussion, the members of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles then vote. If the group chooses to reorganize the First Presidency, a president is selected by unanimous vote. Traditionally, the new president has been the senior apostle. Once a president has been identified, he selects two counselors to make up the First Presidency."

I find it so fascinating that that the new president is chosen by a vote of the Quorum of the Twelve (I could be wrong, but I presume the two prior counselors also get to vote which would make 14 men.. not just the Q of 12)  However, if that is the case, there are only 13 men in this situation since Robert D Hales past away during the last General Conference and has not been replaced.

Unlike in the scriptures where God, Himself calls His prophet, the modern day "prophet" today is instead chosen by men via voting. Truly, as prophesied in Nephi's vision in 2 Nephi 28:5 "for the Lord and the Redeemer hath done his work, and he hath given his power unto men."

The news article failed to explain who ordains the new prophet. I have always believed that only one who has a higher power can ordain/set apart someone to that position. That is why in the beginning of the Church, the Church Patriarch who was equal to the Church President would always be one set apart/ordain the New President.. never was another apostle able to set up the President/Prophet of the Church. Maybe they vote on that too. :)


Sidenote Trivia:
Just saw part of George Orwell's classic movie 1984. Here is just a little date trivia.

The famous date “April 4th, 1984” appeared in one of the early pages of George Orwell’s most important novel '1984'.  The novel was a warning to readers about the continued threats to the world of a future totalitarian, corporatized, and militarized police state. The novel was set in Oceania, which was once a thriving democracy but had then been economically, structurally and morally torn apart. People were criminalized for the things they thought or believed.. They were called thought crimes. If they didn't follow the existing authority they were cast out.  The date April 4, 1984 was the first entry in the diary of Orwell’s main character, Winston Smith.

Completely unrelated, I came across that same date from the movie in reading the bio of President Nelson who was called as an apostle and sustained in General Conference in April 1984.