Tuesday, November 2, 2021

Multicultural Church history

Back cover the the Lemurs book
Because the Church is increasingly multicultural (and multinational), it is important for Latter-day Saints everywhere to become more familiar with other cultures and people. We're all interested in ways to accomplish this and, as Elder Quentin L. Cook has taught,

With our all-inclusive doctrine, we can be an oasis of unity and celebrate diversity. Unity and diversity are not opposites. We can achieve greater unity as we foster an atmosphere of inclusion and respect for diversity.

One way to foster an atmosphere of inclusion and respect for diversity is to teach it and live it within our families, especially starting at a young age.

Hence, the illustrated Church history book this post discusses.

The introductory video is here:


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Having lived in Europe for 8 years, as well as in China, the Philippines, and Africa, and having traveled to every continent and over 60 countries for work or pleasure, I'm particularly enthusiastic about the way the Latter-day Saints are creating a worldwide, united community of people dedicated to establishing Zion and bringing people to Christ.

We've attended Church meetings on every continent (except Antarctica, where the only people we met were a few military personnel at a Chilean base). Every time, we make immediate friends and we usually have connections one way or another. 

Latter-day Saints everywhere have faith in Christ, love in their hearts, and unified desires to bless the world.

There's nothing else like it anywhere. It is evidence of the Restoration.

Thousands of missionaries going from one country to another helps immensely to create this worldwide community. Social media, people going to universities, work assignments, the Pathway program--all of these help to establish and deepen the ties among Latter-day Saints.

But for non-Americans, resources are limited, and almost everything has an American orientation, despite the efforts of the Church to become more multicultural. Translation alone is not multi-cultural.


We thought it would be helpful for Latter-day Saints to have an illustrated Church history from a multinational, multicultural perspective. Something a parent (or grandparent) can sit down and read as a bedtime story.

It includes links to original sources for parents who want to learn more.

The book Lemurs, Chameleons and Golden Plates offers such an opportunity. 

Here's a description:

Readers young and old enjoy learning about Church history and gospel principles in a multi-cultural context. In Lemurs, Chameleons and Gold Plates, African artist William Rosoanaivo (POV) provides delightful illustrations of important events in early Church history from the perspective of Latter-day Saints living in Madagascar.

The book introduces a brother and sister who visit their grandparents in the countryside, where lemurs and chameleons join in the fun. Young readers especially enjoy looking for these creatures as they turn the pages.

African culture permeates the book as the grandparents tell their grandchildren about how they joined the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, how Joseph Smith translated the Book of Mormon, and how the Church has grown throughout the world. They discuss temple work, missionary work, and caring for one another, all in the context of the African setting.

William Rosoanaivo (POV) is an award-winning artist, a native of Madagascar who currently lives in Mauritius, both African nations. Co-author Jonathan Neville, who met William while living in Mauritius, has written extensively about Church history and related topics. References to the Joseph Smith Papers and other historical sources are provided for readers who seek additional information and insights.

This is the first in a series of planned multicultural books about the Restored Gospel of Jesus Christ.

The book is available wherever LDS books are sold, and directly from the publisher: https://www.digitalegend.com/catalog/product_info.php?products_id=377

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