Sunday, February 17, 2019

Never Satisfied

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William Smith

After Joseph and Hyrum’s death, how many factions did William Smith join with?
a.                  5
b.                  10
c.                   15
d.                  20
Yesterday’s answer:
A   Books of Mormon
From the Italian mission: Because of their positive experience with the impromptu choir concert on Christmas Eve 1966, the missionaries sensed the potential of musical and sporting events in garnering media attention and hence, in attracting wider exposure for their message. In August 1967 several elders were transferred to mission headquarters in Florence to join a newly formed mission basketball team, carrying the evangelically pragmatic name I Mormoni SUG (The Mormons LDS). The missionaries played against teams from universities and sporting clubs throughout Italy, normally in large cities already opened to missionary work. Team members presented each opposing team with copies of the Book of Mormon and gave a brief explanation of the Church. Other missionaries working in the area would put on half-time shows (such as judo exhibitions), dress up as female cheerleaders to urge the team on to victory, pass out Church literature, and invite spectators to Church services. During the late sixties in Europe, basketball was a sport that was just beginning to attract attention and participants; thus, even with little practice I Mormoni SUG managed to make a respectable showing.
In February 1968, after six months of competition, the mission basketball team officially disbanded, and the sports experiment was never revisited. The team’s record was twenty wins and twenty-four losses; however, the winning percentage was secondary to the overall objective of spreading “the name and spirt of Mormonism in Italy through the new and fast growing sport of basketball.” A total of 176 copies of the Book of Mormon had been distributed, 90 newspaper articles had been published, and 13,000 spectators had attended their games.
James A. Toronto, The “Wild West” of Missionary Work” Reopening the Italian Mission, 1965-71, Journal of Mormon History, Fall 2014, 44-45.

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