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Pacific Ponderings

By John TannerFebruary 10, 2020
In one of my favorite scenes from one of my favorite movies, A Man For All Seasons, Sir Thomas More explains what it means to take an oath. Imprisoned by Henry VIII for refusing to take an oath swearing to the Act of Succession, More is visited by his daughter, Meg, who urges him to say the words of the oath but think otherwise in his heart. After all, she argues, “God more regards the thoughts of the heart than the words of the mouth.” More counters:
By John TannerDecember 30, 2019
The name January is derived from the Roman god Janus. Janus is the god of doorways, gates, and thresholds; and, by extension, of beginnings, endings, and transitions. Janus was depicted with two faces, one looking forward and one looking backward.
By John TannerDecember 23, 2019
The Joseph Smith Translation (JST) alters a familiar verse in Luke’s account of the birth of Jesus. Instead of “there was no room for them in the inn,” the JST reads, “there was none to give room for them in the inns.”
By John TannerDecember 02, 2019
One of the most poignant moments in world literature occurs in the Divine Comedy at the end of Book 2, Purgatory, when Dante’s beloved guide Virgil must leave him.
By John TannerNovember 25, 2019
This Thanksgiving season, my thoughts turn back in gratitude to Thanksgiving 100 years ago, on November 27, 1919. On that Thanksgiving Day, President Heber J. Grant dedicated the Hawaiian Temple, thus linking forever our lovely temple here in Laie with the Thanksgiving holiday.
By John TannerNovember 22, 2019
Veterans Day was formerly known as Armistice Day. It commemorated the day when the “Guns of August,” which had thundered death for four years during the Great War, finally fell silent. This occurred on the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month in 1918.
By John TannerOctober 31, 2019
The headnote to D&C 138 informs us that President Joseph F. Smith’s vision of the dead “was unanimously accepted” by the First Presidency, Quorum of the Twelve, and Church Patriarch on October 31, 1918—Halloween!
By John TannerAugust 27, 2019
I had never heard of Children’s Day when growing up. As a child, it seemed unfair to me that a Sunday was set aside each year to honor mothers and another to honor fathers but none to honor children...
By John TannerJuly 23, 2019
Becoming Temple Guardians and Gardeners
By John TannerJuly 03, 2019
“Let us now praise famous men” (Ecclesiasticus, 44)