Saturday, October 30, 2010

A Brilliant New Way to Study the Scriptures on new.LDS.org!

Have you checked out the newest update of LDS.org?  It is wonderful!  The site is now interactive offering tools and applications that will be useful to not only Latter-day Saints but also our friends of other faiths.

Members of the church may use their church site passwords to access all of the information available to members including New Family Search for preparing family names for Temple Work online.  They may also access their Ward and Stake websites and get meeting information and check out the Calendars for their local units.  New to LDS.org now, is the ability to sync your Ward and Stake Calendar with Outlook or Google Calendar.  What a fantastic way to keep current on local church events in a busy age.

Another great feature allows us to access the Ward directory of our own particular Ward and Stake.  This includes addresses, phone numbers, email addresses and photos.  Best of all is that this is always as current as the membership records in the Clerk's office!  In Wards where membership has a rapid turn over, this will be an especially useful tool.

Also, there is a Maps app that will help you locate addresses.  This isn't too needful in my Utah Ward, but imagine being called as a Home Teacher to a newcomer in a rural Texas ward.  Wouldn't it be nice to be able to check out a map right from the Ward Web Site?

You can also request a copy of your Patriarchal Blessing from the site.  That, and the blessing of any direct line ancestor.  Isn't technology great!

Finally, and my favorite, is the My Study Notebook.  Associated with all the library content on the site, the notebook allows you to personalize your study of the scriptures, conference talks, church magazines, etc.  As you are studying, should you wish to mark that particular verse; you can highlight it, add personal notations, file the scripture in subject folders of your own creation, as well as tag it for later selection on a particular topic or theme.  This feature makes the online scriptures every bit as useful as my old well worn set of leather bound ones.  Over the years I've tried commercial versions of this that never met my needs.  I shudder to think how much money I spent with no real results.  Now, for free, I can make my own archive of personal insight and inspiration, as pertains to every verse I wish to comment on.  Then when I read the scriptures again, I can read them side by side with the notations I've previously made included right there.  There is a feature that allows you to hide your notations, but I look forward to keeping them open for future reference.  I have long studied the scriptures with a red pencil to mark passage that impressed me.  While I have often, also written notes in the margins, there is seldom enough space to meet my needs.  Now there is no limit to the space I can use to note impressions I have as I study.  Now, if a quote or concept from a conference talk impresses my heart I can file it in a folder that is unique to me and find it quickly next year when I need it for a talk or lesson.

The search engine for the scriptures is much improved as well.  And you can search Conference Talks and other library content as too. It looks like there's also an app that will allow my Folders and Scripture marks and notations to be downloaded to a mobile device so I can carry with me, not only the scriptures, but my personal study data as well.

Well did the ancient prophets long for our day.  Can you imagine studying the scriptures back then and while rolling up a scroll, be given a vision of what we're experiencing today?  I'll bet if we could see those old scrolls, we'd find drool stains, from men who were shown what great blessings and resources WE would take so much for granted.  I hope not to take them for granted, but to make full use of such great gifts from our Father in Heaven.  The church is making full and wonderful use of technology today.  Check our Mormon.org New.familysearch.org for more fantastic examples.  See it all at http://new.lds.org .

2 comments:

SilleSix said...

Thanks for the great information!

SilleSix said...

Thanks Myke for the wonderful information. I was aware of the LDS Tools app and use it often. However the rest was new and I'm excited to find it. I'm looking for a new way to personalize my scripture study this year. Thanks for pointing me in the right direction!

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