Nearly 150 years ago, Mormon pioneers set out from the Midwest, bound for Salt Lake City. They walked, pulling their belongings in wooden handcarts. Two groups got a late start and were stranded in Wyoming by a devastating October blizzard. And for the past 20 years, thousands of Mormon teenagers have been returning to that site to follow in the footsteps of their ancestors.
When the blizzard struck on October 19th, 1856, the lagging handcart companies were still weeks from Salt Lake City. More than 200 people died of exhaustion, hunger, and cold.
It was the Protestant reformer Martin Luther who proposed that we are simultaneously saints and sinners. Jackson artist Aaron Wallis is illustrating the idea by placing drug dealers and gang leaders in the context of Christian iconography: putting halos around criminals' heads. The newest collection of illuminated manuscript prints in his Street Bible series opens August 29th at the Rose and the Pink Garter Theatre in Jackson.
His film and TV credits include the recent Smurfs movies, Shrek 2, and Rugrats, but screenwriter David Weiss also attracts attention for his faith. He grew up a secular Jew, converted to Christianity, and later became an observant orthodox Jew. That’s the subject of his lectures Friday and Saturday at the Chabad Jewish Center in Jackson. Wyoming Public Media’s Micah Schweizer reached Weiss by phone as he was driving from Los Angeles to Santa Monica to work on a script.
Most Wyomingites have long since taken down their Christmas trees and wrapped up their winter holidays… But for people who practice the Bahá'í faith, the Festival of Ayyám-i-Há – where families get together and exchange small gifts, is right around the corner.
The Bahá'í religion is a relatively young one. Founded in Persia in the mid-1800s, it follows the teachings of two prophets – The Báb, and Bahá'u'lláh. They taught about the oneness of God and of religion, and that God continues to reveal truths to humanity throughout time.