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Symbol of online disciples' digital evangelism through keystrokes.

A Clarion Call For Cyber-Disciples

Latter-day Saints embrace their roles as online disciples, advocating for love, truth, unity, boldness, and faithfulness in the digital realm.

About two-thousand years ago, Christ commanded his disciples to “Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature.” More recently, Elder David A. Bednar echoed that command when he encouraged 21st-century members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints to share their beliefs online. He said, “I exhort you to sweep the earth with messages filled with righteousness and truth—messages that are authentic, edifying, and praiseworthy. …” Many members of the Church of Jesus Christ have answered that call in a variety of creative ways. Of course, sharing that which has brought so much personal joy and fulfillment with a world full of strangers comes with its challenges.

In the face of opposition and antagonism, it can be easy to feel alone. We want Latter-day Saint creators around the world to know that you are not alone. We are here, and we invite you to join us in advancing the cause of Zion by striving to create content guided by the following ideals: 

  • Love. The Savior Jesus Christ outlined in no uncertain terms what it means to be one of his disciples: “By this shall men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another.” We echo President Russell M. Nelson’s counsel that “Anger never persuades. Hostility builds no one. Contention never leads to inspired solutions. … [Christ’s] true disciples build, lift, encourage, persuade, and inspire—no matter how difficult the situation.” We strive to meet opposition with patience and respect instead of disdain and mockery. We recognize that discipleship is contingent, first and foremost, on loving others as Jesus loves us.
  • Truth. We strive to create content that is accurate, honest, and in alignment with the teachings of the Church of Jesus Christ. We feel not only a desire but also a responsibility to share accurate information about our religion while also challenging misinformation in kind and productive ways. We believe in seeking knowledge and guidance through a range of epistemological tools, including academic scholarship and also divine revelation (see Doctrine and Covenants 88:118, Matthew 16:17).
  • Unity. We seek conversations that foster mutual understanding and edification. Where disagreement arises, we aim to disagree well without seeking to compromise the dignity of those we disagree with. When we perceive we’ve been mistreated by others, we strive to respond with patience and with an attitude of reconciliation (see Matthew 18:15). This applies to interactions with nonmembers, former members, and our fellow members of the Church. We stand for the ethical treatment of all of God’s children and recognize that our wrestle is not against flesh and blood, “but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world. …” 
  • Boldness. We strive to create content that lives up to the advice found in Alma 38:11-12, “See that ye are not lifted up unto pride; yea, see that ye do not boast in your own wisdom, nor of your much strength. Use boldness, but not overbearance; and also see that ye bridle all your passions, that ye may be filled with love. …” We do not believe that peacemaking and boldly standing up for what we believe to be right are mutually exclusive ideals. We strive to embody both.
  • Faithfulness. We believe that Jesus Christ is our Savior and Redeemer. We strive to create content that reflects faith in, and faithfulness to, Jesus Christ. We strive to follow His example and keep His commandments because we love Him (see John 14:15). We also believe that The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is Christ’s restored church in these latter days. We believe in the foundational truth claims of the Church. Our highest priority is to seek after and follow Jesus Christ, and we believe that the Church of Jesus Christ helps us to accomplish that.

This is not a list of attributes we pretend to have already mastered but rather a view of what we each aspire to work towards and become. We do not expect perfection of ourselves in this endeavor, but we do pledge sincere, repeated, and concerted effort until we might be made perfect in Christ. We are not official representatives of the Church of Jesus Christ, but we have covenanted at baptism to take upon ourselves the name of Christ. Thus, we will strive to humbly and confidently share the good news of the gospel far and wide, waiting for that fateful day when we hope to hear our Savior say, “Well done, thou good and faithful servant: thou hast been faithful over a few things, I will make thee ruler over many things: enter thou into the joy of thy lord.”

If you are a Latter-day Saint content creator and wish to add your name to this document, please visit this link.

David Snell                               C. D. Cunningham                        Ryan Robb

Dan Ellsworth                          BJ Spurlock                                   Bekka McLawhorn

Bridger Coburn                       Jennifer Roach                              Michael Bendall

Nathaniel Givens                    Ryan Sorensen                              Shima Baughman

Mimi Bascom                          Becky Squire                                  Christian McOmber

Kurt Francom                          Jeffrey Thayne                               Sara Phelps

Kyle Smith                               Michael Peterson                           Lynnette Sheppard

Kempe Nicoll                          Ashly Stone                                     Rachel Rhien Tucker

Carol Rice                                Daniel Smith                                  Ashley Getz

Pam Peebles                            Jasmin Rappleye                           Rachel Cushing

Kai Elkins                                Brian Arnett                                   Skyler Sorensen

Guy Johnson                          Fred Zundel                                    Jennie Moss

Ari Coleman                           Jeff Roundy                                   Shannon Jones

Jacob Ryder                           Greg Matsen                                   Beth Martineau

Evan D. Wirig                       Sonrisa Hasselbach                       Lydia JANE Wadsworth

Beth Martineau                    Greg Matsen                                    Kamden Hainsworth

Jeff Roundy                           Jennie Moss                                    Fred Zundel

Jessica Spackman                 Derek Crimin                                 Matthew Sailors

Elissa Nysetvold                    Daniel Sorensen                            Priscilla Davis

Dawn Anderson                     Jenny Panemeno                          Rachel Snider

Shelbi Stanfill                         Todd Bruce                                    Megan Dahl

Nate Russell                            Mandy Davis                                 Austin Smoot

Kjersti Christensen                Jacob Roundy                              Jacob Crapo

Benjamin Pacini                     Christie Hurst                              Amanda Anderson

Amber Pearce                         Tyler Mercer                                 Kaari Lines

Tyler Mercer                           Abby Watson                                 Madison Cantwell Packer

Samuel Serrano                     Linsie Draper                                 Joey Vogl

Bryan Dorman                       Eliza Sewell                                    Richard  Durrant

Sean & M’Shelle Dixon         Kyle Jacobs                                    Jackson Howell

Ryan Mercer                           Mike D. House                              Jeffrey Law

Dustin Moore

 

 

About the author

David Snell

David Snell is currently a host on the Latter-day Saint show, Saints Unscripted. He has produced content (written or otherwise) for a variety of platforms and programs, including Church Newsroom and Third Hour. He has a BA in communications from BYU, with an emphasis in broadcast journalism.
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