IT IS FANTASTIC! We have also been asked to encourage you to check it out and then spread the word to everyone you know. It is absolutely amazing and we are excited about all of the new changes that are forthcoming!
An upgraded LDS.org is now available to the public at new.lds.org. After months of improvements and testing at beta.lds.org, the new features mentioned below are now available to the public at new.lds.org. (The last major overhaul of LDS.org was released to the public in January 2007.)
Much of the focus of the new site is to help you, as a member of the Church and child of our Father in Heaven, to learn, live, and share the gospel of Jesus Christ. It does this by emphasizing the teachings of core doctrines by living prophets and apostles, providing easy access to scriptures, and enabling new tools for online gospel study.
New.lds.org is media rich, using video, audio, photography, gospel art, and other graphics to communicate the gospel message. Most of the site’s content is integrated with popular social networking sites and e-mail so users can easily share content and direct their friends to learn more about the gospel.
This main section on the lower right of the home page provides a focus on the words of the living prophets. Clicking on the heading (or accessing it from the Menu under Study) takes you to a section filled with recent messages from the prophets and apostles. The page Unto All the World follows the ministry of modern prophets and apostles, including recent events and addresses.
What Do Mormons Believe?
This section on the lower left of the home page directs visitors to the recently updated Mormon.org site where they can learn about the basic beliefs of the Church.
The menu on new.lds.org is organized to make materials easier to find. Its structure is based upon the most important and common uses of Church information by members. Click Menu in the upper right of new.lds.org and you’ll see the following five major categories:
Our Heavenly Father’s Plan – Pages in this category provide brief overviews of the vital doctrine that we are all children of a loving Father in Heaven and we are here on earth for a divine purpose.
This entire section is new and can be effective in teaching your children and in sharing these precious truths to your friends.
Family – This category provides pages with doctrines and principles to help families and individuals strengthen marriages, succeed in raising children, teach the gospel effectively in the home, and access the teachings of Church leaders regarding the family.
This section is still under development, but will be an amazing resource to parents and families.
Church – This category includes information about the Church, including News and Events, an overview of the Church organization, Temples, Church History, Places to Visit, Education, Facts and Figures, access to the online distribution store, and information for members about how to share the gospel effectively online.
One new page in this section is Sharing the Gospel Online. This page includes encouragement by the Brethren to join in the online conversation by participating on the Internet to share the gospel and to explain in simple and clear terms the message of the Restoration. It includes information about sharing your personal testimony with the world on mormon.org, using social media, and publishing a personal blog.
Service – Information to help Church members understand and fulfill their church callings, teach the gospel effectively, and participate in humanitarian, community, and missionary service.
One new page in this section is Humanitarian Service, which gives information about the humanitarian service provided by the Church and by individual Mormons, as well as ideas on what you can do to help.
Study – A gospel library that includes the Holy Scriptures, General Conference, the teachings of living prophets and apostles, manuals, music, magazines, and an index that allows users to study by topic. Soon, a media library will be added that will provide access to gospel art, videos, and audio recordings. All materials may be annotated, tagged, highlighted, collected, and shared using new personal study tools. The new site provides you with the same rich repository of content found in current LDS.org. A team is working diligently to add more content in more languages every month over the next many months.
The Scriptures section has a new design that is easier to read, provides better access to footnotes and cross-references, and includes a personal study notebook that lets you take notes, highlight/underline verses, tag verses, and save them to a folder. You can access the notebook in the right margin when you’re viewing a chapter within the scriptures. You can also share your favorite verses with friends. Read more about the new LDS Scriptures site.
The General Conference section provides text, audio, and video archives within an inspiring new experience. If you have linked to the conference site using a friendly URL such as conference.lds.org, general conference.lds.org, or gc.lds.org, the links will automatically point to the new site very soon.
Click Tools in the upper right of new.lds.org and you’ll see the following:
Calendar: This lets you access the new ward and stake calendars. It is available only by signing on with your LDS Account. The calendar is not yet final and new features will be coming. It is recommended that you continue using the calendars at the current sites (ward.lds.org and stake.lds.org).
Directory: This lets you access the new ward and stake directories. It is available only by signing on with your LDS Account. The new directory lets you upload pictures of individuals and families.
Personal Study Notebook: This is a personalized section where you can keep a notebook of your personal study. It is available only by signing on with your LDS Account.
Maps: This is an upgrade of the previous version of maps.lds.org, which allows you to enter an address and find the nearest meetinghouse. It also includes ward and stake maps, meeting times, and contact information for leaders.
Mobile Applications: Learn about the various mobile apps available to access the Gospel Library and Mormon Channel.
New.lds.org employs a new search capability that is a major improvement over the search function on the current LDS.org. As you begin typing a search query, you will immediately see a short list of hand-picked recommended results. If you don’t find what you’re looking for, click “Search All LDS.org” to see the complete list of computer-generated results for your search term.
There are several sections of LDS.org that can now offer a personalized experience if you sign on using your LDS Account, such as the following:
· Access your ward and stake calendars and directories.
· Create a profile through which you can share your testimony with others on Mormon.org.
· Access your personal study notebook.
· Access many other secure Church websites.
“Coming soon” Pages
Throughout the site, you’ll see “coming soon” pages for incomplete sections with an explanation of the new content and functionality that is still being developed.
“Learn About” Videos
Several videos have been created to learn about new features of new.lds.org. These are accessible from the home page of new.lds.org and include short screencasts that give an overview of the new site, as well as highlights of the new sections for Scriptures, General Conference, and how to use the new Search. Next week, videos will also highlight Prophets and Apostles Speak Today, Prepare a Lesson, Prepare a Talk, and My Study Notebook.
For more information about the new LDS.org, listen to the second half of the interview with Elder Craig C. Christensen on Mormon Channel radio.
This new LDS.org website is still being developed. As you use new.lds.org, you may at times have to refer back to the current LDS.org to find some information that has not yet been built into the new site. If you have specific questions or want to let us know about a problem with the new site, please use the Feedback link at the bottom of almost every page. We also invite you to use that same link to share with us your experiences with this new site.
You’ll see additional major changes to LDS.org over the next year. Check back often, since we’ll be constantly improving and adding more content. As the site become more complete, we will switch the URL address LDS.org to point to the new site.
You’ll notice that the Language selector at the bottom of the new.lds.org pages currently shows English only. We expect to release the site in Spanish and German in about a month, then the following languages over the next several months: Chinese, French, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Portuguese, and Russian.