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December 23

Art William Whitaker

1805 – Joseph Smith, the Prophet of the Lord, founder of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, and translator of the Book of Mormon by the gift and power of God, is born in Sharon, Vermont. (Joseph Smith—History 1:3)

1838 – The Prophet Joseph Smith spent his thirty-third birthday in Liberty Jail, Liberty, Missouri, as his people were fleeing Missouri for the safety of Illinois and Iowa.

1839 – The Prophet Joseph Smith spent his thirty-fourth birthday in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

1843 – The Prophet records that on his thirty-eighth birthday, the last birthday of his life, he spent the day “at home, counseling the brethren who called on me, and attending to my domestic duties, making preparations for a Christmas dinner party. Prayer meeting in the Assembly Room” (History of the Church, 6:133).

1845 – Federal officers from Springfield, Illinois, arrived at the Nauvoo Temple to arrest Brigham Young and some of the Twelve Apostles. William Miller put on Brigham Young’s cap and went out of the Temple and approached Brigham’s carriage. He was then arrested by the officers. Brother Miller told them there was a mistake, but they would not listen to him. The troops with the officers celebrated the arrest of “Brigham Young” as they neared Carthage and put up at Hamilton’s Tavern. When told the man they had was not Brigham Young, they soon realized they had the wrong man and let him go. Meanwhile, Brigham Young and others continued officiating in the Temple. In the evening when their work was completed for the day, the Twelve left the Temple in disguise to avoid further threats.

1905 – President Joseph F. Smith dedicates the Joseph Smith Memorial Cottage and Monument in Sharon, Vermont, on the one hundredth anniversary of the birth of the Prophet Joseph Smith.

1953 – Elder Gerrit Walter Gong is born in Redwood City, California.

1991 – Congo grants the Church formal recognition.

1995 – The Church announces a new logo for the name of the Church, focusing the design more prominently on the name of Jesus Christ.

2005 – A fireside broadcast, culminating a year-long celebration of the 200th anniversary of the birth of the Prophet Joseph Smith, is held in the Conference Center in Salt Lake City, Utah, with President Gordon B. Hinckley broadcasting from Sharon, Vermont.

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