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A CHRONOLOGICAL REFLECTION: THE 1980S IN RETROSPECT

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1980Feb. 1, 1980 - A new consolidated meeting schedule providing for a three-hour time block of Sunday meetings was announced by the First Presidency. The schedule began March 2 in the United States and Canada, and May 4 in the remaining areas of the world.

March 1980 - Veteran motion picture actor James Stewart starred in a 30-minute drama produced by the Church, "Mr. Krueger's Christmas." which was shown on T.V. stations throughout the United States at Christmastime, and in 22 countries the next year. By Dec. 21, 1980, more than 40,000 persons had requested the free brochure and Tabernacle Choir recording offered on the program.

April 2, 1980 - At a press conference, President Spencer W. Kimball announced six new temples, the first in a program of "taking the temples to the people."

April 5, 1980 - A new Primary general presidency was sustained at general conference, consisting of Dwan J. Young, president, and her counselors, Virginia B. Cannon and Michaelene P. Grassli.

April 6, 1980 - The sesquicentennial of the Church's founding in 1830, was observed with a general conference session telecast by satellite from Fayette, N.Y.

April 20, 1980 - The first stake in Austria was formed in Vienna.

May 1980 - Jeffrey R. Holland was appointed president of BYU, succeeding Dallin H. Oaks.

Aug. 12, 1980 - Two new buildings to house the Genealogical Library and a Museum of Church History and Art were announced.

Aug. 12-16, 1980 - Thousands of people from different countries and cultures gathered for the second World Conference on Records, arranged by the Genealogical Department.

Oct. 27, 1980 - The Tokyo Temple, the first in Asia was dedicated.

Nov. 17, 1980 - The Seattle Temple, the first in the northwestern United States, was dedicated.

1981

Jan. 17, 1981 - The Tabernacle Choir sang at the inauguration of U.S. President Ronald Reagan.

March 22, 1981 - The first stake was organized in Nicaragua in Managua.

April 4, 1981 - President Spencer W. Kimball, in a general conference address, outlined the mission of the Church: "To proclaim the gospel ...; to perfect the saints ...; to perfect the saints ..."

May 24-27, 1981 - The Tabernacle Choir made its first tour to Brazil.

June 7, 10, 1981 - The first stake in Italy was formed in Milan, and in Portugal in Lisbon, respectively.

July 23, 1981 - Elder Gordon B. Hinckley was called as a counselor in the First Presidency, the first time since the administration of President David O. McKay that a president has had more than two counselors.

September 1981 - A smaller, less expensive ward meetinghouse, called the Sage Plan, was announced by the First Presidency.

Sept. 19, 1981 - A new edition of the triple combination - the Book of Mormon, Doctrine and Covenants and Pearl of Great Price - was published. The publication was a complement to the LDS edition of the King James Bible published in 1979.

Nov. 16, 1981 - The Jordan River Temple, the second in the Salt Lake Valley, was dedicated.

Dec. 6, 1981 - The first all-Indian stake in South America was organized in Otavalo, Ecuador.

1982

March 14, 1982 - The first stake in Spain was formed in Madrid.

April 1, 1982 - Church membership reached 5 million.

April 2, 1982 - A new worldwide policy pertaining to financing construction of meetinghouses and to paying for their operation was announced by the First Presidency. According to the policy, costs for each Church unit were to be paid thereafter from Church general funds depending on tithing faithfulness of the members in the unit, among other conditions.

April 2, 1982 - The length of full-time missions for single men was reduced from 24 to 18 months. The change proved to be temporary, and in 1984 the length of service was restored to 24 months.

June 7-20, 1982 - The Tabernacle Choir presented 10 concerts in eight European cities during its 12th international tour. The cities were in Norway, Sweden, Finland, Denmark, Holland and England.

Aug. 14, 1982 - President Gordon B. Hinckley of the First Presidency dedicated 16 recently restored 19th Century buildings in Nauvoo, Ill., and the excavated site where the Nauvoo Temple once stood.

Aug. 29, 1982 - The first stake in the German Democratic Republic was created in Freiberg.

Sept. 4, 1982 - The Tabernacle Choir celebrated 50 years of continuous broadcasting of "Music and the Spoken Word" over the CBS Radio Network.

Sept. 10, 1982 - U.S. President Ronald Reagan toured a Church welfare cannery in Ogden, Utah.

Oct. 3, 1982 - A subtitle, Another Testament of Jesus Christ, was added to the Book of Mormon. The announcement was made Oct. 3 in general conference during a sermon by Elder Boyd K. Packer.

Dec. 5, 1982 - The Church's first major satellite telecast aside from general conference was a fireside for youths and young adults beamed to meetinghouses in the United States. Up to then, 471 receivers in the growing satellite network had been installed.

Dec. 11, 1982 - The First Presidency was reorganized following the death of President N. Eldon Tanner, with President Marion G. Romney called as first counselor and President Gordon B. Hinckley as second counselor.

1983

April 1, 1983 - Modifications to the welfare system of the Church were announced. Acquisition of new farms or facilities would come from general Church funds and existing projects would be evaluated for greater efficiency.

April 3, 1983 - The historic Assembly Hall on Temple Square was rededicated after remodeling, which included installation of a $300,000 pipe organ.

June 2, 1983 - The Atlanta Temple in Georgia, the first in the southeastern United States, was dedicated.

June 5, 1983 - The first stake in Fiji was created in Suva.

August 1983 - For the first time in Church history, two temples were dedicated within a week's time: the Apia Samoa Temple on Aug. 5 and the Nuku'alofa Tonga Temple on Aug. 9.

Sept. 15, 1983 - The Santiago Chile Temple, the first in a Spanish-speaking country, was dedicated.

Oct. 16, 1983 - The first stake in Kirtland, Ohio, was created by President Ezra Taft Benson, more than a century after the Mormon exodus from that city.

Oct. 27, 1983 - The Papeete Tahiti Temple was dedicated.

Dec. 2, 1983 - The Mexico City Temple, the first temple in Mexico, was dedicated.

1984

Jan. 26, 1984 - The First Presidency announced a new Four-Phase Genealogical Facilities Program, providing a way for wards and branches to establish convenient genealogical facilities in meetinghouses.

April 4, 1984 - The new, three-story Museum of Church History and Art was dedicated in Salt Lake City, west of Temple Square.

April 1, 1984 - The Personal Ancestral File, a genealogy management system for home computers, became available, the Church News reported.

June 22-July 1, 1984 - The Tabernacle Choir toured six cities in Ontario in eastern Canada and in Michigan, Illinois, Missouri and Colorado in the United States.

April 7, 1984 - Barbara W. Winder was called as Relief Society general president, and Ardeth G. Kapp as Young Women general president.

May 25, 1984 - The Boise Idaho Temple, the second in Idaho, was dedicated.

July 1, 1984 - A major change in worldwide Church administration became effective. Area presidencies were named from the First Quorum of the Seventy to preside over 13 geographic areas of the Church. By Nov. 1, 1988, the number of areas had increased to 18.

Sept. 20, 25, 1984 - The Sydney Australia and Manila Philippines temples, respectively, were dedicated.

Oct. 19, 1984 - The Dallas Texas Temple was dedicated.

Oct. 28, 1984 - The Church's 1,500th stake, Ciudad Obregon Mexico Yaqui, was created 150 years after the first stake was organized in Kirtland, Ohio, in 1834.

Nov. 17, 1984 - The Taipei Taiwan Temple was dedicated.

Dec. 14, 1984 - The Guatemala City Temple was dedicated.

1985

Jan. 20, 1985 - The Church was ranked as the fifth-largest denomination in the United States, according to a poll conducted by Tropic, a magazine supplement of the Miami Herald.

Jan. 27, 1985 - The First Presidency called for a special fast day among Church members to assist starving people in Ethiopia and other parts of Africa and the world. More than $6.8 million was donated.

March 1985 - The Book of Mormon or selections of it have been translated into 68 languags spoken by some 3.1 billion people, or roughly 60 percent of the world's population, the Church News reported.

April 5, 1985 - In what was described as the "third major missionary milestone of the last quarter-century," all the regional representatives, mission presidents and stake presidents from throughout the world met together with the General Authorities in Salt Lake City to hear the call for a renewed emphasis on missionary work.

April 12, 1985 - LDS senator from Utah, Jake Garn, was a crew member aboard the space shuttle Discovery. Another Church member, Don Lind, blasted off on a scientific mission aboard the Challenger April 29 for a seven-day trek into space.

April 28, 1985 - The Cusco Peru Stake was created where the headquarters of the Inca empire once stood.

June 29, 1985 - The Freiberg DDR Temple was dedicated. The temple was the second to be completed in continental Europe.

July 2, 1985 - The first temple in Scandinavia, the Stockholm Sweden Temple, was dedicated.

Aug. 2, 1985 - The first LDS hymnbook published in 37 years came off the presses.

Aug. 9, 1985 - The Chicago Illinois Temple was dedicated.

Aug. 24, 1985 - The Johannesburg South Africa Temple was dedicated, providing a temple on every continent except Antarctica.

Aug. 18, 1985 - The first building constructed as an LDS meetinghouse in Ghana was dedicated.

Sept. 19, 1985 - Eight Church members were among 5,000 killed in an earthquake that hit Mexico City, Mexico's worst disaster in modern history.

Oct. 23, 1985 - Some 145 years after the first missionaries arrived in Ireland, Elder Neal A. Maxwell of the Council of the Twelve dedicated this land for the spreading of the gospel.

That same day, the new $8.2 million Church Genealogical Library in Salt Lake City was dedicated.

Oct. 31, 1985 - Elder Thomas S. Monson of the Council of the Twelve dedicated Yugoslavia for the preaching of the gospel during a meeting in the Church's first meetinghouse there.

Nov. 5, 1985 - President Spencer W. Kimball, 90, president of the Church since Dec. 30, 1973, died of natural causes incident to age.

Nov. 10, 1985 - President Ezra Taft Benson was ordained and set apart as president of the Church in the Salt Lake Temple. Named as counselors were President Gordon B. Hinckley, first counselor, and President Thomas S. Monson, second counselor.

Dec. 14, 1985 - The first temple on mainland Asia, the Seoul Korea Temple, was dedicated.

1986

Jan. 10, 1986 - The Lima Peru Temple was dedicated.

Jan. 17, 1986 - The Buenos Aires Argentina Temple was dedicated.

Feb. 12, 1986 - A letter from the First Presidency stated that all worthy members with unendowed spouses could receive temple blessings.

April 6, 1986 - President Ezra Taft Benson was sustained as the 13th president of the Church in a solemn assembly during general conference.

April 30, 1986 - Church membership reached 6 million members.

June 22, 1986 - The Church's 1,600th stake was created in Kitchner, Ontario, by President Thomas S. Monson.

July 6, 1986 - Missionary discussions were revised to focus on "teaching from the heart."

Aug. 23, 1986 - The first regional conference in Leipzig, German Democratic Republic, was held for Church members in that country.

Oct. 4, 1986 - President Ezra Taft Benson announced during general conference that seventies quorums in stakes of the Church were to be discontinued.

Oct. 10, 1986 - Homes of nearly 250 LDS families were destroyed or damaged in an earthquake in El Salvador, which killed an estimated 1,200 people, including two Church members.

Oct. 10, 1986 - Joe J. Christensen was inaugurated as the 12th president of Ricks College.

Oct. 24, 1986 - The Denver Colorado Temple was dedicated.

Oct. 26, 1986 - Elder Joseph Anderson became the oldest General Authority ever, at the age of 96 years and 340 days.

1987

Feb. 15, 1987 - The Tabernacle Choir marked its 3,000th radio broadcast, the longest-running network program in the free world.

April 3, 1987 - The First Presidency reemphasized the role of the Church to regional representatives, counseling them to invite all to "come unto Christ" as they fulfill the mission of the Church, that of perfecting the saints, preaching the gospel, and redeeming the dead.

July 24-26, 1987 - Latter-day Saints throughout the British Isles commemorated the 150th anniversary of the first Church missionary work there.

Aug. 15, 1987 - The First Presidency announced that the Church Genealogical Department would be known as the Family History Department.

Aug. 28, 1987 - The Frankfurt Germany Temple was dedicated.

Aug. 30, Sept. 2, 4, 1987 - Elder Marvin J. Ashton dedicated Zaire, Liberia and the Ivory Coast, respectively, for the preaching of the gospel.

1988

Jan. 30-31, 1988 - In one of the largest single-weekend stake divisions in Church history, 18 stakes were created from 11 existing stakes in Lima, Peru.

May 15, 1988 - The Aba Nigeria Stake, the first in western Africa, was organized.

June 1, 1988 - The Church received legal recognition in the Hungarian People's Republic.

June 2, 1988 - Pres. Howard W. Hunter was set apart as president of the Council of the Twelve, succeeding Pres. Marion G. Romney, who died May 20.

Aug. 15, 1988 - The Church reached a milestone by performing 100 million endowments for the dead.

Oct. 3, 1988 - The First Presidency announced the first modification in eight years to the Church's consolidated Sunday meeting schedule. Sunday School was to be preceded by a 10-minute opening exercise, which includes a hymn-singing period.

Oct. 16, 1988 - The 1,700th stake in the Church was created in Manaus, Brazil, becoming the first stake in the Amazon Basin.

Oct. 28, 1988 - The German Democratic Republic granted the Church the right to conduct missionary work in that country and to permit Latter-day Saints from there to serve as missionaries in other countries.

Oct. 29, 1988 - With the creation of the San Frenando Chile Stake, Chile became the third country outside the United States to reach the 50-stake mark.

Nov. 22, 1988 - Elder Marvin J. Ashton of the Council of the Twelve dedicated the two principal islands of the Mascarene chain in the Indian Ocean, Mauritius and Reunion, for preaching the gospel.

Dec. 14, 1988 - Elder Russell M. Nelson, in behalf of the First Presidency, presented a check for $100,000 for relief in the aftermath of Armenia's devastating earthquake.

Dec. 19, 1988 - Temple Square received its 4 millionth visitor during 1988, reaching a new milestone and reflecting an increase of more than a million visitors over the previous year.

1989

Jan. 20, 1989 - President Ezra Taft Benson and President Thomas S. Monson attended the inauguration ceremony of U.S. President George Bush. The Tabernacle Choir also performed at inaugural activities.

Feb. 21, 1989 - On behalf of the First Presidency, Elder Russell M. Nelson of the Council of the Twelve presented to the Chinese ambassador to the United States a check for $25,000 to help in reconstruction efforts after a major earthquake last November caused extensive damage in China.

April 1, 1989 - Creation of the Second Quorum of the Seventy was announced during general conference.

May 16, 1989 - The BYU Center for Near Eastern Studies in Jerusalem was dedicated.

May 24, 1989 - Two missionaries serving in the Bolivia La Paz Mission, Elders Jeffrey Brent Ball and Elder Todd Ray Wilson, were assassinated by terrorists.

June 15, 1989 - Ground was broken for the first LDS meetinghouse ever to be constructed in Poland.

June 25, 1989 - With the creation of the Tecalco Mexico Stake, Mexico became the first nation outside the U.S. to reach the epoch milestone of 100 stakes.

June 27, 1989 - President Gordon B. Hinckley dedicated the newly renovated $1 million Carthage Jail complex in Nauvoo.

June 1989 - The stake record extraction program processed its 100 millionth name early this month.

Aug. 1, 1989 - The kingdom of Jordan approved an LDS center for cultural and educational affairs.

Aug. 8, 1989 - The church agreed to assist the government of the Armenian Republic in the USSR in building housing for homeless victims of the December 1988 Armenian earthquake.

Aug. 19, 1989 - The Portland Oregon Temple was dedicated.

Sept. 18-23, 1989 - Hurricane Hugo sliced a destructive path through the Caribbean islands and eastern U.S. coastline, leaving hundreds of Church members homeless.

Oct. 17, 1989 - A massive earthquake struck the San Francisco, Calif. area, killing three Church members and causing extensive damage to the property ot hundreds of others.

Oct. 27, 1989 - Rex E. Lee, former U.S. Solicitor General, was inaugurated as BYU's 10th president.

Oct. 17, 1989 - The first LDS meetinghouse in Hungary was dedicated by President Thomas S. Monson.

Nov. .10, 1989 - Steven D. Bennion was inaugurated as Ricks College's 13th president.

Nov. 19, 1989 - In a letter read to wards, the First Presidency announced that Church members would no longer have stake and ward budget assessments.

Dec. 2, 1989 - Church membership reached 7 million, it was announced.

Dec. 16, 1989 - The Las Vegas Nevada Temple was dedicated.