Homeward Bound: Interpretations of Marta Keen Thompson’s Music

homeward bound

Cover of album “Homeward Bound” by Deutsche Grammophon

This past Sunday afternoon I came across a piece of music that moved me to tears.  I don’t get emotional often, so I was struck by the overwhelming power this song has, which I believe is the result of an exquisitely crafted resonance of lyric, melody, arrangement, and vocal talent combined in perfect harmony.  It’s one of those songs that seems to reach down into the deepest parts of my experience and speak to me on a level usually untapped.  I immediately took a closer look at the song, trying to unpack its meaning, and why it moves me so.  I hope to share some of the beauty that I found.

The song’s title is “Homeward Bound.”  No, not that one, by Simon & Garfunkel.  While a good song, it’s not that kind of song.  Rather, the song I heard is by the composer Marta Keen Thompson, who currently lives in Las Vegas.  She wrote the lyrics and music to this song, and this seems to be her most well-known composition.  Marta wrote some about her song, and who has performed it, on a Facebook page dedicated to the song: Read More »

Upcoming Sperry Symposium Focuses on the Temple


Click to see the flyer with schedule

The 42nd Annual Sidney B. Sperry Symposium this year will be focused on the topic of the temple, specifically “Ascending the Mountain of the Lord: Temple, Praise, and Worship in the Old Testament.”  It will be held on Saturday, October 26, 2013, in the Joseph Smith Building (JSB) auditorium and adjacent buildings at BYU in Provo, Utah.  Admission is free, and no registration required.  It is open to the general public.

Below is a comprehensive list of all the scholars presenting and their topics.  It is a smorgasbord of fantastic scholarship that will be presented on the temple.  There will be seven concurrent sessions going on, so you’ll need to pick and choose very carefully which presentations to attend.  Fortunately, many of the papers will be published. Read More »

Schedule and Abstracts Posted for “The Lady of the Temple” Conference

The Academy for Temple Studies has posted a detailed schedule, including abstracts of the presentations, for the upcoming “The Lady of the Temple” Conference which will take place in Logan, Utah, on October 23, 2013. Click here to see the schedule and abstracts.

Don’t forget to register for the conference, as seating will be limited.

Video: An Introduction to the LDS Mormon Temple

Several new videos have just been published by the Church, including this one about the temple:

“Mormonism and the Temple” 2012 Conference Proceedings now available in PDF

proceedings book

PDF of proceedings book

The temple conference that was held in Logan, Utah, on October 29, 2012, entitled Mormonism and the Temple: Examining an Ancient Religious Tradition has had its proceedings published in book form. This book has been available to conference attendees, and for ordering for several months.  The proceedings are now also available for free in PDF format for download.  Click here to download the proceedings book.

This book includes presentations from the following:

  • Gary N. Anderson, Philip L. Barlow, and John W. Welch, “About This Publication”
  • Philip L. Barlow, “Welcome and Opening Comments by Presenters”
  • Margaret Barker, “Restoring Solomon’s Temple”
  • Laurence Paul Hemming, “Chapel, Church, Temple, Cathedral: Lost Parallels in Mormon and Catholic Worship”
  • Margaret Barker and Laurence Hemming, “Questions and Answers”
  • John F. Hall, “Ancient Mediterranean Temple Ceremonies: Vestiges of the Rites of Enoch and Precursors to the Hebrew Temple Ceremonial”
  • John W. Welch, “The Temple, the Sermon on the Mount, and the Gospel of Matthew”
  • Daniel C. Peterson, “A Divine Mother in the Book of Mormon?”
  • Danel W. Bachman, “A Temple Studies Bibliography”
  • LeGrande Davies, “Temples–Bridges of Eternity”
  • John L. Fowles, “The Temple, the Book of Revelation, and Joseph Smith”
  • John W. Welch and Presenters, “Closing Comments”

Videos of the presentations are also available online.

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