From the day Lorenzo Snow stepped out of a carriage onto Italian soil in 1850 to the day that Thomas S. Monson turned a shovel of Italian soil to break ground for a temple in 2010, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has made evangelizing a high priority in Italy. Mormon missionary work unfolded against a backdrop of historical forces—political upheaval, world wars, social change, and internal Church dynamics—that presented both obstacles and opportunities for growth. Over the span of a century and a half, the Church managed to establish a small but significant presence in Italy.
This research offers a comprehensive account and thorough analysis of the people, events, and issues related to this important chapter in Italian and Church history.
This volume highlights the human drama associated with the encounters between foreign missionaries and local spiritual seekers and explores the implications of religious growth across obstacles of faith, geography, and culture.
|Published||Deseret Book and RSC BYU 2017|
The book is very well researched and beautifully illustrated. The authors weave archival content and personal stories into a compelling narrative history of the Latter-day Saints in Italy. Starting in 1850 when Lorenzo Snow steps onto Italian soil, the history of Mormon missionary work opens with accounts of converts from Waldensian mountain valleys who emigrate to Utah, becoming early contributors to the church in the United States. After emigration and challenges with other churches, a long period of general isolation ends when missionaries reenter in the 1960s, reigniting earlier efforts. The authors discuss the golden age of expansion from the 1970s to mid-1980s, leading to President Thomas S. Monson's 2010 groundbreaking for a temple in Rome. Two chapters discuss why Italian converts join, why some stay, and why others leave. This history is definitely worth your time!