SALT LAKE CITY — The LDS Church History Museum now features a Latin flavor in a series of exhibits looking at The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and its members in Latin America.
First to open Dec. 12 was "Mi Vida, Mi Historia: Stories of Faith and Inspiration From Latino Latter-day Saints," with the presented collection of oral histories and accompanying photographs to run through January 2012.
Other exhibits in the next two years will focus on the church's first century in Mexico — the LDS Church's starting point as it moved into Central and South America — and an art display directed toward children on Book of Mormon stories.
"Mi Vida, Mi Historia" — Spanish for "My Life, My History" — features two dozen Latino LDS Church members, nearly all current Utah residents who were born and raised in Latin America. As individuals and couples, they share accounts of how their personal experiences and trials have helped shape their lives and their collective faith — both in their native lands and now in Utah and the United States.
It's a multimedia, multi-format presentation. The featured individuals first are seen in large, documentary-style portraits taken by one of four professional photographers. Most of the portraits tie in elements shared by the individuals in their oral histories.
Panels below the portraits detail the individual and some brief biographical information, the photographer and two brief oral-history excerpts in both Spanish and English.
The oral histories were filmed as individual subjects related a story or experience first in English or in Spanish, and then recounted the same in similar fashion in the other language. As such, the English texts and audio portions are not exact, word-for-word translations from Spanish, but both language versions are directly from the individuals themselves.
Each individual or couple is featured in a half-dozen videos averaging about five minutes each, with the videos available as interactive audiovisual presentations at one of four kiosk stations. The touch-screen display monitors show scrapbook-like menu selections and accompanying personal photographs.
A small theater presents a 30-minute video showing brief highlights from a number of the individuals and some of their stories. The theater video can be in either Spanish or English.
Free to the public, the Church History Museum — 45 N. West Temple — is open 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. Mondays through Fridays and 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays.
e-mail: [email protected]