As social media's ability to reach individuals around the world through interactive mediums has increased, sites such as Twitter, Facebook and YouTube have become increasing useful in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints' efforts to share the gospel.
The LDS Church joined one of the most popular social media sites, Facebook, in May 2008. The church's first Facebook page, www.facebook.com/LDS, now has more than 670,000 fans, and additional pages have since been created.
The following is a list of 21 of church's official Facebook pages, created from information available on LDS.org.
Information about other ways to connect with the church via social media is also available on LDS.org.
This Facebook page provides basic information about the LDS Church.
Here, users can find a timeline about church history and posts related to missionary work, family activities and encouraging videos.
A recent post featured a picture of an LDS temple with the words "Like if you love to see the temple" written on the graphic. The post received close to 40,000 likes and more than 850 shares, as well as comments such as "I am not LDS but I love the temples and try to find them traveling! I did get into the Mt. Timpanogos near Salt Lake before it was blessed — incredible!!"
This Facebook page connects social media users with one of the LDS Church's official websites, Mormon.org.
Here, visitors can learn more about what it means to be a Latter-day Saint. The page includes information about the Book of Mormon and other LDS beliefs.
Recently, this page featured a link to a video called "Lessons I Learned as a Boy," a story told by President Gordon B. Hinckley. With more than 2,000 likes and 600 shares, fans have made comments such as this on that post: "I shed tears at the kindness of the boys ... and at thoughts of missed opportunities for kindness I have been too busy to recognize."
The Mormon Newsroom page releases official news and updates about the church.
Articles published on the Newsroom website are posted here. A recent post discusses temples and features a picture of the Las Vegas Nevada Temple.
Mormon Messages are videos produced by the church, which often feature a prophet or apostle telling meaningful stories meant to strengthen faith.
This Facebook page shares those videos with the world, the most recent being "Earthly Father, Heavenly Father." This Mormon Message highlights a father's role in caring for his family and makes the connection between the love an earthly father has for his children and the love Heavenly Father has for us.
The Mormon Channel is the media channel for the LDS Church.
The Facebook page posts church-related videos, including Mormon Messages, as well as interviews with prominent figures in the church.
A quote by Elder Jeffrey R. Holland was recently posted. It says, "God doesn't care nearly as much about where you have been as he does about where you are."
This post was shared more than 3,000 times, and positive comments were written such as this: "I was recently re-baptized after a long time of silliness. I confirm this statement! How amazing the love of our Heavenly Father!"
The Ensign Magazine has been a publication of the LDS Church since 1971.
On this Facebook page, users can find articles from the monthly publication. This page has more than 194,000 likes.
The New Era is the church's monthly magazine printed for youths.
Its Facebook page has more than 18,000 likes, and it promotes the New Era articles.
An article was recently published for the February 2013 issue about fighting video game addiction. The article provided hope for a mother who commented, "I look forward to reading this to my kids tonight for FHE! I have 3 little boys that think video games are their lives."
The Friend is a monthly church publication targeted toward children.
A recent post on this Facebook page invites fans to meet David, one of the 1 million Primary children around the world. The post shares a link to an interactive map featuring videos of other Primary children as well.
This Facebook page has more than 14,000 likes.
The Liahona is the LDS Church's international publication that provides uplifting messages for church members of all ages.
Many of the posts on this Facebook page are shared in multiple languages. The page has more than 27,000 likes.
Located in Salt Lake City, the Church History Museum showcases galleries and exhibits that teach visitors about the origins of the faith.
Current exhibits, interviews with artists and lecture notices are posted to this Facebook page.
Comments on this page include the following: "This is one of my favorite places to visit while I am in Salt Lake!" and "It is beautiful, there are no words."
The Church History Library offers access to records and images of people, places and events in church history.
The Facebook page for the library shares ideas about how to preserve family history, information about events at the library and historical stories about missionaries.
Drawing on the efforts of hundreds of thousands of volunteers, FamilySearch Indexing is an effort to provide genealogical records online.
The Facebook page has more than 49,000 likes. Posts to this page provide updates about the project and allow indexers to connect with each other.
The Seminary Facebook page provides articles, videos and inspirational quotes for high school students participating in the religious education program.
With more than 73,000 likes, this page encourages youths to press forward in faith. It also provides access to scripture mastery cards.
The purpose of LDS Institutes, according to this Facebook page, is to "help young adults understand and rely on the teachings and Atonement of Jesus Christ, qualify for the blessings of the temple, and prepare themselves, their families, and others for eternal life with their Father in Heaven."
The Facebook page provides links to CES firesides, Mormon Messages videos and other inspirational content written for young adults of the church.
The Family History Library Facebook page has more than 11,000 likes and provides users with FamilySearch tips and links to helpful blog posts and articles.
This Facebook page is dedicated to FamilySearch International, the largest genealogy organization in the world.
Posts to this page include tips and advice, as well as requests for fans to share their experiences with family history.
"The Joseph Smith Papers Project is an effort to publish complete and accurate transcripts of all existant Joseph Smith documents," according to the official Facebook page.
This Facebook page shares updates on the project and links to articles on josephsmithpapers.org.
There are several LDS mobile applications for smart phones including Mormon Channel, LDS tools and LDS Gospel Library.
This Facebook page promotes these apps, which provide resources for lessons, family home evenings and personal study. This page has nearly 5,000 likes.
The Mormon Tabernacle Choir was founded in August 1847 and has been recording longer than any other group in the United States.
The Facebook fan page has more than 250,000 likes and provides links to videos as well as concert information.
"The Perpetual Education Fund (PEF) has been established to provide worthy young adults of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints with the support and resources necessary to improve their lives through education and better employment to better serve their family, the church, and their community," according to this Facebook page.
Posts to the page include quotes from general authorities and links to success stories.