Home on the Range: Mormon Church is finding new ways to preserve wetlands and wildlife

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  • Herbert Gravy Salinas, CA
    July 3, 2017 2:34 p.m.

    @Irony Guy

    The LDS Church has done much more than merely "joined" the environmentalists. As pointed out in the article, it has been a leader in such efforts for many, many years.

    In other words, to borrow from a great country song, the Church was "environmental when environmental wasn't cool".


  • Flashback Kearns, UT
    Oct. 19, 2015 10:35 a.m.

    The Church as a vested interest in the environment of the property. They are being good stewards and their concern isn't for environmentalism for the sake of environmentalism.

    The fact that they take care of the environment is to make the bottom line better. It only makes sense to do that. You allow the environment to degrade, then profits go down. That way they have less to spend in humanitarian efforts and church Welfare efforts.

    It make sense in the big picture scheme of things.

  • floridadan Palm Bay, Fl
    Aug. 5, 2011 7:23 a.m.

    Most people do not know that Florida is only number 2 in cattle production behind Texas. There were cattle and cowboys in Florida before there were in the west. Deseret Ranches of Florida is a buffer between the sprawling Orlando area the the spacecoast. Before Disney, it was the largest property tax payer in central Florida. They were " enviromentalist" before it was fashionable.
    The answer to taxman is that if the church owned property was doing ANYTHING not proper that the anti-mormons would be shouting it from the mountain tops, and no there was not a place to put "purchase land" on tithing slips, but we trust that the church leaders will spend the money wisely. The federal government can learn a lesson from us.

  • county mom Monroe, UT
    Aug. 2, 2011 10:34 p.m.

    All the enviromentally friendly talk is just that. Acctually one volcano explosion is greater then every bit of pollution mankind has ever produced. We are so insignificant in the vastness and perplexities of this planet, we have so little control. To believe that we can change the entire world with a little bit of smoke is like believing that we can stop the planet in it's orbit, or prevent a collision with a meteor or comet. It is in theory possible but immprobable we don't have the ability to do it. We can keep our own yard clean and use our own rescources wisely, take care of your things and encourage your neighbors to do likewise.
    We could all die off. Then who really cares?
    I am having a hard time with some of the statements made here; some are poking at the church for having for profit businesses, some for enviromentism, some for not feeding all the hungry. My question is what does it have to do with your own personal eternal salvation?

  • jmort SLO, CA
    July 26, 2011 11:09 p.m.

    Jared said,"Besides, it's not always better to stave off hunger when you could help more people by first buying more cows."

    The Associated Press and Time Magazine in 1997 (14 years ago) reported the for-profit division of the Church had a minimum of $30 billion in assets and annual gross income of $6 billion, more than Utah's annual state budget. If the Mormon Church were a corporation, that yearly revenue would place it midway through the Fortune 500, a little below Union Carbide and the Paine Webber Group, but bigger than Nike and the Gap. I don't know if the numbers were correct, but they were probably directionally correct. And now, 14 years later, they would have at least doubled.

    So Jared, how many cows are needed before we teach those hungry Africans to fish?

    In 2009, U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon estimated that more than 1 billion people were hungry, and six million children were dying of hunger every year -- 17,000 every day.

  • jmort SLO, CA
    July 26, 2011 10:24 p.m.

    @mtgrantlass - Really? You'd rather see Satanists or Scientologists, or the FLDS own the land in Utah and Nevada that the Federal Government (which, of course, is all of us) currently owns?

  • jmort SLO, CA
    July 26, 2011 8:00 p.m.

    So far we've learned and been told by posters that the Church owns 469 square miles of Florida, is the biggest land owner in Oklahoma, and operates a huge farming operation in California. We also know from the Time Magazine article several years ago that if the profit-making part of the Church was a public corporation it would be a large Fortune 500 company.

    We've learned the Church sends cattle to feedlots out West (which, by the way, are considered to be inhumane by many people).

    We've learned that (despite speculation) nobody knows how much the Church earns or how it it used, because the information is secret. Some people think that is perfectly kosher, some do not.

    But most interesting to me, is how some see questions themselves as negative, threatening, or finding fault, and view the world as an "us/them" proposition.

    What is wrong with openess and disclosure? What are people paranoid about?

  • mtgrantlass Camden Wyoming, DE
    July 26, 2011 7:24 p.m.

    i'd rather see a church owning property in the U.S. than the government grabbing it up and placing restrictions on it. ever seen that map of how much the Fed owns of Utah, Nevada?

  • Maryquilter Farmington, UT
    July 26, 2011 2:53 p.m.

    Thanks Wally B and Floyd Johnson for your further explanations and comments. Some of the comments made regarding this article and similar issues make me think of the saying, " No good deed goes unpunished". Seems like no matter what the LDS church does to help others, they are somehow criticized and scorned. It is so much easier in life to complain and find fault than get up and help others out and find positiveness in the world around you. I try to choose the latter.

  • wallyb Cottonwood Heights, UT
    July 26, 2011 12:58 p.m.

    Thanks MaryQuilter. Finally a reasonable comment. There is obviously a great deal of misunderstanding about the church's program of "caring for the poor and the needy." There are essentially two ways that goal is accomplished. The most familiar and visible program is the traditional Welfare System,largely funded by Fast Offerings, and accomplished by the huge network of Welfare farms,canneries, pasta factories, grain, fruit and vegetable farms,Bishop's storehouses, etc. This is to provide welfare products to members of the LDS Church.
    The lesser known but huge method by which the Church provides Humanitarian care for those who are not members is largely funded by the ForProfit businesses owned by the Church. Most of the recipients of these services are not even aware of the source. We know about the goods sent to Haiti, Japan, the SE Asia tsunami, volcanoes in Indonesia, etc, but do not realize the source, (taxable) of those funds.
    Rather than criticizing, one should visit the Humanitarian Service Center on west 17th South in Salt Lake City, or the Deseret Ranch in Florida, or any of the other For Profit ventures and realize the huge good they are providing throughout the world.

  • Floyd Johnson Broken Arrow, OK
    July 26, 2011 12:28 p.m.

    Abbe: The LDS Church has a combination of "profit" and "welfare" farms. The welfare farms use volunteer labor (removing weeds and such) and the harvest is used to help the needy. The profit farms are self-sustaining and income is used to grow for profit industiries.

    Where did the money come from to start the first for profit industry? Many started a very long time ago when the LDS church had a different economic policy. The policy today is that a distinct separation exists between profit and non-profit arms of the church. Remember that many properties were acquired at no cost. When the Church left the United States and moved to the Salt Lake valley they settled and assumed ownership of any property they wanted. Many of those properties have generated profits for 100 years.

    The LDS church operates a profit ranch in Oklahoma. That ranch makes the LDS church the largest land owner in the state.

    Those suggesting the Church should divest commercial assets to meet immediate needs are short sighted. These interestes will continue to grow over the next 100 years. They will be a stabilizing force in many communities for generations.

    July 26, 2011 12:17 p.m.

    This article reads like it was printed word for word from a press release issued by Deseret Ranches PR firm. I would assume, in that case, that they are in need of good publicity for some reason -- be it proposed changes in laws in the municipalities in which they operate, or perhaps even the need for private equity. It could be that the church is planning to sell off the property.

    With regards to cattle ranching being environmentally friendly -- there is no possible way. I LOVE to eat beef, but I have to face the facts: cattle ranching is an INCREDIBLY carbon-intense practice and global warming is not a hysteria, its a reality and that will have unknown effects on our weather patterns and water supplies which in turn will have unknown effects on farming, ranching, and industry.

    I just think it is prudent to clear our heads and take stock of what kind of impact we're making on the earth, before we shoot ourselves in the feet, instead of sticking our heads in the sand and pretending everything is okay, as this article seems to assume.

  • Kami Bountiful, Utah
    July 26, 2011 10:41 a.m.

    Isn't preserving wetlands required by law?

  • Maryquilter Farmington, UT
    July 26, 2011 9:24 a.m.

    People seem to be worried about what the LDS church does with it's for-profit businesses. One of the wonderful things the LDS church does is run a huge humanitarian complex which takes donations of clothing, medical equipment, books, etc. and cleans and organizes them then donates many millions of dollars worth of items to countries all over the world after tragedies. They create a specialized food formula to help those who are starving and donate medicines to help people who are in need to fight diseases that can kill them. They send doctors around the world to teach other doctors how to resuscitate newborns, etc. At the Humanitarian Center they teach free English classes to workers there and then help them find regular jobs out in the work place. Much of this type of work is done behind the scenes to aid governments around the world, regardless of the religious affiliations of the recipients. They organize people to make up newborn kits to donate to new mothers in 3rd-world countries. I wish people outside the LDS church could stop worrying about what our church does with out money.

  • Jared Northern, FL
    July 26, 2011 8:13 a.m.

    Deseret Ranches also "accepts no government subsidies or taxpayer supported price supports." It is a self-sustaining business enterprise.

    Re: The Taxman: "I think what Abbe may be tryng to get at here is that when the 33K calves grow up and are sold, somebody has to decide whether to perhaps use the money to stave off hunger in Africa or buy more cows. I'm sensing Abbe prefers options like staving off hunger to buying more cows."

    The Church does much good in Africa. Besides, it's not always better to stave off hunger when you could help more people by first buying more cows. Look at it this way. Say I have $1000. I can buy someone food and they'll be full for a half year but I'll no longer have $1,000 and then the person will go hungry again. Or, I can take that $1000, invest it or start a business and grow it to $10,000 as a start. All the while I can take some of the profits and help others. Soon, that $1000 will be millions of dollars (that's business).

    Also, being for-profit, more taxes are paid than as a non-profit.

  • The Taxman Los Angeles, CA
    July 25, 2011 9:05 p.m.

    The fact is, all of us are speaking toally out of school because none of us knows how much the Church makes or what it is used for. You can choose to have faith and believe the cash isn't plowed into other money-making ventures, but we do not know.
    I think what Abbe may be tryng to get at here is that when the 33K calves grow up and are sold, somebody has to decide whether to perhaps use the money to stave off hunger in Africa or buy more cows. I'm sensing Abbe prefers options like staving off hunger to buying more cows.

  • UtahBlueDevil Durham, NC
    July 25, 2011 8:59 p.m.

    Taxman, the church has been in "business" for well over a hundred years. It provided labor and services to the Union Pacific Railroad, and in turn was a share holder and held a seat on the board. Likewise with U&I Sugar... my grandfather when he held a position of leadership sat on these boards representing the churches interest. Then were and are many church owned for profit business, in Banking, Insurance and land holdings. This is nothing new, it has been this way for generations.

    I am glad the church is setting the example of what a stewardship led business should be like. Nice to see.

  • joe5 South Jordan, UT
    July 25, 2011 4:04 p.m.

    I don't think people realize the good that is done by the Church BECAUSE OF their for-profit businesses instead of DESPITE them.

    Have any of you wondered why the recent recession didn't hit Utah harder? If you were one of those who lost your job, of course, it hit you very hard and in a very personal way. But as a state, Utah came through it fairly easily. Other than falling property values, we hardly noticed.

    One major reason was that the City Creek development downtown (by the LDS church development businesses) hired tons of people just as people were starting to lose jobs. Imagine how deep the recession would have hit if there was no City Creek development.

    Abbe Faria: I submit to you that much good is done by the for-profit arm of the church. If they had divested that business entity and given the money away, our community would be the poorer for it.

  • coltakashi Richland, WA
    July 25, 2011 2:45 p.m.

    To Abbe Faria: There is nothing immoral or illegal about earning a "profit" after expenses. The individual members of the LDS Church earn their livings by using their assets, whether skills or capital, and then donate a portion of the residue, after paying their obligations including taxes, to the Church. If the Deseret Ranches were owned by a Mormon family, or by a corporation whose stock was owned solely by Mormons, the profits would belong to them, and they could donate a portion of them to the Church. All of those donations come from normal economic activity, and is not tainted by that fact.

    In this case, the Church itself owns the business, the business pays its employees, pays its suppliers, pays its taxes, and then donates all of its "profit" to the Church. That is not immoral or illegal. The donations the Church receives are used to pursue the legitimate purposes of the Church, including building meetinghouses and paying for their utilities. It is no different than if the Church just put its funds into a bank account and received interest from the bank.

  • Abbe Faria Draper, UT
    July 25, 2011 1:58 p.m.

    To carman:

    I would wholeheartedly agree with you, if I could believe that is what the money is being used for. I think non-profit enterprises that are designed to create perpetuating relief is a wonderful idea and would encourage it. I am not certain that the for-profit businesses are used PRIMARILY to help others. I would rather see them develop farms and businesses that are used for the sole purpose of helping others. Right now it appears that many of the businesses the church owns are used to create revenue. It looks like that will not always be the case in the future though, as they sold many of their radio stations for $500 million which I was happy to see. I am just saying I would like to see them get rid of the businesses that are for creating revenue.

  • carman Wasatch Front, UT
    July 25, 2011 11:54 a.m.

    To Abbe Faria:

    The best way to help in the long-run is to invest for the long-run and increase the asset base and residual income. In this case, there is the added benefit of the farms producing a life-necesity (food), which makes the church more self-sufficient and less reliant on others for key life needs such as food.

    The church is being a wise steward. Thank heaven they are not the typically short-sighted crowd that want to spend everything today rather than invest for the present and for the future.

  • Abbe Faria Draper, UT
    July 25, 2011 11:28 a.m.

    I am very impressed with the environmental preserve that the church is doing in Florida. That being said, It kind of bothers me that the church owns a bunch of for profit businesses. What's the point? If it was to help the needy, then wouldn't it be non-profit? I am glad to know that they seem to be trying to get rid of them and own a lot fewer businesses than they used to. Sell them all and use the money for good.

  • Cindy,RN Lucama, NC
    July 25, 2011 6:44 a.m.

    I'm glad the Church is practicing stewardship and actually being productive with the natural resources given to us to use by Heavenly Father. The EPA should look and learn instead of continually strangling this nation with it's regressive and oppressive regulations.

  • A voice of Reason Salt Lake City, UT
    July 24, 2011 8:35 p.m.

    Rafter17, well I'm glad it at least made sense in the end. Sometimes I get to rushed in typing and forget that it has to make sense to someone reading it.



    "While some who call themselves "environmentalists" think that the optimum state of nature is land simply abandoned to the random action of nature, we should not forget that the mechanism of "natural selection" is competition for scarce resources and death. If we want to preserve species, we must actively manage habitat and ensure water is sufficient, and no wild species like coyotes is allowed to dominate."

    I couldn't agree more!

  • LKA Tremonton, UT
    July 24, 2011 8:32 p.m.

    It does not matter what the article we always have a few sour-grapes out there..

  • Rafter17 OAKLEY, ID
    July 24, 2011 6:47 p.m.

    To A Voice of Reason, again:

    Your point is well made and well taken.

  • The Taxman Los Angeles, CA
    July 24, 2011 6:18 p.m.

    I'm sensing defensiveness, but clearly nobody knows the answers to my questions. Isn't "reporting back" a major tenant of stewardship?

    I know the Church owns and leases a lot of land in the San Joaquin Valley in California and grosses hundreds of millions (if not billions) of dollars each year from its California agricultural businesses.

    I don't know much about mid-West operations though.

    By the way, I know the Church's profit-making businesses pay tax. I am not disputing that. People seem to be reading a lot into my questions. Very interesting.

  • Hank Pym SLC, UT
    July 24, 2011 5:55 p.m.

    @ Irony Guy | 9:58 a.m. July 24, 2011 & The Taxman | 5:31 p.m. July 24, 2011

    Isn't it funny? Had this been the Sierra Club, Al Gore, etc... can you imagine the complaining about "liberal activism"?

    But, the church does this & there is nothing but praise. Its a bit two-faced and hypocritical IMO.

  • nanniehu Wendover, UT
    July 24, 2011 5:46 p.m.

    @The Taxman - I know from personal experience that there are/were a number of church owned farms designed to help provide food for the needy. As a member of the church I know that if I come to a point where I need assistance, I can get food, or help with other necessities. Often folks are asked to work perhaps in a cannery the church owns or clean a chapel, as trade for goods they receive. It depends on the situation. I've worked voluntarily sorting goods that come into our Deseret Industries stores when I was not in need, but to help the church get the goods out for folks who do need them. The beauty of the system is to help those in need and get them off the dole as quickly as possible.
    As for where the money came from to start the first for profit entity the church owns, what does that matter? If a church owned property isn't self sustaining it would be a drain on the system. If the money is used to build the church and enable it to spread the gospel and help others, isn't that a worthy venture?

  • coltakashi Richland, WA
    July 24, 2011 5:44 p.m.

    My guess is that Kim B. Clark, current president of BYU Idaho and former Dean of the Harvard Business School, is very familiar with Deseret Ranches as a business model, as are other present and former LDS members of that faculty.

    Deseret Ranches is a wonderful example of how ownership by a non-profit entity of a land-based business like this can have a long-term view that is interested in preserving ALL of the values of the land, including water, wildlife habitat, recreation, and food production. It can be compared to the Amish and Mennonite views on preserving the productivity of land as a stewardship for which the farmers are accountable to God, and as a matrix within which their communities can be sustained as well.

    While some who call themselves "environmentalists" think that the optimum state of nature is land simply abandoned to the random action of nature, we should not forget that the mechanism of "natural selection" is competition for scarce resources and death. If we want to preserve species, we must actively manage habitat and ensure water is sufficient, and no wild species like coyotes is allowed to dominate.

  • coltakashi Richland, WA
    July 24, 2011 5:34 p.m.

    Mr Taxman: After decades of persecution from the Federal government, the LDS Church had few assets. Over the past century, it has wisely invested its residue above annual operating costs in order to safeguard it and provide long term income to the Church's many charitable and educational activities, including supporting the BYU campuses at levels that keep tuition affordable.

    The article was very clear that Deseret Ranches, despite its ownership by the Church, is itself a for-profit business that pays property and income taxes, as well as employing many people, at a time when Florida has one of the highest unemployment rates in the nation. Income at the Ranches is invested in maintaining the natural resources of the land, including water, species habitat, and grazing forage. Only after that is income received by the Church. Everyone benefits from this arrangement. And remember, no Church leader personally profits from any of this.

    Deseret Ranches is a living example of the principles taught in the Parable of the Talents (Matthew 25). The Church is investing the Lord's talent and increasing its value, a wise stewardship of God's creation that blesses everyone.

  • The Taxman Los Angeles, CA
    July 24, 2011 5:31 p.m.

    Cats said, "The Church has ALWAYS been a wise steward of whatever it has stewardship over."

    May I respectfully ask you how you know what you're saying is correct? In other
    words, are you repeating what you were told, expressing your opinion (passed off as fact), or do you have access to real knowledge about which you speak?

    How do you know the businesses owned by the Church make money? How do you know that they aren't strip mining, toxic waste-dumping, and polluting the water (in places other than Florida)?

    If you can answer this, then maybe you can also help with the two questions I asked above.

    Thank you.

  • lcg Bluffdale, UT
    July 24, 2011 5:25 p.m.

    The Taxman - probably donated by the LDS Church - and taxes were paid as it because it became a for profit business. Why does it matter to you or are you trying to find the church at fault here? I assure you - as the church as a league of lawyers keeping its workings within the law - whatever they did was perfectly legal and above board. If not the IRS would be all over it!

  • Cats Somewhere in Time, UT
    July 24, 2011 3:22 p.m.

    The Church has ALWAYS been a wise steward of whatever it has stewardship over. It's not really an "environmentalist" thing and has very little to do with the current hysteria about being "green." The Church has always execised good management for the good of the Children of God.

    This is a private operation and the decisions are made privately. You see, individuals and organizations CAN make wise decisions. Wouldn't it be nice if the government would allow everyone to work that way. Conservatives are in favor of wise stewardship and responsible management of resources. It's when left-wing, climate-change hysteria takes over that conservatives object.

  • BirdmanKen Fishers, IN
    July 24, 2011 3:18 p.m.

    Florida definitely does not seem like a traditional environment for cattle ranching, but clearly that doesn't matter, since so many big ranches exist there.

  • A voice of Reason Salt Lake City, UT
    July 24, 2011 1:58 p.m.

    I made two points, and they weren't really all that hard to follow. I might not have worded either as well as I could have... but the points weren't hard to understand.

    1) In reply to another comment, not all Church owned businesses merit news- so there are reasons we don't see this kind of article in the news very often.

    2) That any person in Church leadership probably doesn't know of every last business the Church owns. I don't know how many, but say it was 1000 businesses- I wouldn't expect anyone to know about all of them, details, etc. - Also, that the Church might not want a lot of attention to certain businesses as people often find whatever way to judge the church they can... and if some potato farm did something wrong (or any other business) that it might be used to reflect on how the Church does it's dealings, etc.

    Hopefully I made a bit more sense here... if not, oh well.

  • The Taxman Los Angeles, CA
    July 24, 2011 12:51 p.m.

    This story raises many questions, but I'll start with two simple ones. I hope people don't take these questions the wrong way. I am not trying to tear-down, just understand.

    First, "LDS Inc.", owns 469 square miles of Florida. How many square miles in other states are owned and what goes on there?

    Second, We are told our forefathers fled across the plains with only the clothes on their backs. Yet, a century later, we were buying up much land across the country to conduct for-profit businesses. I don't recall seeing the "land/business investment" line on a tithing slip in the 1950's or at any other time. Where did the money come from to buy that first for-profit business?

  • TJ Eagle Mountain, UT
    July 24, 2011 10:52 a.m.

    codger; I did not find the adds distracting at all. Perhaps you could tape a piece of paper over the right 1/3rd of your monitor.

    voice or reason;
    Huh! I think there is a point your trying to make but as they say in vegas, "your trying to do it the hard way".

    I am extremely proud of the LDS church efforts like this. I am sure most members are aware of only a small percentage of the churches operations that benefit so many people. The wildlife angle is also very interesting.

  • B Logan, UT
    July 24, 2011 10:36 a.m.


    This interesting article isn't brought to you by someone's good graces. We all have to earn a living. Somebody has to pay for what you just enjoyed reading about. Hence, the ads.

    @A Voice of Reason

    No idea what your point was. Sorry.

  • BYU Papa Cedar Hills, ut
    July 24, 2011 10:28 a.m.

    I am so pleased to see Latter Day Saints interested in preserving the environment. I think that we need to do more here in Utah. We need a good program to recycle our waste. Our Landfills are too big and not enough encouragement to save plastics and metals for recycling. People will recycle if the process proves financially rewarding.

  • Rafter17 OAKLEY, ID
    July 24, 2011 10:16 a.m.

    To Voice of Reason:

    You can be sure that church leadership is well aware of Deseret Ranches and what goes on there. The church has massive agricultural operations in several states that are major players in their respective areas. Heaven help us if the church forgets the importance of agriculture.

  • nanniehu Wendover, UT
    July 24, 2011 10:13 a.m.

    I find this article incredibly interesting! So many communities who are failing due to the restrictive state laws regarding logging and so forth could use this as a model to change the way they do business, and have their cake and eat it too. Drive through small town America to see what is going on. Communities that once thrived are now fading away, or worse yet, turning into a place where wine is the main product, and tourism the only thing keeping them afloat. Amazing information in my personal opinion. Thank you Deseret News, for sharing this with us!

  • Irony Guy Bountiful, Utah
    July 24, 2011 9:58 a.m.

    Clearly, the LDS Church has joined the ranks of environmentally responsible institutions in caring for wildlife and wetlands. I wonder what those Mormons who are deep in mental Glenbeckistan think of this.

  • JRJ Pocatello, ID
    July 24, 2011 9:48 a.m.

    This was a fascinating, well-written article. AND I'd be willing to venture that Pres. Monson is well aware of the workings of the Ranch.

  • codger Southwest Utah, UT
    July 24, 2011 8:00 a.m.

    Great, interesting article. The photos would have been great, but the flashing commercial ads to the right of the pictures makes them almost impossible to enjoy.

  • FDRfan Sugar City, ID
    July 24, 2011 6:44 a.m.

    I wish this could be a case study for Stanford and Harvard business schools.

  • A voice of Reason Salt Lake City, UT
    July 24, 2011 2:55 a.m.

    The Church owns a lot of different branched-off businesses or 'ventures' or what-have-you... MANY of them may be very boring... who knows. Maybe we'll see more, maybe not.

    Who wants to read about a Catholic-owned 'paper-hole puncher- factory in Iowa?

    No such place exists that I know of (hopefully there is no such place either! lol) - but either way, I'm sure my point was made.

    One other concern, these businesses are probably not all run by Church leadership themselves... if at all. They probably aren't hardly... so they might want to not bring them up so that if someone finds an issue with a business they don't say "President Monson, how dare you let hole punchers be made this way!?" - When in reality, he may not even know of that business personally. - This is just what I see as a valid reason to not make it news, or least LDS-related news.

    Who knows...

  • Truthseeker SLO, CA
    July 24, 2011 12:14 a.m.

    This is the first article I've ever read about an LDS for profit business. Very interesting. I hope we hear about the other businesses too.

    July 23, 2011 11:48 p.m.

    As a native Floridian, I am particularly pleased with the job that Deseret Ranches is doing. It is a widely admired operation in this state.

    I am happy that the Church is committed to maintaining and furthering the mission of Deseret Ranches. The Church and the state of Florida will be better off for it.