News Release

Pioneers at Carnegie College

Julie Oakley and Iain Liston, two members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Dunfermline, were recently invited to speak to a class of H.N.D. students at Carnegie College on the subject of the pioneer trek. The Higher National Diploma Social Sciences course at the college covers the History of the United States of America from 1600-1865. A key aspect of this time period is the western expansion, including the "Mormon Trek".
Julie and Iain had been asked to describe the testimony and motivation for the trek, the trials that accompanied the exodus and the final resting place beyond the rocky mountains. Julie spoke about the early Church, leading up to the departure from Nauvoo, and including the first vision of Joseph Smith and the persecution of the saints in Kirtland, Independence and Nauvoo. Iain spoke about the actual trek from Nauvoo, focussing particularly on the handcart companies. The class received the information graciously and asked lots of relevant questions.
Of the experience, Iain said, "Studying the stories of the early pioneers for a non-church audience allowed me to look at experiences and motivations in an entirely new light. The class were thoughtful as they tried to imagine themselves in the same situation."
Mary M. Wallace, Curriculum Leader for Social Sciences at the college, said of Iain and Julie's presentation, "They were able to bring a unique insight into the foundation of the Church and explain the trials and tribulations of the early settlers from religious and historical perspectives. Iain and Julie had thoroughly researched their presentation and their very human and personal touch brought to life a topic that otherwise could have been quite dry and dangerously littered with misconceptions."

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