News Story

Public Affairs Training Improves Understanding of

Directors of public affairs, stake presidents and stake Relief Society presidents for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints from across the province of British Columbia recently gathered in Langley to receive public affairs training. The participants specifically received training in how to engage best in community service.

They learned how to use the Church’s volunteer service website to identify service opportunities in their communities. is a free web service created by the Church to help link community needs with volunteers. Organizations may post their needs, and volunteers may search for places to serve in their communities, providing opportunities to assist those in need and improve the quality of life in their communities. recently featured service opportunities at the Salvation Army’s Gateway of Hope in Langley. The Gateway of Hope is a ministry of the Salvation Army in Canada. It follows the admonition of Christ to care for the poor and needy by helping the homeless and those at risk by providing material assistance and other crucial support.

The participants from the public affairs training visited the Gateway of Hope shelter. Dan Donkers, the shelter’s volunteer co-ordinator, took them on a tour of the facility and invited them to participate in a cleanup of the grounds surrounding the facility. Donkers expressed gratitude to the group for their interest in the Salvation Army’s efforts and for their help in the cleanup.

Michael Towns, a member of the stake presidency of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Surrey, British Columbia, was present and has worked closely with the Gateway of Hope in the past. He commented, “The Salvation Army provides a much-needed service in Langley. We are grateful to them for their Christlike example of service to others.”

In like manner, Emily Albertson, one of the directors of public affairs for the Church in Prince George, said, “The Salvation Army has been a great friend to the community in Prince George.”

Elder Michael R. Murray, North America Northwest Area Seventy for the Church states, “Service to our fellow beings is a key principle of our faith, and JustServe is a tool that can help Church members and the community at large to bless the lives of others through Christlike service. We encourage people everywhere to look outward and to seek to lift the burdens of others. Those who do so will find promised blessings in their own lives.”

Giving service in the community is a foundational principle of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, rooted in the Book of Mormon scripture: “When ye are in the service of your fellow beings ye are only in the service of your God” (Mosiah 2:17). provides excellent opportunities to help all citizens to be more engaged in community service.

Style Guide Note:When reporting about The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, please use the complete name of the Church in the first reference. For more information on the use of the name of the Church, go to our online Style Guide.