News Release

Johannesburg Holds Red Carpet Media Event to Introduce "LightTheWorld" Christmas Initiative

Africa Southeast Area

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints'  Missionary Department has sponsored online campaigns during the Christmas and Easter seasons for the past several years. 

Johannesburg, South Africa was the site of a recent Media/Interfaith Event to introduce the "Light the World" Christmas initiative, November 21, 2017.


Many countries were represented by journalists and guests.

Lydia Jele, an olympic athlete from Botswana was the keynote speaker. She was accompanied by her husband and trainer Ofentse Jele. Lydia is a track and field sprinter and also a Latter-day Saint.

Gianfranco Vizzini, a soloist, shared his musical talents.

Elder Joni L. Koch, Second Counselor in the Africa Southeast Area Presidency was interviewed by journalists Julius Sigei from Kenya and Violet Nabatanzi, Uganda. He explained the initiative and  answered questions.  

The “Light the World” Christmas initiative, now in its second year, focuses on celebrating and sharing the light of Jesus Christ, the “light of the world” (John 8:12). The Savior declared, “Ye are the light of the world” (Matthew 5:14).

"Building on last year’s #LIGHTtheWORLD Christmas initiative, this year’s effort continues the invitation to serve others as the Savior did," said Elder Brent H. Nielson of the Seventy, executive director of the Church's Missionary Department. 

“As we follow the example of the Savior and live as He lived and as He taught, that light will burn within us and will light the way for others,” said President Thomas S. Monson in a general conference address in October 2015.   

One asset of the initiative is  "25 Ways for 25 Days"  an advent calendar that uses scriptures to encourage service each day in December leading up to Christmas.

All the assets are now available at

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