Every Tuesday at 11:05 a.m., BYU students, faculty and staff walk to the Marriott Center or tune in to watch the weekly devotional or forum address. President Kevin J Worthen and his wife Peggy kick off the semester this fall. The following weeks' speakers include leaders of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, BYU employees and a range of industry leaders and thinkers.
Specific details on the delivery format for each devotional and forum is forthcoming.
FALL 2021 DEVOTIONAL AND FORUM SCHEDULE
- 7: President Kevin J Worthen and Sister Peggy S. Worthen (devotional)
- 14: Elder Dale G. Renlund, Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (devotional)
- 21: Elder Paul B. Pieper, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (devotional)
- 28: Martin Luther King III, lawyer and American human rights advocate (forum)
- 5: Homecoming Opening Ceremony
- 12: Bishop W. Christopher Waddell, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (devotional)
- 19: Sister Becky Craven, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (devotional)
- 26: Rev. Dr. Andrew Teal, chaplain and Oxford University lecturer (forum)
- 2: Julie Valentine, BYU College of Nursing (devotional)
- 9: Gilbert W. Fellingham, BYU Department of Statistics (devotional)
- 16: Elder W. Mark Bassett, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (devotional)
- 30: William Barber II, author, pastor and president of Repairers of the Breach (forum)
- 7: Elder Neil L. Andersen, Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (devotional)
ABOUT THE FALL 2021 DEVOTIONAL AND FORUM SPEAKERS:
BYU President Kevin J Worthen
September 7, 2021, Devotional
Kevin J Worthen began serving as the 13th president of Brigham Young University on May 1, 2014. He previously served as BYU's advancement vice president and as the dean of its J. Reuben Clark Law School, where he was the Hugh W. Colton Professor of Law. President and Sister Worthen have three children and six grandchildren.
President Worthen was born in Dragerton (now East Carbon-Sunnyside), Utah, and grew up in nearby Price. After serving a mission for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Monterrey, Mexico, he earned an associate degree from the College of Eastern Utah (now Utah State University Eastern). He then received his Bachelor of Arts in political science and his Juris Doctor from BYU. Following his graduation from the J. Reuben Clark Law School, President Worthen served as a law clerk to Judge Malcolm R. Wilkey of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit and Justice Byron R. White of the U.S. Supreme Court. After three years of private practice with the law firm Jennings, Strouss & Salmon in Phoenix, Arizona, President Worthen joined the BYU Law School faculty in 1987. In 1994, he was a Fulbright Scholar at the University of Chile Law School in Santiago. He has published extensively on a number of legal topics, with particular emphasis on federal American Indian law and the rights of indigenous peoples.
September 7, 2021, Devotional
Peggy Sealey Worthen, born and raised in Price, Utah, is the second oldest of five children. She is married to BYU President Kevin J Worthen. While she was attending the College of Eastern Utah, she met Kevin at a church dance, and the two soon began dating. Although she grew up three blocks from Kevin and his family, their three-year age difference meant they never went to high school at the same time or knew each other well. She and Kevin were married in the Provo Utah Temple.
Early in their marriage, Peggy worked in a number of jobs to support their family, including as a receptionist for U.S. Senator Jake Garn, as Kevin finished his education and started his career. She was able to return to school when Kevin began teaching, and she graduated with a bachelor’s degree in English from BYU in 2003, the same year their oldest son graduated from high school. She has taken a number of courses since then, including two years of Norwegian.
Elder Dale G. Renlund
September 14, 2021, Devotional
Elder Dale G. Renlund was named to the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles on October 3, 2015.
After receiving his Bachelor of Arts and Doctor of Medicine degrees from the University of Utah, Elder Renlund received further medical and research training at Johns Hopkins Hospital. He was a professor of medicine at the University of Utah and the medical director of the Utah Transplantation Affiliated Hospitals Cardiac Transplant Program.
Elder Renlund was born in Salt Lake City, Utah, in November 1952. He married Ruth Lybbert in 1977. They are the parents of one daughter.
Elder Paul B. Pieper
September 21, 2021, Devotional
Elder Paul B. Pieper was sustained as a General Authority Seventy of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints on April 2, 2005.
He was the president of the Russia St. Petersburg Mission from 2004 to 2005. Elder Pieper also served in the Europe East, Middle East, and Mexico Areas, as well as at Church headquarters in the Family History, Curriculum and Priesthood and Family Departments. He is currently serving as President of the North America Southwest Area.
Elder Pieper was trained as an attorney. He worked in Latin America, Asia and the former Soviet Union with law and management consulting firms during his professional career.
Martin Luther King III
September 28, 2021, Forum
Martin Luther King III is a lawyer and American human rights advocate. The oldest son and oldest living child of civil rights leaders Martin Luther King Jr. and Coretta Scott King, he served as the fourth president of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference from 1997 to 2004.
On April 4, 2008, the 40th anniversary of his father’s death, King and Al Sharpton led a march around Memphis, Tennessee. There, he visited the Lorraine Hotel for the first time since his father’s death and placed a wreath where his father stood before being shot. As he spoke to those who participated in the march, King called for them to continue his father’s fight and promoted the nonprofit organization Realizing the Dream, which seeks to eliminate poverty.
In 2005, he told Ebony magazine, “My father’s views were unequivocal, and I have found them to be invaluable to me as guidelines for prayerful consideration of current events and issues."
Bishop W. Christopher Waddell
October 12, 2021, Devotional
W. Christopher Waddell was called to serve as First Counselor in the Presiding Bishopric at the October 2020 general conference.
Prior to his call as First Counselor, he had served for five years as Second Counselor in the Presiding Bishopric (2015–20) and four years as a General Authority Seventy (2011–15). He also served as the president of the Barcelona Spain Mission.
Beginning in 1984 he worked with Merrill Lynch in several positions, including first vice president of investments. Bishop Waddell received a bachelor’s degree in 1984 from San Diego State University.
Sister Becky Craven
October 19, 2021, Devotional
Sister Becky Craven was sustained as the Second Counselor in the Young Women General Presidency of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints on March 31, 2018.
Over the past 15 years, Sister Craven and her family have traveled to villages in Kenya, Bolivia, Ecuador, Peru and Guatemala with CHOICE Humanitarian to help rural communities end poverty. She served as an executive board member for that humanitarian organization.
Sister Craven met her husband, Ron, on a blind date while they were students at BYU. They are the parents of five children and 20 grandchildren.
Reverend Doctor Andrew Teal
October 26, 2021, Forum
Rev. Dr. Andrew Teal is a chaplain and Fellow at Pembroke College and lecturer in theology and religion within Oxford University. He is warden of the Community of the Sisters of the Love of God and a trustee of All Saints Sisters of the Poor, Helen and Douglas House children’s hospices, St John’s Home for vulnerable people and The Porch for homeless people, all in Oxford.
Teal has published in the U.K. and Europe in English and Russian on patristic and modern theology. Among his recent publications is “Inspiring Service: Interfaith Remarks with Elder Jeffrey R. Holland at Oxford,” published in 2019 by the Religious Studies Center at BYU. Teal will join the BYU Maxwell Institute in fall 2021 as an affiliate faculty member.
November 2, 2021, Devotional
Associate dean of undergraduate studies and research for the College of Nursing and an associate professor, Dr. Julie Valentine received her doctorate in philosophy and nursing from Duquesne University. Her clinical work is with Wasatch Forensic Nurses as a certified sexual assault nurse examiner. Valentine previously taught at Westminster College and worked as a forensic nurse at Primary Children’s Hospital.
She is currently the principal investigator in multiple quantitative and mixed-method research studies to inform multidisciplinary practice and influence legislative policy with the goals of decreasing sexual violence, advocating for justice and creating healthier communities.
Gilbert W. Fellingham
November 9, 2021, Devotional
A professor of statistics, Gilbert W. Fellingham received his doctorate and masters in biostatistics from the University of Washington. He also earned master's degrees in statistics and physical education from Brigham Young University.
After a decade of teaching in secondary schools, Fellingham earned his Ph.D. and has taught at BYU for over 30 years and authored or co-authored over 100 peer-reviewed publications. His areas of research interest include Bayesian nonparametrics and Bayesian hierarchical models as applied to sports and human performance.
Elder W. Mark Bassett
November 16, 2021, Devotional
Elder W. Mark Bassett was sustained as a General Authority Seventy of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints on April 2, 2016.
At the time of his call, he had been serving as a member of the Fifth Quorum of the Seventy in the North America West Area. Elder Bassett has served as a member of the Brazil Area Presidency. He currently serves as an assistant executive director of the Missionary Department and as a member of the North America Northeast Area Presidency.
Elder Bassett received a bachelor’s degree in accounting from BYU in 1991. During his professional career, he functioned as owner and CFO of West Coast Auto Auctions, Inc.
William Barber II
November 30, 2021, Forum
William Barber II is a pastor of Greenleaf Christian Church, Disciples of Christ in Goldsboro, North Carolina, and a prominent figure in the current civil rights landscape. Barber is the president and senior lecturer of Repairers of the Breach, co-chair of the Poor People’s Campaign: A National Call For Moral Revival, bishop with The Fellowship of Affirming Ministries and visiting professor at Union Theological Seminary.
He is also the author of four books: “We Are Called to Be a Movement,” “Revive Us Again: Vision and Action in Moral Organizing,” “The Third Reconstruction: How a Moral Movement Is Overcoming the Politics of Division and Fear” and “Forward Together: A Moral Message for the Nation.” Barber served as president of the North Carolina NAACP and currently sits on the National NAACP Board of Directors. Barber is regularly featured in media outlets such as CNN, The New York Times, The Washington Post and The Nation magazine, among others.
Elder Neil L. Andersen
December 7, 2021, Devotional
Elder Neil L. Andersen was named an Apostle of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints on April 4, 2009.
Elder Andersen was serving as the senior member of the Presidency of the Seventy prior to his calling to the Quorum of the Twelve. He was named a member of the First Quorum of the Seventy in April 1993, at age 41. He previously led the work of the Church in southern Brazil and, again as a member of an area presidency, oversaw the Church in western Europe. Prior to his call as a General Authority, Elder Andersen served as a mission president in the France Bordeaux Mission and as president of the Tampa Florida Stake.
He graduated from BYU, where he was a Hinckley scholar, and earned a Master's of Business Administration from Harvard University. Elder Andersen and his wife, Kathy Williams Andersen, are the parents of four children.