Hundreds of Latter-day Saints Perform in Luz de las Naciones

Hundreds of Latter-day Saints Perform in Luz de las Naciones

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints hosted its annual celebration of Latin American culture on Saturday evening.

The annual event has been held in the Conference Center in Salt Lake City, Utah, in years past, but due to COVID-19 restrictions, the event can only be viewed via broadcast for a second year in a row.

The 50-minute cultural celebration known as Luz de las Naciones (“Light of the Nations”) featured a cast of hundreds of volunteers who performed songs, dances and narratives reflecting traditional clothing and cultures from countries throughout Latin America. Participants represented Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Cuba, Ecuador, México, Puerto Rico and other countries in Central America.

The evening was filled with traditional Latin American music, colorful clothing and the addition of contemporary-style dance.

The program’s theme, “A Light for Everyone,” focused on finding joy and hope in times of trial and difficulty.

One of the musical number coordinators, Dulce Benjamin, said, “We wanted to share the feeling of Luz de las Naciones, that we can still shine no matter what, that nothing is going to stop us.”

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Alex Melecio, a soloist in this year’s event, explained that this program has become a time-honored tradition in his family. It started with his participation in 2007 and has grown into a family activity as his five children now participate with him.

“We had a lot of people dancing, the talent, just the vibe, it’s just always a highlight of my year. I look forward to it every year,” Melecio said.

Elder Walter F. González, of the Utah Area Presidency, said the event is a good way to showcase the love of culture and tradition paired with the love for our Savior Jesus Christ.

“The restored gospel of Jesus Christ is being preached all over the planet, including the Latino cultures. And it’s also a message that those cultures can be enhanced by the gospel values,” Elder González said.

The event closed with a message from Elder D. Todd Christofferson of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles. Watch the entire broadcast below.

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