Christmas is a season of serving and giving, and the LDS church is seeking to unite others in service this year.
The #LIGHTtheWORLD campaign is part of a worldwide initiative to promote 25 days of service, beginning with a worldwide day of service on Dec. 1.
Each of the 25 days of service correlates with a different theme from the Savior’s life, according to the church’s website.
Senior BYU mechanical engineering student Cole Gunderson said he thinks the #LIGHTtheWORLD campaign will really bring the Christmas spirit and will inspire people to serve.
“I’m planning on visiting Mormon.org each day and seeing what inspiration I can get to serve from the ideas they have listed,” Gunderson said. “It probably won’t be something huge each day, but I think it will get me in the spirit of service and help me look for opportunities.”
The Dec. 1 day of service will kick off the day before, Nov. 30, with various performances around Utah.
Several well-known “influencers” in the LDS community will do a Facebook live stream of their performances and will share that stream with their Facebook friends, according to Utah musician and campaign influencer, Shaun Barrowes.
An influencer is someone with an online, active audience, according to Barrowes.
“For example, I have 35,000-40,000 weekly viewers with my Facebook page, so I can influence those people with stories or messages,” Barrowes said. “By combining efforts with other influencers, we can influence more people together with this message.”
Barrowes said he’s excited for the Nov. 30 stream because it will encourage people to come together and serve.
“It’s exciting to be at the center of a big live stream and online push to get the word out there,” Barrowes said. “I can’t wait to see just how many people we can reach to recruit for the big day of service.”
BYU music program graduate Rob Landes is an innovative violinist and another influencer of the campaign.
Landes said he’s excited about the service campaign because he’s grateful for the opportunity to take attention off of himself.
“I know that I’m much happier when I’m thinking of others,” Landes said. “Christmas is such a great time for people to think outwardly and do more acts of service than they might normally do. I hope this will help people recognize how easily they can serve other people in their daily lives.”
Barrowes said the best way to find joy in life is to focus on others and lift them up.
“When you serve, you bring a light to someone else, and that almost always spreads to others and gets passed on and on,” Barrowes said. “We (artists) always talk about virality, millions of views, etc. True and genuine service spreads love to the far reaches and has a lasting impact, far better than any viral video.”