Skip to comments.LDS Church ranch making big impact in Florida
Posted on 06/15/2011 9:09:38 AM PDT by Colofornian
ST. CLOUD, Fla. Most Utahns are unaware that The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints owns one of the biggest ranches in the country and it's nowhere near the Beehive State.
Because of its prominent location, millions have seen the ranch without realizing what it was. But managers are opening the curtain; they have a message they want the public to hear.
From St. Cloud to:
Orlando Airport: 10 miles
Kennedy Space Center: 15 miles
Magic Kingdom: 22 miles
The cowboys are up before dawn, but this is not the Old West.
They ride out into Florida fog to punch cows a lot of cows. In all, there are 44,000 of them, producing over 30,000 calves each year.
"It's good cattle country. At times it can be a hard environment to run cattle in," said David Genho, cattle development manager at the Deseret Cattle and Citrus Ranch.
Over the decades, the cattle have been specially bred at the ranch to thrive in a tropical climate.
Along with the cattle, the ranch has groves and groves of citrus fruit. Every year, it produces enough oranges to make 50 million glasses of orange juice.
Deseret Cattle & Fruit
- 500 billion gallons of rain fall the ranch receives annually (1.5 times the volume of Utah Lake)
- 290-300,000 acres (450 sq. miles)
* 165,000 acres of pasture land
* 75,000 acres of wetlands
* 60,000 acres of timber
* 1,700 acres of citrus orchards (producing 50 million 8 oz glasses of orange juice annually)
* 920 acres of row crops (450 acres of potatoes for Frito Lay Chips)
- 44,000 cows
- 33,000 calves born annually
- 1,400 bulls
- 1,400 miles of fencing
- 380+ documented species of vertebrate animals- many threatened or endangered
* 245 birds
* 53 fish
* 33 reptiles
* 31 mammals
* 20 amphibians
- 90 employees
- 61 years of operation (acquired in 1950)
- 45 hunting clubs have rights to use land
But there's also a profusion of wildlife. To see it all you have to walk through jungles, or take a wild ride on an airboat across a thriving aquatic habitat where you run a pretty good chance of getting crossways with an alligator.
"Occasionally they'll take a calf; and just last week one of our cowboys had his favorite dog that went down to get a drink and that was the last of him," said David Wright, environmental affairs manager at the ranch.
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints acquired the property in 1950, and Florida grew up around it.
"Just the scale of it is hard to grasp," said environmental consultant W. Michael Dennis. "We're in this remote area, but yet it's still very close to all the urban centers of central Florida."
It's not far from Disney World, for one. It covers nearly 300,000 acres more than 450 square miles spanning much of the distance from the Orlando airport to the Kennedy Space Center.
Urbanization is creating challenges "with the pressures for water, the pressures for land, the pressures for transportation corridors," Dennis said.
As legal and political controversy rises over those issues, ranch managers are now proudly displaying what they've done for the environment.
"The ranch has been a good steward of this land for 60 years," Dennis said.
The ranch won a Florida environmental leadership award for creating a one square mile wetlands reservoir to purify storm water runoff.
"The natural wetland vegetation takes up any nutrients that are found in the water; the nutrient levels are already very low," said Erik Jacobsen, general manager of the ranch.
The reservoir is now a haven for wildlife. "We've documented over 380 species on the ranch. Some are protected and some are rare," Jacobsen said.
They created a rookery, a nesting area, for thousands of birds by re-landscaping. It created island sanctuaries protected from predators by a moat full of alligators.
"We want to protect the environment; and that's been part of our responsibility since we've been here," Genho said.
On a broad scale, they've achieved an award-winning stewardship approach with a carefully designed mosaic of wetlands, pasture and timberland.
"Just the nature of our ranching operations is a huge benefit to the surrounding area because of the diversity of habitat it creates for wildlife," Jacobsen said. "It creates a huge area for groundwater recharge."
Rather than pumping precious groundwater, ranch managers capture and use surface water almost entirely. The ranch is currently battling a lawsuit that's aimed at turning over some of that water to surrounding communities.
"I think through cooperation we can come up with solutions that will be able to sustain the water supply in the area for years to come," said James Payne, manager of properties at the ranch.
Recently the ranch was honored for its environmental stewardship of the land. It won a "best in the region" award from the National Cattlemen's Beef Association.
The church is the kingdom of God on earth and operates on his behalf. The Bible is full of many references to the importance of obedience to God and you have those debates already many times so I won’t waste further time on it.
Again I find it strange how much you all complain about what it would take to get something you don’t even want.
It’s amazing how wrong you are when you try to tell me what it is I believe. The apostacy was man’s failure to follow Christ and it does nothing to diminish his glory.
All blessings? No, good weather is a blessing from God, and it comes to the wicked and the faithful alike. Same with many other things. Temple blessings however can only be obtained through the priesthood of God that was restored to the church.
Tithing may be defined as “voluntary” within the church circles, but the temple recommend negates that through tithing. How? Tithing is a mandatory “condition” placed upon members in order for them to secure a temple recommend and thus take out their endowments, which then is supposed to help ensure their celestial glory.
It’s “extortion” in this sense because mormons are taught that of the 3 degrees of glory, only the celestial kingdom is reserved for those who have been “obedient” to the covenants and oaths taken in the temple.
So, if one wants to be able to dwell in the presence of the mormon god, one needs a temple recommend, if one wants a temple recommend, one needs to be a full tithe payer.
How is that not “extortion”?
As to “obligation”, open books lends credibility to an organization. It demonstrates to the flock that their monies are being used for the purposes intended.
“Prospering” in this sense is the antithesis of what should be motivating a “true” church.
Saving souls, it’s what Jesus does, not a “prosperous church”.
No, but I do belive that God tests the faith of his people by asking things of them and seeing if they love him enough to obey or not. Was God influenced by animal sacrifices?
Yet nobody is kicked out of the church for not having a temple recommend, that is voluntary too, and once a person gets their endowments they are not excommunicated or have their temple blessings revoked for just stopping paying tithing. Likewise, there are members who are currently unable to get a recommend due to an addiction or some sins that have to dealt with who still pay tithing, recognizing that it is a commandment of God.
BTW: a prosperous church is in a way better position to save more souls than a broke one.
Well, it’s been fun. I need a little refresher now and then on just how far gone you all are.
Rest assured that faithful Mormons will carry on doing all the things you hate them doing. Paying their tithing, going to temples, serving missions, sharing the gospel with others. The church will continue to grow and prosper in many ways, and the man-made religions of the world will continue to fall into greater and greater error or crumble away to dust.
I hope when you see that happening you’ll at some point start to consider that perhaps you were wrong and become sincere seekers of truth instead of trying to tell me what I believe as if you were the experts. I really do hope God soften your heart and if the day comes when you see the light I’ll rejoice with you, no hard feelings.
When ‘you’ learn to discern between the dictation from demons and God making a promise, then you may have some credibility. Here’s a hit, Mormon: if what you are following as a ‘promise’ from your god does not line up with the Bible which is God’s Word, then you may be following demons. The God was never ‘an exalted man’ should have been a clue to you. Since it wasn’t, you fail, bigtime. God of all did not have to be appointed as god over the Earth or this universe. That should have been the clue that set you running from Mormnism as fast as you could go, but since it hasn’t, you fail, bigtime. Peddle your heretical religion elsewhere.
Of course Catholics aren't a cult. They are Christian. They believe in ONE God, just as God Himself said in the Hebrew Scriptures. In contrast, you are a member of a cult that believes in 4 Earth Gods and Millions, Billions or Trillions of other gods. Heck, I suspect you yourself might expect to become yet one more mormon god.
"The ordinances, and right the church has over those ordinances and the requirements for them is granted by God."
Yes, but as is true of your cult, which god grants them to your group? Is it one of the 4 Earth Gods? The Father, who used to be a man, but became a god? The Mormon Jesus, who was created, came to earth to get a body and later became a god? The Holy Spirit, who was created, but never got a body because he did something naughty? The Mother God who is eternally pregnant, popping out spirit children after she and the Father god breed? Or is it one of the millions of other mormon gods who grants you these ordinances the "church has the right over?" Which one Grig?
"If you dont believe any of it, what difference does it make to you what the requirements are? You have a strange obsession with it."
I am totally committed to the truth. Mormonism is a false religion that claims to be Christian. As the Apostle Paul wrote in the Holy Bible...
"And I will keep on doing what I am doing in order to cut the ground from under those who want an opportunity to be considered equal with us in the things they boast about."
2 Corinthians 11:12
Paying tithing is just giving Him back what is already His own.
Then ifd thats the case why on earth are you giving your money to greedy multi-millionaire secular business executives ???
Why dont you take that same moneu and feed the poor ???
Thus truly “giving HIM back”
You dont owe those thieves up in the penthouse of Temple Square anything ...
They werent the ones who “own” everytrhing you have or aqre...
Up to now you have NEVER been “giving HIM back”
You have just been buying %5 BILLION fancy Hollywood malls, Hawaiian resorts, and 100s of sq milles of Florida cattle ranch and citrus farms for those same Mormon Mafia to contiue to live comfortable Easy Street lives...
When are you FINALLY going to do something for God ???
faithful Mormons will carry on doing all the things
Where were Momons during the after math of the tornadoes in the South in April ???
There was neither hair nor hide of them in the destroyed areas where Christians lived...
Never mind we Christians pitched in usual...
But down in Australia during the floods the mormon members there couldnt even find the mormons
The LDS membewrs were told to go to the Baptists, Methodists, govt etc anbd not to bother the Mormons in their ivory towers errr temples...
Tough for an old guy who paid tithing to the LDS all of his grown up life and has now lost his home and everything in it and his car and cant go to work...
A mormon member who has tithed and the mormon god refuses to please him
He did X the mormon god is suppose to do Y but didnt...
It bad enough that the mormons are absent when we apostate abominations have dire needs
But you dont help your own members
Whats that about ???
The guy couldnt even get one of those “loans” on his own many thousands of Aussie dollars he gave the Mormons
Such greed Such extortion on the part of the Mormons
They all should be in jail
and he was just one of many Aussie mormons who0 were refused help from SLC
The people in Aussie dont think the lousy mormons are any fun at all
I didn’t mention anything about being kicked out of the church.
I said they’re “prevented” from dwelling in the celestial kingdom.
Isn’t that the “ultimate” goal in mormonism? Live with the mormon god and jesus?
How then can that be attained without a temple recommend?
Simple, it can’t. They are consigned to one of the lower “kingdoms”. Only getting “visits” from jesus, but never god since he will not venture out of perfection.
Really? Do you honestly believe that $$ makes the difference in whether or not a person can be saved?
Seems the faithful naive are seriously blinded about the reality of how things work. PR by Mormonism leadership feeds them incessant BS about how wonderful they are for their involvement in these disasters. What the are not saying is who gets service first. And you know the answer to that.
When I meet you on July 23, we will talk more about this.
Grace = Unmerited favor i.e. you will never do anything that will impress God. Everything you do is but filthy rags compared to what He did.
Good for you living that law.
Do you ALSO 'live the law' of not eating MEAT in warm weather?
We have NO idea what you 'believe'.
We DO, however, know what your chosen religion has TAUGHT on the subject.
How can two Angel of Light demons, giving the location of a 'miracle' of golden plates, restore ANYTHING that pertains to GOD?
May as well; since they get 'kicked out' of the highest level of MORMON heaven.
Name it and Claim it!
BTW: a prosperous church is in a way better position to save more souls than a broke one.
Try telling that one to the LORD Jesus Christ
He was poor as a church mouse
Foxes and birds were richer than He was
“The Son of man has nowhere to lay His head...” Matthew 8:20
Try telling that one to the disciples that the LORD Jesus Christ sent out
These were His instructions: “Take nothing for the journey except a staff—no bread, no bag, no money in your belts.” He allowed them to wear sandals but not to take a change of clothes. Mark 6:8, 9
Paul and John had no money, nor gold or silver but Paul laid his hands on a crippled man in the Name ofr Jesus and he was healed
The Name of Jesus is the richest commodity Heaven has..
Then Peter said, “Silver or gold I do not have, but what I have I give you. In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, walk.” Acts 3:6
No theres no need of money to preach the Gospel and get people saved and the so called “church” doesnt do the saving
The LORD Jesus Christ does...
All people do is preach the Gospel...
That doesnt take money
That takes a belief in the LORD Jesus Christ..
If your religious organization is collecting money its not to get people saved...
Its just because they are greedy for gain and filthy lucre...
There was no reading into anything. As I said, I have an incomplete picture of your motives & don't pretend to know all of them there. All I could go on was your emphasis. And rather than mentioning the Biblical foundation of giving -- blessed to be a blessing...you twice mentioned that your financial blessings given are to be blessed.
That's out of order in the emphasis of things. (I can't help what you convey).
Very good Q, GF. I have found that Mormons generally focus more on the outer checklist stuff...tithing, temple rituals, giving a testimony -- all the external stuff drilled into them by the temple recommend questions.
They somehow keep thinking they can get their god to change his mind about them via performance...
They somehow seem to forget that God is all-knowing...and that he knows what's going on on the inside of a person, too. That's essentially what Jesus noted: He complimented many of the externals of the Pharisees ("unless your righteousness exceeds that of the Pharisees"); inwardly, he referenced them as whitewashed tombstones.
May as well; since they get 'kicked out' of the highest level of MORMON heaven. [Elsie]
Doncha love it, Els? Here, one of the most dire things that could happen in their mind to a Mormon -- to be cut off from their family & Heavenly Father forever -- and he's able to put such a positive spin on it!
BTW the real Calvinist I know are better people then you will every be!
Poor Resty; forced into making JUDGEMENTS about me; while letting the HERESY that is MORMONism get a pass.
Speaking of CALVINists; didja EVER find out what was UNTRUE about PRESBYTERIANism of Joseph Smith's day?
My Calvinist friends we agree to disagree without being disagreeable, you antis from what I witness are incapable of doing that!
LOL ... pots and kettles and a kettle of fishy assertion. We do so value your opinion, Resty. ‘Don’t go breakin’ our hearts ...’
Resty; does your BISHOP know you have Calvinist FRIENDS???
Do you support, affiliate with, or agree with any group or individual whose teachings or practices are contrary to or oppose those accepted by the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints?
What do you expect?
We start out nice; merely posting what your beloved chosen Organization has taught and practiced, and we get called HATEFUL Bigots!
So worry about them other 3 fingers pointing BACK at yourself when you go off on a rant and ACCUSE us of something.
Resty; does your BISHOP know you have Calvinist FRIENDS???
What an unChristian thing to say but what else would I expect from an anti...
Even my Bishop has Calvinist friends from all kinds of faith...
Only folks that are difficult are those X Mormons who are radical & Bigots...not all x Mormons are disagreeable.
Is this a YES or a NO??
It's YOUR 'church' that wants to KNOW these things; mine is the one who doesn't care WHO you are FRIENDS with!
Stop confusing the simple act of observation with negativity.
An Agreeable Apostate!
Who else but RESTY could come up with this!
Since I am NOT a BIGOT; I guess I am one of the sweet ones.
ANYone who CALLS me a BIGOT; well...
the Lord Church could careless because all are His that have ears to hear their masters voice.
Agreed. Joseph Smith DID listen to his master's voice!
“BTW the real Calvinist I know are better people then you will every be!”
Ad hominem argument. Got anything about the topic? Anything that includes facts? Evidence? Logic?