2018-05-21

When Christ Came to America

A photo gallery from the Hill Cumorah Pageant, an annual outdoor show dramatizing scenes from the Book of Mormon.

Every year around the Pioneer Day holiday (July 24), the Mormon church presents the Hill Cumorah Pageant, an outdoor dramatization of parts of the Bible, the Book of Mormon, and Mormon history. Tens of thousands of people trek to upstate New York to see the shows, which take place on the hill near Palmyra, N.Y., where Joseph Smith said he found the golden tablets on which were written the Book of Mormon. To see a photo gallery of the pageant and hear music from it, click here.

The Hill of Cumorah, where the angel Moroni is said to have revealed to Joseph Smith the Book of Mormon, which tells of ancient civilizations in America between 2,200 B.C. and 421 A.D.

Images and audio (Postlude - Hill Cumorah Pageant Soundtrack) courtesy of the Hill Cumorah Pageant

Lehi, an Israelite, is told by God around 600 B.C. to gather his family and leave Jerusalem with his family, which includes sons Nephi and Laman. Nephi, unlike Laman, follows in his father's righteous ways, and the two often quarrel.

Images and audio (Postlude - Hill Cumorah Pageant Soundtrack) courtesy of the Hill Cumorah Pageant

Nephi (seen in the background with an angel) becomes a major prophet, and is shown a vision of Christ's birth.

Images and audio (Postlude - Hill Cumorah Pageant Soundtrack) courtesy of the Hill Cumorah Pageant

Lehi is shown a vision of the Tree of Life.

Images and audio (Postlude - Hill Cumorah Pageant Soundtrack) courtesy of the Hill Cumorah Pageant

The family makes the arduous journey to America, where they give rise to two often-warring tribes, the Nephites and the Lamanites.

Images and audio (Postlude - Hill Cumorah Pageant Soundtrack) courtesy of the Hill Cumorah Pageant

King Noah was a Nephite ruler who levied oppressive taxes on his subjects, failed to protect them from the Lamanites, and replaced the good priests with people who would participate in his evil.

Images and audio (Postlude - Hill Cumorah Pageant Soundtrack) courtesy of the Hill Cumorah Pageant

Wars between the Nephites and Lamanites were common, and these men are ready for battle. Mormons have traditionally identified the Nephites and Lamanites as Native Americans.

Images and audio (Postlude - Hill Cumorah Pageant Soundtrack) courtesy of the Hill Cumorah Pageant

Nephi raises his sword in victory and gives thanks to God after winning a battle.

Images and audio (Postlude - Hill Cumorah Pageant Soundtrack) courtesy of the Hill Cumorah Pageant

Following his resurrection, Christ appears to the multitudes in America, where he ministers to them by healing the sick, teaching them the Gospels, performing miracles, and letting the people touch his wounds.

Images and audio (Postlude - Hill Cumorah Pageant Soundtrack) courtesy of the Hill Cumorah Pageant

The actor playing Joseph Smith as a young boy prepares to take the stage. Casting for the pageant is done in one day, when the more than 650 parts are assigned--mostly based on looks, since the audio is prerecorded. Seven performances are held annually, and the outdoor space seats 9,000.

Images and audio (Postlude - Hill Cumorah Pageant Soundtrack) courtesy of the Hill Cumorah Pageant


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