The JWHA newsletter is published quarterly. Members receive updates to access the latest articles before the next issue is available.

JWHA President’s Message – September 2023

The 2023 JWHA Conference in Fredericksburg, Texas was a Great Success! Read post-conference report.

Congratulations to our Scholarship Winners

This year scholarships were awarded to four students, two were able to attend in person: Robyn Spears and Makoto Hunter.  Two were unable to travel but presented their recorded presentations to attendees; Andrew Ankersen and Michelle Graabek.

Robyn Spears

“No words can sufficiently express the appreciation I feel for the generous scholarship JWHA gave me this fall. Thanks to the award granted, I was able to provide adequate childcare for our preschooler in order to leave my family and make the drive from Bentonville, Arkansas to Fredericksburg. The friendships and scholarly bonds that were created at this year’s conference would not have been possible without the generous support of JWHA donors. From my family to yours, thank you.”  Robyn Spears, Doctoral Candidate, University of Arkansas


Makoto Hunter

Scholarships are available for the 2024 conference in St. George, Utah.  Learn more about scholarships, encourage students to apply.

AI (Artificial Intelligence) and the Conference

As a sign of the changing times, it seems that artificial intelligence made it into this year’s conference when young scholar, Jaxon Washburn, cited ChatGPT as the source for his introduction of two hymns during Sunday’s hymn fest! A recent tech development that is rapidly innovating multiple industries, ChatGPT (along with other AI language processing tools) has the ability to digest and reconfigure massive amounts of information from the internet, allowing for curious users to ask questions and receive all kinds of answers. For his introductions, Jaxon asked it for summaries of the hymns “Adam-ondi-Ahman” and “The Spirit of God,” along with W.W. Phelps and the 1835 hymnal. Aside from a few errors, the summaries it gave were pretty accurate! You can test the technology out for yourself by visiting

Donate Seed Money for the JWHA 50th Anniversary Tree

to be planted at the Heritage Plaza Historic Site in Independence, Missouri and dedicated at a future Independence conference.

Donate here, enter tree in the comments, support this symbol of JWHA’s continuing growth.

2023 Membership Survey

Thank you for participating and sharing your thoughts and suggestions.  During the fall board and business meeting the survey results were discussed.  The board will review, analyze, and categorize the responses looking for overlap to update our strategic plan.  View the compiled survey results

Annual Business Meeting Financial Report

As of August 8th, 2023, JWHA holds three investment accounts with the following balances:

  • Investment Account: $484,504.59
  • Endowment Fund: $167,434.77
  • Cash Account: $4,511.06 (100% Fidelity Government Cash Reserves)

During the second quarter of 2023 the investment accounts experienced a collective increase of 3.87%, $24,023.44.

  • Our investment approach continues to center on achieving moderate growth while safeguarding against potential market fluctuations.
  • View our full 2022 Financial Statement and Annual Report.

Barbara Jean Bernauer

January 23, 1930 — August 28, 2023


Wallace B. Smith

July 29, 1929 — September 22, 2023


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