She confronted her alleged rapist inside a Mormon church as two men tried to pull her away. This is her story.
Photo by George Frey/Getty Images.

McKenna Denson walked into a Mormon church to face the man she says raped her. Church officials literally tried to pull her away from the microphone but her story is being heard.

In 1984, McKenna Denson says she was raped by a man named Joseph L. Bishop, who worked for the Missionary Training Center in Provo, Utah.

This year she filed a suit in federal court over the alleged assault but has reportedly faced a stiff wall of opposition from church officials.


So, in early September Denson bravely walked into the church Denson was attending and confronted him in front of the church’s members.

In shocking video from that morning, church officials literally try to physically remove her from the podium. But Denson refused to be silenced and now her story is making national headlines and bringing attention to an alleged history of abuse inside one of America’s largest religious organizations.

With the Supreme Court nomination of Brett Kavanaugh dominating the news, it’s important to remember that sexual assault is a crime happening in all corners of society in what are considered some of our safest spaces.

Photo by Jim Bourg-Pool/Getty Images.

“I am grateful to be able to stand up and bear my testimony today,” Denson says as she takes the podium in the Arizona church, “Because I have great confidence in and love for the savior.”

The church members are largely non-responsive at first, assuming it’s just another testimony given as part of the church’s Fast and Testimony meeting, where members are encouraged to give their testimonies on the personal meaning of the Gospels.

Then her tone dramatically shifts. “The first presidency and the quorum of the 12 Apostles are covering a sexual predator that lives in your ward,” she says, as attendees began to visibly look up in attention. “His name is Joseph Bishop.”

“He was the MTC president when he raped me in the basement of the MTC.”

At that point, an unnamed male church official rushes to Denson’s side and attempts to move her away from the microphone.

But she refuses to step down.

As she literally physically struggles with the two men trying to pull her away, she courageously continues.

“In order to keep the church safe, we need to hold sexual predators accountable.”

At that point, one of the men forcibly removes her from the podium.

If you doubt that women still struggle to be heard when speaking out about sexual assault, this video is a must see.

Denson’s video is uncomfortable for almost anyone to watch. Now, imagine if you are a survivor of sexual assault. For too many people, women in particular, it’s something they don’t have to imagine. It’s a reality they must cope with every day.

Denson and her attorney have filed a lawsuit against the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints over the alleged assault and the Church says it is fully investigating the accusation.

She is also fundraising for a documentary that will look into other alleged incidents of assault within the church.

Whether it’s in a religious institution, place of learning, or in the halls of Congress, brave women are standing up everywhere to fight against sexual predators and for justice. They’ve made it this far on their own and it’s time we as a society have their backs.

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Shopping sustainably is increasingly important given the severity of the climate crisis, but sometimes it's hard to know where to turn. Thankfully, Amazon is making it a little easier to browse thousands of products that have one or more of 19 sustainability certifications that help preserve the natural world.

The online retailer recently announced Climate Pledge Friendly, a program to make it easier for customers to discover and shop for more sustainable products. To determine the sustainability of a product, the program partnered with third-party certifications, including governmental agencies, nonprofits, and independent labs.

With a selection of items spanning grocery, household, fashion, beauty, and personal electronics, you'll be able to shop more sustainably not just for the holiday season, but throughout the year for your essentials, as well.

You can browse all of the Climate Pledge Friendly products here, labeled with an icon and which certification(s) they meet. To get you on your way to shopping more sustainably, we've rounded up eight of our favorite Climate Pledge Friendly-products that will make great gifts all year long.

Amazon

Jack Wolfskin Women's North York Coat

Give the gift of warmth and style with this coat, available in a variety of colors. Sustainability is built into all Jack Wolfskin products and each item comes with a code that lets you trace back to its origins and understand how it was made.

Bluesign: Bluesign products are responsibly manufactured by using safer chemicals and fewer resources, including less energy, in production.


Amazon

Amazon All-new Echo Dot (4th Gen)

For the tech-obsessed. This Alexa smart speaker, which comes in a sleek, compact design, lets you voice control your entertainment and your smart home as well as connect with others.

Reducing CO2: Products with this certification reduce their carbon footprint year after year. Certified by the Carbon Trust.


Amazon

Burt's Bees Family Jammies Matching Holiday Organic Cotton Pajamas

Get into the holiday spirit with these fun matching PJs for the whole family. Perfect for pictures that even Fido can get in on.

Global Organic Textile Standard: This certifies each step of the organic textile supply chain against strict ecological and social standards. Each product with this certification contains 95%-100% organic content.

Amazon

Naturistick 5-Pack Lip Balm Gift Set

With 100% natural ingredients that are gentle on ultra-sensitive lips, this gift is a great gift for the whole family.

Compact by Design (Certified by Amazon): Products with this certification are packaged without excess air and water, which reduces the carbon footprint of shipping and packaging.


Amazon

Arus Women's GOTS Certified Organic Cotton Hooded Full Length Turkish Bathrobe

For those who love to lounge around, this full-length organic cotton bathrobe is the way to go. Available in five different colors, it has comfortable cuffed sleeves, a hood, pockets, and adjustable belt.

Global Organic Textile Standard: This certifies each step of the organic textile supply chain against strict ecological and social standards. Each product with this certification contains 95%-100% organic content.

Amazon

L'Occitane Extra-Gentle Vegetable Based Soap

This luxe soap, made with moisturizing shea butter and scented with verbena, is perfect for the self-care obsessed.

Compact by Design (Certified by Amazon): Products with this certification are packaged without excess air and water, which reduces the carbon footprint of shipping and packaging.

Amazon

Goodthreads Men's Sweater-Knit Fleece Long-Sleeve Bomber

For the fashionable men in your life, this fashion-forward knit bomber is an excellent choice. The sweater material keeps it cozy and warm, while the bomber jacket-cut, zip front, and rib-trim neck make it look elevated.

Recycled Claim Standard 100: Products with this certification use materials made from at least 95% recycled content.

Amazon

All-new Fire TV Stick with Alexa Voice Remote

Make it even easier to access your favorite movies and shows this holiday season. The new Fire TV Stick lets you use your voice to search across apps. Plus it controls the power and volume on your TV, so you'll never need to leave the couch! Except for snacks.

Reducing CO2: Products with this certification reduce their carbon footprint year after year. Certified by the Carbon Trust.

In the hours before he was sworn in as the 46th president of the United States, then-President-elect Biden was sent a letter signed by 17 freshmen GOP members of the House of Representatives.

In sharp contrast to the 121 Republican House members who voted against the certification of Biden's electoral votes—a constitutional procedure merely check-marking the state certifications that had already taken place—this letter expresses a desire to "rise above the partisan fray" and work together with Biden as he takes over the presidency.

The letter reads:

Dear President-elect Biden,

Congratulations on the beginning of your administration and presidency. As members of this freshman class, we trust that the next four years will present your administration and the 117thCongress with numerous challenges and successes, and we are hopeful that – despite our ideological differences – we may work together on behalf of the American people we are each so fortunate to serve.

After two impeachments, lengthy inter-branch investigations, and, most recently, the horrific attack on our nation's capital, it is clear that the partisan divide between Democrats and Republicans does not serve a single American.

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If the past year has taught us nothing else, it's that sending love out into the world through selfless acts of kindness can have a positive ripple effect on people and communities. People all over the United States seemed to have gotten the message — 71% of those surveyed by the World Giving Index helped a stranger in need in 2020. A nonprofit survey found 90% helped others by running errands, calling, texting and sending care packages. Many people needed a boost last year in one way or another and obliging good neighbors heeded the call over and over again — and continue to make a positive impact through their actions in this new year.

Upworthy and P&G Good Everyday wanted to help keep kindness going strong, so they partnered up to create the Lead with Love Fund. The fund awards do-gooders in communities around the country with grants to help them continue on with their unique missions. Hundreds of nominations came pouring in and five winners were selected based on three criteria: the impact of action, uniqueness, and "Upworthy-ness" of their story.

Here's a look at the five winners:

Edith Ornelas, co-creator of Mariposas Collective in Memphis, Tenn.

Edith Ornelas has a deep-rooted connection to the asylum-seeking immigrant families she brings food and supplies to families in Memphis, Tenn. She was born in Jalisco, Mexico, and immigrated to the United States when she was 7 years old with her parents and sister. Edith grew up in Chicago, then moved to Memphis in 2016, where she quickly realized how few community programs existed for immigrants. Two years later, she helped create Mariposas Collective, which initially aimed to help families who had just been released from detention centers and were seeking asylum. The collective started out small but has since grown to approximately 400 volunteers.