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From around the world

Basketball tournament

HONG KONG — More than 700 youth participated in Kowloon's 1999 Kwun Tong District three-on-three basketball tournament recently, an event organized by the Kwun Tong Ward of the Hong Kong Kowloon East Stake. There were 154 teams competing in four age divisions during two Saturdays.

The tournament has experienced tremendous growth since it began in 1996 with 48 teams. Its objectives, as established by the governmental district and the Kwun Tong Ward, were to create interest in basketball among the youth, promote individual well-being through wholesome activities, unify the community and encourage team spirit.

Elder Richard E. Cook, first counselor in the Asia Area presidency, officiated at the opening ceremony. He was joined by other Church leaders and governmental officials.

'Hearts Interlaced with Music'

SANTA MARIA, Brazil — Some talented musicians serving in the Brazil Santa Maria Mission presented a concert recently, entitled, "Hearts Interlaced with Music," that featured a pianist, Elder Dan West; two flautists, Sister Amy Frost and Elder Joseph Stevenson; and a choir. Elder Alan Lindsay conducted the 12-voice choir. Missionary music and songs, such as "Families Can Be Together Forever" and "I Am a Child of God," along with classical selections, were presented.

"All of the missionaries united their individual talents to share the gospel to the city through music," said one person after attending. A packed theater of members and friends applauded the music. Santa Maria is described as "a city rich in culture and beauty located in Brazil's southernmost state."

Collecting, donating books

CITRUS HEIGHTS, Calif. — Members of the Woodside Ward, Citrus Heights California Stake, recently participated in a book drive, collecting and donating 1,640 books to local schools through the "Friends of the Library" organization.

Gayle Hage, a member of the ward Relief Society presidency, explained that the women got to know their neighbors while collecting the books .

"This project promoted literacy, missionary work and service to our community," she said.

'Bags of blocks'

ROCHESTER, N.Y. — About 125 youth from the Rochester New York Palmyra Stake recently stamped wooden blocks by hand and then placed them in drawstring bags. They prepared approximately 150 "bags of blocks" that will be distributed by the Latter-day Saint Humanitarian Center to children in developing nations.