2021 Speakers & Talks

Restoration Torah Conference
Shavuot 2021 (May 21-22)

    Gene Hagloch is a sixth generation Latter-Day Saint. He served an LDS mission to Canada, married in the Salt Lake City LDS Temple, and has served on five bishoprics. He graduated from Utah State University in Business and Accounting, and is currently an Accountant and Process/Information Analyst. Gene came to Torah in 2014, and is in his fourth year of Hebrew.  He is the owner and founder of the Albuquerque Institute of Biblical Law website, which can be found here, and is publishing his book based on his blog – Torah Friendly Teaching and Davidic Kingship.

    His presentation is titled:
The Seven Covenants of Jehovah

Taylor Smith is happily married with a quiver full of beautiful children, currently living the dream in Morgan, UT. His favorite hobbies include studying and discussing Truth, spending quality time with his Family, promoting and defending Freedom, and playing and enjoying diverse kinds of Music.

   His presentation is titled:
The Law of Moses: Viewed Through the Lens of the Restoration

Robert Kay is a Jewish believer in the Book of Mormon. Robert is an avid researcher of the Hebrew Roots of the Book of Mormon. Besides having a degree in Mathematics, and an MBA, he has spent many years studying the Hebrew language and culture. He has also been schooled in the Talmud and several esoteric disciplines of Judaism. He is the author of a Hebrew Roots version of the Book of Mormon, Voices From the Dust.

   His presentation is titled:
The Hidden Teachings of The Book of Mormon

David Patrick lives in Utah where he has raised his family.  He has 20 years of experience marketing and operating a financial services business and holds multiple licenses to practice in securities and insurance. His interest in Mormon studies extents through all movements, organizations, and churches within the restoration. He is an active member of Christ’s Church, The Branch. David can be reached for positive discussion or speaking engagements via email at: david.patrick@latterdayzion.org. 

His presentation is titled:
The First Shall Be Last, and The Last Shall Be First: What Are The Times of the Gentiles? Are They Fulfilled?

      Joshua Erickson was raised in an LDS home in Utah, by a father who was a scholar and lover of the Restoration and all things Israelite. His father has now passed away, but planted a loving seed in Joshua for those things. The seed grew slowly in earlier years, but has now blossomed and is continually growing. He is hoping to plant similar seeds in his own children (he has 5 and one on the way). Born and raised in Utah (one of seven siblings) Joshua attended graduate school at UCLA. He is a chemist by training and profession, and loves his job. He and his family currently live in Lehi, UT. He is also the secretary of the Zarahemla Foundation, and author of the book, Wine of your Own Make.

   His presentation is titled:
Animal Sacrifice and The Restoration of All Things

   Jonathan Felt was born in Jackson County Missouri, in the urban city of Kansas in the late 1950s, his yearnings for Zion have never abated from that day until today. He can remember the nursery and his own circumcision, can’t you? Little did he know just how strong that desire for the Gathering of Israel would become as time progressed. He and his wife Melody have seven children.
   This accompanying portrait and selfie of the late and grand Rabbi Menachem Schnersohn is a representation of his deep friendship and genuine love for his professional boss who is, a devoted member of the Chabad community in Brooklyn, New York. The painting behind him was hanging inside the Bombay, India synagogue that was attacked by Pakistani terrorists in 2008. He and his boss program software systems for Amazon Sellers, especially those of the Jewish brotherhood. Jonathan’s career in computer programming started when he was a young married general contractor in 1987. At the time he maintained apartments and managed them for his well-to-do bosses and the Salt Lake County Housing Authority. As his skills increased on the computer, his places of domicile and employment included Salt Lake City, Utah; Monroe, Louisiana; Keene, New Hampshire; St. Petersburg, Florida; San Diego, California; Ahmedabad, India, and Brooklyn, New York. He served a fulfilling 2 years for his church in Sendai, Japan.
   He currently resides in Utah, in the little old hamlet of Leland, which is the same ward precinct as the famous Bishop John Hyrum Koyle. The name Felt has migrated from the Celtic name (probably) Failte (fel-chiah) to Felse (fel-che) to Feltch to Felt in 1601 when his ancestors mostly inhabited the region around Salem, Massachusetts (and have for the last 400 years or so). His family’s more recent advent to Mormonism was in 1843 when Brigham Young sized up his great (and grand) 2nd great grandfather Nathaniel. Since he wasn’t the best student of his era, no greatness will be found there, but he briefly studied “business” at the University of Utah before dropping out to get to work!

   His presentation is titled:
Rav Moshe and the Torah Temimah Will Heal The Nations

   Melanie Melton was born May 19, 1972 to Dale and Genevieve Lyon. She was raised in Utah, in the small town of Ferron, where she learned how important family, friends, and God are to her very existence.
She graduated with a bachelor’s degree in Women’s Imaging, specializing in breast cancer. This has led Melanie to serving, both through her work at the hospital, and in her personal life, to help women understand how to take care of themselves. Melanie helped low income patients find the assistance they need and to receive the care they deserve.
Her greatest love is her family. She has been married to the love of her life and eternal companion, Jason Bradford Melton for 11 years. They have been blessed with a beautiful daughter, Aubrie Genevieve, who is four years old. Aubrie is the miracle angel that Melanie was promised in the Patriarchal Blessing, she received when she was 12 years old.
While excommunicated from the LDS church because of her practice of polygamy, she has come to know even more the love of her Heavenly Father and his son, Jesus Christ, and the true Gospel.
Melanie has two sister wives, Tracy and Stephanie. Between them all, they have 10 children and 1 grandchild. Melanie and her family live in Kidder, Missouri on a 30 acre farm where they raise sheep, goats, chickens, bees, and horses. The farm is located in the City of Seth (the original name of the area, so named by Joseph Smith), in Daviess County.

   Her presentation is titled:
The Torah and the Family: How We in This Time and Age Can Follow

   Nathan Dilts is a disciple of Jesus Christ, striving to walk in His way and keep His commandments. His life long passion for teaching the restored gospel of Jesus Christ, particularly to youth, has been expressed over the past 25 years as a missionary, Sunday School teacher, Aaronic Priesthood advisor and Seminary teacher. Nathan’s greatest education comes from raising his seven children with his beautiful wife in their red desert home. Nathan is the facilitator on the Red Rock Seminary podcast.

   His presentation is titled:
Obtaining a Land of Promise

   Enoch Foster is a husband, father, and friend to many. Enoch is a lover of Jesus Christ and the Gospel, and has a great desire to see an increase in unity and understanding between the various branches of the Restoration, and between all people. Enoch hosts the Rock Rally, an annual event that draws hundreds of participants from many different Restoration groups, and provides them an opportunity to both socialize and worship together.

   His presentation is titled:
Torah is Jehovah in Relationship With His Creation

   Mike Mitchell is a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints and has found a Love and appreciation for the Original Testament.  This Love he has found to be quite unique in traditional Church circles. His journey of OT Love began as he had sincere questions, and concerns, that could not be answered regarding the direction of the Church.  He found understanding and answers from seeing the patterns and teaching methods God has used since the beginning.  Because of this, he believes that God truly is unchanging and God is working in these same patterns today. Mike and his family have been observing the Biblical feasts and festivals in various ways for the last five years.   By observing the feasts, he has found friendship and fellowship from all types of people and groups seeking to live and understand the Hebrew roots of their faith.  Mike genuinely respects and appreciates others’ earnest efforts to live any truth found in scripture.  
Mike was raised the youngest of six kids in the farm country of West Kaysville Utah.  The love of the outdoors kept him from getting into more trouble than he was naturally inclined to in his youth.  He had a change of heart and was truly born of God when he was nineteen and contemplating serving a mission.  He can relate to the words, “I could remember my pains no more, yea I was harrowed up by the memory of my sins no more… there can be nothing so exquisite and sweet as was my joy!” He served in the Canada Toronto West Mission.   Since that time, he has served in the; Primary, Young Men’s, Elders Quorum, and most notably as the Building Cleaning Coordinator.   He is happily married and the proud father of five.  He was barely educated at Davis High and formally educated at Dixie and Weber State where he graduated with honors.  His background is in accounting and sales.  He is a part owner of his family business Air-O Fasteners.  Pray for his soul and his message.  For truly, if anything is gained by hearing him speak to this group it will be an example of God’s willingness to use the weak and the simple to do his work. 

   His presentation is titled:
Unbelief and Leaven- What It Is, and How It Is a Warning For Our Day!

   Joshua Jessop was taught the gospel of Jesus Christ from his youth by a very knowledgeable father, and so he is familiar with the functions of the church, priesthood, and Kingdom of God, and has been introduced to the way the Lord operates.  Often simple things have profound implications in the gospel, and he is a studier of these things.  He learns by both study and faith, and often pairs study and faith together in his learning to produce astounding results.  While he doesn’t have much experience in sharing the things he has learned, he has a deep desire to share the wondrous simplicities of the gospel.

   His presentation is titled:
The Ten Commandments

   Anna Knecht is a Wife and Mother, raising a family in their Rockland desert home in Southern Utah. She is often found giving tours, sharing the gospel, and showing hospitality to those who come across, or are introduced to, their unique homes found nestled in the side of a large sandstone Rock Village. 
Anna has a passion for seeking truth within the scriptures, and extrabiblical endorsed texts (books mentioned in the Bible, but not included in the canon – like Enoch and Jasher). She has a love of Biblical astronomy and homemaking. She and her husband have made a point of researching the Old Testament and studying and living the Hebrew festivals with her Children and grandchildren. Anna and her husband love working with the youth and sharing their home with many.

   Her presentation is titled:
The Angel Moroni’s Message and the Latter Day Identity Crisis of the Bride

   Benjamin Shaffer was raised in an LDS home by two convert parents.  He has always been a very active participant in the Restored Gospel.  He served a mission for the LDS Church, taught seminary for a time, and even served as a temple worker in the Taipei Taiwan Temple. He is currently a 70 in Christ’s Church. Benjamin graduated from Southern Utah University in 2005 where he studied history and political science.  A few years later, after seeking some counsel from a mentor and friend, Benjamin decided to apply to law school and begin to forge a career path toward practicing law. He was quickly accepted into the James E. Rogers School of Law at the University of Arizona, and graduated with a Jurist Doctorate degree in 2014.  Benjamin now resides in Spanish Fork, UT where he practices law at Shaffer & Briney.  He has a great love for the House of Israel, and likes to write and speak about gospel topics.

   His presentation is titled:
Ancient Peoples & Ancient Scriptures, Reading Between the Lines: Context for a Book of Mormon Exegesis

   Eric Jessen was raised agnostic, but believes the Biblical Scriptures and the Scriptures given by Joseph Smith to be the inspired Word of God.  Eric and his wife are approaching 24 years of marriage and have seven beautiful children together.  Eric is a retired Marine Fighter Pilot, a graduate of TOPGUN, avidly studies the Word of God, and works diligently with his wife to follow the Commandments of God in their family’s daily life. (The spot on the ground in the picture to the left is where Marines raised the flag on Iwo Jima.)

   His presentation is titled:
The First Commandment, Torah, and Passover

The opinions of the conference presenters are their own.
The Restoration Torah Conference, and The Zarahemla Foundation, make no claims to represent the Community of Christ, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, or any other entity.

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