Monthly Archives: March 2015

LDS Family Activity Guide to Celebrating Easter Week

6884507944_3d01f71c8e_z“This Easter, as you remember the Resurrection and the price paid and the gift given through the Atonement, ponder what the scriptures teach of those sacred events. Your personal witness of their reality will be strengthened. They must be more than principles you memorize. They must be woven into the very fiber of your being as a powerful bulwark against the rising tide of abomination that infects our world.” (Richard G Scott, He Lives! All Glory to His Name!, April 2010)

This week, families all over the world will be celebrating the glorious atonement and resurrection of Jesus Christ, the Savior of the world. The week before the Savior’s resurrection contain many important events from His triumphant entrance into Jerusalem to His suffering in the Garden of Gethsemane to His humiliation, and crucifixion.

Many resources available help make worshiping the Savior central to our Easter holiday celebration. Mormon Women Stand admin Montserrat Wadsworth put together a fantastic daily activity with video and scriptures to help her children understand the divine mission of the Savior. She has used this for the past 15 years to make Easter a week-long celebration with her family.

You can find this great resource online here.

11081021_10205298531917256_617847173736843474_nMormon.org has released a video and a daily meme, as a part of the #BecauseHeLives campaign, teaching about the week before the Resurrection. Be sure to check up on Facebook each day this week, either on the MWS or Mormon.org Facebook pages to see what happened this day in history the week before Jesus Christ’s resurrection and share it with your family.

Happy celebrating!

 

 

 

 

Honoring Christ’s Atonement by Living His Gospel

SaviorTrying to fully explain the wondrous and miraculous gift that was given to all the world through Jesus Christ’s Atonement is like trying to explain the unexplainable—it can’t be done. However, each individual can honor that Atonement by keeping the Lord’s commandments and living His gospel to the very best of her/his ability.

In my own case, and in the words of the hymn, “I Stand All Amazed,” I literally marvel and can hardly believe “that He would descend from His throne divine, to rescue a soul so rebellious and proud as mine.” (Hymn #193). Yet Jesus, the God and creator of every living thing, the only perfect and sinless individual to walk the face of the earth, willingly took upon himself the sins of the entire world. He had the power to back out anytime if He wanted, but chose not to because He knew His full purpose, and fulfilled it. Continue reading

President Henry B. Eyring: The Comforter

president-henry-b-eyring-lds-462519-galleryYou “promised to help!”  “My message to you tonight is that you can be an important part of His giving comfort to those who need comfort.” The words of President Henry B. Eyring’s address at the Women’s Session of LDS General Conference keep echoing in my mind and in my heart. Our lives here in mortality are not all about us. We have been asked of the Lord to be unselfish, caring, and concerned for others. We are asked to look around us at the trials and difficulties so many carry, and try to help them at each opportunity we have. Why? Because as members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, we have covenanted to do so. Continue reading

Carole M. Stephens: One As Sisters in God

sister-carole-stevensCarole M. Stephens, First Counselor in the Relief Society General Presidency, talked about empathy and the need to be one as sisters in God.

She began with a focus on the first verse of the song, “The Family is of God, and the second paragraph to The Family: A Proclamation to the World.

She first quoted the song:

“Our Father has a family. It’s me!
It’s you, all others too: we are His children.
He sent each one of us to earth, through birth,
To live and learn here in fam’lies”

Next she tied the second paragraph of the Family Proclamation into the song. It reads:

“ALL HUMAN BEINGS—male and female—are created in the image of God. Each is a beloved spirit son or daughter of heavenly parents, and, as such, each has a divine nature and destiny.”

Continue reading

Bonnie L. Oscarson: Be Defenders of the Family Proclamation

bonnie-oscarson-md-1190455Twenty years ago I sat with my sisters-in-law on a pew at the Church watching the General Relief Society session being broadcast to our stake center. I remember the questions I had in my heart and the overwhelming feelings I had of inadequacy. I was one month away from giving birth to my first child. How could I, a young seventeen-year-old girl, be a good mother? As I listened to President Gordon B. Hinckley read the words of The Family: A Proclamation to the World peace came into my heart. I knew that prophetic document would be the guide my husband and I could follow in raising our children and teaching our family. All these memories came flooding back as I listened to Sister Bonnie L. Oscarson, Young Women General President, speak of the truths and principles contained in the Family Proclamation. Sister Oscarson said,

“Little did we realize then, how very desperately we would need these basic declarations in today’s world as the criteria by which we could judge each new wind of worldly dogma coming at us from the media, the internet, scholars, TV and films, and even legislators. The proclamation on the family has become our benchmark for judging the philosophies of the world and I testify that the principles set forth within this statement are as true today as they were when they were given to us by a prophet of God nearly 20 years ago.”

Continue reading

Cheryl A. Esplin: Defend Truth and Light

sister-cheryl-a-esplin-lds-797675-galleryCheryl A. Esplin, Second Counselor, Primary General Presidency was the first speaker of the Women’s Session of LDS General Conference held March 28, 2015. I don’t remember the last time I was so moved by a speaker. I interpreted it as a call to arms. It was a powerful, bold reiteration of what we have been told many times, yet delivered in a manner to shake us to the core. The irony of that is that Sister Esplin is a quiet, mild mannered, sweet sister who at first glance would not appear to be capable of such an oration. When Sister Esplin speaks, she is filled with the Spirit of the Lord.

Sister Esplin taught that it is our great responsibility to seek truth. We must live the truth we know, and defend it. She said we must be filled with gospel light and truth, and warned that Satan tries to separate us from that truth. She talked about how the world has many doubters and critics, and that we must do our best to hold on to the light and truth we have. Sister Esplin said that we must find moments to seek greater light, and when we find it, we must live it, share it, and defend it. Continue reading

Stand and Defend the Family: General Women’s Session Recap

A combined Primary, Young Women and Relief Society choir from stakes in Salt Lake, Murray, Kamas and Park City performs during the General Women's Session of the 185th Annual General Conference of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, held in the Conference Center in Salt Lake City on Saturday, March 28, 2015.  (Kristin Murphy, Deseret News)Everything we stand and defend here on Mormon Women Stand was highlighted during this evening’s General Women’s Session of General Conference. We stand with the counsel and direction of Prophets of God to defend home and family, and we are covenant “home-makers.” It was wonderful to hear a representative from each of the auxiliaries stand as a living witness on behalf of these eternal truths. We have covenant responsibility to both stand as witnesses of God and His teachings and to also reach out and minister to those in need of comfort. 

It is a sacred privilege to have prophets of God in our midst. Since the Church made the decision to give the meeting General Conference “session” status, it is all the more appropriate that the prophet preside over the meeting and that members of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles be present.

Sisters, we have been called upon to stand with the prophet and apostles. The women of the Church were yet again invited to become strong defenders of the family as outlined in the “The Family: A Proclamation to the World.” Let’s do this together!

Continue reading

No Innuendo in Media

innuendo meme 8 copyWe love our media. We get excited for big blockbuster movies. We love holding movie nights with our friends and families. We like to relax with our favorite TV shows each night. New and popular books are fun and great for family time and discussion. Music is important to almost everyone. We talk about our favorite band and favorite type of music. We even identify ourselves by our favorite band. But, have we stopped to think about the content of our favorite movies, television shows, books, websites, and music? Does it fit within the parameters for media taught by our prophet?

In April 2011, Thomas S. Monson declared:

“Many movies and television shows portray behavior which is in direct opposition to the laws of God. Do not subject yourself to the innuendo and outright filth which are so often found there. The lyrics in much of today’s music fall in the same category” (Thomas S. Monson, “Priesthood Power“, Apr. 2011 General Conference).

Note that he says “Do not subject yourself to the innuendo and outright filth which are so often found there.” (Emphasis added.) Innuendo is defined as, “a statement which indirectly suggests that someone has done something immoral, improper, etc.” (Merriam-Webster Dictionary Online).

This means that our prophet has told us not to indulge in media that even has the suggestion of immorality. If we are not to be reading, viewing, or listening to the suggestion of immorality, then we are certainly not supposed to partake of media that states it outright.

This makes one wonder what would be left to watch or read. We know that most movies, TV shows, many newer novels, and much of the modern music not only suggests immoral behavior, but celebrates it.

Joseph Smith taught that:

“A religion that does not require the sacrifice of all things, never has power sufficient to produce the faith necessary unto life and salvation” (Lectures on Faith, 6:7, as related by Ezra Taft Benson (then Of The Council of the Twelve Apostles), This is a Day of Sacrifice, Apr. 1979 General Conference).

file4061261807233Indeed, to follow this advice from our prophet today, we must make sacrifices. We should ask ourselves if there are any sacrifices the Lord would ask of us that we would refuse. Do our covenants with the Lord mean more to us than the excitement and delight we get from our media that contains innuendo, or more direct references to immorality?

Once we firmly determine that “I will not subject myself to any media that has innuendo or worse in it”, we may find some initial awkwardness, but in time and in retrospect we’ll likely look back and see ourselves having been like those in the scriptures who dreamed of feasting, but awoke and felt hungry and unsatisfied.

We all want our homes to be the temple it needs to be for our children’s sake. We can help that happen when we follow the prophet, and are careful to play music, watch television and movies, view websites, or play video games that only fit within the Lord’s standards.

True Mercy and True Love

mormon women and the priesthoodThe Lord is merciful. Everyone knows this and everyone, including the non-religious, shout it from the house tops. Those shouting about mercy declare that we are okay; we are enough; who we are today is good, and Jesus will take care of the rest later. This teaching contradicts scripture and keeps us from Christ’s true mercy.

I read a comment once that said something like this: the Church wants to change these people as if there was something wrong with them. God loves them and He made them that way, they do not need change. They need acceptance.

And I thought, yes, that is it. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is about change. It’s about becoming—becoming like God. When we think and do things that are contrary to the character of God, we sin. Jesus Christ came to redeem us from those sins. He came to change our hearts, our actions, and ultimately our minds. Continue reading

Relief Society: A Holy Organization

relief societyMany don’t understand the majesty of which the Relief Society organization was founded. Over the years, we have lost the significance of the Relief Society. We have forgotten that we were organized “under the priesthood, after the pattern of the priesthood.” That gives us a power unlike any other women’s organization in the world. What exactly does under the priesthood, after the pattern of the priesthood mean? Continue reading