LDS Women: A Force for Good in Social Media

We all know the power of social media when it’s used to the fullest potential. Not only does social media connect us together, it also helps us share our faith and experiences. In short, it helps us share goodness with one another and the world around us.  While it can be overwhelming to know where to begin, it certainly helps to see how other LDS women around the world are tapping into this power.

Pacific LDS WomenAn inspiring example of this comes from a young New Zealand woman of Tuvaluan heritage named Kaveinga Anilli Lisati. She had never written a blog post before, but felt the need for a blog focusing on faith-filled stories from the Pacific Islands. She is following Elder David A. Bednar‘s apostalic call to flood the earth with goodness on social media. And, as one reader put it, “I feel the push from the apostles and prophets more so now to SPEAK up and using social media for what is right and not stand idly by.” We couldn’t agree more! LDS women are indeed feeling a renewed push by inspired apostles and prophets to speak up, stand up, and use social media for righteous purposes.

Mormon Women Stand has many LDS women in its community from all over the world, and will continue to unite with other LDS women one blog post and one Facebook post at a time. We will keep flooding the earth with the words of prophets, apostles, Jesus Christ, pure doctrine, and our Heavenly Father’s plan of salvation on social media. We’re in! Are you?

The Pacific Mormon Newsroom says this about social media:

The Church does not endorse individual member’s or groups’ blogs, pages or groups. Pacific Mormon Newsroom is pointing to this one as an example of Mormons striving to build and share their faith.

Other examples include a Facebook page for Auckland young adults, another for Church members in New Zealand’s Bay of Plenty, and Mormon Women Stand.

The Church maintains a number of official websites, including: Mormon.org, LDS.org, MormonNewsroom.org, Mormon Channel, FamilySearch.org and the Mormon Tabernacle Choir YouTube channel.

Read or view Elder Bednar’s talk “To Sweep the Earth as with a Flood.”

Read a Mormon Newsroom article titled, “Guidelines and helps for Latter-day Saints participating in online conversations about the Church.”

In a Mormon Channel interview, Julie B. Beck was asked what she thought about social media and blogging:

Member Question:  “I listened to a talk by Elder Ballard and he really encouraged us to use the Internet to share the gospel.  … My question for you is how can we use the Internet to share the gospel and be a force for good?

Sister Beck’s response was instructive and a must-read for all LDS bloggers:

A photograph of spring blossoms combined with the words “Learn it, live it, share it.”We have our agenda and our agenda should be the Lord’s agenda — which is to prepare ourselves for the blessings of eternal life and help other people receive the blessings of eternal life. If you study section one of the Doctrine and Covenants, the Lord says: I need faith to increase in the earth. I need to establish my covenant. He talks about people who don’t give heed to the words of the prophets and apostles and have strayed from the Lord’s ordinances and they seek not the Lord, or to establish His righteousness — and every man walketh in his own way in the image of his own god. Now, a blog could do that, but if we are walking in the image of ‘our’ God and we’re walking in His way, then His Spirit will guide us and help us prioritize this work.

Blogging is a new opportunity. It also comes with a responsibility. A lot of people dived in with the idea of the opportunity, without recognizing it has this other side of the sword. There is a responsibility and an accountability that comes with it.

Another quote that I would teach from this is one that President Kimball gave and we read it in “Daughters in My Kingdom”. This is a quote all the sisters should know, where he says: 

“Much of the major growth that is coming to the Church in the last days will come because many of the good women of the world (in whom there is often such an inner sense of spirituality) will be drawn to the Church in large numbers. This will happen to the degree that the women of the Church reflect righteousness and articulateness in their lives and to the degree that the women of the Church are seen as distinct and different—in happy ways—from the women of the world.”

“Where does a blog fit into this? Think about the influence Latter-day Saint women could have if they are articulate. Not just about anything, but they are articulate about the things they stand for, which are encapsulated here (holding up Daughters in My Kingdom) and in the scriptures. If they can express their faith. If they can express what families mean to them. If they can serve in a way to seek out and help those who are in need of those covenants and ordinances and the blessings of the gospel in a distinct and different and happy ways, from the women of the world — those are some principles.

So we look at, one, the time —  the amount of time it takes. It shouldn’t distract us from the essentials or the necessaries, but is something that we can do to share the gospel if it is focused correctly. What is the tone of our conversation on a blog? I’ve read a lot of blogs, just to become acquainted with this. Are we representing ourselves as harried, as silly, as distracted? Or are we representing ourselves as who we really are?  Latter-day Saint women are generally well informed, intelligent — we’re challenged by our life experiences, but we triumph. We are problem solvers — we know how to do that. So we come from a long line of strong, faithful, purposeful women. Some of the stories in here (Daughters in My Kingdom) can maybe influence the tone of how we represent ourselves.

This is a great opportunity, but we also have the responsibility. We’re accountable for managing it in a way that will bless others and will show us as being distinct and different in happy ways.

Mormon Channel: What you write on the Internet lasts forever and it is always searchable and people, thousands and thousands of people have access to that, not just one person that you have a conversation with. And so it means the stakes are higher.

 Sister Beck:

“They are higher. And we will be accountable for that. If you read 2 Nephi 26 — this is aA white smartphone icon combined with the quote, “Who will people decide you are if all they know is what is on your social media?” sobering one, when we’re talking about blogs. I hope sisters look at this and think about this in terms of this opportunity — and I’m calling it an opportunity, that in verse 29 the Lord commanded that there shall be no priestcrafts, “For behold priestcrafts are that men preach and set themselves up for a light unto the world that they may get gain and praise of the world, but they seek not the welfare of Zion”. Then we hear a little bit more, “but the laborer in Zion shall labor for Zion”. We’ve covenanted to give all that we have to help the Lord and bless His kingdom.  There is such an opportunity to build and labor for Zion, to help the Lord establish His Kingdom on the earth and I think that our women understand in their heart about this covenant we’ve made in the temple — to help the Lord build His Kingdom. What a chance!

What powerful words from an articulate and eloquent female leader in our Church! If you’re a blogger (or thinking of starting a blog), what will you do to best represent being a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints? What parts of Sister Beck’s council resonate with you? Most importantly, how do you plan on using social media to share goodness and stand for truth and righteousness?

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Angela Fallentine

Angela Fallentine is the Co-Founder of Mormon Women Stand. She is a native of Alberta, Canada and has loved living in New Zealand and briefly in Europe. She is a researcher and analyst for a think tank in New York which focuses on social issues, religious freedom and international policy affecting the family at the United Nations.