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What’s in a Name? Mormon Women Stand is now Latter-day Saint Women Stand

Latter-day Saint Women StandMormon Women Stand has chosen to change our official name to “Latter-day Saint Women Stand,” in keeping with the recommendations of President Russell M. Nelson’s August 16, 2018, Mormon Newsroom directive:

“The Lord has impressed upon my mind the importance of the name He has revealed for His Church, even The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. We have work before us to bring ourselves in harmony with His will. In recent weeks, various Church leaders and departments have initiated the necessary steps to do so. Additional information about this important matter will be made available in the coming months.”

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints updated its preferred ways of being referenced in the media and other channels. This particular “Style Guide,” announcement is significant because most members of the Church will need to learn how to rephrase common nicknames we commonly use for the Church and its members. A few of the more common phrases the Church has preferred we avoid are: “the LDS Church,” the Mormon Church,” “Mormonism,” and “Mormons.” As a preferred replacement for these words, “The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints,” or “Latter-day Saints.” See the official site for more details: https://www.mormonnewsroom.org/article/name-of-the-church

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While the World Rejects Absolute Truth, We Stand for It!

Is there is a such thing as absolute truth? Those of us who believe in the restored Gospel of Jesus Christ declare unequivocally that, yes, truth exists! God is real and so is eternal truth. Unfortunately, the world is quickly going in the opposite direction. ‘My truth’ and ‘your truth’ are common statements heard today. We are no longer supposed to make judgments of any kind, but instead should be accepting of just about everything. Moral relativism is the prevailing standard.

Dallin H. Oaks defined moral relativism this way: “More and more of our citizens support the idea that all authority and all rules of behavior are man-made and can be accepted or rejected as one chooses. Each person is free to decide for himself or herself what is right and wrong.”

But, you may ask, shouldn’t each person be allowed to decide what they believe to be right and wrong? Yes, when speaking of individuals establishing their own belief system. But societies have to have a foundation; they have to be based on something in order to function. Without a moral foundation, freedom cannot exist, as Elder D. Todd Christofferson taught: Continue reading

Local Member’s Thoughts About President Nelson’s Recent Visit to South Pacific

President Nelson SamoaImagine a lush, tropical jungle, tamed by careful hands, adorned with jewel-toned flowers and surrounded by sun-kissed, sparkling waters that ebb and flow to reveal every shade of blue in a crayon box. The happiest people on earth live here, always smiling and laughing. You will find these happy people and their island paradise nestled in the South Pacific. They affectionally call their home Sāmoa, which can be interpreted as sacred heart.

Much like the tropical landscape, members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints have flourished here. Roughly 42% of the nation’s population belongs to the Church. But it hasn’t always been so.  In the mid-1900s, Church members were often persecuted. My husband’s great-grandfather, Malietoa Fitisemanu, was chosen to be king, with a caveat that he denounce his LDS faith. In a very kingly fashion, he replied, “I would rather be a deacon in the Lord’s Church than king of Sāmoa.”

President Nelson SamoaMembership in Sāmoa has steadily grown since that time, resulting in a warm welcome for our prophet, President Russell M. Nelson, on his recent visit. Thousands gathered to sit at his feet and hear his voice. Rich, harmonious music filled the night air, including a stirring medley of The Battle Hymn of the Republic and Let Us All Press On. Continue reading

Appreciating, Loving and Respecting Fathers

It always saddens me when a television show or movie has a father character that is silly, lazy, and unintelligent in a ‘humorous’ way; especially when done in a children’s show. The wife is smarter, prettier, and thinner than her husband, which gives her reason to belittle and control him. Which then, opens up the narrative for children to disrespect their fathers. This is not how families should act, and this is not how husbands and fathers should be treated.

Whenever a real-life story about a father doing something deemed wonderful goes viral, it feels like half of the responses are, “Why is he being applauded for doing something he should already do?” There are literally hundreds of articles that compliment and encourage mothers, so why can’t we also acknowledge examples of good parenting done by men? Both mothers and fathers make sacrifices for their families, work hard physically, and suffer mentally. No role is better or harder than the other. Each role is different, yes, but both deserve positive acknowledgment, even for tasks that they “should be doing anyway.”   Continue reading

The Fallacy of “Separation of Church and State”

Whenever one speaks of religion and government in the same breath, five words inevitably follow: “separation of church and state.” This concept has infiltrated every corner of our society despite being an enormous deception. The term “separation of church and state” does not appear in the Constitution or the Declaration of Independence and the current meaning is not what the Founders intended. It is critical to understand the relationship between religion, freedom, and government, so let’s examine the issue.

The First Amendment states: “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof…” In other words, Congress cannot establish an official state religion (such as was found in England at the time) or make any law that infringes upon the citizens’ right to freely practice their faith. It is a simple statement that is highly disregarded today, and it says absolutely nothing about prohibiting government from recognizing God. Continue reading

America is Still a Promised Land

Essential to understanding religious freedom is understanding the uniqueness of this land we call America. This is not just another piece of earth. The Book of Mormon declares it to be a choice land (Ether 2:12). Here the Garden of Eden was found, and here the New Jerusalem will be built. This American continent is still a promised land, just as it was in prior dispensations.

As a promised land, this continent has a destiny and a purpose, which Elder Mark E. Petersen described as follows: “For centuries (the Lord) preserved this land from colonization by unwanted groups. Then he set up this nation by his own power and for his own purpose. That purpose was to provide the free conditions under which he could restore his gospel in the last days” (BYU, 7/4/76).

President Benson also taught, “Only in this foreordained land, under its God-inspired Constitution and the resulting environment of freedom, was it possible to have established the restored church” (October 1987 General Conference). Continue reading

A Call to Defend Religious Freedom

Tucson TempleThere is one area which Latter-day Saints must pay greater attention – protecting religious freedom. Did you know that  The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has a website dedicated to teaching how we can stand for religious freedom? Did you know that members of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles speak frequently on this critical topic? Why is this such a vitally important issue?

Let’s go straight to the Savior’s own words to find out more. He said that He established the Constitution and raised up wise men – the Founding Fathers – for that very purpose (see D&C 101:80). That alone shows us that we should revere the Constitution and the Founding Fathers because they were given to us by the Savior himself! Joseph Smith set an example for us all to follow when he said, “I am the greatest advocate of the Constitution of the United States there is on the earth” (Documentary History of the Church, 6:56). Continue reading

Opinion: #SexStrike – A Hollywood hashtag I can only ‘kind’ of agree with…

There aren’t many movements coming out of ‘La-La Land’ that I can get on board with, but I think I just may have found one, though not with the same motivation or end result that some have in mind.

Recently, in response to a pro-life bill passed in a southern state, Hollywood erupted in protest threatening to pull their industry from that state unless a woman’s ultimate right to decide what happens to her body was fully restored (code words for they want unfettered abortion).  As part of this uproar, a new hashtag was born: #SexStrike. Many who make their living in front of the camera are encouraging females to show their power by refraining from having sexual relations until they are given full autonomy over their bodies and their reproductive rights.

At first glance, I thought… well, I won’t tell you what I thought… but on taking a second look, I decided that this movement, a call to abstain from sex, might be something I could fully get behind, with a couple of twists. Continue reading

‘Devilish Infirmities’ Plaguing Our Day

Certain Women and Their Infirmities

During the ministry of Jesus Christ, “certain women were mentioned alongside the twelve apostles. But it was their special calling as the first to see the empty tomb and witness the resurrection of Jesus Christ that makes us wonder what made these women so special in the eyes of our Savior.  The scriptures explain…

“And it came to pass..that he (Jesus) went throughout every city and village, preaching and shewing the glad tidings of the kingdom of God: and the twelve were with him, And certain women, which had been healed of evil spirits and infirmities, (Luke 8:1. Emphasis added) 

What do these “evil spirits and infirmities” have to do with how these women were prepared for their unique missions? And more importantly, why did the writers of the gospels feel the need to point out their personal trials?

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Faith in Jesus Christ is the Key Defense Against Spiritual Decline

In April 2019 general conference, President Henry B. Eyring talked about the differences between a family being spiritually minded and having spiritual decline. Being spiritually minded simply requires faith in Jesus Christ and through that faith, we can feel the Holy Ghost guide us. Spiritual decline, on the other hand, comes in many different forms and branches us off onto all sorts of different paths. President Eyring used the example of the spiritual decline in the Book of Mormon 200 years after Christ visited those ancient people (see 4th Nephi):

  • Pride crept in.
  • The people stopped sharing what they had with each other.
  • They began to see themselves in classes above or below each other.
  • They began to diminish in their faith in Jesus Christ.
  • They began to hate.
  • They began to commit all kinds of sin.

Anyone can look at personal examples of spiritual decline and fit them into one of the above categories. President Eyring said that the underlying cause of spiritual decline is “Satan trying to lead good people down a path to sin and thus to lose the influence of the Holy Ghost.” No matter which category spiritual decline starts in, it all ends the same with losing the influence of the Holy Ghost. How can we prevent that from happening? How can we bring back spiritual mindedness if decline does happen? Continue reading

April 2019 General Conference: Many Called, But Who’s Listening?

Many Called, Are We Ready to Listen? 

“How long can rolling waters remain impure? What power shall stay the heavens?” (D&C 121:30)

Change has been rolling over the Lord’s Church since President Nelson became the prophet. Each new announcement has called upon the Saints to roll the work forward at an unprecedented pace. These changes brought new life to the way we worship, learn, and organize and keep us from becoming stagnant. Some expected April Conference to keep the waters rolling. But instead of rolling out more changes, we were humbled to hear the loving voice of the Lord calling us to change ourselves and Come Unto Him! His fervent pleading with his children reminds us that it is through Jesus Christ that we can change and become like our Heavenly Parents. To do this, he has asked us to strengthen home and family, repent, and come unto Christ…. but are we listening?

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