Greetings friends! General Conference is off to a spiritual and exciting start. If you did not have a chance to listen to the Saturday morning session, please go back and listen to Pres. Nelson’s opening remarks. They are important! He let it be known that the Sunday Morning session of Conference will be a Solemn Assembly and that we will have the great opportunity to participate in the Hosanna Shout.
Here are some links to refresh your mind on what these are:
It should also be noted that tomorrow is Palm Sunday — the day of Christ’s Triumphal Entry into Jerusalem for the last week of his mortal life — the start of Holy Week. When He entered the people shouted:
“And the multitudes that went before, and that followed, cried, saying, Hosanna to the Son of David: Blessed is he that cometh in the name of the Lord; Hosanna in the highest” (Matthew 21: 9).
Traditionally for the Hosanna Shout you wave a white handkerchief, but if you don’t have one you can wave your hand instead. I’m scouring the drawers this afternoon. I know we have a stash of Grandpa’s handkerchiefs somewhere.
I hope you and your family enjoy Conference and that you will leave your thoughts with us here.
If you have yet to start your preparations (ahem, that’d be me), you still have time. My friend Montserrat Wadsworth has written a 30 day study guide over on her blog, A Gospel Centered Home. She has some great ideas to get you started.
Pres. Nelson issued four challenges to the sisters in the Saturday night Women’s Session of General Conference. They are:
1. Participate in a 10 day social media fast — removing negative influences from your life, and things that cause you to have impure thoughts.
2. Read the Book of Mormon between now and the end of year (that’s 84 days as of today).
3. Establish a pattern of regular temple attendance. If you’re far from a temple study the standard works and other church materials on temples.
4. Participate fully in Relief Society.
Saturday night and over the course of Sunday, my Facebook feed filled with girlfriends signing off of social media for 10 days. But, let’s not forget the other three parts of the challenge. I wanted to focus first on the Book of Mormon reading challenge — as that is something I can do without having to rearrange life too much. Continue reading →
Here are just a few thought’s I’ve had this Sunday afternoon, they are in no particular order.
Thought One: I posted a meme with a quote by Pres. Howard W. Hunter on the Millennial Star Facebook page a few weeks ago which said, “We need to be kinder with one another, more gentle and forgiving.”
Along the lines of forgiveness and kindness, in my Gospel Doctrine class today I included a story of Edward Partridge, the first bishop of the Church. He was one of the leaders of the Church in Missouri and in charge of helping people settle into land and life there. He was a target of mob violence and suffered a tarring and feathering. He said of the incident,
“I told [the mob] that the Saints had suffered persecution in all ages of the world; that I had done nothing which ought to offend anyone; that if they abused me, they would abuse an innocent person; that I was willing to suffer for the sake of Christ; but, to leave the country, I was not then willing to consent to it. I bore my abuse with so much resignation and meekness, that it appeared to astound the multitude, who permitted me to retire in silence, many looking very solemn, their sympathies having been touched as I thought; and as to myself, I was so filled with the Spirit and love of God, that I had no hatred towards my persecutors or anyone else” (Our Heritage: A Brief History of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, chapter 4).
In the age of social media mob violence, we need to be kinder, gentler and more forgiving of each other. We will be more effective as Latter-day Saints by being kinder to people than by being argumentative and rude. Continue reading →
Tomorrow we get to sit and listen to General Conference. Including the Women’s Session from last week, there are about 11 hours in which we will be instructed, counseled, and taught as members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. I know many of us look forward to this weekend with anticipation.
This year I have approached Conference differently. In years past, I just sort of showed up and was wiling to hear whatever was said. If I learned something, great! And I always have. This year, however, I decided to do what many people do, and that is, come to General Conference with questions. I’m hoping that with a few particular points to focus on, in addition to learning what is presented, I will come away from Conference a bit more enriched and a bit more focused for the next six months.
In the Book of Second Nephi 2: 26-27, we read, “Wherefore, men are free according to the flesh; and all things are given them which are expedient unto man. And they are free to choose liberty and eternal life, through the great Mediator of all men, or to choose captivity and death, according to the captivity and power of the devil; for he seeketh that all men might be miserable like unto himself.” The words of the prophets and other leaders of the Church are the way to eternal life. By choosing to follow their council and guidance, we are choosing to follow the Lord. But we have to choose to follow. Nephi also teaches us in these verses that we are here to “act” and “not to be acted upon.” Continue reading →