Thursday, December 11, 2014
Tuesday, December 2, 2014
President Kimball said in regards to VT: "Your duties in many ways must be much like those of the [home] teachers, which briefly are 'to watch over the church always' -- not twenty minutes a month but always -- 'and be with and strengthen them' -- not a knock at the door, but to be with them, and lift them, and strengthen them, and empower them, and fortify them -- 'and see that there is no iniquity,...neither hardness,...backbiting, nor evil speaking.'"
This quote is a reminder that VTing is a way to improve/build our relationships with people through real Christ-like service. We are not limited to those we are assigned to by the R.S. Presidency. Rather, to ANYONE the Lord see's fit; regardless of their religion, age, or family status. If we are in tune to the spirit the Lord will direct us to those who need us.
The sisters met in the R.S. room to make FHE Binders. There were close to 40 sisters in attendance. Not everyone made a binder and those who didn't enjoyed chatting and helping others make their binders. We also had delicious cookies, cheesecake and veggies to snack on while we worked/visited.
Here's the PDF file to download and make your own!
Here are some other resources for FHE:
Yearly Lesson Plans
FHE Resource Book
It is a commandment from the Lord that we seek him constantly in humble prayer. When the Savior was with his disciples he taught them to pray and he set the example before them in frequent prayers to his Father. We may be sure, since it is a commandment from the Lord, that there is virtue in prayer, and when we seek the Lord it should be in the spirit of humility and reverence. …
Why Do We Pray
1) I wonder if we ever stop to think why the Lord has asked us to pray. Did he ask us to pray because he wants us to bow down and worship him? Is that the main reason? I don’t think it is. He is our Heavenly Father, and we have been commanded to worship him and pray to him in the name of his Beloved Son, Jesus Christ. But the Lord can get along without our prayers. His work will go on just the same, whether we pray or whether we do not. … Prayer is something that we need, not that the Lord needs. He knows just how to conduct his affairs and how to take care of them without any help from us. Our prayers are not for the purpose of telling him how to run his business. If we have any such idea as that, then of course we have the wrong idea. Our prayers are uttered more for our sakes, to build us up and give us strength and courage, and to increase our faith in him.
- I think it is funny how he says that the Lord knows how to conduct his affairs and how to take care of them without any help from us. And that our prayers aren’t for the purpose of us telling him how to run his business.
2) Prayer is something that humbles the soul. It broadens our comprehension; it quickens the mind. It draws us nearer to our Father in heaven. We need his help; there is no question about that. We need the guidance of his Holy Spirit. We need to know what principles have been given to us by which we may come back into his presence. We need to have our minds quickened by the inspiration that comes from him; and for these reasons we pray to him, that he may help us to live so that we will know his truth and be able to walk in its light, that we may, through our faithfulness and our obedience, come back again into his presence.
- It quickens the mind
3) Few things in life are as important as communing with Deity in prayer. The Lord has drawn over our minds a curtain of forgetfulness so that we do not remember him and our association with him as members of his family in the premortal life. Prayer is the avenue of communication which he has provided for us to commune with him again. Thus, one of the chief purposes of our mortal probation is to see if we can learn with the spirit of prayer always in our hearts so that when the Lord chooses to speak, we shall hear his voice in our souls.
How do we get to the point where when the Lord speaks we will be able to hear him in our souls?
President Joseph Fielding Smith taught that we should make the spirit of prayer “part of our very being.” He set an example of this principle by the way he lived and by the way he prayed—alone, with family members, and in public. He was a good example of praying in many different situations.
There are four prayers that he offers to the Lord that we are going read and as we do I want you to think of similar situations you might have been in when you offered a prayer like his.
After the death of his first wife, Louie, he penned this tender supplication in his journal, providing a glimpse into his personal prayers: “O my Father in heaven, help me, I pray Thee, to so live that I shall be worthy to meet her in eternal glory, to be united again with her, never again to be separated, throughout the countless ages of eternity. Help me to be humble, to trust in Thee. Give me wisdom and knowledge of heavenly things that I may have power to resist all evil and remain steadfast to Thy truth. O Lord, help me, grant unto me eternal life in thy Kingdom. Guide my footsteps in righteousness, give unto me Thy Whole Spirit. Help me to rear my precious babies that they shall remain pure and spotless throughout their lives, and when we have finished our course, take us unto thy Celestial Kingdom, we pray thee. In the name of our Redeemer, let it be, Amen.”
President Smith’s son Joseph Jr. told of a memorable prayer President Smith offered when the two of them were on their way home to Salt Lake City after a trip in eastern Utah. They “became engulfed in a heavy rain storm and took a wrong turn,” ending up in a place called Indian Canyon. “The storm became heavier and the road very muddy and slippery, so much so that it was not only dangerous but impossible to travel farther. The heavy mist shrouded the deep chasm off the one-lane dirt road, and young Joseph Jr. and Dr. David E. Smith who were passengers attempted to push and steady the car for fear of its sliding into the deep canyon below. The wheels began to spin in the mud, and eventually the car came to a standstill. … Joseph recall[ed] that his father said, ‘We have done all we can. We will call upon the Lord.’ He bowed his head in prayer, calling upon the Lord to prepare the way that he might right his mistake and get out of the dangerous canyon and proceed on the journey home. He told the Lord that he had important commitments that needed his attention the next day, and that it was imperative that he be back in Salt Lake City. Miraculously, the storm abated, a wind came up, drying off the road sufficiently that they were able to … eventually get back onto a highway. No sooner had they reached low ground than the storm settled in again, stalling traffic in the immediate area for several hours. As they proceeded down Provo Canyon headed for Salt Lake City, after many hours of extra travel, they were stopped by a highway patrolman who asked where they had come from. When informed that they had come through Indian Canyon the officer said, ‘That’s impossible! It’s reported that all the bridges in that area have been washed out.’ To their surprise, the headlines of the next day’s paper reported 200 cars stranded in the area from which they had escaped.”3
During President Smith’s 62-year apostolic ministry, many of his sermons included public prayers in which he sought the blessings of heaven for members of the Church and people throughout the world. For example, in his first general conference as President of the Church, he petitioned, “I pray that God our Heavenly Father will open the windows of heaven and pour out upon his children in all the earth those great and eternal blessings which will better their lot temporally and spiritually.”
President Smith’s prayers revealed the depth of his testimony and his love for his Father in Heaven and his Savior.
President Boyd K. Packer, who was called to serve in the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles when Joseph Fielding Smith was President of the Church, said: “It was an experience to hear President Joseph Fielding Smith pray. Even when he was past ninety he would pray that he would ‘keep his covenants and obligations and endure to the end.’”5
What is the season of prayer?
The season for prayer is always.
4) Some of us may have the idea that the season of prayer is when we arise in the morning, and when we are about to retire at night when our work is done, and that there is no other season for prayer. But I say unto you, and I have good backing for it, that the season for prayer is always.
He goes on to talk about Amulek from the Book of Mormon teaching the poor Zoramites. These Zoramites were cast out of the synagogues because of their poorness and they were upset because they weren’t able to go to the Ramiumptum to do their prayers. Amulek taught them that we should pray always.
“Yea, cry unto him for mercy, for he is mighty to save; yea, humble yourselves and continue in prayer unto him; cry unto him when ye are in your fields, yea, over all your flocks; cry unto him in your houses, yea, over all your household, both morning, mid-day, and evening; yea, cry unto him against the power of your enemies; yea, cry unto him against the devil, who is an enemy to all righteousness. Cry unto him over the crops of your fields, that ye may prosper in them; cry over the flocks of your fields, that they may increase. But this is not all; ye must pour out your souls in your closets and your secret places and in your wilderness; yea, and when you do not cry unto the Lord, let your hearts be full, drawn out in prayer unto him continually for your welfare, and also for the welfare of those who are around you.”
5) I think that is very excellent doctrine, and I read it to impress upon your minds the season of prayer. The season of prayer is in the morning before the family separates. A good time for prayer is when you assemble at the table before you partake of the morning meal, and let the members of the family take turn in the praying. That is the season of prayer. The season of prayer for the merchant is in the morning when he goes to his place of business and before he begins his day’s work, over his merchandise. The time of prayer for the shepherd, is when he is out with his flocks watching over them. The time for the farmer to pray is when he goes with his plow into the field, when he goes to sow his grain, and when he goes to gather his harvest. And if a man will pray as he is commanded to do in this passage of scripture which I have read, then he more than likely will be found in all things righteously keeping the commandments of the Lord.
When are some good times in our own lives when we could pray?
(my kids- all the time)
Teaching our Children
… It is the duty of parents to teach their children to pray as soon as they commence to understand. Let them form the habit of approaching their Father in heaven, and with the understanding of the reason for prayer. If this habit is formed in childhood, it may remain through mature years, and the man or woman who has earnestly sought the Lord and thanked him for blessings, may expect that the Lord will not forsake them in the hour of need.6
In our prayers we should pour out our souls in thanksgiving.
Being Thankful in Our Prayers
How careful we should be to cultivate, through the medium of a prayerful life, a thankful attitude. I believe that one of the greatest sins of which the inhabitants of the earth are guilty today is the sin of ingratitude, the want [or lack] of acknowledgment, on their part, of the Lord and his right to govern and control.12
In our prayers we should pour out our souls in thanksgiving for life and being, for the redeeming sacrifice of the Son of God, for the gospel of salvation, for Joseph Smith and the mighty work of restoration brought to pass through him. We should acknowledge the hand of the Lord in all things and thank him for all things both temporal and spiritual.
How does our attitude change when we “pour out our souls in thanksgiving” to our Heavenly Father?
We should plead with Heavenly Father for all our righteous desires.
We should plead with [Heavenly Father] for faith and integrity and for every godly attribute, for the triumph and success of his work, for the guidance of his Holy Spirit, and for salvation in his kingdom. We should pray for our families, for our wives and children, for food and shelter and clothing, for our business concerns, and for all our righteous desires.
Joseph Fielding Smith Prayed…
“I pray that the blessings of heaven may be and abide with us and all men. O that the heavens might pour down righteousness and truth upon all the world! O that all men everywhere might have a listening ear, and that they might heed the words of truth and light which come from the Lord’s servants! O that the Lord’s purposes among all people in every nation might speedily be fulfilled! I pray for the members of the Church, who are the saints of the Most High, that they may be strengthened in their faith, and that desires for righteousness may increase in their hearts, and that they may work out their salvation with fear and trembling before the Lord.
I pray for the good and the upright among all people, that they may be led to seek truth, to sustain every true principle, and to further the cause of freedom and justice. In these troublesome and difficult times, I pray that all men may be guided by that light which lighteth every man who cometh into the world, and that they may gain thereby the wisdom to solve the problems which beset mankind. I beseech a gracious Father to pour out his blessings upon all men, upon the young and old, upon those who have cause to mourn, upon the hungry and needy, upon those who are entrapped in unfortunate circumstances and unwholesome environments, and upon all who need aid, and help, and succor, and wisdom, and all those good and great things that only he can give. Along with all of you, I have love and concern and compassion for our Father’s children in all the earth, and pray that their conditions may be bettered both temporally and spiritually; I pray that they may come unto Christ, and learn of him, and take his yoke upon them, that they may find rest to their souls, for his yoke is easy and his burden is light. I pray that the Latter-day Saints and all who will join with them in keeping the commandments of the Father of us all may so live as to gain peace in this life and eternal life in the world to come- all of which I ask in humility and in thanksgiving, and in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ. Amen.”
In this prayer he is praying for others I feel his love when I read this. When we pray maybe we could think more about others and thanksgiving for all we have.
Before we go I want us to silently ponder these questions.
Are we in possession of the spirit of prayer? Have we made it a part of our very being? Are we in touch with our heavenly Father through the Holy Spirit, or are we not?
Missionary Moment: Amy Perkins
After her mission she wanted to have an opportunity to share her testimony again. She was on her way to Canada for her grandpa's funeral so she got prepared to talk to someone on the plane. She had written her testimony in a Book of Mormon and had brought along pass along cards in the hopes of finding someone to share them with. She ended up sitting next to an older man who had just lost his wife and was on his way home from a trip he went on to get away. She ended up asking him questions like did he think he would ever see her again and had the opportunity to talk to him about the plan of salvation. They had a really great talk. When it was time to land they handed out the customs cards and she felt prompted to memorize his address which she thought was extremely weird, but was able to memorize the first part of his address. They landed and on her way to her uncle's house who she was staying with, her dad asked her about her flight and she told him about the man she had met and then said she had felt prompted to memorize his address. Her dad asked her what the address was and as she was telling him she was reading the address of the house right next door to her uncle! It happened to be her uncle's next door neighbor. She went over to his house with her dad who is a convert and he was able to share his conversion story. As they were leaving, the missionaries happened to be riding by and they were able to come meet this man.She doesn't know the end of the story. Her uncle moved so she doesn't have any way to get in touch with him, but she felt so grateful to feel the presence of the Lord in her life, and how clearly His hand was involved in that experience.
“The scornful often accuse prophets of not living in the 21st century or of being bigoted. They attempt to persuade or even pressure the Church into lowering God’s standards to the level of their own inappropriate behavior, which in the words of Elder Neal A. Maxwell will ‘develop self-contentment instead of seeking self-improvement’ and repentance. Lowering the Lord’s standards to the level of a society’s inappropriate behavior is—apostasy.”
“Some members don’t realize they are falling into the same snare when they lobby for acceptance of local or ethnic traditions of their fathers that are not in harmony with the gospel culture. Still others, self-deceived and in self-denial, plead or demand that bishops lower the standard on temple recommends, school endorsements, or missionary applications. It isn’t easy being a bishop under that kind of pressure."
Do you have a mantra? A mantra comes from Hinduism or Buddhism and is often used in yoga during meditation or running to keep you from quitting. Its definition is a statement or slogan repeatedly frequently. Happyblackwoman.comdescribes a mantra as a phrase or statement to inspire courage to overcome fear.
Elder Robbins reminds us of the first and second commandments Jesus Christ gave us found in Matthew 22:37-39. The first is, “Love God with all your heart.” The second is, “Though shalt love thy neighbor as thyself.” He reminds us that pleasing others before God is inverting the first and second great commandments. We often make this mistake because of the fear of mean. We fear confrontation, we fear offending, we fear embarrassing others, and we fear being accused of judging or being called “self-righteous.”
Think of some situations where either you or someone you know demonstrated followed the first commandment before the second commandment. Someone who demonstrated courage by choosing what the Lord would have them do, even in the face of what others may think about them.
Elder Robbins says, “While it certainly takes courage to face perils, the true badge of courage is overcoming the fear of men.” The scriptures and this talk are full of examples of great men and women who overcome to the fear of men to do what was pleasing unto God (think Nephi, Esther, Captain Moroni), and others who didn’t (think King Noah, Peter, King Herod, etc.).
Sometimes we show courage by choosing to live our lives the way the Lord would have us do even if friends, family, or coworkers may not understand our choices. Sometimes we show courage by remaining silent in a charged situation. But sometimes we may find it necessary to speak up in order to keep God’s first commandment. How can we tell if we should speak up? With a prayer in your heart for help in guiding your words, use Christ’s example to know how to speak to others.
If you find yourself in a situation where you need to speak up in order to follow the first commandment, develop a mantra to help you have courage and try to speak as Christ would speak.
Some mantras we developed in class were:
“Be a first time listener.”
“It doesn’t matter what others think.”
“It doesn’t matter how fast or slow, only what direction you go.”
Use one of these mantras, or develop one of your own, when deciding which way you face. Don’t let peer pressure let you invert or confuse the order of the first two commandments.
Tuesday, November 25, 2014
Monday, November 3, 2014
Taught by Katie Warnock
He begins his talk by sharing a story of the writer William Saroyan, who just before
he died of cancer in 1981 told the press “Everybody has to die, but I always
believed an exception would be made in my case. Now what?”
QUOTE 1. The “now what” in the face of death in this life and the
“now what” in contemplation of life after death are at the heart of the
questions of the soul that the restored gospel of Jesus Christ
answers so beautifully in the Father’s plan of happiness.
In this life we laugh, we cry, we work, we play, we live, and then we
die. Job asks the succinct question, “If a man die, shall he live
again?”2 The answer is a resounding yes because of the atoning
sacrifice of the Savior. Part of Job’s diverse preamble to the question
is interesting: “Man that is born of a woman is of few days. … He
cometh forth like a flower, and is cut down. … There is hope of a
tree, if it be cut down, that it will sprout again, and that the tender
branch thereof will not cease … and bring forth boughs like a plant.”
Our Fathers plan is about families. Several of our most poignant scriptures
use the concept of the tree with its roots and branches as an analogy.
In the closing chapter of the Old Testament, Malachi, in describing the
Second Coming of the Savior, vividly uses this analogy. Speaking of the
proud and wicked, he notes that they shall be burned as stubble and “that
it shall leave them neither root nor branch.” Malachi closes this chapter
with a reassuring promise from the Lord.
“Behold, I will send you Elijah the prophet before the coming of the
great and dreadful day of the Lord:
“And he shall turn the heart of the fathers to the children, and the
heart of the children to their fathers, lest I come and smite the earth
with a curse.”
We hear more about Elijah at the beginning of the Restoration when
Moroni reemphasized this message in his first instructions to Joseph Smith
Elijah was an Old Testament prophet through whom mighty miracles were
performed. He sealed the heavens, and no rain fell in ancient Israel for 3 ½
years. He multiplied a widow’s meal and oil. He raised a young boy from
the dead, and he called down fire from heaven in a challenge to the
prophets of Baal. At the conclusion of Elijah’s mortal ministry, he “went up
by a whirlwind into heaven” and was translated.
Christians and Jews everywhere accept the Old Testament account of
Elijah. In fact the Jews have been waiting for Elijah’s return for 2.400
years. To this day, at their annual Passover Seders, or dinners, they set a
place for him and go to the door hoping he has arrived to herald the
coming of the Messiah.
We learn from Joseph’s revelations that Elijah held the sealing power of
the Melchizedek Priesthood and was the last prophet to do so before the
time of Jesus Christ.
We know that Elijah has already returned and it occurred in the Kirtland
Temple on April 3, 1836. At that time he declared he was fulfilling
Malachi’s promise and committed the priesthood key for sealing families in
QUOTE 2: The Prophet Joseph Smith explained, “The spirit, power,
and calling of Elijah is, that ye have power to hold the key of the
fullness of the Melchizedek Priesthood and to obtain all the
ordinances belonging to the kingdom of God.”
This sacred sealing authority is essential for priesthood ordinances to be
valid and binding both on earth and in heaven.
In another talk, given 16 years ago by Elder Russell M. Nelson titled “A
New Harvest Time” he spoke about how this restoration was accompanied
by what is sometimes called the Spirit of Elijah—which is a manifestation
of the Holy Ghost bearing witness of the divine nature of the family. Hence,
people throughout the world, regardless of religious affiliation, are
gathering records of deceased relatives at an ever-increasing rate.
In a footnote for that talk I found the following information very interesting.
It says genealogy is now among the fastest growing applications for
noncommercial use of computers in the home. The popularity of a recent
television series entitled Ancestors was unprecedented. It was subscribed
to by 340 of 353 PBS television stations—the highest response rate in their
history. In connection with that effort, a book was prepared entitled
Ancestors: A Beginner’s Guide to Family History and Genealogy. More
than 35,000 copies of it were sold in less than a year. Some experts have
estimated that 20 percent of Internet use pertains to genealogy.
President Howard W. Hunter declared in November 1994: ‘We have
BEGUN using information technology to hasten the sacred work of
providing ordinances for the deceased. The role of technology has been
accelerated by the Lord himself. However we stand only on the threshold
of what we can do with these tools.
And that was almost 20 years ago!! Think about how much has changed
for us and our children in the last 2 decades. In the 19 years since this
prophetic statement, the acceleration of technology is almost unbelievable.
In Elder Cook’s talk he relayed a conversation he had with a 36-year old
mother of young children.
She exclaimed to me “Just think – we have gone from microfilm readers in
dedicated family history centers to sitting at my kitchen table with my
computer doing family history after my children are finally asleep.”
Sisters!! Family history centers are now in our home. I like to think of it, the
same way I think about my Thanksgiving Point family membership. I take
my kids to the gardens, or the dino museum or the childrens museum
when I have an hour to kill here or an hour to spare there simply because
I’m not concerned with the box office ticket price. I have already invested in
the membership. The hour has already been paid for, we go in for free.
Just like my TP membership, we can use those 10 spare minutes before
baby wakes up to hop on our computer and index. Because instead of
having to find a babysitter and drive to the dedicated family history center –
we have our family history membership at home. We can open up our
computer and work immediately – with no cost to us!
The church is doing a phenomenal job of pushing the work forward. They
are doing their part to make it easier, more accessible and more
convenient for us to attend the temple and do the work needed for those
beyond the grave. Elder Cook points out that less than a year after
President Monson was called as an Apostle, there were only 12 operating
temples. During the period President Monson has served in the senior
councils of the church, 132 of our 142 operating temples have had their
initial dedication, and 26 more temples have been announced and are in
various stages of completion. 85% percent of the Church members now
live within 200 miles of a temple.
So take note, theyre making this possible. Now it is up to us to follow their
lead and do our part.
Our part can be manifested in many ways. It is up to us evaluate our lives
individually and see how we can best serve at this time in our lives.
Whether it is going to the temple to do baptisms, initiatories, sealings or
endowments – actually being a set apart temple worker – sitting at our
kitchen table after bedtime indexing or researching our ancestors – or
teaching our youth about the vital part they play in this work.
In October 2011 conference Elder Bednar gave a talk titled “The Hearts of
the Children Shall Turn” which I would urge you all to read. It is
INCREDIBLE and still so pertinent to our lives today. Quote #3 comes from
this talk – who has quote #3?
QUOTE 3: “It is no coincidence that FamilySearch and other tools
have come forth at a time when young people are so familiar with a
wide range of information and communication technologies. Your
fingers have been trained to text and tweet to accelerate and
advance the work of the Lord – not just to communicate quickly with
your friends. The skills and aptitude evident among many young
people today are a preparation to contribute to the work of
As leaders and parents we can teach the youth that they can learn about
and experience the spirit of Elijah. By responding to the invitation faithfully,
just like us, their hearts can be turned to the fathers. The promises made
to Abraham, Isaac and Jacob will be implemented in THEIR hearts, as
they can be in ours.
Elder Bednar promises that “your patriarchal blessing, with its declaration
of lineage will link you to these fathers and be more meaningful to you.
Your love and gratitude for your ancestors will increase. Your testimony of
and conversion to the Savior will become deep and abiding. And I promise
you will be protected against the intensifying influence of the adversary. As
you participate in and love this holy work, you will be safeguarded in your
youth and throughout your lives.”
How powerful is that! Don’t we all want that for our children, our families,
It seems to me that taking the time to be an example of this work for our
children, and teaching them what they can do to further the work should be
at the forefront of our minds. By looking to the past for our roots we will be
planting our family trees firmly in the gospel, where our future branches will
have a deep and everlasting foundation to draw from.
If I could leave with one thing to remember it is this quote from Elder Cook
"Temple and family history work is not just about us. Think of those on the
other side of the veil waiting for the saving ordinances that would free them
from the bondage of spirit prison. Prison is defined as a state of
confinement or captivity. Those in captivity might be asking William
Saroyan’s question: Now What?"
I bear my testimony that I know the “NOW WHAT” is up to us. Heavenly
Father has faith in us and has given us the tools that we need to help
those who have gone on before us. I am grateful for what I can do to
further this crucial work and the blessings that I receive from my efforts.
Skyler Brunner taught us about Indexing.
Wednesday, October 22, 2014
Saturday, October 18, 2014
Temple Moment by Karen Miller
"Being together in the temple with our whole family was a heavenly experience. Not just because we were in the Celestial Room together, but because we were all there, worthy, together as a family. The preparation for temple worthiness begins when your children are young." What a blessing to get a glimpse of what Eternity will be like!
Dean M. Davies
Taught by Tara GotfredsonVideo
"Brethren, members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints are a covenant-
making, commandment-keeping people. I cannot think of any law, any commandment,
which, if kept faithfully, is easier to keep and which provides greater blessings than
the law of the fast. When we fast and give an honest fast offering, we contribute to the
Lord’s storehouse what would have been expended on the cost of the meals. It does not
require monetary sacrifice in excess of what would be expended normally. At the same
time, we are promised the extraordinary blessings." Dean M. Davis, Law of the Fast
Ask the sisters: What does it mean to fast?
- Go without food and water for 24 hours
- Attend fast and testimony meeting
- Give a generous fast offering to the church (it should cover at least the cost of two
Faithful Church members everywhere assist by fasting each month—abstaining from food
and water for 24 hours—and then giving to the Church a financial fast offering equal to at
least the value of the food they would have eaten.
Although I fast every month and give a fast offering, I have not had a particularly meaning
and testimony strengthening experience with fasting. I think in part because I have not
approached the fast correctly.
Ask the sisters: Why do you fast? What do you fast for?
Have a sister read these scriptures:
Isaiah Chapter 58
“Is not this the fast that I have chosen? to loose the bands of wickedness, to undo the heavy
burdens, and to let the oppressed go free, and that ye break every yoke?
“Is it not to deal thy bread to the hungry, and that thou bring the poor that are cast out to
thy house? when thou seest the naked, that thou cover him; and that thou hide not thyself
from thine own flesh?”
Isaiah then went on to list the wonderful blessings promised by the Lord to those who obey
the law of the fast. He says:
“Then shall thy light break forth as the morning, and thine health shall spring forth
speedily: and thy righteousness shall go before thee; the glory of the Lord shall be thy
“Then shalt thou call, and the Lord shall answer; thou shalt cry, and he shall say, Here I am.
“And if thou draw out thy soul to the hungry, and satisfy the afflicted soul; then shall thy
light rise in obscurity, and thy darkness be as the noonday:
“And the Lord shall guide thee continually, and satisfy thy soul in drought.”
Through fasting, we are making the sacrifice necessary to have Heavenly Father answer
"Caring for the poor and needy contemplates both temporal and
spiritual salvation. It includes the service of individual Church members as they personally
care for the poor and needy, as well as formal Church welfare, which is administered
through priesthood authority. Bishop Dean A Davies:
Central to the Lord’s plan for caring for the poor and needy is the law of the fast.
“The Lord has established the law of the fast and fast offerings to bless His people and to provide a
way for them to serve those in need.”3
As followers of the Savior, we have a personal responsibility to care for the poor and needy.
Faithful Church members everywhere assist by fasting each month—abstaining from food
and water for 24 hours—and then giving to the Church a financial fast offering equal to at
least the value of the food they would have eaten.
Ask the sisters: How do you make fasting more meaningful?
As a fast day approaches, think about a purpose for your fast. That purpose could be
as simple as expressing thanks. with Him the purpose of your fast (see D&C 59:14).
Whenever hunger pains come, use them as a reminder to pray again about the purpose of your fast.
• Begin your fast by praying. Talk with Heavenly Father and share
• Fast for two meals, or about 24 hours. (Those with medical concerns should follow doctors’ orders)
• Give a generous fast offering.
• If you feel impressed to do so, bear your testimony in fast and testimony meeting.
• During the time you would have spent preparing food and eating,
engage in worthy pursuits such as studying the scriptures, writing in your journal, or serving others.
• After Sunday meetings, end your fast by praying.
• Commit to being a better person, and make plans with God on how you will
Why do we need to give a fast offering?
Our fast offerings are ways of showing sacrifice to the Lord. He will bless us with
the spirit when we are willing to sacrifice.
From Elder Holland’s talk last week in General Conference:
“In what would be the most startling moment of His early ministry, Jesus stood up in His
home synagogue in Nazareth and read these words prophesied by Isaiah and recorded in
the Gospel of Luke: “The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he hath anointed me to
preach the gospel to the poor; he hath sent me to heal the brokenhearted, to preach
deliverance to the captives, and … set at liberty them that are bruised.”
Thus the Savior made the first public announcement of His messianic ministry. But this
verse also made clear that on the way to His ultimate atoning sacrifice and Resurrection,
Jesus’s first and foremost messianic duty would be to bless the poor, including the poor in
Commitment: In your next fast, find a way to make it more meaningful and try to give a
more generous fast offering.