If you follow the NothingWavering.org feed (which is where most of you are reading this), then you would have seen the most recent 9th Ward cartoon. It was particularly funny for me since I am currently a bishop, and there are bunch of guys who get together most Thursday nights and play basketball at the church. Thankfully we haven’t gotten into a fight like that 🙂
Monthly Archives: April 2009
I don’t have anything deep to say about this, but it’s something I’ve thought about before and figured I’d put up something quick about it.
I’m certainly not the only one who has thought of this, but there seems to be a progression of why we do things. Sometimes we do things because we have to. Sometimes we do things because we want to. I suppose there are a variety of reasons why we might do things, and I’ve listed a few of them below.
- We do it because we feel we have to because of family and/or friends
- We do it because we are scared of potential consequences
- We do it because we don’t see any drawback to doing it
- We do it because we want to be obedient, and we have a testimony that obedience to that principle really does bring blessings
Is one reason better than another? If we are being obedient isn’t that good enough? What about the good gift/bad gift scriptures? If you are doing something for the wrong reason, is it worth doing at all? If you are doing something because of someone else, does the “believe on their words” gift of the Spirit apply?
Mormon Times has a short, but good, article about how the Church has changed as media has changed. There is a link to a lengthy document (113 pages) by Associate Professor Sherry Baker that covers the period from 1827 to 2007. It covers printing the Book of Mormon, to creating a temple video, to using the Internet.
The timeline focuses on technological and organizational developments rather than on what is written or broadcast in the media. It charts the church’s adoption of new technologies including telegraph, film, radio, television and Internet. It also looks at the introduction of church-produced media such as Mormon Tabernacle Choir broadcasts, Web sites like FamilySearch and the beginnings and endings of church newspapers and magazines. She also notes major events that received extensive coverage by non-Mormon media.
I haven’t had time to read the entire thing, but I’ve skimmed over it, and it looks very interesting.
First of all, let me say that I am not a musician, and not a singer. I took piano lessons when I was a kid, and can read basic music. I have an ok voice, but probably only because I sing a lot, not because I’m in any choirs (which I’m not).
I love to sing!
It doesn’t really matter what I’m singing, I just love singing. Since I’m at the front every Sunday, and generally close to the microphone at the pulpit, I’ve had numerous people tell me that when they are out in the hall, they distinctly hear my voice over the sound system.
I think the main reason that I love to sing, is that it gives me a great feeling. I almost always feel happy when I sing, and more often than not, I feel the Spirit when singing Church hymns. I thought the music from this past General Conference was tremendous. I downloaded Sweet Hour of Prayer, This Is My Beloved Son, and We Thank Thee , O God, for a Prophet from the Sunday Morning session and have listened to them several times.
The words of Doctrine and Covenants 25: 12 say it best:
For my soul delighteth in the song of the heart; yea, the song of the righteous is a prayer unto me, and it shall be answered with a blessing upon their heads.
My life has certainly been blessed because of the songs of the Church!
Thanks to LDS Media Talk, I found out there is a General Conference sub-domain. I also found what appears to be an official Mormon Tabernacle Choir YouTube channel.
I’ve added this to my Official web sites of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints page. There are now 68 official church sites and sub-domains listed.
I’ve seen this site before, but somehow missed adding it to my Official web sites of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints page.
Since this past Sunday was Easter, I didn’t have any morning administration meetings. I still went a little early, and I took my two sons with me. I also didn’t have any meetings afterwards, and I drove them home. On the way home, my 4-year-old son said that he didn’t like Mommy’s “no fun” rule for Church.
Son: I can’t believe Mommy has a rule that says no fun at Church!
Me: No fun at church? You can still have fun at Church. You get to see all your friends and say, “Hi” to them.
Son: Daddy, it’s no fun saying, “Hi” to people.
True enough! 🙂
And just to clarify, the rule is about running around and having fun in a boisterous way…
Here is the program that we used for our Sacrament Meeting on Sunday. Afterward, I’ve made a few notes:
Program Title: I Believe In Christ
Musical Number: Ward Choir—I Know That my Redeemer Lives
Judith Robinson Walton, “The Mother,” Ensign, Dec. 1982, 49
She went unnoticed.
Amid the angry mob she was
But another witness.
Yet those who knew
Beheld a softly anguished face,
Whose sorrow raged, but silently.
A knowledge that this must be
For a time had steadied her.
And so she watched,
As, taunted, bound, and lifted high,
He stood his pain, and hers, and theirs.
The thing she could not bear to see.
For a moment
She remembered a time before;
Then, too, He was
About his Father’s business.
Yet, that time,
The parting short and painless.
In new and sudden grief
She bowed her head.
Above the rabid cries of men
Her silent prayer, a plea.
Must this suffering be?
Might not a mother’s hands
Some comfort give?
The son looked down
And kindly drew her eyes to his.
She saw her answer there.
She could not ease these final steps,
And, at length, withdrew her gaze.
Her son, His Son: His will be done.
She turned and walked with John.
Read to add testimony
Congregational Hymn: 191 Behold the Great Redeemer Die
John 20:1-3, 9-17
1 THE afirst day of the week cometh Mary Magdalene early, when it was yet bdark, unto the sepulchre, and seeth the cstone taken away from the dsepulchre.
2 Then she runneth, and cometh to Simon Peter, and to the other adisciple, whom Jesus loved, and saith unto them, They have taken away the bLord out of the sepulchre, and we know not where they have laid him.
3 Peter therefore went forth, and that other disciple, and came to the sepulchre.
4 So they ran both together: and the other disciple did outrun Peter, and came first to the sepulchre.
9 For as yet they knew not the scripture, that he must arise again from the bdead.
10 Then the disciples went away again unto their own home.
11 ¶ But Mary stood without at the sepulchre weeping: and as she wept, she stooped down, and looked into the sepulchre,
12 And seeth two aangels in white sitting, the one at the head, and the other at the feet, where the body of Jesus had lain.
13 And they say unto her, Woman, why weepest thou? She saith unto them, Because they have taken away my Lord, and I know not where they have laid him.
14 And when she had thus said, she turned herself back, and asaw Jesus standing, and knew not that it was Jesus.
15 Jesus saith unto her, Woman, why weepest thou? whom seekest thou? She, supposing him to be the gardener, saith unto him, Sir, if thou have borne him hence, tell me where thou hast laid him, and I will take him away.
16 Jesus saith unto her, Mary. She turned herself, and saith unto him, Rabboni; which is to say, aMaster.
17 Jesus saith unto her, aTouch me not; for I am not yet bascended to my cFather: but go to my brethren, and say unto them, I ascend unto my dFather, and your Father; and to my God, and your God.
Read to add testimony of the resurrection
Musical Number: Look on Him and Live
In April 6, 1985, 13 days before his death, Bruce R McConkie, an Apostle of the Lord Jesus Christ delivered a stirring testimony. I will be reading part of his address.
We do not know, we cannot tell, no mortal mind can conceive, the full import of what Christ did in Gethsemane. We know he sweat great gouts of blood from every pore as he drained the dregs of that bitter cup his Father had given him. We know he suffered, both body and spirit, more than it is possible to suffer, except it be unto death. We know that in some way, incomprehensible to us, his suffering satisfied the demands of justice, ransomed penitent souls from the pains and penalties of sin, and made mercy available to those who believe in his holy name.
As near as we can judge, these infinite agonies- this suffering beyond compare- continued for some three or four hours… he was led away with a rope around his neck, as a common criminal, to be judged… they took him to Annas, to Caiaphas, to Pilate, to Herod, and back to Pilate. He was accused, cursed, and smitten. Their foul saliva ran down his face as vicious blows further weakened his pain-engulfed body. With reeds of wrath they rained blows upon his back. Blood ran down his face as a crown of thorns pierced his trembling brow…But above it all he was scourged, scourged with forty stripes save one, scourged with a multithonged whip into whose leather strands sharp bones and cutting metals were woven. Many died from scourging alone, but he rose from the sufferings of the scourge that he might die an ignominious death upon the cruel cross of Calvary. Then he carried his own cross until he collapsed from the weight and pain and mounting agony of it all.
Finally, on a hill called Calvary…the Roman soldiers laid him upon the cross. With great mallets they drove spikes of iron through his feet and hands and wrists. Truly he was wounded for our transgressions and bruised for our iniquities. Then the cross was raised that all might see and gape and curse and deride. This they did, with evil venom, for three hours from 9 A.M. to noon.
The heavens grew black. Darkness covered the land for the space of three hours, as it did among the Nephites. There was a mighty storm, as though the very God of Nature was in agony. And truly he was, for while hanging on the cross for another three hours, from noon to 3 P.M., all the infinite agonies and merciless pains of Gethsemane recurred. And finally, when the atoning agonies had taken their toll- when the victory had been won, when the Son of God had fulfilled the will of his Father in all things- then he said, “It is finished” (John 19:30), and he voluntarily gave up the Ghost
Read to add testimony of Atonement
Congregational Hymn: 136 I Believe in Christ
Elder McConkie continues:
After some thirty-eight or forty hours- three days as the Jews measured time- our Blessed Lord came to the Arimathaean’s tomb, where his partially embalmed body had been placed by Nicodemus and Joseph of Arimathaea. Then, in a way incomprehensible to us, he took up that body which had not yet seen corruption and arose in that glorious immortality which made him like his resurrected Father. He appeared unto Mary Magdalene and many others, and ascended into heaven, there to sit down on the right hand of God the Father Almighty and to reign forever in eternal glory. His rising from death on the third day crowned the Atonement. Again, in some way incomprehensible to us, the effects of his resurrection pass upon all men so that all shall rise from the grave.
As Adam brought death, so Christ brought life; as Adam is the father of mortality, so Christ is the father of immortality. And without both, mortality and immortality, man cannot work out his salvation and ascend to those heights beyond the skies where gods and angels dwell in eternal glory.
The Atonement of Christ is the most basic and fundamental doctrine of the gospel, and it is the least understood off all our revealed truths.
I invite you to join with me in gaining a sound and sure knowledge of the Atonement… We must search the scriptures, accepting them as the mind and will and voice of the Lord
Bruce R McConkie went on to say : And now, as pertaining to this perfect atonement, wrought by the shedding of the blood of God- I testify that it took place in Gethsemane and at Golgotha, and as pertaining to Jesus Christ, I testify that he is the Son of the Living God and was crucified for the sins of the world. He is our Lord, our God, and our King. This I know of myself independent of any other person. I am one of his witnesses, and in a coming day I shall feel the nail marks in his hands and in his feet and shall wet his feet with my tears. But I shall not know any better then than I know now that he is God’s Almighty Son, that he is our Savior and Redeemer, and that salvation comes in and through his atoning blood and in no other way. God grant that all of us may walk in the light as God our Father is in the light so that, according to the promises, the blood of Jesus Christ his Son will cleanse us from all sin.
Bishop will close with own comments)
Closing Hymn: 200 Christ the Lord is Risen Today
- The meeting turned out excellent. The three readers/speakers before me bore wonderful testimony of the Savior, his mission, life, and atonement. It was very touching
- The song Look on Him and Live is gorgeous! 4 woman sang it, and I really wanted to applaud when they were done. Bravo!
- I only had a couple of minutes when I was done, and shared a thought based on the Primary Songbook song This Is My Beloved Son. I just wanted to emphasize that even though we have those who have seen Jesus, and we have the testimonies of our prophets and apostles, we, too, can have a witness.
Overall, it was a very good day!
We recently had an activity in the ward where we went through the different aspects of a Family Home Evening. The Young Men President and Young Women President ran the activity portion, and they had a handout with some ideas for Family Home Evening activities. There were no details provided on any of the suggestions. Some of these could be directly tied in to a lesson, others would just be for family fun. Most of them are self-explanatory, but if you want more details, you can do a search online and I’m sure you could find specifics.
Here are the suggestions:
- beach blanket volleyball with water balloons
- water balloon toss
- water gun fight
- flour-filled balloon toss
- egg toss
- relay with sponges and 2 buckets
- races around a high school track
- tricycle races around a high school track
- sack races
- family walk or family hike
- raking leaves contest
- jump in leaf piles
- build a snow fort
- snowball fight
- plan bulbs at the chapel
- clean the chapel
- shovel driveways
- rake leaves
- deliver home-made cookies
- write letters to the missionaries
- deliver sand-art cookies-in-a-jar
- secret service delivery
- invite another family to your Family Home Evening
- scripture pictionary
- scripture story picture guess
- act-out scripture stories
- do as I’m doing
- hide and go seek
- freeze tag
- dance contest
- crab walk race
- sock tag
- balloon toss or balloon keep-away
- bean bag toss
- hidden object search
- tower building contest with recycling
- board games
- mini golf
- make valentines
- dye Easter eggs
- carve pumpkins
- decorate the Christmas Tree
Missionary Preparation Activities
- tie tying contest
- egg frying contest
- Kraft Dinner making contest
- ironing contest
- button sewing contest
- clothes folding relay race