Of course, it’s almost Tuesday now, but that couldn’t be helped.
So, I’ve been thinking of starting “Mormon Monday” for a while now. I have hesitated partly because the term Mormon is a nickname for our religion, which is actually called The Church of Jesus-Christ of Latter-day Saints, and I don’t want to perpetuate the somewhat misleading nickname (we don’t worship a guy named Mormon). However, I couldn’t very well do Latter-day Saint Lednesday or Luesday or Lunday because none of those days exist. So, Mormon Monday it will be.
Why do it at all? You wonder. Well, basically, for two reasons: 1. My faith is a huge part of who I am, but I have shared very, very little of it on my blog. I think it’s time to fix that. 2. I know there are misunderstanding and misconceptions out there about our church, so I thought this would be a nice way to share some of the things we actually do believe, and give people an opportunity to see what it is we stand for, and how it is we strive to live.
To that end, each Monday I will share a quote from a recent General Conference. “What,” you are wondering, “is a General Conference?”
I call it internet church. If I had satellite television I’d call it satellite t.v. church. People in Utah call it stay at home on your couch in your jammies church because it is broadcast on local channels there.
General Conference is where the the general leadership of the church, as opposed to the local and regional leadership, speak to the Latter-day Saints at large. Think mass with the Pope and a bunch of Cardinals or whatever. Except it is much less ritualistic and there are also women in leadership positions who speak to us. It takes place one weekend each April and October, and there are two two-hour sessions on both Saturday and Sunday. There is also an extra two hour session for the men on Saturday night (because apparently they need extra guidance?). Actually, McH and I call it the Priesthood Smackdown because the general authorities, including the president of the church (prophet), are always telling the men not to beat their wives, stay away from porn, don’t yell at your children, and be more responsible in your church responsibilities. When they have the extra session for women once a year, they just tell us how wonderful we are. Go figure. Anyway, calling it a smackdown is very irreverent of me, so I am a bad example. Just had to acknowledge that up front.
I give you all of this back story basically to explain that if something is said from the pulpit in a General Conference session it is safe to say it is doctrine. So I will quote things from General Conferences past as doctrinally sound examples of our beliefs. And, on future Mormon Mondays, I promise you won’t get all of this back story. Just the quotes. Easy reading. Really short sometimes, even. Oh, and Mormon Monday will not now, nor will it ever be, a platform for Mitt Romney. Not saying I don’t like him and not saying I do. Actually, I’m not sure what I think of him at this point, but I don’t want anyone to think, “Oh yeah, we’re getting close to the election year, so she’s going to start stumping for the Mormon dude.” No. Way. Not on Mormon Monday, anyway.
So, without further ado, here is this week’s Mormon Monday quote by Mary N. Cook, the second counselor in the Young Women General Presidency:
“For the Strength of Youth* reminds us that ‘being part of a family is a great blessing . . . Not all families are the same, but each is important in Heavenly Father’s plan’ ([pamphlet, 2001], 10).
“All families need strengthening, from the ideal to the most troubled. That strengthening can come from you. In fact, in some families you may be the only source of spiritual strength . . .
“It is important to establish patterns of righteousness in your own life, which will enable you to set a good example for your family, whatever form your family may take.
“The example of your righteous life will strengthen your family . . .
“Elder Rober D. Hales said: ‘If the example we have received from our parents was not good, it is our responsibility to break the cycle . . . Each person can learn a better way and in so doing bless the lives of family members now and teach correct traditions for the generations that follow’ (“How Will Our Children Remember Us?” Ensign, Nov. 1993, 10).”
*For the Strength of Youth is a pamphlet published by our church for the youth (imagine!) that kind of spells out the basics of our morals and values.
If you are interested in reading her whole talk, you can click here.
And George, if you’re out there, Tewt the Newt says hello.