Mormon Monday: Family Home Evening

Our church has this program we call Family Home Evening.  President Gordon B. Hinckley explained it this way:

“We have a family home evening program once a week across the Church in which parents sit down with their children.  They study the scriptures.  They talk about family problems.  They plan family activities and things of that kind.  I don’t hesitate to say if every family in the world practiced that one thing, you’d see a very great difference in the solidarity of the families of the world (interview, Boston Globe, 14 Aug. 200).

So Family Home Evening is supposed to be every Monday night.  It has been this way since 1915.  No Latter-day Saint congregation anywhere on the planet plans church activities on Monday nights, because Mondays are family night.  The church is so dedicated to this program of family night that BYU students are even grouped into “families” within their congregations, and they are supposed to meet together on Mondays for Family Home Evening.

In a meeting in Reykjavik, Iceland on Sept. 11, 2002, President Hinckley said, “What is the great strength of [this] Church? . . . It is the emphasis which we place on families . . . Keep your families close together and love and honor your children.”

We aren’t as consistent as I’d like to be about holding our Family Home Evenings.  One of our children is very, very good about reminding us and guilting us if we don’t have it, but her idea of FHE is that we all just sit down and play a board game.  She loves board games.  The problem there, of course, is that we have a wide variety of ages in our family and the younger three children really aren’t quite ready to play Bananagrams, Scrabble, Apples to Apples, or any of her other favorites.  It is one of the downsides to having so many children.

So tonight for FHE I think we are going to spend some time brainstorming activities that we could all enjoy and planning the upcoming holiday season before it hits. 

In the meantime, what suggestions do you have for activities that would interest a family with children ranging in ages from 2.5 to 12?  Please keep in mind we live in the middle of nowhere and it takes us close to an hour to get anywhere.

And George, if you’re out there, Tewt the Newt misses the sun.

To read the article on Family Home Evening from which the above quotes were pulled, click here.

5 thoughts on “Mormon Monday: Family Home Evening

  1. Have you looked into geocaching? It isn’t something you do at home, but everyone in our family loves it and we always have a good time doing it. There is often a car ride here or there doing it, but that is a good time to chat and share our week with each other. So far we have only searched for caches, but soon we want to plant and maintain one of our own.

    I am interested in other replies to this post as we are always looking for family activities that please all ages.

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  2. One thing we have enjoyed for family home evening is looking up the temple web page, and clicking on a random one. We have a blanket that is a map of the world, so we put a checker or something on the country to show where it is. We make sure to point out something interesting about the temple (design, when it was built, length of time between announcement and finish, etc.) A little geography, a little temple discussion, no stress on anybody!

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  3. Do you have any corn mazes in your area? We always try to get to a corn maze or haunted house this time of year. Of course, with little ones the “scares” need to be mild.

    We like taking walks this time of year, too, to enjoy the fall leaves. Just a couple of ideas for ya!

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  4. Novella

    Maybe you could do a scavenger hunt. Have the older children maybe even help you set it up once and then reverse it the next time and have the younger ones set it up for the older ones. I always enjoyed scavenger hunt. You could even take things out of one place and put them in another. Leave clues through the house and yard or just make a list yourself and have the children work as a team to find them.

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  5. We were always big trivial pursuit fans and name that tune. But your ages won’t work for that yet. What about a “Our Family’s Got Talent” competition? American Idol-style?

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