Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Family Home Evening Lesson #80: OPPORTUNITIES TO DO GOOD

1. Opening Prayer

2. Sing "Have I Done Any Good" Hymns pg. 223

3. Read Mosiah 2:17  And behold, I tell you these things that ye may learn wisdom; that ye may learn that when ye are in the service of your fellow beings ye are only in the service of your God.

4. Read and discuss the following from Henry B. Eyring in the May 2011 Ensign:

My dear brothers and sisters, the purpose of my message is to honor and celebrate what the Lord has done and is doing to serve the poor and the needy among His children on earth. He loves His children in need and also those who want to help. And He has created ways to bless both those who need help and those who will give it.

Our Heavenly Father hears the prayers of His children across the earth pleading for food to eat, for clothes to cover their bodies, and for the dignity that would come from being able to provide for themselves. Those pleas have reached Him since He placed men and women on the earth.

You learn of those needs where you live and from across the world. Your heart is often stirred with feelings of sympathy. When you meet someone struggling to find employment, you feel that desire to help. You feel it when you go into the home of a widow and see that she has no food. You feel it when you see photographs of crying children sitting in the ruins of their home destroyed by an earthquake or by fire.

Because the Lord hears their cries and feels your deep compassion for them, He has from the beginning of time provided ways for His disciples to help. He has invited His children to consecrate their time, their means, and themselves to join with Him in serving others.

5. Closing Prayer

Additional Resources: Opportunities to Do Good (Ensign, May 2011)
FHE Resource Book, Lesson 23: Loving Our Neighbors
Serving God by Serving Others

Monday, June 27, 2011

Family Home Evening Lesson #79: THE TEMPLE IS A HOUSE OF GOD

1. Opening Prayer

2. Sing "I Love to See the Temple" Children's Songbook pg. 95

3. Read The Family: A Proclamtion to the World, Paragraph 3   Sacred ordinances and covenants available in holy temples make it possible for individuals to return to the presence of God and for families to be united eternally.

4. Read and discuss the following from the July 2011 Friend:

Everyone must be baptized to return to Heavenly Father. Many of Heavenly Father’s children died without being baptized. After you turn 12, you can be baptized in the temple for those people so they can have the same blessings.

In the temple we also receive an endowment, or gift. This gift is the promise that if we keep the commandments, we can have eternal life.

In the temple a husband and wife can be sealed as a family for time and eternity. That means if they stay worthy, they will be married forever as part of an eternal family.  Everything done in the temple is done by the priesthood—the power and authority of God.

To go inside the temple, you must be at least 12 years old and be baptized and confirmed. You need to believe in Heavenly Father and His Son, Jesus Christ, and in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. You need to strive to live Heavenly Father’s commandments. Your bishop or branch president will interview you to make sure you are worthy to enter the temple, and you will receive a temple recommend to show at the temple. Having a recommend means that you are living the way you should to go inside.

When you stay on the path that takes you to the temple, you will be prepared to go there “to feel the Holy Spirit, to listen and to pray. For the temple is a house of God, a place of love and beauty.”

5. Closing Prayer

Additional Resources: Temples (
A Place of Love and Beauty (Friend, January 2002)
The Holy Temple, a Beacon to the World (Ensign, April 2011)

Tuesday, May 10, 2011


1. Opening Prayer

2. Sing "Joseph Smith's First Prayer" Hymns pg. 26

3. Read Joseph Smith History 1:17   I saw two Personages, whose brightness and glory defy all description, standing above me in the air. One of them spake unto me, calling me by name and said, pointing to the other— This is My Beloved Son. Hear Him! 

4. Read and discuss the following from the May 2011 Friend:

Do you know what the word restore means? It means to bring something back to the way it was.

When Jesus Christ was on the earth He taught His gospel. He taught faith, repentance, baptism by immersion, and the gift of the Holy Ghost. He gave His Apostles His authority, which is the priesthood of God. The Church of Jesus Christ was on the earth.

After Jesus Christ’s death and resurrection, His Apostles went forth to preach the gospel of Jesus Christ, but many people rejected them. The Church of Jesus Christ and the priesthood were taken from the earth for hundreds of years.

In 1820, young Joseph Smith was reading in James in the New Testament. He read, “If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God” (James 1:5).

Joseph wanted to know which church to join. He decided to do what the scripture said.

Joseph went to a grove of trees one spring morning and knelt in prayer to ask of God. As he was praying, a bright light descended. In that light stood two glorious heavenly beings: Heavenly Father and His Son, Jesus Christ.

Joseph asked Them which church he should join. Jesus Christ told Joseph to join none of the churches.

Three years later, Joseph was visited by the angel Moroni, who taught him about the Book of Mormon and showed him where the golden plates were buried.

John the Baptist and the Apostles Peter, James, and John came to earth to ordain Joseph Smith to the priesthood of God. The priesthood was once again on the earth.

The true Church was restored—or brought back—to the earth. We are blessed to have the restored Church on the earth. The Lord’s Church today is called The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

5. Closing Prayer

Additional Resources: Joseph Smith Seeks Wisdom in the Bible (Gospel Art Picture Kit)
The First Vision (Gospel Art Picture Kit)
Restoration  (Friend, May 2007)

Friday, April 15, 2011


1. Opening Prayer

2. Sing "He Sent His Son" Children's Songbook pg. 34

3. Read Articles of Faith 1:3  We believe that through the Atonement of Christ, all mankind may be saved, by obedience to the laws and ordinances of the Gospel.

4. Read and discuss the following from the April 2011 Friend:

What would you be willing to give for someone you love very, very much? Our Savior, Jesus Christ, loves us so much that He gave His own life for us.

Heavenly Father knew that if we sinned and made mistakes, we would not be able to live with Him again. So His Son, Jesus Christ, offered to be our Savior. Heavenly Father chose Him to save us because He was the only one who could live a life without sin.

Jesus suffered and died to save us from death and our sins. This loving act is called the Atonement. Because of the Atonement, we can repent of our sins, be forgiven, and become clean and pure, as Jesus is.

Jesus was crucified and died, but after three days He was resurrected. He lived again! Because He was resurrected, we will be resurrected too. This means that our bodies and spirits will be reunited forever.

Truly, Jesus Christ is our Savior and Redeemer. He is the perfect example for all of us. He taught us how to treat one another with kindness. He taught us how to serve one another. He taught us how to become better. We won’t be able to live a perfect life as He did, but we can return to live with Jesus and Heavenly Father by obeying the commandments and doing our best. We need to follow Jesus Christ every day.

5. Closing Prayer

Additional Resources: Heavenly Father Provided Us a Savior (FHE Resource Book)
Jesus Praying in Gethsemane (Gospel Art Picture Kit)
The Beautiful Day (Friend, April 2011)
Christ's Resurrection (Friend, March 1986)

Friday, April 1, 2011

Family Home Evening Lesson #76: PROPHETS IN THE LAND AGAIN

1. Opening Prayer

2. Sing "We Thank Thee, O God, for a Prophet"  Hymns pg. 19

3. Read Doctrine & Covenants 1:38  What I the Lord have spoken, I have spoken, and I excuse not myself; and though the heavens and the earth pass away, my word shall not pass away, but shall all be fulfilled, whether by mine own voice or by the voice of my servants, it is the same.

4. Read and discuss the following from Jeffrey R. Holland in the October 2006 Ensign

In my own expression of testimony and gratitude for the messages and meaning of general conference, may I suggest three things these twice-yearly gatherings declare to all the world.

First, they declare eagerly and unequivocally that there is again a living prophet on the earth speaking in the name of the Lord. And how we need such guidance! Our times are turbulent and difficult. We see wars inter-nationally and distress domestically. Neighbors all around us face personal heartaches and family sorrows. Legions know fear and troubles of a hundred kinds . . . It is no trivial matter for this Church to declare to the world prophecy, seership, and revelation, but we do declare it. It is true light shining in a dark world, and it shines from these proceedings.

Secondly, each of these conferences marks a call to action not only in our own lives but also on behalf of others around us, those who are of our own family and faith and those who are not.  We are reminded of the 150th anniversary of those handcart companies that, as general conference was convening in October of 1856 in the Salt Lake Valley, were staggering through the last freezing miles of Nebraska and were soon to be stranded in the impassable snows of the high country of Wyoming. President Brigham Young’s inspiring general conference message to those Saints was simply “go and bring in those people now on the plains.” 

As surely as the rescue of those in need was the general conference theme of October 1856, so too is it the theme of this conference and last conference and the one to come next spring. It may not be blizzards and frozen-earth burials that we face this conference, but the needy are still out there—the poor and the weary, the discouraged and downhearted . . . they are all out there with feeble knees, hands that hang down, and bad weather setting in. They can be rescued only by those who have more and know more and can help more. And don’t worry about asking, “Where are they?” They are everywhere, on our right hand and on our left, in our neighborhoods and in the workplace, in every community and county and nation of this world. Take your team and wagon; load it with your love, your testimony, and a spiritual sack of flour; then drive in any direction. The Lord will lead you to those in need if you will but embrace the gospel of Jesus Christ.  Open your heart and your hand to those trapped in the twenty-first century’s equivalent of Martin’s Cove and Devil’s Gate. In doing so we honor the Master’s repeated plea on behalf of lost sheep and lost coins and lost souls. 

Lastly, a general conference of the Church is a declaration to all the world that Jesus is the Christ, that He and His Father, the God and Father of us all, appeared to the boy prophet Joseph Smith in fulfillment of that ancient promise that the resurrected Jesus of Nazareth would again restore His Church on earth.  This conference and every other conference like it is a declaration that He condescended to come to earth in poverty and humility, to face sorrow and rejection, disappointment and death in order that we might be saved from those very fates as our eternity unfolds, that “with his stripes we are healed.” This conference proclaims to every nation, kindred, tongue, and people the loving Messianic promise that “his mercy endureth for ever.” 

To all of you who think you are lost or without hope, or who think you have done too much that was too wrong for too long, to every one of you who worry that you are stranded somewhere on the wintry plains of life and have wrecked your handcart in the process, this conference calls out Jehovah’s unrelenting refrain, "My hand is stretched out still. I shall lengthen out mine arm unto them,” He said, “[and even if they] deny me; nevertheless, I will be merciful unto them, … if they will repent and come unto me; for mine arm is lengthened out all the day long, saith the Lord God of Hosts.” His mercy endureth forever, and His hand is stretched out still. His is the pure love of Christ, the charity that never faileth, that compassion which endures even when all other strength disappears.

5. Closing Prayer

Additional Resources: Prophets in the Land Again (Ensign, Oct. 2006)
Heavenly Father Speaks to Us Through His Prophets (Friend, March 2011)
Heeding the Voice of the Prophets (Ensign, July 2008)

Saturday, March 5, 2011


1. Opening Prayer

2. Sing "Follow the Prophet" Children's Songbook pg. 110

3. Read Doctrine & Covenants 1:38  What I the Lord have spoken, I have spoken, and I excuse not myself; and though the heavens and the earth pass away, my word shall not pass away, but shall all be fulfilled, whether by mine own voice or by the voice of my servants, it is the same.

4. Read and discuss the following from the March, 2011 Friend:

Heavenly Father gives His message to His children on the earth through prophets. He knows His prophets are honest, responsible, trustworthy, and righteous.

In the scriptures we read the writings of many prophets who wrote the inspired messages given by Heavenly Father to His children. Let’s learn about some of the prophets’ writings in the scriptures.

Malachi delivered to the people the Lord’s message of paying tithes and offerings (see Malachi 3:8–10).

Alma the Younger left his position as chief judge to be a missionary throughout the land (see Alma 4:15–20). He shared God’s message with many people.

Moroni gave Heavenly Father’s message to all of us when he gave us this promise about reading the Book of Mormon: “When ye shall receive these things, I would exhort you that ye would ask God, the Eternal Father, in the name of Christ, if these things are not true; and if ye shall ask with a sincere heart, with real intent, having faith in Christ, he will manifest the truth of it unto you, by the power of the Holy Ghost” (Moroni 10:4).

Joseph Smith was given a special message from Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ (see Joseph Smith—History 1:11–20). Joseph Smith spent his life declaring that message to all people.

We are blessed to have a prophet today. We can hear messages from Heavenly Father as we listen to the prophet.

5. Closing Prayer

Additional Resources:  Heavenly Father Speaks to Us Through His Prophets (Friend, March 2011)
Follow the Prophet (Friend, Oct. 2004)
Heeding the Voice of the Prophets (Ensign, July 2008)

Tuesday, February 8, 2011


1. Opening Prayer

2. Sing "Search, Ponder, and Pray" Children's Songbook pg. 109

3. Read Moses 1:39  For behold, this is my work and my glory—to bring to pass the immortality and eternal life of man.

4. Read and discuss the following from the January, 2000 Friend:

For as long as I can remember, my family has read scripture stories every night. We started with the books that have lots of pictures, then gradually moved up to books with more words and fewer pictures. It wasn’t until my mom read the requirements for earning a Gospel in Action award that we made the jump from scriptures stories to real scriptures.

“Read the scriptures daily for at least one month,’” Mom read from the award form. “We could all do that together,” she said enthusiastically.

“You mean scripture stories, don’t you?” my little sister, Crystal, asked.

“I think that you’re old enough to read the actual scriptures,” Dad said.

Crystal and I looked at each other.

“I don’t think Crystal’s ready for scriptures,” I said. After all, she was only seven and hadn’t even been baptized yet.

“I am, too, ready!” she shouted, offended. She didn’t understand that I was just trying to keep Mom and Dad reading from the scripture story books.

“Then it’s settled,” Mom said. “We’ll start tonight.”

So we started reading the Book of Mormon. Dad suggested that we try to read one chapter per night. Each of us took a turn reading three verses at a time. Then we finished up by reading the chapter heading. I like the chapter headings. Sometimes that’s the only part that I understand.

We began, of course, with 1 Nephi, and after a few days, I decided that the actual scriptures weren’t as tough as I thought they’d be. We read about how Lehi’s family left Jerusalem. Then Nephi and his brothers, Laman, Lemuel, and Sam, went back and got the brass plates. I already knew the story, but it was interesting to read it the way that Nephi himself told the story. Then Nephi and his brothers went back to Jerusalem to get Ishmael’s family. And after a long time, they all sailed to the promised land.

I learned things that I had never known before, like how the Lord taught Nephi to build a boat. And how some of the sons of Ishmael were just as mean to Nephi as Laman and Lemuel were. And I had never realized how long they all lived in the wilderness before they sailed to America.

Toward the end of 1 Nephi were a few chapters that were very hard for Crystal and me to understand. The chapter headings always ended with a note that said to compare them with a chapter in Isaiah. Dad explained that Isaiah was a prophet from the Old Testament who Nephi really liked. I didn’t think much about it until we got to 2 Nephi, where we read chapter after chapter that didn’t make much sense to me. There were even parts where Mom and Dad just shook their heads and said that we’d understand them better when we’re older.

I was just about ready to tell Mom and Dad that I didn’t think I was old enough to read real scriptures, when Nephi started to use words that I understood again.

Then one Monday night we read 2 Nephi 31. Crystal was reading when we came to verse 20. She read, “‘Wherefore, ye must press forward with a steadfastness in Christ, having a perfect brightness of hope, and a love of God and of all men.’”

“Wait,” I interrupted. “That sounds familiar.”

Crystal, who is usually annoyed when I interrupt, added, “I’ve heard it before, too.”

“Where do you think you heard it?” Mom asked.

It popped into my head: “In Primary, in singing time!” I started to sing, “‘Press forward, Saints, with steadfast faith in Christ.’”

Crystal joined in. “‘With hope’s bright flame alight in heart and mind, With love of God and love of all mankind.’”

Mom and Dad sang the last line with us. “‘Alleluia! Alleluia! Alleluia!’”

“Well done,” Dad said after clapping. “We’re impressed!”

“It’s out of the Hymns book,” Crystal said, trying to impress them a little more.

“That’s right, and I think it’s hymn number eighty-one,” I added.

I could tell that Mom and Dad were surprised, so I went over to the piano for our hymnbook. “Look it up,” I said, handing it to Mom.

She turned to hymn number eighty-one. I was right. There it was—“Press Forward, Saints.”

“We learned this hymn for the Primary program last year,” I reminded Mom. “And the words are almost the same as in the Book of Mormon.”

Mom pointed to the bottom of the page in the hymnbook. It said, “Text: Marvin K. Gardner, b. 1952; based on 2 Nephi 31:20.”  Then she explained that the words to the song were written by a man named Marvin K. Gardner, who was born in 1952. He took the scripture that we had just read, and wrote it as a poem to be sung.

Mom played the piano, and together we sang all three verses. Then we went back and finished chapter 31.

“Nephi wrote those words a long time ago,” Dad said as he closed his scriptures. “But they mean as much now as they did then. We still need to ‘press forward.’”

I went to bed that night understanding that the scriptures are more than just a story about people who lived a long time ago. The scriptures are here for us to read and learn from. I felt that night as if the scriptures were talking to Crystal and me. It was as though Nephi was telling us to always press forward and do our best. I could use that kind of encouragement every day. I plan to keep reading the scriptures every night. Someday I’ll even understand the parts from Isaiah.

5. Closing Prayer

Additional Resources: The Scriptures Teach of Heavenly Father's Plan (Friend, Feb. 2011)
The Words of Christ (Friend, March 1996)
The Scriptures (Friend, Aug. 1995)

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Family Home Evening Lesson #73: WE BELIEVE!

1. Opening Prayer

2. Sing "True to the Faith" Hymns pg. 254

3. Read Articles of Faith 1:13  We believe in being honest, true, chaste, benevolent, virtuous, and in doing good to all men; indeed, we may say that we follow the admonition of Paul—We believe all things, we hope all things, we have endured many things, and hope to be able to endure all things. If there is anything virtuous, lovely, or of good report or praiseworthy, we seek after these things.

4. Read and discuss the following from the January, 2011 New Era:

When Joseph Smith wrote the thirteenth article of faith, he expressed everything we can and must seek and become as believers. Joseph Smith knew that we must believe in standards and values and seek after these things in order to have the power and strength of the Holy Ghost. He knew we would need to follow the Savior in word and deed. He knew that doing this would prepare us to be worthy of the blessings of the temple.

How will you do this? How will you lead others in following the Savior’s example, living a virtuous life, and preparing for the temple? First, believe in yourself! Your courage and strength have helped you become a leader, and your commitment will make all the difference this year. Your ideas, innovations, and actions can shape the world now and in the future.

Because of the technological world in which you live, you have the ability to flood the earth with those things that are virtuous, lovely, and praiseworthy. You have at your fingertips the ability to testify of the gospel of Jesus Christ to the entire world. Never before has a generation had such an ability, blessing, and opportunity.

Three Things Plus One—Every Day!

We believe in you. Now is the time to unite and begin a change that will empower you and bless others. We invite you to continue to do three things every single day—plus one.

1. Pray every morning and every night.

2. Read in the Book of Mormon at least five minutes every day.

3. Smile!

4. In addition, we invite you to obey and live the standards in For the Strength of Youth. Become familiar with these standards. Share them with others. And be an example of the believers.

5. Closing Prayer

Additional Resources: 2011 Mutual Theme (New Era, January 2011)
For the Strength of Youth

Sunday, January 2, 2011

Family Home Evening Lesson #72: THE SCRIPTURES ARE THE WORD OF GOD

1. Opening Prayer

2. Sing "Search, Ponder and Pray" Children's Songbook pg. 109

3. Read 2 Nephi 32:3   Angels speak by the power of the Holy Ghost; wherefore, they speak the words of Christ. Wherefore, I said unto you, feast upon the words of Christ; for behold, the words of Christ will tell you all things what ye should do.

4. Read and discuss the following from the January, 2011 Ensign:

In the Book of Mormon, Lehi tells his family about his dream of the tree of life. In the dream, Lehi wanted his family to eat the fruit of the tree, which was “desirable above all other fruit” (1 Nephi 8:15). He saw many people walking along the path that led to the tree of life, but some got lost in mists of darkness and wandered away from the path. Others held onto the iron rod that led along the path toward the tree. They walked forward, holding tightly to the rod until they reached the tree and ate the fruit, which brought them joy. (See 1 Nephi 8.)

Lehi’s son Nephi prayed to know the meaning of the things his father had seen. Nephi was shown the same dream as his father. The Spirit taught Nephi that the tree of life represents the love of God. Nephi was shown Jesus Christ, the Son of God, teaching and blessing people on the earth. Nephi was also taught that the rod of iron represents the word of God. (See 1 Nephi 11.)

The scriptures are the word of God. Reading the scriptures is like holding onto the iron rod. We will know what Jesus wants us to do and say. We will have power to resist temptation and make our way to the tree of life and to feel the love of God.

5. Closing Prayer

Additional Resources: Poster: I Know the Scriptures are True (Friend, January 1998)
Scripture Lifeline: Is it Really True?: (New Era, November 2009)
Getting Into the Scriptures (Friend, February 1998)