“Understanding the heritage we have, that this organization is a restoration of something that existed anciently, helps us understand that we are not a footnote in history or a sidebar in the Lord’s work; we are an essential part of building the kingdom and we’ve been organized to do such.”
Julie B. Beck, BYU Women's Conference, 2011
I am a 63-year-old lifelong member. Daughters in my Kingdom certainly put in context my membership in a Church that is worldwide. Having been raised in the Church in Utah and having pioneer ancestry, I have often heard the pioneer stories and the descriptions of how Relief Society was founded in Nauvoo and have felt a strong link to that. But to read about the Saints in Africa, Asia, India, and South and Central America has broadened my sense of belonging and helped me feel more a part of the bigger whole. There are sisters I have served with whom I love so deeply because we have been able to share life experiences as a result of Relief Society service. The bonds of sisterhood have extended beyond my sisters by blood to my sisters by faith.
I have lived in Chile, Argentina, Brazil, and the US, but wherever I go, I know I am part of a wonderful circle of sisterhood—a heritage of strong, faithful women. Daughters in My Kingdom confirms what I already knew: we are part of a worldwide sisterhood that, connected with the priesthood, will be a protection for each of us and our families. How often we need that protection and the loving charity of each other when we feel lonely or sad. Everyone goes through those times. If you are sick, you need help. But we have to go beyond that, especially to see the soul of the people with charity, as the Savior would.
As I face stage-four colon cancer, I have been strengthened by the faithful discipleship of early Latter-day Saint women who helped build the Nauvoo Temple. So much work went into the Nauvoo Temple. The Lord knew it would not last. But strength and sacrifice were built. That is what I think about at this time of my life. It is building strength and it is building sacrifice. My illness has prevented me from attending Relief Society for several months, but I feel such a part of it—a connection with female disciples from the scriptures, from early Church history, and from today.