“Is Faith in the Atonement of Jesus Christ Written in Our Hearts?”
Linda K. Burton
Relief Society General President
As a new Relief Society presidency, we have sought the Lord earnestly to know what essential things He would have us put in our Relief Society handcart to continue moving His work forward. We have felt that Heavenly Father would first have us help His beloved daughters understand the doctrine of the Atonement of Jesus Christ. As we do so, we know our faith will increase, as will our desire to live righteously. Second, as we have considered the critical need to strengthen families and homes, we have felt that the Lord would have us encourage His beloved daughters to cheerfully cleave to their covenants. When covenants are kept, families are strengthened. Finally, we feel He would have us work in unity with the other auxiliaries and with our priesthood leaders, striving to seek out and help those in need to progress along the path. It is our fervent prayer that each of us will open our hearts and let the Lord engrave in them the doctrines of the Atonement, covenants, and unity.
“Wide Awake to Our Duties”
Carole M. Stephens
First Counselor in the Relief Society General Presidency
Many of the early Saints “experienced this mighty change in [their] hearts.” … With hearts changed through faith in the Savior, they relied on the power of His Atonement. They were awakened to act. They knew deep in their hearts that there was one—the Savior—who understood their personal adversity because He suffered it for them in the Garden of Gethsemane and on the cross. He felt their fear, their doubt, their pain, and their loneliness. He suffered their sorrows, their persecution, their hunger, their fatigue, and their loss. And because He suffered all these things, He could say to them, “Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.”
And they came. They trusted in and followed the prophet. They knew the journey would be long, their duty difficult. They knew that sacrifice would be required, but sustained by their faith and cleaving to their covenants, they were spiritually prepared.
“The Lord Has Not Forgotten You”
Linda S. Reeves
Second Counselor in the Relief Society General Presidency
I testify that He has not forgotten you! Whatever sin or weakness or pain or struggle or trial you are going through, He knows and understands those very moments. He loves you! And He will carry you through those moments. … He has paid the price that He might know how to succor you. Cast your burdens upon Him. Tell your Heavenly Father how you feel. Tell Him about your pain and afflictions and then give them to Him. Search the scriptures daily. There you will also find great solace and help.
President Henry B. Eyring
Caring for those in need takes a team, a loving and unified society. That is what the Lord is building among you. He loves you for any part you play. …
The Lord, who is the Master Nurturer of people in need, gave inspired counsel to weary caregivers in these words delivered by King Benjamin and recorded in the Book of Mormon: “For the sake of retaining a remission of your sins … I would that ye should impart of your substance to the poor, every man according to that which he hath, such as feeding the hungry, clothing the naked, visiting the sick and administering to their relief, both spiritually and temporally, according to their wants.” …
And you have seen, as I have, a wise visiting teacher build the confidence in a struggling sister that her service to someone else, even as she is failing, is still needed and valuable. Great Relief Society presidents find ways to let those who need care help in the care of others. They create opportunities for sisters to endure trials well as they care for each other in the pure love of Christ. …
We speak often of the strength of the circle of sisters in the Church of Jesus Christ. We must learn to recognize that the Savior is always in the circle as we invite Him.