Teachings for Mothers: April 2010 General Conference


An Early Warning System for Parents

  • Learn about an early warning system for parents that "applies to children of all ages and contains three basic components: (1) reading and talking about the Book of Mormon with your children, (2) bearing testimony of gospel truths spontaneously with your children, and (3) inviting children as gospel learners to act and not merely be acted upon. Parents who do these things faithfully will be blessed to recognize early signals of spiritual growth in or challenges with their children and be better prepared to receive inspiration to strengthen and help those children" (David A. Bednar, "Watching with All Perseverance," April 2010 general conference).

Children Who Have Strayed

  • "If a child is not listening, don’t despair. Time and truth are on your side. At the right moment, your words will return as if from heaven itself. Your testimony will never leave your children" (Neil L. Andersen, "Tell Me the Stories of Jesus," April 2010 general conference).

Family Dinner Table

  • "Parents must bring light and truth into their homes by one family prayer, one scripture study session, one family home evening, one book read aloud, one song, and one family meal at a time. They know that the influence of righteous, conscientious, persistent, daily parenting is among the most powerful and sustaining forces for good in the world. The health of any society, the happiness of its people, their prosperity, and their peace all find common roots in the teaching of children in the home" (L. Tom Perry, "Mothers Teaching Children in the Home, April 2010 general conference).

Mothers' Teachings to Daughters

  • "If the mothers are thrifty, so are their daughters. If the mothers are modest, so are the girls. If the mothers wear flip-flops and other casual clothing to sacrament meeting, so do their daughters. Mothers, your example is extremely important to your daughters—even if they don’t acknowledge it" (M. Russell Ballard, "Mothers and Daughters," April 2010 general conference).
  • "Let me assure you that even when you think your daughter is not listening to a thing you say, she is still learning from you as she watches you to see if your actions match your words. As Ralph Waldo Emerson is believed to have said, 'What you do speaks so loud that I cannot hear what you say' (see Ralph Keyes, The Quote Verifier [2006], 56)" ("Mothers and Daughters").
  • "Mothers, teach your daughters that a faithful daughter of God avoids the temptation to gossip or judge one another. In a sermon to the Relief Society of Nauvoo, the Prophet Joseph counseled, 'The tongue is an unruly member—hold your tongues about things of no moment' (Teachings of Presidents of the Church: Joseph Smith [2007], 455)" ("Mothers and Daughters").
  • "Mothers, teach your daughters the importance of making covenants, and then show them how to keep those covenants in such a way that they will desire to live worthy to go to the temple. In today’s world this means talking to your daughters about sexual matters. . . . Immodest, unchaste women are glamorized and all too often celebrated and emulated. . . . You need to have frequent, open discussions during which you teach your daughter’s the truth about these issues" ("Mothers and Daughters").
  • "[Your daughters] need to understand that when they wear clothing that is too tight, too short, or too low cut, they not only can send the wrong message to young men with whom they associate, but they also perpetuate in their own minds the fallacy that a woman’s value is dependent solely upon her sensual appeal. This never has been nor will it ever be within the righteous definition of a faithful daughter of God. They need to hear this—clearly and repeatedly—from your lips, and they need to see it modeled correctly and consistently in your own personal standards of dress, grooming, and modest living" ("Mothers and Daughters").

Nurturing

  • "A mother-daughter relationship is where a daughter learns how to nurture by being nurtured" (M. Russell Ballard, "Mothers and Daughters," April 2010 general conference).

Single Mothers

  • "After her husband passed away, Sister Stella Oaks raised her three young children (including Elder Dallin H. Oaks) as a single mother. She once said: 'I was given to know that the Lord loved me and that I would be made equal to my mission. I felt an encircling love . . . [and knew] he [would sustain us] through the opposition that [would] arise' " (Neil L. Andersen, "Tell Me the Stories of Jesus," April 2010 general conference).

Talking with Our Children

  • "Mothers and fathers, as you drive or walk children to school or their various activities, do you use the time to talk with them about their hopes and dreams and fears and joys? Do you take the time to have them take the earplugs from their MP3 players and all the other devices so that they can hear you and feel of your love?" (Robert D. Hales, "Our Duty to God: The Mission of Parents and Leaders to the Rising Generation," April 2010 general conference).
  • "It is impossible to overestimate the influence of parents who understand the hearts of their children. Research shows that during the most important transitions of life—including those periods when youth are most likely to drift away from the Church—the greatest influence does not come from an interview with the bishop or some other leader but from the regular, warm, friendly, caring interaction with parents" ("Our Duty to God").
  • "When we have a family home evening, a family council, or a meaningful gospel conversation with our children, we have the opportunity to look into their eyes and tell them that we love them and that Heavenly Father loves them. . . . In every interaction we share, we demonstrate the principles and blessings of the gospel" ("Our Duty to God").

Teaching Children

  • "The family has an advantage in the first eight years of a child’s life. In those protected years, because of the Atonement of Jesus Christ, Satan’s use of the mists of darkness to hide the path to return home is blocked" (Henry B. Eyring, "Help Them on Their Way Home," April 2010 general conference).
  • "Teaching in the home is becoming increasingly important in today’s world, where the influence of the adversary is so widespread and he is attacking, attempting to erode and destroy the very foundation of our society, even the family. Parents must resolve that teaching in the home is a most sacred and important responsibility. While other institutions, such as church and school, can assist parents to 'train up a child in the way he [or she] should go' (Proverbs 22:6), ultimately this responsibility rests with parents" (L. Tom Perry, "Mothers Teaching Children in the Home," April 2010 general conference).

Teaching Our Children about Jesus Christ

  • "We are the angels that Heavenly Father has sent today to bless the children, and we can help them to one day see the face of the Savior as we teach the principles of the gospel and fill our homes with the joy of living them. Together we can come to know Him" (Cheryl C. Lant, "That Our Children Might See the Face of the Savior," April 2010 general conference).
  • "The stories of Jesus can be like a rushing wind across the embers of faith in the hearts of our children. Jesus said, 'I am the way, the truth, and the life.' The stories of Jesus shared over and over bring faith in the Lord Jesus Christ and strength to the foundation of testimony. Can you think of a more valuable gift for our children?" (Neil L. Andersen, "Tell Me the Stories of Jesus," April 2010 general conference).
  • "Are the life and teachings of Jesus Christ embedded in the minds and souls of our children? Do they think about the Savior’s life when they wonder what to do in their own lives? This will be more and more important in the years ahead. . . . My counsel is to speak more frequently about Jesus Christ. . . . As you do your best, the testimony of Jesus will gently distill upon your children’s hearts. They will go to their Heavenly Father in humble prayer and feel His influence through the power of the Holy Ghost. A stronger personal faith in Jesus Christ will prepare them for the challenges they will most surely face" ("Tell Me the Stories of Jesus").

Teaching Our Children to Have Their Own Testimonies

  • "The spiritual understanding you and I have been blessed to receive, and which has been confirmed as true in our hearts, simply cannot be given to our children. The tuition of diligence and of learning by study and also by faith must be paid to obtain and personally 'own' such knowledge. Only in this way can what is known in the mind also be felt in the heart. Only in this way can a child move beyond relying upon the spiritual knowledge and experiences of parents and adults and claim those blessings for himself or herself. Only in this way can our children be prepared spiritually for the challenges of mortality" (David A. Bednar, "Watching with All Perseverance," April 2010 general conference).
  • "It is our imperative duty to help youth understand and believe the gospel in a deeply personal way. We can teach them to walk in the light, but that light cannot be borrowed. They must earn it for themselves. They must obtain their own light of testimony directly from the source of spiritual light—God Himself—through prayer and study and pondering. They must understand who they are and who Heavenly Father wants them to become" (Robert D. Hales, "Our Duty to God: The Mission of Parents and Leaders to the Rising Generation," April 2010 general conference).

The Greatest Work We Will Ever Do

  • "The greatest missionary work we will ever do will be in our homes. . . . Our children and grandchildren are our most important investigators" (Robert D. Hales, "Our Duty to God: The Mission of Parents and Leaders to the Rising Generation," April 2010 general conference).
  • "The greatest family history work that we will do will be within our own homes. It is the spiritual preparation of our children in the rising generation that will, through their obedience, ensure the eternal preservation and perpetuation of our families for the coming generations" ("Our Duty to God").
  • "The greatest rescue, the greatest activation will be in our homes. If someone in your family is wandering in strange paths, you are a rescuer, engaged in the greatest rescue effort the Church has ever known. I testify from personal experience: There is no failure except in giving up. It is never too early or too late to begin. Do not worry about what has happened in the past. Pick up the phone. Write a note. Make a visit. Extend the invitation to come home. Don’t be afraid or embarrassed. Your child is Heavenly Father’s child. You are about His work. He has promised to gather His children, and He is with you" ("Our Duty to God").
  • "The greatest faith we have will be within our homes as we remain strong in the trials and tribulations of parenthood. To a small group of mothers, President Monson recently said, 'Sometimes we are too quick to judge the effect of our successes and failures.' May I add, don’t look at today’s trials as eternal. Heavenly Father does His work in the long term. 'There is much which lieth in futurity,' the Prophet Joseph Smith said. 'Therefore, . . . let us cheerfully do all things that lie in our power; and then may we stand still, with the utmost assurance, to see the salvation of God, and for his arm to be revealed' (D&C 123:15, 17)" ("Our Duty to God").