Stake Homemaker’s Day Acts as a Missionary Tool

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    The La Grande, Oregon, stake Relief Society has a great tradition going: for twenty-eight years running they’ve held a stake homemaker’s day for members and nonmembers in the area. This last year was no exception, and the program proved as successful as ever.

    Planning for the day began months in advance. Under the direction of the stake presidency, the Relief Society leaders assigned different stake members to coordinate different portions of the day’s program, invited a noted lecturer on marriage and the family, Lucile Johnson, to come and speak, and asked two of the members of the stake presidency to also speak.

    A month before the homemaker’s day was to be held, advertising flyers were printed up and distributed through the visiting teachers to every woman in the stake. Women were asked to bring their daughters (age fourteen and up), their husbands, and their nonmember friends and neighbors. Meanwhile, special announcements were made over the pulpit of several of the local churches, and invitations were issued to all the people of the community through the radio and television stations and through the local newspapers.

    All this effort paid off. Several hundred people, including many nonmembers, visited the La Grande stake center on homemaker’s day. They listened to the program, which included the speakers and special musical numbers, then took in the many displays and demonstrations that were set up throughout the building.

    Displays included the Pantry Shelf, with examples of home-preserved foods, homemade breads, and homemade candles; the Calico Corner, with an assortment of stitchery, yarn-knitting, and other crafts; the Crystal Palace, which showed centerpiece ideas and party table settings; Ye Olde Sweet Shoppe, with displays of homemade candies and cookies, along with the recipes that created them; and the Print Shoppe, which displayed a variety of old journals, photo albums, genealogy, and so forth.

    Visitors could also visit the wedding room, which held a variety of both old and new wedding gowns, hope chests, a wedding cake (which was served), and a bride and groom. The filmstrip Temples of the Most High was shown, and temple marriage was explained. Visitors unfamiliar with Relief Society learned about it through the display “How to Get a College Education for Nothing,” which explained “how Relief Society can edify a woman’s life.”

    Demonstrations included how to make whole wheat pancakes, how to make a quilt, and how to spin yarn.

    Throughout the day’s program, which lasted from 10 A.M. to 4 P.M.., visitors were served fresh fruit or homemade bread at the Bakery Shop and ate it, with sack lunches brought from home, in the city park setting in the cultural hall.

    “I feel this was one of the most successful homemaker’s days we’ve held,” said Sister Ella M. Lindsay, stake Relief Society president. “We received many complimentary remarks and letters from those who attended, including many nonmembers. The response was overwhelming.”

    Will the La Grande Stake continue the tradition of homemaker’s days? Says Sister Lindsay: “plans for next year’s homemaker’s day are already in the making.”

    Illustrated by Fred Harrison