They Spoke to Youth


Learn, Act, and Share: Doing Your Duty to God

We have been entrusted to bear the priesthood and to act in the name of God. We are the recipients of a sacred trust. Much is expected of us. … Let us consider our callings, let us reflect on our responsibilities, and let us follow Jesus Christ, our Lord.

President Thomas S. Monson, “Preparation Brings Blessings,” 64.

Just a few weeks ago, I saw a new deacon start on that path of diligence. His father showed me a diagram his son had created that showed every row in their chapel, a number for each deacon who would be assigned to pass the sacrament, and their route through the chapel to serve the sacrament to the members. The father and I smiled to think that a boy, without being asked to do it, would make a plan to be sure he would succeed in his priesthood service.

I recognized in his diligence the pattern from the new Duty to God booklet. It is to learn what the Lord expects of you, make a plan to do it, act on your plan with diligence, and then share with others how your experience changed you and blessed others.

President Henry B. Eyring, First Counselor in the First Presidency, “Act in All Diligence,” 60.

Adult members of the Church should understand that Personal Progress and Duty to God requirements are not just lengthy lists of items to check off. They are personal goals set by each young man and young woman to help them become worthy to receive temple ordinances, serve missions, enter into eternal marriage, and enjoy exaltation. But let it be understood: for young men and young women to try to accomplish these goals alone would be a great loss and tragedy!

Fathers, mothers, and leaders of youth, we urge you to participate in Personal Progress and Duty to God with your children and with the youth. Not only will they grow; you will grow too. And just as importantly, you will grow together in a bond of faith and friendship that will allow you to strengthen each other and stay on the gospel path forever.

Elder Robert D. Hales of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, “Our Duty to God: The Mission of Parents and Leaders to the Rising Generation,” 95.

The stage is yours, my dear Aaronic Priesthood boys. Are you ready and willing to play your part? The Lord needs every able young man to prepare and recommit, starting tonight, to be worthy of a call from the prophet of God to serve a mission.

Elder Ronald A. Rasband of the Seventy, “The Divine Call of a Missionary,” 51.

As a deacon, teacher, and priest, you will participate in activities that will help you build spiritual strength and learn and fulfill your priesthood duties. Each activity follows this simple pattern:

First you learn about a gospel principle or a priesthood duty. You discover what Heavenly Father wants you to do, and you strive to gain a spiritual witness about why it is important.

Next you make plans to act on what you have learned. You are encouraged to base your plans on your own needs, circumstances, and opportunities to serve others. This is a wonderful chance to take responsibility for your own growth and develop spiritual self-reliance.

Then you share what you learn and experience with others. As you do so, you will strengthen your testimony and build faith in those around you. You will increase your ability to talk about the gospel with others. …

… I testify that your faithful service in the Aaronic Priesthood will change the lives of those you serve. There are people who need your priesthood service. Your family needs you. Your quorum needs you. The Church needs you. The world needs you.

David L. Beck, Young Men general president, “The Magnificent Aaronic Priesthood,” 54.

Information about the new Duty to God program is available in many languages at DutyToGod.lds.org.

Standing for Virtue: Personal Progress

On the first page of your Young Women Personal Progress book you will find these words: “You are a beloved daughter of Heavenly Father, prepared to come to the earth at this particular time for a sacred and glorious purpose.”

Sisters, those words are true! They are not made up in a fairy tale! Isn’t it remarkable to know that our eternal Heavenly Father knows you, hears you, watches over you, and loves you with an infinite love? In fact, His love for you is so great that He has granted you this earthly life as a precious gift of “once upon a time,” complete with your own true story of adventure, trial, and opportunities for greatness, nobility, courage, and love. And, most glorious of all, He offers you a gift beyond price and comprehension. Heavenly Father offers to you the greatest gift of all—eternal life—and the opportunity and infinite blessing of your own “happily ever after.”

President Dieter F. Uchtdorf, Second Counselor in the First Presidency, “Your Happily Ever After,” 124.

Young women of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, remember who you are! You are elect. You are daughters of God. You cannot be a generation of young women who are content to fit in. You must have the courage to stand out, to “arise and shine forth, that thy light may be a standard for the nations” (D&C 115:5). The world would have you believe that you are not significant—that you are out of fashion and out of touch. The world calls to you with unrelenting, noisy voices to “live it up,” “try everything,” “experiment and be happy.” Conversely, the Holy Ghost whispers and the Lord invites you to “walk in the paths of virtue,” “lay aside the things of this world,” “and cleave unto [your] covenants” (D&C 25:2, 10, 13).

Elaine S. Dalton, Young Women general president, “Remember Who You Are!” 120.

Personal Progress provides a wonderful way for you to nourish your testimony step by step. Value experiences and projects are small steps that will nourish your testimony of Jesus Christ as you learn His teachings and regularly apply them in your life. This constant nourishment will keep you safely on the path.

Mary N. Cook, first counselor in the Young Women general presidency, “Never, Never, Never Give Up!” 117.

The Lord will always be there for us and will never leave us alone. We are taught that Heavenly Father knows and loves each of His children. As one of His precious daughters, you have access to His assurance and guidance through the power of prayer.

Ann M. Dibb, second counselor in the Young Women general presidency, “Be of a Good Courage,” 114.

For more information on Personal Progress, go to PersonalProgress.lds.org.

Photo illustrations by Christina Smith and Robert Casey