Parents sometimes feel unsure when opportunities arise for them to teach their children about sexual purity. However, discussions on this topic can invite the Spirit and help prepare children to make and keep sacred covenants.
On pages 28–29 of this month’s New Era, Neill F. Marriott, second counselor in the Young Women general presidency, writes, “Heavenly Father provided the powers of procreation within marriage for godly purposes only.” We learn from Handbook 2: Administering the Church that those purposes include “expressing love and strengthening emotional and spiritual bonds between husband and wife” (, 21.4.4). The suggestions below can help you teach your children about sexual purity. You can also refer to “Teaching Chastity and Virtue” in the October 2012 Ensign for more ideas on how to approach this topic.
Suggestions for Teaching Youth
Consider reading with your teenage children “We Believe in Being Chaste” by Elder David A. Bednar of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles in the May 2013 Ensign. Invite them to ask questions about sexual purity. You could also use
“Personal Purity” by Elder Jeffrey R. Holland of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles in the February 2000 New Era to help answer their questions.
The youth curriculum topic for Sunday lessons this month is the Atonement of Jesus Christ. Consider using the curriculum materials to teach your youth about the repentance required for sexual sins (see lds.org/youth/learn). You could also read and discuss “Why and What Do I Need to Confess to My Bishop?” by Elder C. Scott Grow of the Seventy in the October 2013 New Era.
If a temple is nearby, consider visiting the temple grounds with your family and discussing why we must remain pure to enter the temple. You could share with them the blessings you have received from temple worship. You may also want to plan a time for your family to do baptisms for the dead.
You may want to read with your youth “Sexual Purity” in For the Strength of Youth ([booklet, 2011], 35–37) and highlight the blessings we receive for staying pure. You could encourage your children to write down goals related to sexual purity.
Suggestions for Teaching Children
You may want to hold a family home evening in which you use pictures of temples to discuss the importance and sacredness of the temple. Then you could explain that our bodies are sacred temples too.
Read with your children the thirteenth article of faith and talk about the importance of keeping our thoughts clean. Make a list of some books, movies, and songs that will fill your mind with good things. You many want to read, watch, or sing them together.