Study John 14:16–17, 26.
Have the chart ready from lesson 7, “Becoming a Member of the Church of Jesus Christ.” Before class, place the wordstrips “Faith in Jesus Christ,” “Repentance,” and “Baptism” on the proper steps of the chart. Have the wordstrip “Gift of the Holy Ghost” ready to use during the lesson.
Place picture 3-14, Girl Being Confirmed (62020) in a box. If possible, wrap the box to look like a gift.
Prepare to help the children sing or say the words to the song
“The Holy Ghost” (Children’s Songbook, p. 105); the words are included at the back of this manual.
Picture 3-14, Girl Being Confirmed (62020); picture 3-22, The Last Supper (62174; Gospel Art Picture Kit 225); and picture 3-10, The First Vision (62470; Gospel Art Picture Kit 403).
Make the necessary preparations for any enrichment activities that you will be using.
Suggested Lesson Development
Invite a child to give the opening prayer.
Follow up with the children if you encouraged them to do something during the week.
We Can Receive the Gift of the Holy Ghost
Show the “gift” box and ask the following questions:
Why do we give each other gifts?
How do you feel when someone gives you a gift?
Explain that the day we become members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is one of the most important days of our lives. On that wonderful occasion, Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ give us a precious gift.
Tell the children that you will give them some clues that will help them discover what the gift is. Invite them to listen quietly until you have given them all of the clues.
The gift Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ give us can’t be purchased with money.
We can’t hold this gift in our hands and look at it as we would a book or a toy.
This gift is worth more than any other gift a person can receive.
Worthy Church members are helped and comforted by it throughout their lives.
We receive this gift when men who hold the Melchizedek Priesthood lay their hands upon our heads and confirm us members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
Ask all who know what the gift is to raise their hands.
What is this gift? (The gift of the Holy Ghost.)
Picture and discussion
Have a child open the gift to discover the picture. Then display the picture of the child being confirmed. Explain how the gift of the Holy Ghost is given. Following a person’s baptism, men who hold the Melchizedek Priesthood place their hands upon the person’s head, as shown in the picture. One of the men (usually the father, the bishop, a missionary, or a friend of the person being confirmed) says the prayer. During the prayer, the person is confirmed a member of the Church and receives the gift of the Holy Ghost.
What do you know about the Holy Ghost?
Let the children tell briefly what they know about the Holy Ghost. Bring out the following points:
The Holy Ghost does not have a body of flesh and bones as we do. He has a spirit body in the form of a man.
The Holy Ghost teaches us about Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ and bears witness of those things we are taught about them.
The Holy Ghost bears witness to us when we are taught the truth that what we are hearing is truth.
The Holy Ghost is sent from Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ to help us choose the right.
Display the chart “Becoming a Member of the Church of Jesus Christ.”
Place the wordstrip “Gift of the Holy Ghost” on the fourth step of the chart. Have an older child read the words aloud or read them yourself; then have all the children repeat the words with you.
Explain that not all people who live on earth have the privilege of receiving the gift of the Holy Ghost. Only those who have been baptized and confirmed members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints have that blessing. Emphasize that when we receive the gift of the Holy Ghost at confirmation, we become official members of the Church. Review with the children the steps on the chart, starting with faith in Jesus Christ.
Article of faith review
Write the words of the fourth article of faith on the chalkboard. Repeat it aloud with the children. Then erase several words and repeat it aloud with them again. Continue to erase a few words each time you repeat it as long as the practice is worthwhile.
Jesus Christ Promised to Send the Holy Ghost
Display picture 3-22, The Last Supper. Explain that the night before Jesus Christ was crucified, he ate one last supper with the Twelve Apostles. At that time, he also taught them something very important. He knew that when he was gone the Apostles would be very sad. He knew they would need his help. Jesus promised the Apostles that he would not leave them alone but would send someone to help and comfort them.
Ask an older child to read what Jesus told his Apostles from John 14:16 or read it yourself.
What is another name for the Comforter whom Jesus promised to send the Apostles? (The Holy Ghost.)
Read John 14:26 to the children.
Emphasize that Jesus Christ sent the Holy Ghost to help and comfort his Apostles. Even though the Apostles could not see the Holy Ghost, they could feel him helping and comforting them. That is why he is called the Comforter.
Sing or say the words to the song “The Holy Ghost.”
The Holy Ghost Can Help Us
Explain that as members of Jesus Christ’s Church, we have the same privilege the Apostles did of having the Holy Ghost to help and comfort us. Emphasize that the companionship of the Holy Ghost is one of the greatest gifts that we can enjoy in this life. We can always have his companionship if we are worthy and live righteously.
Tell the children that the Holy Ghost can help us know what to do when we have hard choices to make. Encourage the children to follow their feelings from the Holy Ghost when they are afraid or hurt. He will help them know what they should do, such as prompting them to tell someone who can help.
Relate the following story in your own words. Ask the children to listen to find out how the Holy Ghost helped and comforted a girl named Jan:
Jan had lived most of her life in a small farming town. She loved the town and the people who lived there. Often Jan thought how wonderful it was to live in a town that was so full of friendly people.
One day, Jan’s father came home from work and told the family that he was changing his job and that they would be moving to a larger city.
How do you think Jan felt?
Jan felt sad and upset each time she thought of moving. It was hard for her to think that soon she was going to leave her friends, home, school, and ward behind.
Jan was worried. She wondered if she would have a hard time making new friends. What would her new home and ward be like? Would the schoolwork be too hard for her?
No one was able to help her get rid of her worried feelings. Jan decided to pray and ask Heavenly Father for help.
Jan prayed to Heavenly Father with all her heart. As she prayed, something wonderful began to happen. All of the worried and frightened feelings started to go away.
Jan felt that someone was comforting her.
Who do you think was comforting Jan? (The Holy Ghost.)
Jan’s family moved, and everything turned out fine. She always remembered the loving help she received from Heavenly Father through the Holy Ghost.
Teacher’s experience and testimony
You may wish to tell of a time you were comforted by the Holy Ghost, such as when you were afraid or when you lost a loved one. Bear testimony that the Holy Ghost can comfort and guide us. The gift of the Holy Ghost that we receive following baptism is one of the most precious gifts that Heavenly Father could ever give us to help us to choose the right throughout our lives.
Emphasize that as members of the Church we believe in the Holy Ghost. We know that he will give us the help and comfort we need if we obey the commandments.
Article of faith
Explain that the first article of faith tells about the Holy Ghost. Repeat with the children the first article of faith. Display picture 3-10, The First Vision, and picture 3-14, Girl Being Confirmed, at appropriate points as you recite the article of faith.
Invite a child to give the closing prayer; remind him or her to thank Heavenly Father for making it possible for us to receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.
Choose from the following activities those that will work best for your children. You can use them in the lesson itself or as a review or summary. For additional guidance, see “Class Time” in “Helps for the Teacher.”
Invite a special guest to your class. Ask your guest to share an experience when he or she was comforted by the Holy Ghost. (Obtain permission from the bishop or branch president if the guest is not from your ward or branch.)
Ask the children if there is someone who makes them feel warm, happy, and safe, especially when they have been feeling sad. Emphasize that such persons can sometimes give us comfort when we are sad or feeling lonely. Explain that the Holy Ghost is sometimes called the Comforter. He can give us great comfort throughout our lives. Jesus Christ sent him to be with us when we feel sad or troubled.
Sing or recite the last two lines of
“The Still Small Voice” (Children’s Songbook, p. 106):Listen, listen. (Cup hand to ear)The Holy Ghost will whisper. (Place index finger to lips)Listen, listen (Cup hand to ear)To the still small voice. (Hand over heart)
Play the following quiet game with the children to show them that they can be guided by a still, small voice:
Show the children a small item you will hide for this game. Invite one child to leave the group for a moment while you hide the item. Have the child return to the group, and tell him that he must listen to find the way to the hidden item. Use a quiet noise, such as lightly tapping a pencil, gently clapping your hands, or humming a song, to show the child which way to turn to look for the hidden object. Make sure that the noises you make are very soft and reverent. Gently tap when the child looks in the correct direction. Tap more quickly as the child moves closer to the hiding place, until he finds the item.
Emphasize to the children that they can be guided in their lives by listening to the still, small voice of the Holy Ghost.
Whisper to the children and say something such as, “If you hear me, put your finger on your cheek. If you hear me, put your finger on your chin.” Then explain to the children that there is someone else who speaks with a still, small voice, and they must listen very carefully to hear what that voice tells them. That voice comes from the Holy Ghost.
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