“There is a test to find whether your mission on earth is finished. If you’re alive, it isn’t.”—Richard Bach
by Casey Null
It’s natural to feel sad about the fact that both your parents don’t go to church with you, but you don’t have to feel helpless. You can try to—
Remember that your parent may be struggling to find his or her way and Heavenly Father loves him or her as much as he loves you.
Think about this: You wouldn’t want your parent to fake a testimony. Wouldn’t you prefer that he or she be honest and sincere?
Grow through adversity. The trials you’re facing now will help you be strong in the future.
Know that even though your parent has doubts, the gospel is still true. Nothing will ever change that.
Lean upon the Lord. Pray often and get close to him. He’ll gladly help you through.
Consider that, ultimately, not everyone may accept the gospel. But if you remain faithful and strong, you won’t miss out on any blessings.
Blame no one—especially not yourself. It isn’t your fault your parent has chosen not to go to church. You might not know the real reason for your parent’s feelings.
Find friends who can support you and understand without judging.
Persevere. It’s worth it! There’s great satisfaction in the act of just hanging in there. And who knows? There’s a strong possibility that someday things will change for the better.
Sometimes a positive thought can help you through troubled moments. When your parent’s inactivity starts to get you down, try repeating one of these:
“Happiness is not a station you arrive at, but a manner of traveling.”—Margaret Lee Runbeck
“Some of the greatest battles you will face will be fought within the silent chambers of your own soul.”—Pres. Ezra Taft Benson
“A certain amount of opposition is a great help for a man. Kites rise against, and not with, the wind.”—John Neal
“The best way out is always through.”—Robert Frost
“Peace be unto thy soul; thine adversity and thine afflictions shall be but a small moment; And then, if thou endure it well, God shall exalt thee on high” (D&C 121:7–8).
“Always, eternally, there is hope and faith—and tomorrow morning.”—Elder Richard L. Evans
“A merry heart doeth good like a medicine: but a broken spirit drieth the bones” (Prov. 17:22).
“Let your hearts be comforted; for all things shall work together for good to them that walk uprightly” (D&C 100:15).
Do Your Part
What can you do to help your parents see the value of the Church without being pushy? Try—
Setting a great example. Go to all your meetings, have a positive attitude, and live up to the standards they know you’ve been taught at church.
Expressing your love to them. The gospel of Jesus Christ can help you find ways to love your parents more deeply. Make sure they know and feel that love. Express gratitude for their teachings that helped you.
Making them aware of your goals. If they know you’re planning to go on a mission and get married in the temple, it might encourage them to prepare for that.
Inviting them to certain meetings. You might not want to badger them about attending every meeting, but make sure they know how much it would mean to you to have them there when you give a talk or participate in a program.
Supporting them in their good efforts. Help them out around the house and with the family. Be interested in their plans and projects. Don’t just be an offspring; be a loving friend.
Out of Focus
It’s easy to focus on one challenge as the source of all your problems. For example, “If Dad would only go to church there would be a better spirit in the house so I wouldn’t fight with my brothers and I’d be able to study more and get better grades.”
Don’t fall into that trap. Take as much responsibility as you can for your own life. Decide to be a Christlike person no matter what. Your parents will admire and respect this, regardless of their religion, and it will help you realize that you are the one who ultimately decides which of life’s courses you take.
A new general presidency of the Young Women was sustained in general conference, Saturday, April 4, 1992.
Janette C. Hales, of Provo, Utah, was called as the new general president of the Young Women. She had previously been serving as second counselor to Ardeth Kapp. Sister Hales is a former Utah state legislator. She has four daughters and a son. Her husband, Robert H. Hales, died in 1988.
Virginia H. Pearce, of Salt Lake City, was called as the first counselor. Sister Pearce had been serving on the Primary General Board. She has coauthored several children’s books and taught classes in children’s literature. She and her husband, James R. M. Pearce, are the parents of six children.
Patricia P. Pinegar, of Provo, Utah, was called as second counselor. She had been serving on the Primary General Board, and had served with her husband, Ed J. Pinegar, when he was president of the Missionary Training Center in Provo. Sister Pinegar and her husband have eight children.
Youth from the Newcastle Stake and surrounding districts in Australia make the most of their Easter break youth conference. Some 120 young people gathered for last year’s activity, with the theme, “I teach them correct principles and they govern themselves.”
They had dances. They had waterfights. They had fun old movies. They put snags (sausages) on the barby. They had firesides, church meetings, and the best-loved testimony meeting.
But a major part of the conference was spent cleaning up the land around the Richmond Vale Mine Museum, at a historic coal mine. They pulled weeds, cleared train tracks, moved logs, and basically tidied up the area.
What’s the focus of youth conferences in the Far East these days? Service, of course, like everywhere else.
Recently, members of the English-speaking ward in Okinawa, Japan, visited an orphanage where they cuddled, held, and played with the children.
Youth from the Victoria Ward, Hong Kong, visited a home for mentally retarded children and helped out there.
All involved said they experienced compassion and love towards these children—a feeling they described as the true love of God.
If you’re not wild about the thought of graduating as the only member of the Church in your class, you can always do what Tammy Shick of the Ridgeway Branch, Pennsylvania Pittsburgh Mission did. She helped convert two of her classmates.
But her missionary work didn’t stop there. She also gave a class presentation on the Book of Mormon and presented a copy to her non-LDS teacher. Then there was her senior paper, written on Church history.
Tammy is currently at Utah State on scholarship, majoring in Aerospace Engineering.
Everyone’s done it. You go for a Church interview and find yourself waiting with time on your hands. The Mia Maids of the American Fork 15th Ward, American Fork North Stake, decided to put something else in their hands while they’re waiting. They tie quilts.
Every month they have a personal progress interview with their adviser, and before and after their interviews, they tie lightweight quilts on a frame set up in the adviser’s living room. Ward members donate the materials. The quilts are then finished and donated to the residents of a local rest home. Actually, delivering the quilts is the best part, according to the girls. The residents are very appreciative—so much so, in fact, that the girls have decided to continue the project indefinitely.
Tossip Sahaiau of Manus, Papua, New Guinea, is justifiably excited about his local soccer team’s grand final win in district competition. But the 18-year-old co-captain knows that his team had extra help.
Because of financial problems, the team almost didn’t make it to the finals. “It was through prayer that we were able to get the money we needed,” said Tossip.
Tossip is the only Latter-day Saint on his team, but he tries hard to set a good example. His faith helps. “I am thankful that the Lord has directed me to my right destination in the Church,” he says.