“The priesthood is not really so much a gift as it is a commission to serve, a privilege to lift, and an opportunity to bless the lives of others.”

President Thomas S. Monson, “Our Sacred Priesthood Trust,” Ensign, May 2006, 57.

By the Numbers

22,011

Number of Duty to God awards issued in 2006.

Summer of Service

Last summer the priests quorum of the Eagle Eighth Ward in Eagle, Idaho, took part in a four-day high-adventure service project on the Duck Valley Indian Reservation. Over the course of the four days the young men painted two homes, built wheelchair ramps and railings for four homes, replaced the windows in the home of a local minister, and built a sand volleyball court, fire pit, two tables, and two barbecue grills at the branch meetinghouse. At an inter-tribe rodeo, the priests also distributed over 420 blankets, boots, and winter coats that had been collected by one of the priests for his Eagle Scout project.

The young men and their leaders also visited local members’ homes and shared spiritual lessons. On Sunday, local leaders asked them to provide talks and lessons for the branch services. Trent Anderson, one of the priests, said of the experience, “This high adventure helped me learn more about charity, service, and the culture of another people. We finished all the work we had expected and even some other projects given us while we were there. It helped our testimonies grow by trusting in the Lord and in His power.”

Photographs courtesy of the Eagle Eighth Ward

The Church in USA: Kentucky

The Prophet Joseph Smith likely preached in Louisville, Kentucky, on his way to Missouri. He stayed in the city for three days and later visited it again in 1832. In 1835, two missionaries baptized 22 people there. Brigham Young and Wilford Woodruff preached in Kentucky in July 1843. Though persecution existed, some 1,170 members of the Church lived in the state in 1900.

Automobiles and road improvements caused Bradfordsville, Kentucky, to become a main gathering place for Church members. One traditional Church-sponsored activity in Bradfordsville was a July 4th fish fry with fiddle and banjo music and food for up to 200 people, including many who were not members of the Church.

Here are a few facts about the Church today in Kentucky:

Membership

29,866

Missions

1

Temples

1

Congregations

73

Family History Centers

21

Information from Newsroom at www.lds.org.

They Spoke to Us

Many of the general conference talks have messages directed to you, the youth of the Church. Here are just a few examples. Read all the conference talks in the May Ensign and Liahona magazines. You can also read, listen to, or watch them online at www.lds.org.

  • “My young friends, be strong,” says President Monson. He calls on you to resist temptation and to be an example for good. See “Examples of Righteousness.”

  • President Henry B. Eyring says the choices you make every day and every hour “keep you walking in the light or moving away toward darkness.” See “Walk in the Light.”

  • Read about how to overcome the “Heartbreak Hills” in your life in Sister Elaine S. Dalton’s talk, “At All Times, in All Things, and in All Places.”

  • “Do I need to lower my standards to keep my friends?” Read what Elder W. Craig Zwick says about this question one teen asked his mother. See “We Will Not Yield, We Cannot Yield.”

To read what other youth are saying about the April general conference, go to www.newera.lds.org.

My Favorite Scripture

Alma 57:21 is my favorite scripture because the 2,000 stripling soldiers are such great examples for me of obedience and faith. One of my goals is to be like them and to “obey and observe to perform every word of command with exactness.”

Laura J., 17, California, USA

Tell us about your favorite scripture in one or two sentences. Send it to newera@ldschurch.org.

Photograph courtesy of Laura J.