What We Really Think of Youth

“You who serve as deacons, teachers, and priests are as willing, reliable, and capable in doing your duty as we expect you to be. We admire you. Your vitality is infectious, your abilities astounding, your association invigorating.”

Bishop Keith B. McMullin, Second Counselor in the Presiding Bishopric, “The Power of the Aaronic Priesthood,” Ensign, Nov. 2011, 47.

International Art Competition: Call for Entries

In Doctrine and Covenants 115:4–6, the Lord invites us to “arise and shine forth” so that our “light may be a standard for the nations.” He asks us to join together to support one another and become a “refuge from the storm.”

The Church History Museum invites you, the youth of the worldwide Church, to create original works of art that express what the 2012 Mutual theme—“arise and shine forth”—means to you. You might consider these questions as you prepare your art:

  • What does it mean for Latter-day Saint youth to “arise and shine forth”?

  • How can the light of Latter-day Saints be “a standard for the nations”?

  • What kinds of storms (or trials) do youth face, and how does the gospel provide refuge?

So pick up a brush, a pencil or pen, some paint, a camera, some clay—whatever you use to let your inner artist shine—and begin creating.

For more information or to enter the competition online, go to lds.org/youthartcomp. You may begin submitting entries on Monday, January 2, 2012. All entries must be submitted by Friday, June 1, 2012.

A Year Full of Service

The youth of one ward in Washington state came up with a plan to focus on service for an entire year. Throughout the year, each hour of service was marked by a white address label that was then attached to a large cardboard cutout of the temple. These young men and women came up with an amazing variety of ways to serve: babysitting, doing yard work, community coaching, doing baptisms for the dead, mentoring, helping at a community center, splitting wood, visiting a nursing home, tutoring, serving at school camp, and more. Many of the youth even turned down payment for their work, opting instead for the service stickers they could add to the temple cutouts. One of the main projects of the year was completely redoing the yard of a Young Women leader going through chemotherapy. At their ward conference in January, these youth presented their stake presidency with two huge temple cutouts covered with their service bricks representing the 2,070 hours given that year.

You’re Invited to Do Family History

In last October’s general conference, Elder David A. Bednar of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles invited you—and all the youth of the Church—to learn about and experience the Spirit of Elijah in your life by participating in family history work.

To start learning about ways you can get involved right now, go online to lds.org/familyhistoryyouth and watch the video tutorials about FamilySearch and indexing. To get started, you’ll need an LDS Account, which requires you to find out your membership record number from your ward or branch clerk.

Elder Bednar promised wonderful blessings to those who respond in faith to this invitation: “Your love and gratitude for your ancestors will increase. Your testimony of and conversion to the Savior will become deep and abiding. And I promise you will be protected against the intensifying influence of the adversary. As you participate in and love this holy work, you will be safeguarded in your youth and throughout your lives” (“The Hearts of the Children Shall Turn,” Ensign, Nov. 2011, 26–27).

Mutual Theme: D&C 115:5 Sudoku

Mutual theme sudoku(click to view larger)

The objective of a regular Sudoku is to fill the 9×9 grid so that each column, each row, and each of the nine 3×3 boxes (also called blocks or regions) contains the digits from 1 to 9 only one time. For this puzzle, instead of numbers, use the scripture reference and the eight words in bold to complete the puzzle.

D&C 115:5

Arise and shine forth, that thy light may be a standard for the nations.”

My Testimony of Prayer

Amber D., 14, Tennessee, USA

When living the gospel, the first thing you should do is pray. Start the day off with a prayer and end your day with a prayer. Also, reading the scriptures and reading the talks in the Ensign helps us to live the gospel. When we pray and read the scriptures, being a good example to others will happen. Being a good example to others is another way to live the gospel and to teach others about the Church.

My Favorite Scripture

Joshua 1:9: “Be strong and of good courage; be not afraid, neither be thou dismayed: for the Lord thy God is with thee withersoever thou goest.” To me this means don’t fear. Heavenly Father is with you.

Emily F., 13, California, USA

Tell us about your favorite scripture in a paragraph or two. Send it to us, along with a photo, at newera.lds.org (click on “Submit Material”).

Quotes from Conference

“To hope and trust in the Lord requires faith, patience, humility, meekness, long-suffering, keeping the commandments, and enduring to the end.”

Elder Robert D. Hales of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, “Waiting upon the Lord: Thy Will Be Done,” Ensign, Nov. 2011, 72.

By the Numbers


Number of subscribers who have joined the New Era e-mail group.

If you’d like to join our e-mail list and get regular newsletters, usually sent monthly, just say so in an e-mail to newera@ldschurch.org.

On Our Honor

In early 2011, New Mexico—usually a mild desert state—felt record low temperatures. The freezing caused pipes all over the state to burst, including some in the stake center where the Scouts of Troop 211 meet. Within hours volunteers, including many of these Scouts, were at the building to help clean up.

But serving together is nothing new for the boys of the troop. Just days after helping clear out the building, parents and Scouts gathered to hold a court of honor for the 10 boys from the ward who would be receiving Eagle awards. These young men had performed a host of service projects in their community, including organizing a blood drive; cleaning up a baseball field; working on the landscaping, classrooms, and libraries of local schools; and assisting with research for eye diseases in Peru. In recognition of the boys’ collective service, the city’s mayor attended their court of honor and pronounced February 9, 2011, as “Troop 211 Eagle Scouts Day.”

We’ve Got Mail

Swimming Lessons

I was really uplifted when I came across the article “What Swimming Taught Me” (June 2011). The story was about a girl learning how to swim and how embarrassed she felt when her friend was a better swimmer. What really caught my eye was how she overcame her fear of swimming by not giving up but believing that through trial and error she could excel at it. In fact, no matter what type of peer pressure it is, you can always read your scriptures, seek answers from your prayers, and ask a friend, Church leader, or your bishop for support. I know that as a member of the Church and a former swimmer, I will remember this message.

Corri G., Arizona, USA

Dating Q&A

When I read the May 2011 issue of the New Era, I came across the “Questions & Answers” article on dating before the age of 16. I was shocked, because I had recently had a boyfriend, even though I am not yet 16. When I read through the answers given, I felt the Spirit with me. I realized that by ending the relationship I was keeping the standards. I’m so glad the New Era was there for me.

Felisha L., Vermont, USA

Rereading “Role Models”

I reread an article from the August 2009 issue called “Role Models” by Elder Benson E. Misalucha. Thank you for putting this article in the magazine; it was an answer to my prayer. I had just met someone who is very strong in the gospel. She has been through many trials and is still going strong. She is a role model for me, and I have learned so much from her about forgiveness and enduring through trials.

Mason M., Utah, USA

We love hearing from you. Write to us by going online to newera.lds.org and clicking “Submit Material.”

Or you can e-mail us at newera@ldschurch.org or write to New Era, 50 E. North Temple St., Rm. 2420, Salt Lake City, UT 84150-0024.