“The youth in my ward split into groups. How can we get more unity?”

Being united was so important to the Savior that just before He carried out the Atonement, He prayed for unity among all His disciples and those who believe in their words: “That they all may be one; as thou, Father, art in me, and I in thee, that they also may be one in us” (John 17:21).

But it’s natural that when youth get together, those who already know and are comfortable with one another may often form into groups. While this is not necessarily a bad thing, it can cause some people to feel left out. The first step in building unity is to include everyone in your group. Be aware of someone who might not feel included, and invite him or her to join in—it can make a big difference. And if you’re the one not included, let the others know you’d like to join the group.

A few other great ways to build unity are by serving together, supporting and encouraging each other, and participating in activities together. You might want to bring up the subject in your quorum or class and plan activities that will help you get to know one another’s interests.

Be Positive

What I find best to do is just be positive. I always keep my head up and smile and try to be nice to everyone no matter what. Also, I try reaching out to different groups of friends.

Ashton T., 14, Arizona, USA

Sit with Someone New

On Sunday in opening exercises, go sit with someone you don’t know very well or you haven’t seen before.

Isabel T., 14, British Columbia, Canada

Do Things as a Group

It is not easy doing stuff with people you don’t know as well as your friends. But doing things as a group with people you don’t know as well can give variety to the activity, and you also have the chance to make new friends.

William W., 14, Utah, USA

Introduce Yourself

Sometimes people are afraid to introduce themselves to other youth they don’t know. Whenever I see this, I introduce myself and my friends to them and invite them to hang out with us.

Danielle H., 15, California, USA

Be a “Service Sister”

In our ward we planned different activities that included the “likes” of particular girls. We also have “Service Sisters,” where each of us is assigned another girl. Then we write nice notes to her or make treats, and every month we switch girls.

April B., 14, Arizona, USA

Reach Out to Everyone

A more close-knit youth group starts with yourself. Reach out to everyone. This may be difficult, but if you open up to others, they will usually open up to you. Get your friends in on it too! Especially if you’re a priest or Laurel, the younger youth will feel special if you include them in activities outside of church.

Kristen B., 17, Illinois, USA

Plan Meaningful Activities

We started planning activities where we met new people. We played winter Olympics, ultimate Frisbee, and many more games. And we always had a spiritual thought and meaning to each activity. These activities brought everyone together and we all became great friends!

Megan W., 16, Utah, USA

Make Some Phone Calls

You can make some phone calls and remind those young women or young men how much you care for them. You can also remind them that we are all sons and daughters of God.

Belén C., 16, Buenos Aires, Argentina

Become the Bridge

I found if you are friendly with everyone, people start to accept you into their groups. And once you do that, you can become the bridge between groups. By being that bridge, you can start a chain reaction that brings your whole ward together. And it doesn’t take much to start. Just smile and say hi.

Megan C., 16, California, USA

Responses are intended for help and perspective, not as official pronouncements of Church doctrine.

Our Great Opportunity

President Henry B. Eyring

“We know from experience that joy comes when we are blessed with unity. … It is not surprising then that God urges us to gather so that He can bless us. … He has established classes, wards, and branches and commanded us to meet together often. In those gatherings, which God has designed for us, lies our great opportunity. We can pray and work for the unity that will bring us joy and multiply our power to serve.”

President Henry B. Eyring, First Counselor in the First Presidency, “Our Hearts Knit as One,” Ensign, Nov. 2008, 69.

Next Question

“What can I do to help my younger brother and sister be more reverent during sacrament meeting?”

Send your answer and photo by August 15, 2012.

Go to newera.lds.org, click “Submit Material,” and then select “Questions and Answers.”

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Responses may be edited for length or clarity.