Desire to See Christ

Written by The Gospel News on Monday, 09 December 2019. Posted in Miracles Hits 65

Desire to See Christ

Today's Miracle Monday originally appeared in the December 1951 issue of The Gospel News. This experience happened during a Detroit Branch 1 Ladies' Circle class. Sister Mary Di Donato had the following vision:

On Monday night, we were having our Ladies' Circle meeting, and we were reading in the Bible about the resurrection of Christ, when Mary went to to the tomb and didn't find Him there.

I looked at the three sisters that were sitting at the head who are President, Vice President, and Teacher, and it seemed they all appeared to me as though their faces were all the same. Then I turned to all the other sisters, and they appeared, too, all as one face.

Spread the Good Word: Psalm 72:18

Written by GospelBlog on Friday, 06 December 2019. Posted in The Good Word Hits 195

Spread the Good Word: Psalm 72:18

Today, we're introducing our final Good Word theme for 2019. This December, we're sharing scriptures related to "Wonder."

What is wonder? It's "a feeling of surprise mingled with admiration, caused by something beautiful, unexpected, unfamiliar, or inexplicable," as defined by Lexico.

The Christmas season is all about wonder, isn't it? Sparkling lights. Magnificent trees. Gorgeous food. Spellbinding stories. Charming carols. Warm traditions. They're all enchanting.

Standing on the Promises

Written by Sister Vicki Ali on Thursday, 05 December 2019. Posted in Special Series Hits 205

Standing on the Promises

Today's article is another installment in our series of childhood church memories. Today, Sister Vicki Ali recollects how her definition of "cool" has changed since she was a teenager.

I didn’t dig deep into my earliest church memories, but I dialed back to my preteen years and came across a good one to share. At this age, church services could be highly entertaining to an immature brain. The sport of Church People Watching provided many moments of uncontrollable muffled laughter as friends and I witnessed things like a sister returning to the front pew during the service with a trail of toilet paper stuck to her shoe. There were also poorly timed burps and other funny noises from old and young humans, and once a Sunday school Christmas program momentarily dissolved into melee when two kids got into a physical brawl front and center on stage. All of these — certainly America’s Funniest Home Video worthy moments.

However, the most amusing church memory I’ll share occurred when my family and I attended the Roscoe, Pennsylvania, location of The Church of Jesus Christ for several years. I dreaded the hour ride to get there, crammed in a car with my siblings and parents, which also included stopping to pick up my grandma and another elderly sister. Did I mention the last two passengers always wore very strong (often conflicting) floral perfumes? After escaping that misery, I was glad to settle into a pew with my new friend, Robyn. Robyn was four years older than me and super cool. She was kind enough to tolerate awkward me sitting there, as I admired her weekly lip gloss and nail polish choices, and we doodled in notebooks. So what significant event stands out from this pew memory?

Heritage of Servants of the Lord (3 Nephi 22)

Written by Brother Jerry Valenti on Wednesday, 04 December 2019. Posted in Scripture Study Hits 98

Heritage of Servants of the Lord (3 Nephi 22)

"Heritage" generally refers to practices or characteristics that are passed down through the years from one generation to the next.

For example, our family's recipe for making sauce for pasta (or gravy for macaroni, depending on who in the family you talk to) is part of our Italian heritage. For me personally, the lovely dark tan I get in the summer comes from that same heritage.

Speech mannerisms in different parts of the country — the way yinz or y'all pronounce certain words — are part of the heritage of those geographic areas. Historical landmarks, such as the Statue of Liberty and the Liberty Bell, are part of the American heritage — these items are not owned by any individual but are collectively owned by the American people and are passed down from one generation to the next.

How My Decisions Discipled Me

Written by Brother P. on Tuesday, 03 December 2019. Posted in Special Series Hits 119

How My Decisions Discipled Me

Today's article is another installment in our series of childhood church memories. Today, Brother P. recollects how growing up in church influenced his adult decisions.

If you grew up in The Church of Jesus Christ like I did, then you probably have memories of playing under the pew as a kid — and having to sit next to mom if you got too loud. There are also memories of Sunday school lessons, sermons, baptisms, sacrament, feetwashing, campouts, picnics, MBA activities, and more.

One thing that I am particularly thankful for is not really one event, and I cannot actually remember a person telling me this, but I think it was more of a cultural thing that I absorbed.

This Is the Place for Me

Written by Sister Ozie B. Mathis on Monday, 02 December 2019. Posted in Testimonies Hits 136

This Is the Place for Me

Today, we're sharing a dream had by Sister Ozie B. Mathis, as recorded in the February 1954 issue of The Gospel News.

I am so happy, my heart is overflowed with joy to have such a great desire to serve my Saviour. Through a testimony of Sister Carlini, a dear friend of mine, and she gave that testimony to me. After she did, I tried to forget the wonderful news, but Jesus never leaves His children alone.

Spread the Good Word: Hebrews 4:16

Written by GospelBlog on Friday, 29 November 2019. Posted in The Good Word Hits 239

Spread the Good Word: Hebrews 4:16

We're concluding this month's theme, "Boldness," with today's verse from Hebrews. It tells us to come boldly to the throne of grace. Two things are striking about this seemingly simple exhortation:

First, we're to approach God boldly, or with confidence. Do you remember the Old Testament temple? The Holiest of Holies was where God was supposed to meet with man. It was the innermost of several chambers, and the high priests were the only humans who could tread there, and even then, only by obeying God's instructions.

Thankful for the Greatest Generation

Written by Sister Erin Light on Thursday, 28 November 2019. Posted in Special Series Hits 282

Thankful for the Greatest Generation

Happy Thanksgiving! We hope you're enjoying a wonderful holiday with your loved ones. Today's article is another installment in our series of childhood church memories, and Sister Erin Light shines the spotlight on something that we can be very thankful for in our church — the fact that we benefit from having a wide span of ages interacting with and supporting one another.

One of the first questions out of my mouth as a child after Sunday service was not, surprisingly, “What’s for lunch?” It was, “Where are we going today?” That's because, more frequently than not, Sunday afternoon was the time when Mom and Dad would decide to go visit someone from the branch who was elderly or sick.

In the San Diego Branch, when I was little, we had a large group of seasoned saints who all lived within a half-hour of the church building. I remember sitting on their couches, always being offered a cookie or some juice, but the best memories were the stories. Soft-spoken sisters and brothers, with years of serving God and a huge pile of blessings, were just waiting to share. I remember trying to hold in my excitement at hearing their stories of prayers answered and miracles that got them through poverty, family trials, sickness, or layoffs. At the end of our visits, Mom and I would sit together and hold hands as Dad said a prayer for them.

City Building (3 Nephi 21)

Written by Brother Jerry Valenti on Wednesday, 27 November 2019. Posted in Scripture Study Hits 143

City Building (3 Nephi 21)

For about the past 30 years, there has been a genre of computer games known as "city building" games. These games allow the participants to build virtual (pretend) cities on their computer, designing the individual buildings, laying out the streets, etc. The grandfather of all city-building games was called "SimCity," which is considered rather basic today but paved the way (ha ha) for many other games to be created over the years.

The top-of-the-line city-building game available today is one known as "Cities: Skylines." If you invest enough time in this game, you can build a sprawling metropolis for which you will determine how to run power lines and water pipes, which businesses should be established, how taxes will be collected, what type of transit system to create, etc. By the time you're done, you will have put in enough effort to have built a real city.

In 3 Nephi 21, Jesus describes to the Nephites a city-building opportunity that will be presented to their descendants as well as others of the House of Israel:

The Real-Life Armor of God

Written by Brother Rich Nath on Tuesday, 26 November 2019. Posted in Special Series Hits 207

The Real-Life Armor of God

Today's article is another installment in our series of childhood church memories. Today, Brother Rich Nath discovers an interesting connection between an old memory and a recent experience.

All throughout my toddler and school-age years, I attended VBS in the Monongahela Branch. Every summer, there was a weeklong series of lessons on a particular theme.

My great-great aunt, Sister Mabel Bickerton, planned many, many VBS lessons for all age groups that covered people, events, or in one case, a specific item. Back in 1980-something, when I was in my early grade-school years, the VBS theme was about the armor of God. We studied the pieces and their meanings throughout the week, ending with a program on Friday night where we sang the songs and displayed the pieces of armor.

Thanks, Thanks Again

Written by Catherine Poma on Monday, 25 November 2019. Posted in Holidays Hits 154

Thanks, Thanks Again

Today, in honor of the Thanksgiving holiday, we are publishing this poem, written by Catherine Poma, that appeared in the November 1955 issue of The Gospel News. We hope it inspires you to gratitude!

For the clasp of a hand
In a weary land,
When you're sure nobody cares;
For the pat on the back
When the skies are black,
And the pain's too great to bear;

For the friendships based
On a love as chaste
As the love of God to men;
For all these things
My glad heart sings,
"Thanks, thanks again!"

Spread the Good Word: Alma 38:12

Written by GospelBlog on Friday, 22 November 2019. Posted in The Good Word Hits 268

Spread the Good Word: Alma 38:12

For Good Word Friday, we're exploring scriptures about boldness. Merriam-Webster defines "bold" as

  • fearless before danger (intrepid)

This dictionary also includes the archaic meaning, which is "assured and confident," which, you can argue, applies nicely to today's scripture, too. In this light, boldness is good. It's something free from fear and doubt — how refreshing!

Thank You for the Music

Written by Sister Natalie Shawver on Thursday, 21 November 2019. Posted in Special Series Hits 231

Thank You for the Music

Today's article is another installment in our series of childhood church memories. Today, Sister Natalie Shawver takes a musical trip down memory lane.

“Deep and wide, deep and wide, there’s a fountain flowing deep and wide…”

Know that song? I learned it (hand-motions included) thanks to Sister Linda during a Sunday School class in the Youngstown Branch in the late ‘80s.

“I am a promise, I am a possibility, I am a promise with a capital ‘P,’ I’m a great big bundle of potentiality!”

How about that one? Those words (and tune) are permanently ingrained in my head (and heart) thanks to Sister Carolyn from a GMBA Campout in the early ‘90s.

How to Have Beautiful Feet (3 Nephi 20)

Written by Brother Jerry Valenti on Wednesday, 20 November 2019. Posted in Scripture Study Hits 213

How to Have Beautiful Feet (3 Nephi 20)

Welcome to today's beauty tips column. Here are a few tips for maintaining your feet that come from actual websites on this subject:

  • Wear comfortable, well-fitting shoes.
  • Perform regular self-examination; deal with problem areas immediately.
  • Moisturize the skin; remove dead skin.
  • Exercise on a regular basis — walking, etc.

In 3 Nephi 20, Jesus describes to the Nephites the covenant God made with Abraham and his descendants, specifically the House of Israel. He mentions how the House of Israel has been scattered but will eventually be gathered together again in a place referred to as Zion. He then quotes Isaiah 52:7, which makes reference to those who will assist in bringing about Zion:

"How beautiful upon the mountains are the feet of him that bringeth good tidings unto them, that publisheth peace;…that publisheth salvation, that saith unto Zion: Thy God reigneth!" (3 Nephi 20:40)

The above verse contains four actions that workers for Zion will undertake with the House of Israel to help bring them to a knowledge of Christ. These same activities can be undertaken by any of us as part of our Christian walk in the hopes that people we come in contact with can be brought to a knowledge of Christ. Let's see how we can make our feet beautiful upon the mountains in the way this verse describes.

Open to the Spirit

Written by Sister Stefanie Callens on Tuesday, 19 November 2019. Posted in Special Series Hits 233

Open to the Spirit

Today's article is another installment in our series of childhood church memories. Today, Sister Stefanie Callens remembers feeling the Spirit of God for the first time.

God touched me for the first time when I was 11 or 12 years old. That particular Sunday, there wasn’t anyone else who had come to the branch except for my immediate family, so they decided to just do a Bible study. We read a couple of chapters, and I remember feeling really disappointed when we finished up. I just wanted to read and learn more and more. It was to the point that I was on the verge of tears. I didn’t understand why I was feeling that way and actually hid in the bathroom because I was embarrassed.

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