Special Series

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?

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

Feeling Emotion vs. the Spirit

Written by Sister Michelle Watson on Thursday, 14 November 2019. Posted in Special Series Hits 276

Feeling Emotion vs. the Spirit

Today, we're happy to introduce a new series called Early Church Memories. We all have certain childhood memories that stand out as interesting or important to us. For those who were raised in church, many of these early recollections play a role in our spiritual development. You'll see articles in this series pop up through November, and we hope they remind you of your earliest memories with the Lord.

To start things off, Sister Michelle Watson shares two memories that are the same but different.

I had to have been 6 years old or younger, and I was sitting in a pew near the back of the sanctuary in the old church building in Anaheim, California (before the blue remodel). The minister at the pulpit was telling a very touching story about a young child. Because the story was about a kid, my ears perked up, and I listened. The narrative was sad and beautiful, and I both pitied and admired the fictional child.

What to Worry About

Written by Brother P. on Tuesday, 11 June 2019. Posted in Special Series Hits 489

What to Worry About

Today's article is another installment in Brother P.'s column, "Lessons From the Nursing Home."

Often while walking people in the nursing home — that is my job, you know — the person with whom I am walking will share with me their worries. And they will worry about everything.

They worry about having to be in the nursing home for a few weeks following their most recent surgery; they worry about that surgery; they worry about their animals at home or their kids or grandkids at home; they worry about the weather, Christmas coming, you name it.

They worry about, well, everything.

If I Could Have Dinner With Two

Written by Brother P. on Tuesday, 02 April 2019. Posted in Special Series Hits 479

If I Could Have Dinner With Two

When our Gospel Blog editor asked us to write about who we would have dinner with, I thought I would cheat and have dinner with two people. I choose (1) a former Hollywood celebrity currently in prison and (2) Abinadi. We would have some steaks, and I would take a selfie. I would later print the photo, frame it, and then add a scripture: "The wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord" (Romans 6:23).

If I Could Have Dinner With the Four Sons of Mosiah

Written by Brother Rich Nath on Thursday, 28 March 2019. Posted in Special Series Hits 648

If I Could Have Dinner With the Four Sons of Mosiah

If I had the opportunity to have dinner with anyone from scripture or church history, it would be the four sons of Mosiah: Ammon, Aaron, Omner, and Himni. These men were great missionaries, taking the Gospel to the Lamanite people and being used by God to bring many of them to an understanding of the truth.

With where I am in The Church, away from the main body with only a handful of saints closer than four hours away, I would love to hear their counsel. It would be both encouraging and helpful in spreading the Gospel and growing The Church.

If I Could Have Dinner With Eve

Written by Sister Natalie Shawver on Tuesday, 26 March 2019. Posted in Special Series Hits 1307

If I Could Have Dinner With Eve

Of the hundreds of notable people throughout the Scriptures, one individual has always intrigued me. Perhaps the best-known woman in both the Bible and Book of Mormon, Eve has had an enormous influence on our lives. While many poke fun at her “gigantic mistake,” I tend to err on the side of her humanness — and somehow that makes me feel comforted when I find myself following suit. If I could sit down to dinner with her one evening — over a pasta meal, of course — I’d love to ask her about the following:

If I Could Have Dinner With Brother Ishmael D’Amico

Written by Brother Richard Lowman on Thursday, 21 March 2019. Posted in Special Series Hits 578

If I Could Have Dinner With Brother Ishmael D’Amico

We were recently blessed to host Sister Sharon Church at our home. I mention her name in order to introduce the person from church history with whom I would like to have dinner.

While Sister Sharon was with us, she gave me the gift of her father's and her grandfather’s testimony in booklet form. After reading these, you have no idea how I wished that I could have met these two gentlemen. Her grandfather was Brother Ishmael D’Amico. I read his story two times and then went on to share his testimony with many.

The reasons I would love to have dinner with him and have discussions with him are as follows:

If I Could Have Dinner With...

Written by Sister Linda Scolaro on Tuesday, 19 March 2019. Posted in Special Series Hits 629

If I Could Have Dinner With...

If I were to have dinner with someone from church history and could ask him or her questions it would be…

Can you guess by these statements who the person (I would choose to have dinner with) is?

If I Could Have Dinner With Brother Alexander Cherry

Written by Sister Dianne Maddox on Thursday, 14 March 2019. Posted in Special Series Hits 2252

If I Could Have Dinner With Brother Alexander Cherry

Today, we're introducing a series of articles called, "If I Could Have Dinner With…" Each participating writer has chosen someone from scripture or church history who they'd love to have all to themselves for the length of a meal — to ask questions, to listen, to dialogue. Sister Dianne Maddox kicks things off in the following article where she imagines what it would be like to have Brother Alexander Cherry over to her home for dinner more than a century ago.

In 1904, the average life expectancy was 47 years. Fourteen percent of the homes had a bathtub and 8 percent had a telephone. There were 8,000 cars and 144 miles of paved roads. The average wage was 22 cents an hour. Eggs cost 14 cents a dozen, and coffee was 15 cents a pound. Twenty percent of adults couldn’t read or write, and 6 percent of Americans had graduated high school.

O Holy Night: Christmas Playlist 2018

Written by Brother Rich Nath on Thursday, 13 December 2018. Posted in Special Series Hits 640

O Holy Night: Christmas Playlist 2018

"O Holy Night" has been one of my favorite Christmas hymns since I can remember. Though, I can't say that I've heard it sung during congregational singing much. Maybe that's because it's a tough song to sing since much of it is written in higher notes. It surely isn't because of the words or the message that the song brings, which is one of hope and salvation.

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