FHE: Perpetual Education

Conference Talk:

For more information on this topic read "Welcome to Conference," by Thomas S. Monson, Ensign, May 2009, 4-6.

Thought:

The Perpetual Education Fund, established in 2001, continues to move forward. Since its inception, 35,600 young men and young women have been enrolled in the program and have trained to improve their skills and their employment opportunities. Thus far, 18,900 have finished that training. On average, . . . they are increasing their income by three to four times. What a blessing this is in their lives! This is indeed an inspired program.

(Thomas S. Monson, "Welcome to Conference," Ensign, May 2009, 4-6.)

Song: "I Will Be Valiant" Children's Songbook, p. 162.

Scripture: God gave them knowledge and skill in all learning and wisdom. (Daniel 1:17)

Lesson:

Read in the For the Strength of Youth booklet why the Lord wants us to learn and to gain an education. Emphasize that we can find joy in learning at church, at school, and at home.

Ask the family three questions:

Question 1: How do you make a blade of grass? Question 2: How many stars are in the sky? Question 3: Have any birds fallen out of trees and died anywhere on earth today?

We can't answer any of these questions.

Who does know the answer to these questions? Jesus Christ does. He created the earth and everything on it. He knows how many stars are in the sky. He knows about the fall of the sparrow, and he knows about each of us. Jesus knows everything. But did you know that we have been commanded to become like Jesus? He has promised us that we can be like him and know what he knows. Does this mean that we need to keep learning? Yes! Do even Moms and Dads need to keep learning? Yes! We all need to learn from the scriptures, from good books, from going to school and to church, and from studying, listening, observing, and working hard. The Holy Ghost will help us get the knowledge that we need, "line upon line, precept upon precept" (2 Nephi 28:30). We will keep learning even after we die.

Bear your testimony of the importance of education. Share why education is important to you and explain the blessings your education has brought into your life. Congratulate each family member for the things that he or she has learned during the past year. Let each person know that he or she is smart and capable of learning all the things that Heavenly Father wants his children to know. Encourage the family to keep learning every day.

(Deborah Pace Rowley, Before They Turn Twelve, [Salt Lake City: Deseret Book, 2007], p. 20-21.)

Discuss the Church's plan (called the Perpetual Education Fund) to help people in other countries obtain an education. Ask how your family could help with this program.

Story:

President Gordon B. Hinckley

(*This was the third time President Hinckley was invited to address the Los Angeles World Affairs Council. More than 2,000 people were in attendance, including diplomats, professors, government officials, media representatives, and religious leaders of many faiths.)

Let me give you, in their own words, two or three expressions [about the Perpetual Education Fund].

This from a young man in Concepcion, Chile:

"I have felt frustrated and inadequate to provide my future family a better economic state and at the same time a spiritual surrounding. All my life I have fought mediocrity. My feelings for the Perpetual Education Fund are those of gratitude to the Lord. This is a great blessing for so many of us, not only from Chile but in all Latin American countries. Today I can change the future and give something better to my children. Thanks to all who have made this possible."

This from a young man in Colombia who is studying to become a computer systems network technician:

"When I was serving my mission, many of the members and even the investigators would ask me about my goals after my mission. Without hesitating I would always respond, 'I'll go to school, work, and get married.' Then, when I was in the apartment with my companion, the truth would come out. I told my companion that it would be too difficult for me, that I could never have the money to do it. My good companion would try to encourage me by saying that the Lord would help me somehow if I were just patient. Still, it seemed hopeless.

"The Perpetual Education Fund was an answer to my companion's faith and the prayers of many others. Now I am achieving that dream. I am attending one of the best schools in my city. My desires and motivation are higher than ever. I can see how I will be able to help my family, the Church, and others, and I will return in many ways the assistance given me. I am so grateful once again to see the fulfillment of the Lord's promise to always protect His sheep."

This from a young man in Brazil. He is now 27.

"I came home from my mission six years ago and eventually found a wonderful wife. However, all my efforts to gain an education were frustrated. The free courses I took were ineffective, and the good courses were expensive and therefore totally inaccessible. When the Perpetual Education Fund was announced, it gave me new hope about becoming self-reliant, about having a promising career. Today I am in training to become a radiology technician thanks to a loan from the fund. After my graduation I will find a job that will give me the time and money to take care of my family and serve better in the Church."

(Gordon B. Hinckley, Discourses of President Gordon B. Hinckley, Volume 2: 2000-2004, [Salt Lake City: Deseret Book Co., 2005].)

Activity:

Remind the family that the prophet thinks that learning is very important. "Be smart" was one of President Gordon B. Hinckley's Six Bs, and he even established the Perpetual Education Fund to help young men and young women get the education they need. For the Six Bs Relay, family members will run to a certain part of the house, say one of the six phrases, perform a simple action that will help them remember that "B," then run to the next part of the house. Make it a timed obstacle course to see who can finish the relay fastest, or make it a relay with two teams racing against each other. Start at the front door.

B #1: Run to the dining room and touch your lips while mouthing the words "Thank you." Shout out, "Be grateful."

B #2: Run to a bedroom and kneel down and fold your arms. Whisper, "Be prayerful."

B #3: Run to the kitchen and bow your head. Say, "Be humble."

B #4: Run to the home office or stand beside a bookshelf. Point to your brain and declare, "Be smart."

B #5: Run to the bathroom and rub your hands together as if you were washing them. Say, "Be clean."

B #6: Run to the living room, place your hand over your heart, and promise to "Be true." Run back to the front door. The first person or team to touch the door wins the relay.

(Deborah Pace Rowley, Before They Turn Twelve, [Salt Lake City: Deseret Book, 2007], p. 21.)

Refreshment

German Pancakes with Strawberries

  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 1 1/2 cups milk
  • 3/4 cup flour
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 3 cups fresh strawberries, halved
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 (8-ounce) carton sour cream
  • 1/4 cup packed brown sugar
  • Maple syrup
Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Put butter in a 9-inch glass pie plate. Place in oven for 5 minutes, or until butter melts and bubbles. While butter is melting put milk, flour, sugar, eggs, and salt into blender. Blend on medium speed until smooth. Remove pie plate from oven. Adjust heat to 450 degrees F. Immediately pour mixture into pie plate. Return pie plate to oven. Bake for 20 minutes. Reduce oven temperature to 350 degrees F. and bake 8 to 10 minutes more until edges are puffed and browned. Remove from oven. In a bowl, sprinkle strawberries with sugar. Spoon into center of hot pancake. Cut hot pancake into wedges. Serve topped with sour cream, brown sugar, and syrup. Makes 4 servings.

(Julie Badger Jensen, Essential Mormon Cookbook, [Salt Lake City: Deseret Book, 2004], p. 11.)

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