Editor’s note: “This week from the pulpit” highlights recent messages by Church leaders.
From leaders to parents to students, there is a little something for just about everyone in messages from Church leaders this week. President Russell M. Ballard and Elder Quentin L. Cook spoke at a special broadcast centered around the Children and Youth program and how to reengage in it since the pandemic. President Dallin H. Oaks and Sister Michelle D. Craig also delivered special devotionals to Church Educational System teachers and BYU–Hawaii students, respectively.
On social media, the new Primary General Presidency encouraged Primary leaders to look at the new Gospel for Kids App, and other Church leaders covered a variety of topics from reflecting on the small things we appreciate in life to discussing depression and anxiety.
Read more thoughts from these Church leaders below.
Why parents and leaders are vital to the Children and Youth program, President Ballard, Elder Cook and other Church leaders explain
By Sydney Walker, Church News
Only a few months into the Children and Youth program, the COVID-19 pandemic halted in-person gatherings around the world, forcing parents, leaders, and quorum and class presidencies to adapt meetings and activities.
Now, as COVID-19 restrictions subside in many areas, general Church leaders are encouraging parents and leaders to reintegrate activities where appropriate and reinforce other aspects of the Children and Youth program.
“We know this program will bless the lives of children and youth who participate,” said President M. Russell Ballard, Acting President of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, during a broadcast on Sunday, June 6. “Its purpose, like all Church programs and resources, is to help us draw closer to the Savior so that we may return to our Heavenly Father and receive eternal life.”
What President Oaks remembers best about his seminary teachers 70 years ago—and how it can help teachers today
By Rachel Sterzer Gibson, Church News
In a time where youth and young adults struggle to navigate the pressures of worldly ideas and values, contentions in society, and the isolation brought on by the pandemic, the Church’s second-most senior leader expressed his love, appreciation and a blessing to those who strive to teach them the gospel of Jesus Christ.
“I bless you as His servants, as His teachers, and as fathers and mothers in Zion, as worthy servants of the Lord Jesus Christ, to fulfill your responsibilities, to keep His commandments, to be great models of righteousness and teaching of true principles,” declared President Dallin H. Oaks, first counselor in the First Presidency.
Speaking during a devotional broadcast to Church Educational System teachers and administrators and their spouses on June 4, President Oaks was joined by his wife, Sister Kristen M. Oaks, and other top administrators in Seminaries and Institutes of Religion to offer words of counsel and encouragement to the more than 55,000 teachers throughout the world. Friday night’s devotional was translated into roughly 20 languages.
See more of President Oaks’s address at Church News.
By Rachel Sterzer Gibson, Church News
As some parts of the world start to come out of the worldwide pandemic, Sister Michelle D. Craig said she has heard some Church members express that they are not sure they want to come back when restrictions are lifted. It’s easier to take a vacation from church.
With this in mind, Sister Craig issued a challenge: “Let’s do the gospel of Jesus Christ. Let’s be where we are supposed to be, when we are supposed to be there, and be all in.
“As we do this, I bear testimony that our faith in Jesus Christ and our joy in His gospel will increase.”
Sister Craig, First Counselor in the Young Women general presidency, issued the challenge as part of her remarks during the weekly BYU–Hawaii campus devotional on Tuesday, June 8.
Speaking from the Cannon Activities Center on the BYU–Hawaii campus in Laie, Sister Craig offered five ways that individuals can protect themselves against “the lurking danger of spiritual complacency.”
Read more about Sister Craig’s message at Church News.