Sunday, October 19, 2008
***Visiting teaching is much more than a visit or sharing a thought with a sister. It is how we connect with one another. We share hearts and souls and extend charity, which is "the highest, noblest, strongest kind of love" (Bible Dictionary, "Charity," 632). Visiting teaching brings the love of the Lord to every home and to every sister. It is a sacred trust we have been given.
Why do sisters do visiting teaching? Mosiah describes it this way: "To bear one another's burdens, . . . to mourn with those that mourn; yea, and comfort those that stand in need of comfort" (Mosiah 18:8–9).
Visiting teaching is the heart and soul of Relief Society. The purposes of visiting teaching are to build caring relationships with each sister and to offer support, comfort, and friendship. In visiting teaching, both the giver and the receiver are blessed and strengthened in their Church activity by their caring concern for one another.
This caring concern is described in Moroni 6:4: “And after they had been received unto baptism, . . . they were numbered among the people of the church of Christ; and their names were taken, that they might be remembered and nourished by the good word of God, to keep them in the right way.”
Elder Henry B. Eyring
To be named and numbered has special significance for those in need. Elder Henry B. Eyring describes it beautifully:
“You are called to represent the Savior. Your voice to testify becomes the same as His voice, your hands to lift the same as His hands. . . . Your calling is to bless lives. That will be true even in the most ordinary tasks you are assigned. . . . You see, there are no small callings to represent the Lord” (“Rise to Your Call,” Ensign, Nov. 2002, 76).****
October's Visiting Teaching Message
Gender Is an Essential Characteristic of Eternal Identity and Purpose
Ensign, October 2008
The First Presidency and Quorum of the Twelve Apostles: "All human beings—male and female—are created in the image of God. Each is a beloved spirit son or daughter of heavenly parents, and, as such, each has a divine nature and destiny. Gender is an essential characteristic of individual premortal, mortal, and eternal identity and purpose" ("The Family: A Proclamation to the World," Liahona, Oct. 2004, 49; Ensign, Nov. 1995, 102).
Why Is Gender Essential?
Elder David A. Bednar of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles: "[Gender] in large measure defines who we are, why we are here upon the earth, and what we are to do and become. For divine purposes, male and female spirits are different, distinctive, and complementary. . . . The unique combination of spiritual, physical, mental, and emotional capacities of both males and females were needed to implement the plan of happiness" ("Marriage Is Essential to His Eternal Plan," Liahona, June 2006, 51; Ensign, June 2006, 83).
Julie B. Beck, Relief Society general president: "As spirit daughters of God, women 'received their first lessons in the world of spirits and were prepared to come forth' (D&C 138:56) on the earth. They were among the 'noble and great ones' (D&C 138:55) who 'shouted for joy' (Job 38:7) at the creation of the earth because they would be given a physical body with the opportunity to be proven in a mortal sphere (see Abraham 3:25). They wished to work side by side with righteous men to accomplish eternal goals that neither can attain independently. Female roles did not begin on earth, and they do not end here. A woman who treasures motherhood on earth will treasure motherhood in the world to come" ("A 'Mother Heart,' " Liahona and Ensign, May 2004, 76).
What Can I Do Because of My Role in Heavenly Father's Plan?
Margaret D. Nadauld, former Young Women general president: "Women of God can never be like women of the world. The world has enough women who are tough; we need women who are tender. There are enough women who are coarse; we need women who are kind. . . . We have enough women of fame and fortune; we need more women of faith" ("The Joy of Womanhood," Liahona, Jan. 2001, 18; Ensign, Nov. 2000, 15).
Elder M. Russell Ballard of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles: "The premortal and mortal natures of men and women were specified by God Himself. . . . [Sometimes women] ask: 'Is a woman's value dependent exclusively upon her role as a wife and mother?' The answer is simple and obvious: No. . . . Every righteous man and woman has a significant role to play in the onward march of the kingdom of God. . . .
" . . . My dear sisters, we believe in you. We believe in and are counting on your goodness and your strength, . . . And we believe that God's plan is for you to become queens and to receive the highest blessings any woman can receive in time or eternity" ("Women of Righteousness," Liahona, Dec. 2002, 36–37; Ensign, Apr. 2002, 66–69).
The recipe included in the halloween/october visiting teaching kit is for Spiced Pumpkin Seeds. I also made a batch of pumpkin-chocolate chip cookies for the Smiths (yum-o) Here are the recipes for both:
Spiced Pumpkin Seeds
1 1/2 T butter, melted (okay, it says margarine...but I prefer the real stuff!)
1/2 t salt
1/8 t garlic salt
2 t worcestershire sauce
2 C raw whole pumpkin seeds
Preheat oven to 275 degrees F. Combine butter, salts, worcestershire sauce and seeds. Mix thoroughly and place in shallow baking dish. Bake for 1 hour, stirring occassionally.
Pleasantly Plump Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies
1 C pumpkin (I used canned pure pumpkin...not the sweetened pie filling)
1 C white sugar (I did half white and half brown...just because I'm partial to brown)
1/2 Vegetable Oil
2 C flour
2 t baking powder
2 t cinnamon
1/2 t salt
1 t baking soda
1 t milk
1 T vanilla
2 C chocolate chips
1. Combine pumpkin, sugar(s), oil and egg. 2. In a second bowl combine flour, powder, cinnamon and salt. 3. In a small bowl mix baking soda and milk so it dissolves; add to flour mixture. 4. Combine both mixtures together. 5. add vanilla and chips to pumpkin cookie batter. 6. Drop spoonfuls on greased sheets. Bake at 350 for about 10 minutes.
I call mine "Pleasantly Plump" because everytime I've made these cookies (3 times this month already!) I double the batch and my individual cookies are HEAPING ICE CREAM SCOOP-FULS. I would definitely recommend doubling this recipe--they are REALLY GOOD! (Not too pumpkiny for finicky eaters)
Posted by Kelly Tillotson at 11:23 AM