Last Sunday was our ward conference. Bishop Lomenick shared words of encouragement and praise. He commended the ward for having someone at the temple every day that it has been opened this year. This started out as a goal for January, but we have been so blessed by our January efforts in regard to temple attendance that the invitation has been extended throughout the entire year. Sister Mack was endowed and many ward members were there with her. We had a ward session in February, and Tapie Rohm was the officiator. We have had temple baptisms for those who are not yet endowed and for the youth. Good things are happening. There are others that will be endowed in the near future. I am thankful for Bishop Lomenick's words of praise and encouragement. Our ward really needs that. We are striving to boost our spirituality and to help boost each other.
John and I sang a duet. Bob accompanied. We sang, "Lord, I would follow Thee." John sang the melody and I sang alto. The congregation joined us for the last verse.
Then President Poulsen spoke. He gave us our marching orders. I'm thankful for the reassuring words first of Bishop Lomenick. We all need to feel good about where we are heading and what we are doing in order to boost it up and do more, what President Poulsen is inviting us to do, and what the Lord is requiring that we do.
There were three things that President Poulsen asked us to do:
1st--During the sacrament, think of the Savior. Think of His life, his miracles, how he went about doing good, how he blessed others and ministered to their needs.
2nd--Pray for promptings--for yourself, for your family, for your stewardshiop, and for your callings in church.
Currently, we have 65-70% of our ward membership missing from Sacrament meeting. We must remember them; it is not optional. We were participants in the War in Heaven; it was a war of words. We raised our arm to the square and said that we'd follow the Savior. We raised our arm to the square and covenanted that we'd move heaven and earth to bring each other back into Heavenly Father's presence. Reflect and pray on that covenant. Remember and nourish the members of the ward. Those who are here with us and those who are not here.
There are many health needs in the ward. There are many single sisters. Throughout the church, 83% of single mothers do not go to church at all. This Fast Sunday (which is tomorrow now) come to church fasting and praying. Ponder on the Savior and whom He would have me minister to and bless.
By July 1st, our Sacrament meeting attendance should rise to 52%. From there we will be blessed to see it rise to 70-75%. Be prepared for the blessings.
3rd--Pray while at the temple--Ask--Who in my ward dost Thou want me to bless? Follow the promptings you receive. Say Father, They will be done. Hearts will be healed; lives will be blessed.
As we go forth in faith to meet these challenges, we will be blessed with the choicest esperiences.
Bishop Lomenick has asked us to do our visiting teaching and home teaching by the 15th of each month. I believe that this will be necessary for us to do in order to meet the challeges extended to us by President Poulsen. If we are to bring in the lost sheep, we need to more fully care for those for whom we have stewardship. As we become stronger and as they become stronger, we will move to higher ground (having even more members endowed in the Holy Temple) and we will be able to reach many others and extend to them the invitation to move to higher ground. We definitely need to learn to be a more kind and loving people; we need to be a more inclusive and outgoing people. And with these thoughts, it's time to begin my own fast.