Monday, January 9, 2012
Visiting Teaching January 2012
My husband and I were having our Family home evening tonight, and he was sharing with me some of the messages he has read in this months Ensign. For some reason, I found it surprising that he read the Visiting Teaching message, and even more surprising, that he pointed out to me a quote, that didn't jump out at me when I first read the message. He read to me this quote from Eliza Snow, the 2nd General R.S. President:
“A teacher … should surely have so much of the Spirit of the Lord, as she enters a house to know what spirit she meets in there. … Plead before God and the Holy Ghost to get [the Spirit] so that you will be able to meet that spirit that prevails in that house … and you may feel to talk words of peace and comfort, and if you find a sister feeling cold, take her to your heart as you would a child to your bosom and warm [her] up.”
When my husband read this to me, immediately my mind was drawn to some past visiting Teaching visits, where the sisters that I taught needed what Sister Snow said..."peace and comfort" and as she describes in a different way... I think she means "A HUG". I thought about the instances where my sisters needed a hug, and I knew just how important that a timely visit from me really was for them. They needed a listening ear, a shoulder to cry on, someone to commiserate with and words telling them that they aren't alone. I am so grateful for the Spirit opening my heart to listen, and know what those needs were.
I too have had need for a hug from my visiting teachers from time to time, and I have felt so blessed to have been given some caring sisters to provide me the watch care I need. We all have need of watch care, and how blessed we are when we have sisters whom we have developed a friendship with and know that they really do care when they say they do. Not only do they care, but they act upon those feelings and provide the watch care that is needed.
I will be the first one to admit that I have not always been able to develop the kind of relationship with all of my visiting teachers that I should have. Trust has always been a huge issue with me, and I personally need to feel that I can trust that when my Visiting Teacher says she wants to be there for me, or help me, or bring in a meal or whatever, that she isn't just saying it, but she really means it. Believe me, I know the difference. I want to know that when my Visiting Teachers leave me with a hug, that I feel their warmth and friendship, that our spirts have connected, and I and know that they genuine in their watch care of me.
This is probably one of the greatest reasons that I am doing what I do with this blog. I have such a strong testimony of the value and importance of good Visiting Teachers, that if I can encourage anyone who reads this blog, to go the extra mile, or to understand and gain the testimony of her own, of the importance of the watch care given as a Visiting teacher, then I will have accomplished something great on behalf of my Heavenly Father.
My Ward has a phenomenal Relief Society President. She is tireless, constantly filled with love and fervor, and absolute zeal in her calling. Every single Sunday when she takes a moment to bolster up the sister in Relief Society, I feel like I have been spiritually fed through her words. She lives every word that comes out of her mouth. She says, and she does, if you know what I mean. I know how much time she spends in watching over the sisters in our ward. I know because my husband is the Bishop and she is at my home or on the phone very often discussing needs, concerns or whatever about the sisters she has stewardship over, with the Bishop.
One occasion in Relief Society, she was sharing how important those little papers are to her, that are shown in the prior post. After you have finished reading this post, scroll down and see the "Caring that Counts" page. She says that when these reports are turned into her monthly, she pours over them and it allows her to really know the sisters and their needs, and act upon meeting the needs of those who have things going on in their lives that need care given. These little papers, which are essentially feedback from vigilant Visiting Teachers, are so important because no matter how much time she spends in her calling, she can't know everything, unless we, her Visiting Teachers, do our part. So just how important do you think Visiting teachers are? Without them, how many sisters needs wouldn't be met,just because nobody knew about them?
Anyway, I hope you appreciated my thoughts, and perspective on Visiting teaching for this month. Enjoy! Katie G.
P.S. A little note about the photo that I have used for this blog post. When I began searching for the right photo, I was absolutely drawn to this one, and it was from "The Daughters of my Kingdom" book that our church recently published and distributed to all the women of the Church. Here is the link to that wonderful book and if you have not yet taken the opportunity to do so, read it! http://lds.org/relief-society/daughters-in-my-kingdom/manual/chapter-7?lang=eng
I think the reason I liked it so much was because one of my sisters I teach looks just like the woman who is giving the Watch Care to the elderly woman. Ironically enough, this sister is also providing care for her own mother, and I imagined this picture continually as she cared for her own mother.
General Conference Talks
General Conference Reports
Proceedings of Recent General Conferences
What shall we give?
An Apostles Easter Thoughts on Christ
This short video is an Important message from the mouths of our Prophets!
July 6 - Pioneer Cooking
Click on this link to take you to the Pioneer Recipes:
I was also thinking that if you were to copy some of these recipes and print them off, that might be a fun handout for the Sisters you Visit Teach!
July 2nd - Diana Lucina Spicer Block
Visiting Teaching Tips, handouts and Ideas
For many years, I have been creating very cute and fun things to take to the ladies I Visit Teach. I have shared from time to time, my ideas with others and they have really appreciated them. I decided that since I do these anyway, I would start doing one every month and then post it on this blog to share with anyone for their Visiting Teaching. I do need to make a disclaimer.... the ideas, thoughts, stories, graphics etc. used are created by me and they are not in any way official LDS Church quotes, handouts or ideas. They are my creations or others as noted, except for the quotes that will come directly from the Monthly Visiting Teaching message found in the Ensign. Also, many thanks to the talented designers of the digital paper and elements that I use to create the beautiful artwork, and handouts you see on my blog.
You can go to http://www.lds.org/ and look up and even print the monthly message if you do not have your own Ensign magazine subscription in English or to choose to read the Liahona or Ensign in a different language go to http://lds.org/ldsorg/v/index.jsp?vgnextoid=03103c7ff44f2010VgnVCM1000001f5e340aRCRD&locale=0.
For Spanish you can go to http://www.sud.org.es/
I highly recommend you get your own subscription because you will find a wealth of really good & wholesome, moral reading, that you can't find anywhere else. If you go to http://www.lds.org/ and click on "Gospel Library" then click on "Magazines" you can order your own Ensign, Liahona, New Era, or Friend magazines.
Posted by Katie Gauger at 10:41 AM 0 comments
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"Returning to the Past" A Relief Society Activity Idea
I just found your blog. It is so great. I love the idea of the Hearts of Angels. I am trying to figure out how we can use it for our VT conference and incorporate some of the things for our VT interviews. I am a new R/S president and all these things we have to do throughout the year are a little overwhelming. I love all of you ideas. So much work involved, thank you for being willing to share with all of us! I would love anything else you could pass my way.
WE had the thought earlier to use a theme of "Returning to the past" for our activities this year. So all of your old-fashioned pictures will be great to use as invites and handouts.
You might be interested in the idea we had for our B-Day dinner. We always have a progressive dinner in December to the homes of different sisters. We divide them up into about 5 smaller groups and go around to the different sisters homes in the ward. Because of the weather we cancelled it and had it at the church. We decided to do it for our B-Day dinner instead when the weather would be better. We are having the women bring a sack lunch with them and to wear something old, like a grandmothers broach or shawl, or to dress up in the time of the 1800's, and to bring a pint jar with a lid. We will have the sisters make lemonade at the first house and take with them in the jar that they brought, and then go to the next house. At the last house we will have and old fashioned cake to serve like apple walnut cake or something like that.
We still have some details to work out but at the end each member of the presidency will be at a different home and will share a prepared script. It will be written as if they were at the very first R/S meeting when the prophet Joseph Smith organized the R/S with just a handful of women.
Anyway, thank you for sharing what you have! You have a great talent!
Stacey McClellan - Blackfoot, Idaho
SELF RELIANT SISTERS BLOG HAS A GREAT ACTIVITY ABOUT GARDENING WITH KIDS - go to http://selfreliantsisters.blogspot.com/ It is well worth the time and a terriffic idea as Spring is just around the corner! Here is a tiny bit of information that you will see at the site.....
Gardening with Kids has great tips on getting kids started with gardening. Give your child some space; literally! Kids loving having spaces that are all their own, whether it`s their own desk area in the house, or the tent they've created with chairs and blankets in the family room. The same is true for gardening. Dedicate a small plot of the garden just for them. Put a fancy border around it, perhaps purchase one of the stepping stone making kits found at crafts stores in which they can mold their name and make their hand print.
Let them join you at the nursery. Let your kids know you value their opinion. Ask them which kinds of plants, flowers, and vegetables they like. Explain what will work well in your garden and what won't.
Give them (limited) choices. While you're at the nursery, ask them if they'd like pansies or petunias, marigolds or zinnias. This will give them the feeling of power without letting it get out of control.
Remind them money doesn't grow on trees. With older children discuss the budget. Let them help select seeds and blossoming plants at the nursery - and turn it into a math lesson. Let your child do the money calculations; they can tell you when the money runs out.
Let your child do what he will (especially if you have a preschooler). Let him dig, explore, play with bugs. You may be tempted to steer your child in another direction (like actually watering or weeding his garden), but this is a great way for your child to explore this exciting new universe.
Plan, plan, plan. If you have older children, say 8 or 9 or older, let them plot out their own garden on paper. Provide him or her with graph paper, pencils and seed catalogs. Give them a group of flowers and vegetables from which to choose, and then let them draw out their garden.
Get them their own gardening tools. Nothing will motivate your little gardener more than having her own little shovel, her own gardening gloves, and her own watering pail. And don't forget those bright colored rubber boots. You need to go to the site and explore all the rest of the links and ideas.