The LDS Daily WOOL© Archive - Family

"Some Latter-day Saint families are what we refer to as the 'traditional family,' consisting of parents and children all together in a permanent relationship, with both mother and father sharing in the responsibility of caring for children. Others have witnessed the loss of one of the parents and become one of the many single-parent families. I am one who grew up in a single-parent home. My father lost his life as a result of a construction accident when I was two years old, leaving my mother with seven children to raise. Even in single-parent families, the family continues on, for families are forever. Perhaps few human challenges are greater than that of being good parents. Yes, even with the best intentions, conscientious, good parents sometimes experience feelings of despair, failure, and hurt when children do not make right choices and turn out the way we would like. Even in those circumstances it is so important for parents to love, pray for, and never give up hope for a son or daughter who may have strayed or brought disappointment. Elder Howard W. Hunter stated: 'The responsibilities of parenthood are of the greatest importance. The results of our efforts will have eternal consequences for us and the boys and girls we raise. Anyone who becomes a parent is under strict obligation to protect and love his children and assist them to return to their Heavenly Father' (ENSIGN, Nov. 1983, p. 65)."— Ben B. Banks, Take Time For Your Children, General Conference, October 1993

"The Brethren have said to push the world back. We are many more than the ten needed to save Sodom and Gomorrah. How will we fight this battle as it continues? The faithful Saints of God, with the undergirding of His holy priesthood, are the most powerful force on earth. We must hold fast to forceful proclamations from God regarding the sanctity of life, His eternal and never-ending instruction to be chaste and pure. His loving counsel that families are ordained of God with a father, mother, and children to live together forever was not intended to be the exception, but the rule. A return to Christ by an individual will bring peace of mind in place of turmoil, tranquility to replace strife, courage and optimism in place of fear."— Durrel A. Woolsey, A Strategy for War, General Conference, October 1995

"We must recognize that the family is the cornerstone of civilization and that no nation will rise above the caliber of its homes. The family is the rock foundation of the Church. We therefore call on the head of every household to strengthen the family."— Ezra Taft Benson, Counsel to the Saints, General Conference, April 1984

"I believe we must constantly nourish the seeds of love, harmony, and unity in our homes and families. Fathers are to preside over their families in kindness, remembering that "no power or influence can or ought to be maintained by virtue of the priesthood, only by persuasion, by long-suffering, by gentleness and meekness, and by love unfeigned" (D&C 121:41). Husbands and wives are to love each other with a pure love that transcends selfishness. In a single-parent family, the parent presides. Parents are to nurture their children and teach them the principles of right living. Regardless of the help other individuals or institutions may give, the Lord has placed this responsibility ultimately with parents. Children are to honor their parents (see Exodus 20:12) by obeying them, living as they are taught, and fostering peace in the home."— Joseph B. Wirthlin, Seeds Of Renewal, General Conference, April 1989

"In the plan of salvation, all families are precious instruments in the Lord's hands to help direct His children toward a celestial destination. The righteous molding of an immortal soul is the highest work we can do, and the home is the place to do it. To accomplish this eternal work, we should make our homes gospel centered. When peace and harmony abound, the Holy Spirit will ever be present. The storms of the evil one can be stopped at the very entrance of our homes."— Joseph B. Wirthlin, Spiritually Strong Homes And Families, General Conference, April 1993

"Be true to your families, loyal to them. Protect your children. Guide them, not arbitrarily, but through the kind example of a father, and so contribute to the strength of the Church by exercising your priesthood in your home and in your lives."— David O. McKay, Conference Report, April 1969

"And so we plead with you fathers to return to your little kingdoms and, with kindness, justice, proper discipline, and love, to inspire your family. We appeal to mothers to help create that happy family relationship. We desire that our people strengthen their families according to the pattern set by Abraham. We need to prepare all within our homes to serve beyond our homes, as calls and opportunities come to provide leaven for the world that wants for what we have."—The Teachings of Spencer W. Kimball, p.338

"Parents have a divine duty to teach their children to love the Lord. Children have an equal obligation to 'obey [their] parents in the Lord.' (Eph. 6:1.)" — Russell M. Nelson, "Listen to Learn," "Ensign," May 1991, p. 23

"Some of the greatest lessons of gospel principles about the eternal nature of the family are learned as we observe how members of the Church, when faced with adversity, apply gospel principles in their lives and in their homes." — Robert D. Hales, "The Eternal Family," "Ensign," Nov. 1996, p. 65-66

"Parents have the glorious opportunity of being the most powerful influence, above and beyond any other, on the new lives that will bless their homes. Look around you, and you will soon discover that the greatest joy in this life, and the most comforting hope for the eternities to come, is found in the uniting of eternal family units. Whether we are married or single, we are a part of a family which can be eternal." — L. Tom Perry, "Proclaim My Gospel from Land to Land," "Ensign," May 1989, p. 14

"No sacrifice is too great to have the blessings of an eternal marriage. To most of us, a temple is easily accessible, perhaps so conveniently that the blessing is taken too casually. As with other matters of faithfulness in gospel living, being married the Lord's way takes a willingness to deny yourself ungodliness, worldliness, and a determination to do our Father's will. By this act of faith, we show our love to God and our regard for a posterity yet unborn. As our family is our greatest source of joy in this life, so it may well be in the eternity." — Ezra Taft Benson, "This Is a Day of Sacrifice," "Ensign," May 1979, p. 33-34

"The followers of the divine Christ have to be weighed on the scales of what their actions are rather than on solemn professions of belief. The true measure is found in Matthew: 'Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these..., ye have done it unto me' (Matt. 25:40). A wise man observed, 'The man who lives by himself and for himself is apt to be corrupted by the company he keeps' (Charles Henry Parkhurst, quoted in The International Dictionary of Thoughts [1969], 659)." — James E. Faust, "That We Might Know Thee," "Ensign," Jan. 1999, p. 2, 4

"At a time when families all across the world are falling apart, let us solidify our own, let us strengthen them, let us nurture them in righteousness and truth." - Gordon B. Hinckley, "True to the Faith," General Conference, April 1997

"Benjamin was not an 'I told you so' leader. He was genuinely concerned with whether or not his words had been received and applied. He also recognized the role of the family in teaching and implementing the commitments of discipleship. (See Mosiah 2:5-6; Mosiah 6:3.) He apparently did as the Savior did when He taught intensively and then directed His hearers to go and discuss with their families that which had been taught. (See 3 Ne. 17:3.)" - Neal A. Maxwell, "King Benjamin's Manual of Discipleship," Ensign, January 1992, p. 13

"Brethren, there is too little religious devotion, love, and fear of God, in the home; too much worldliness, selfishness, indifference, and lack of reverence in the family, or it never would exist so abundantly on the outside. Then, the home is what needs reforming. Try today, and tomorrow, to make a change in your home." - Joseph F. Smith, "Worship in the Home," Improvement Era, December 1903, p. 138

"In a world of turmoil and uncertainty, it is more important than ever to make our families the center of our lives and the top of our priorities. Families lie at the center of our Heavenly Father's plan.... We need to make our homes a place of refuge from the storm, which is increasing in intensity all about us. Even if the smallest openings are left unattended, negative influences can penetrate the very walls of our homes." - L. Tom Perry, "The Importance of the Family," General Conference, April 2003

"Faithful attendance at Church, together with careful attention to the needs of the family, is a near-perfect combination. In Church we are taught the Great Plan of Happiness. (See Alma 12:32.) At home we apply what we have learned. Every call, every service in the Church brings experience and valuable insights which carry over into family life." — Boyd K. Packer, "Parents in Zion," Ensign, November 1998, p. 23

"The fact that some members do not have functioning traditional families is no reason to move in a direction that would diminish or abandon family activities among those who can and should foster them. With the increased onslaught of forces that cause families to disintegrate, we ought to dig in our heels to preserve all that is great and good in the family. We are reminded that in times of tribulations, the Nephites were not fighting for a political cause, such as monarchy or power; rather, they 'were inspired by a better cause.' For 'they were fighting for their homes and their liberties, their wives and their children, and their all, yea, for their rites of worship and their church.' (Alma 43:45.)" - James E. Faust, "Where Is the Church?" Ensign, August 1990, p. 66

"If a family loses its cherished human values and deteriorates into only the form of a family, it has lost what a family is for. Whatever changes are said to have occurred in our time, there is left to the family the most important purpose of all-the satisfaction of the basic emotional and spiritual needs of its members. In any era, one has written, society is a 'web of which the family forms the central strands.' In home, family, and love lie the resources that fulfill the life of the individual and the life of the community; indeed, the resources that would redeem our troubled world and bring it lasting peace. Children must be safeguarded and reared. Only in the home can children be assured of the love and direction they need to live life, and only parents who genuinely love can meet those needs. But it must be more than a preached or pronounced love; it must be love that takes time, makes the effort, listens patiently, gives freely, forgives generously, 'provides the amenities that will grace and adorn and make beautiful the relationships of family life.'" - Marion D. Hanks, "Practicing What We Preach," Ensign, June 1971, p. 92

"There is no spirit but what was pure and holy when it came here from the celestial world.... He is the Father of our spirits; and if we could know, understand, and do His will, every soul would be prepared to return back into His presence. And when they get there, they would see that they had formerly lived there for ages, that they had previously been acquainted with every nook and corner, with the palaces, walks, and gardens; and they would embrace their Father, and He would embrace them and say, 'My son, my daughter, I have you again;' and the child would say, 'O my Father, my Father, I am here again.'" - Brigham Young, "Journal of Discourses," 4:268

"The family is a creation of the Almighty. It represents the most sacred of all relationships. It represents the most serious of all undertakings. It is the fundamental organization of society." - Gordon B. Hinckley, "The Great Things Which God Has Revealed," General Conference, April 2005

"Sisters in Zion, could there be a more rewarding calling than to labor in the Lord's vineyard for the salvation of souls? We have the choice privilege of strengthening families and influencing those who have been placed in our care, as well as those who have preceded us beyond the veil. Lest we think the task is too hard, be reminded that angels will be round about us to bear us up if we are willing to do our part. The promised blessings are almost more than we can imagine.

"We have been blessed by a prophet of God in our day as he said: 'We pray for you. We sustain you. We honor you as you bear, nourish, train, teach, and love for eternity. I promise you the blessings of heaven and 'all that [the] Father hath' (see D&C 84:38) as you magnify the noblest calling of all' (Benson, To the Mothers in Zion, p. 13)." - Joanne B. Doxey, "Strengthening the Family," Ensign, Nov. 1987, 92

"Family home evenings are for everyone, whether it be in a two-parent home, a single-parent home, or in a single-member family unit. Home teachers, we call upon you in your regular visits to encourage and revitalize the holding of family home evenings." - L. Tom Perry, "Therefore I Was Taught," Ensign, May 1994, 38

"Husbands and wives who love each other will find that love and loyalty are reciprocated. This love will provide a nurturing atmosphere for the emotional growth of children. Family life should be a time of happiness and joy that children can look back on with fond memories and associations.

"Hear these simple admonitions from the Lord which may be applied to the marriage covenant.

"First: See that ye love one another; cease to be covetous; learn to impart one to another as the gospel requires. Cease to be unclean; cease to find fault one with another. (D&C 88:123-24.)

"Second: Thou shalt love thy wife with all thy heart, and shalt cleave unto her and none else. Thou shalt not commit adultery. (D&C 42:22, 24.)

"Third: He that hath the spirit of contention is not of me, but is of the devil, who is the father of contention. (3 Ne. 11:29.)" - Ezra Taft Benson, "Fundamentals of Enduring Family Relationships," Ensign (CR), November 1982, p.59

"I know that many of you are concerned about raising your children during these difficult times and increasing their faith. When my wife and I were starting our family in the San Francisco Bay Area, we had that same concern. At a critical point our stake members were advised by Elder Harold B. Lee, then a member of the Twelve, that we could raise our families in righteousness if we would:
Follow the prophet.
Create the true spirit of the gospel in our hearts and homes.

Be a light to those among whom we live.

Focus on the ordinances and principles taught in the temple. (See D&C 115:5; Harold B. Lee, “Your Light to Be a Standard unto the Nations,Ensign, Aug. 1973, 3–4.)" -

Quentin L. Cook, "Live by Faith and Not by Fear," General Conference, 7 October 2007

"The family proclamation helps us understand much of the love the Savior referred to when He told us we must 'love one another.' (John 13:34) He gave us the supreme example of love when He declared, 'Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.' (John 15:13) He later atoned for all our sins and finally gave His life for all of us.

"We can lay down our lives for those we love not by physically dying for them but rather by living for them—giving of our time; always being present in their lives; serving them; being courteous, affectionate, and showing true love for those of our family and to all men—as the Savior taught." - Claudio R. M. Costa, "Don't Leave for Tomorrow What You Can Do Today," General Conference, 7 October 2007

"There are as many different kinds of family councils as there are different kinds of families. Family councils can consist of one parent and one child, one parent and several children, two parents and one child, two parents and several children, or just two parents. Regardless of the size or makeup of the family council, the things that really matter are loving motivations, an atmosphere that encourages free and open discussion, and a willingness to listen to the honest input of all council members-as well as to the whisperings of the Holy Spirit as it comes to confirm truth and direction." - M. Russell Ballard, "Counseling with Our Councils: Learning to Minister Together in the Church and in the Family," p.157

"President Wilford Woodruff declared: 'The Lord has a great many principles in store for us, and the greatest principles which he has for us are the most simple and plain. The first principles of the gospel which lead us unto eternal life are the simplest and yet none are more glorious or important unto us' (Remarks, Deseret News, 1 Apr. 1857, 27).

"It is precisely because these principles are plain and simple that many times they are not considered when there are challenges to face that affect family life. At times we have the tendency to think that the more serious the problem, the bigger and more complex the solution should be. That idea can lead us, for example, to seek help from people or institutions outside the home when in reality the most effective solution will come by applying the glorious principles of the gospel in our homes in the small actions and duties of everyday life. The scriptures remind us 'that by small and simple things are great things brought to pass' (Alma 37:6).
"- Francisco J. Vias, "Applying the Simple and Plain Gospel Principles in the Family," Ensign (CR), May 2004, p.38

"Heavenly Father has assigned us to a great variety of stations to strengthen and, when needed, to lead travelers to safety. Our most important and powerful assignments are in the family. They are important because the family has the opportunity at the start of a child’s life to put feet firmly on the path home. Parents, brothers and sisters, grandparents, aunts and uncles are made more powerful guides and rescuers by the bonds of love that are the very nature of a family." - Henry B. Eyring, "Help Them on Their Way Home," Ensign (CR) May 2010

"Freedom and light have never been easy to attain or maintain. Since the War in Heaven, the forces of evil have used every means possible to destroy agency and extinguish light. The assault on moral principles and religious freedom has never been stronger.

"As Latter-day Saints, we need to do our best to preserve light and protect our families and communities from this assault on morality and religious freedom." - Quentin L. Cook, "Let There Be Light!" Ensign (CR) October 2010

Among the assaults on families are the attacks on our faith, for which parents should prepare their children. Some of it is coming from apostates who had testimonies and now seem unable to leave the Church alone. One, complaining of Church policy, was heard to say: “I am so mad: if I had been paying my tithing I would quit.” Persecution is not new to the devoted followers of Christ. More recently, however, the anger and venom of our enemies seems to be increasing. Brigham Young said, “We never began to build a temple without the bells of hell beginning to ring.” (Discourses of Brigham Young, sel. John A. Widtsoe, Salt Lake City: Deseret Book Co., 1973, p. 410.) With twenty-two temples under construction or in the planning stage, there seems to be a lot of bells to be rung. - James E. Faust, "Enriching Family Life," Ensign (CR) April 1983

Let me say again that the family is the main target of evil’s attack and must therefore be the main point of our protection and defense. As I said once before, when you stop and think about it from a diabolically tactical point of view, fighting the family makes sense to Satan. When he wants to disrupt the work of the Lord, he doesn’t poison the world’s peanut butter supply, thus bringing the Church’s missionary system to its collective knees. He doesn’t send a plague of laryngitis to afflict the Mormon Tabernacle Choir. He doesn’t legislate against green Jell-O and casseroles. When evil wants to strike out and disrupt the essence of God’s work, it attacks the family. It does so by attempting to disregard the law of chastity, to confuse gender, to desensitize violence, to make crude and blasphemous language the norm, and to make immoral and deviant behavior seem like the rule rather than the exception. - M. Russell Ballard, “Let Our Voices Be Heard,” Ensign (CR) November 2003

The evidence is overwhelming and the need so critical for a strong bond of respect and admiration in our homes. The trend is growing more acute daily. Latter-day Saint parents must analyze the foundation on which their homes are being built, for the rains of evil are descending. Parents must prayerfully prepare for their particular family needs. - David B. Haight, “A Foundation Whereon Men Cannot Fall,” Ensign (CR) May 1972

We face the challenge of raising families in the world in darkening clouds of wickedness. Some of our members are unsettled, and sometimes they wonder: Is there any place one can go to escape from it all? Is there another town or a state or a country where it is safe, where one can find refuge? The answer generally is no. The defense and the refuge is where our members now live. - Boyd K. Packer, “A Defense and a Refuge,” Ensign (CR) October 2006

The older we grow, the more precious our family becomes to us. We come to see more clearly that all of the wealth, honor, and positions of the world pale in significance when compared to the precious souls of our loved ones. - M. Russell Ballard, "Teach the Children," Ensign (CR), May 1991

The hard doctrines, however, insist that we ask some hard questions. How can a nation nurture family values without consistently valuing and protecting the family in its public policies? How can we value the family without valuing parenting? And how can we value parenting if we do not value marriage? How can there be "love at home" without love in a marriage? So many selfish tugs draw fathers and mothers away from each other and away from their children. - Neal A. Maxwell, "Take Especial Care of Your Family," Ensign (CR), May 1994, p. 88

That faith that causes us to cleave unto every good thing comes by hearing the word of God (see Rom. 10:17), and this word is heard with more power in family home evening lessons and in family scripture study. There is no better place to build faith than in the home, where the lessons and practical applications are realized and lived day to day. - Francisco J. Viñas, "Applying the Simple and Plain Gospel Principles in the Family," Ensign (CR), May 2004, p. 38

As local Church leaders cautiously conserve the time that families can spend together, we say to both parents and children, "Come back home." Parents should spend less time in clubs, bowling alleys, banquets, and social gatherings, and more time with their children. Young men and women must balance their involvement in school and other social activities with supportive participation in family activities and appropriate time in the home. - Spencer W. Kimball, "Living the Gospel in the Home," Ensign (CR), May 1978, p.100

This crisis of the family is no surprise to the Church. We have certainly known what was coming. I know of no better testimony that we are led by prophets than our preparation for this present emergency. …
We can only imagine where we would be if we were just now reacting to this terrible redefinition of the family. But that is not the case. We are not casting frantically about trying to decide what to do. We know what to do and what to teach. – Boyd K. Packer, “The Father and the Family,” Ensign (CR) April 1994, pp.24-25

In Thornton Wilder's play Our Town, a young woman dies and discovers that she has the opportunity to live one day of her life over again. She chooses her twelfth birthday. When the day begins, her first reaction is an intense desire to savor every moment. "I can't look at everything hard enough," she says. Then to her sorrow she sees that the members of her family are not experiencing life with any of the intensity she felt. In desperation, she says to her mother (who cannot, of course, hear her), "Let's just sit and look at one another." And later she says, "Oh, earth, you're too wonderful for anybody to realize you. Do any human beings ever realize life while they live it?" - David B. Haight, “A Light unto the World,” p.153

Strengthening families is our sacred duty as parents, children, extended family members, leaders, teachers, and individual members of the Church. - Robert D. Hales, “Strengthening Families: Our Sacred Duty,” Ensign (CR), May 1999, p.32

So if the basses in your family choir are too loud and overbearing, or if the string section in your family orchestra is a little too shrill or a little bit sharp, or if those impetuous piccolos are out of tune or out of control, be patient. If you’re not hearing the music of the gospel in your home, please remember these two words: keep practicing. With God’s help, the day will come when the music of the gospel will fill your home with unspeakable joy. – Wilford W. Andersen, “The Music of the Gospel,” Ensign (CR) May 2015

The LDS Daily WOOL Home Page