I'm a little late posting this morning. I had my Relief Society Presidency Meeting last night and I always have a hard time turning my brain off afterwards so I wasn't able to fall asleep until the wee hours of this morning and slept in until 7 am. I often have this problem if I have had a meeting or something similar to attend of an evening. I am an insomniac at the best of times, but when my brain has been ticking over instead of resting . . . it's even worse.
The Relief Society is the oldest and largest women's organization in the world. Having been established in 1842 for women 18 years of age and older, its purpose is to build faith and personal righteousness, strengthen families and homes, and help those in need.
All adult women in the Church are members of Relief Society. The Prophet Joseph Smith organized the Relief Society on March 17, 1842. He taught that the Relief Society was organized for “the relief of the poor, the destitute, the widow and the orphan, and for the exercise of all benevolent purposes.” In addition, he taught that the Relief Society was “not only to relieve the poor, but to save souls.” The larger part of the work of Relief Society today is “to look after the spiritual welfare and salvation … of all the female members of the Church.” The Relief Society was “divinely made, divinely authorized, divinely instituted, divinely ordained of God.” It operates under the direction of priesthood leaders.
There is a General Presidency on an international level which consists of three women. The general presidency of the Relief Society serves under the direction of the Church's First Presidency. Sister Linda K. Burton is the current Relief society president. Her counselors are Sister Carole M. Stephens and Sister Linda S. Reeves. They have been serving since April 2012. Their purpose is to care for the needs of all of the Relief Society Sisters in the world, which is an awesome responsability, but they do not do it alone.
In addition every stake (region) has an area RS Presidency and all of the Individual Wards (Congregations) in those regions have their own RS Presidencies. I am the first counselor in the Chester Ward Relief Society Presidency. I share the mantle of the care of the sisters in our congregation along with two other women, our President (Sister Carolyn Worthington) and the other counselor (Sister Elizabeth Kenny.) Just as the General RS Presidency cares for the needs of all the women in our church, we help to care for the needs of all of the women in our own congregation. (I hope that all of that made sense! It sounds long and convoluted, but it's the only way I knew how to explain it!)
I love my calling in the church on the RS Presidency. (A calling is what we call each of our responsabilities. This is because we have been called to serve by the Lord, under His inspiration and through prayer by our leaders. There is no paid clergy in our church. Everything is done voluntarily by the members via callings.) I am responsable for the Umbrella of Compassionate Leadership as well as the organization of the social activities which we plan monthly, and sometimes even more frequently for the Sisters under our care. I suppose that is where my creativity really comes into play. I try to make each event as interesting and as fun as it can be for the sisters, so that they can not only learn something new, but also enjoy the process of learning it! I also teach a lesson in our Sunday RS Meeting every third month. This year I am responsable for the first lesson in December. A lot of care and planning goes into each lesson that we teach the sisters as their leaders. I'm not sure but what any sister would tell you, as the teacher of these lessons I prepare, I probably come out of them having learned just as much if not more than they have.
Our main responsability though, as leaders . . . is to love and to care for the needs of the Sisters in our care, so that they need never feel alone or that they are not important or valuable. We are the Saviours hands when it comes right down to it. We make decisions concerning them only after much prayer and consideration. We pray for each of our sisters often and daily and our concern for them is real and tangible, and I hope and pray that they know and feel of this.
In the first meeting of the Relief Society, Sister Emma Smith said, “We are going to do something extraordinary.” Relief Society is filled with examples of ordinary women who have accomplished extraordinary things as they exercise faith in Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ.
“The Relief Society was established by the spirit of inspiration, and has been guided by that spirit [ever since], and has instilled into the hearts of countless of our good sisters those desires for righteousness which have been pleasing to the Lord.”
~Joseph Fielding Smith
I hope that you didn't mind me sharing with you about our program this morning. I just always write what is in my mind and heart on any given day and that is what was on my mind this morning!
This is my new Kenwood Stand Mixer. It arrived night before last and you cannot imagine how excited I was to see it! I have wanted a stand mixer my whole cooking life. My mother had one which we were never allowed to use. She kept it under a plastic cover on the kitchen counter. We were allowed to use her hand mixer but the stand mixer was verboten! I've never been able to afford to buy one for myself. I can understand how very precious hers was to my mother. Mine came with extra attachments (A juicer, a food processor and a blender). I have put the attachments away for just in case the ones I use already break down, but I have already been putting the mixer to good use!
Yesterday I used the dough hook to make these lovely Old Fashioned Pull-Aparts! I was so pleased with how they turned out. I will be making more breads using that lovely dough hook! Of course I will be doing all sorts in it. If I am going to have something that large taking up precious counterspace . . . I am going to make sure it earns it's place!
Shall I leave you with a thought for today? Of course . . .
⋱ ⋮ ⋰
⋯ ◯ ⋯¨♥♥♥
The fact that I can plant a seed
and it becomes a flower,
share a bit of knowledge
and it becomes another's,
smile at someone and receive a smile in return,
are to me continual spiritual exercises.
Have a wonderful Thursday!