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05 October 2007 @ 05:45 pm
"If you have any thoughts and feelings [of inadequacy and guilt], I invite you to become as a little child and feel again 'the great and wonderful love made manifest by the Father and the Son in the coming of the Redeemer into the world' (D&C 138:3). Childlike faith in the perfect love of Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ will 'divide asunder' (Helaman 3:29) Satan's snares of inadequacy, imperfection, and guilt."

(Anthony D. Perkins, "The Great and Wonderful Love," Ensign, Nov. 2006, 77)
 
 
04 October 2007 @ 09:10 am
"There are two purposes for life in mortality. The first is that we might gain experiences that we could not obtain in any other way. The second is to obtain tabernacles of flesh and bones. Both of these purposes are vital to the existence of man. We are now being tried and tested to see if we will do all the things the Lord has commanded us to do. These commandments are the principles and ordinances of the gospel, and they constitute the gospel of Jesus Christ. Every principle and ordinance has a bearing upon the whole purpose of our testing, which is to prepare us to return to our Heavenly Father and become more like Him."

(L. Tom Perry, "The Plan of Salvation," Ensign, Nov. 2006, 71)
 
 
"Honesty is the basis of a true Christian life. For Latter-day Saints, honesty is an important requirement for entering the Lord's holy temple. Honesty is embedded in the covenants that we make in the temple. Each Sunday as we partake of the holy emblems of the Savior's flesh and blood, we again renew our basic and sacred covenants--which encompass honesty. As Latter-day Saints we have a sacred obligation to not only teach the principles of honesty, but also to live them. . . . Honesty should be among the most fundamental values that govern our everyday living.

"When we are true to the sacred principles of honesty and integrity, we are true to our faith, and we are true to ourselves."

(Richard C. Edgley, "Three Towels and a 25-Cent Newspaper," Ensign, Nov. 2006, 74)
 
 
29 December 2006 @ 12:19 am
"At the focal point of all human history, a point illuminated by a new star in the heavens revealed for just such a purpose, probably no other mortal watched--none but a poor young carpenter, a beautiful virgin mother, and silent stabled animals who had not the power to utter the sacredness they had seen. Shepherds would soon arrive and later, wise men from the East. Later yet the memory of that night would bring Santa Claus and Frosty and Rudolph--and all would be welcome. But first and forever there was just a little family, without toys or trees or tinsel. With a baby--that's how Christmas began.

"It is for this baby that we shout in chorus: 'Hark! the herald angels sing Glory to the newborn King! . . . Mild he lays his glory by, Born that man no more may die; Born to raise the sons of earth, Born to give them second birth' (Hymns, no. 209)."

(Jeffrey R. Holland, "Without Ribbons and Bows," New Era, Dec. 1994, 6)
 
 
29 December 2006 @ 12:16 am
"Many years ago I found myself as part of occupation troops in a foreign land just at the end of a terrible war. It was not long after we arrived in this country before we developed a great love and concern for the people we were there to watch over. This was especially true of the young people, the children. Many times we would find them scavenging in our garbage cans looking for food to keep themselves alive. This deeply touched us, and we wanted to make a more substantial contribution to them. We raised what money we could and found a local religious group that was willing to open an orphanage for them. We donated as much time as possible to improve the facilities and provided them with the operating funds they needed.

"As Christmas approached, we sent letters home to our families asking that, instead of sending gifts to us, they send toys for the children in the orphanage. The response of our families was overwhelming! Toys arrived daily from our homes.

"We found a tree suitable to use as a Christmas tree, but we had no traditional decorations for it. A lady taught us how to make little birds by folding square pieces of paper, and these became the major part of the decorations for the tree. The presents were wrapped mostly in discarded Stars and Stripes newspapers. I'll never forget Christmas Eve with those children. I am sure many of them had never seen a Christmas tree in their lives.

"We sang Christmas carols to them, but we weren't very good at this. They had been rehearsing for weeks so they could sing a song to us in English. It was not a Christmas carol, but it was beautiful. They sang, 'You Are My Sunshine.' We were deeply touched with the spirit of the children that Christmas Eve, especially as they opened the presents sent from our families. I suppose some of them had not had a toy in many, many years.

"This is a Christmas I'll never forget because we were learning the true meaning of this great holiday season. The greatest joy we can receive in life is giving--to bring into the life of someone else a little joy and happiness."

(L. Tom Perry, "A 'Sunshine' Christmas," Tambuli, Dec. 1990, 12)
 
 
 
28 December 2006 @ 11:38 pm
"Christmas means giving. The Father gave his Son, and the Son gave his life. Without giving there is no true Christmas, and without sacrifice there is no true worship."

(Gordon B. Hinckley, "What Shall I Do Then with Jesus Which Is Called Christ?" Ensign, Dec. 1983, 3)
 
 
28 December 2006 @ 11:36 pm
"The message of this season that is applicable throughout the year lies not in the receiving of earthly presents and treasures but in the forsaking of selfishness and greed and in going forward, seeking and enjoying the gifts of the Spirit, which Paul said are 'love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, temperance: against such there is no law' (Gal. 5:22-23)."

(James E. Faust, "A Christmas with No Presents," Ensign, Dec. 2001, 6)
 
 
28 December 2006 @ 08:11 pm
"This is a glorious time of the year, simple in origin, deep in meaning, beautiful in tradition and custom, rich in memories, and charitable in spirit. It has an attraction to which our hearts are readily drawn. This joyful season brings to each of us a measure of happiness that corresponds to the degree in which we have turned our mind, feelings, and actions to the spirit of Christmas."

(Thomas S. Monson, "What Is Christmas?" Ensign, Dec. 1998, 2)
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28 December 2006 @ 08:08 pm
"This entire people have become as a city upon a hill which cannot be hid. Sometimes we take offense when one who is a member of the Church is involved in a crime and the public press is quick to say that he is a Mormon. We comment among ourselves that if he had been a member of any other church, no mention would have been made of it.

"Yet, is not this very practice an indirect compliment to our people? The world expects something better of us, and when one of our number falters, the press is quick to note it. We have, indeed, become as a city upon a hill for the world to see. If we are to be that which the Lord would have us be, we must indeed become 'a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that [we] should shew forth the praises of him who hath called [us] out of darkness into his marvelous light.' (1 Pet. 2:9.)"

(Gordon B. Hinckley, "A City upon a Hill," Ensign, July 1990, 4)
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