Saturday, October 03, 2009

Our Conference Reverence Tent

This weekend is a special weekend for our church and our family. It is General Conference weekend. The members of our church throughout the world gather together to listen to the prophet and other leaders of the church speak to us and give guidance and counsel from the Lord.

Leif and I look forward to listening to the speakers and feeling a renewal of spiritual strength from their words. Jakob on the other hand looks forward to our Conference Reverence Tent. What is this, you ask? Well, in the Book of Mormon there is a righteous king named Benjamin who asks all of his people to gather together to listen to the word of the Lord. He instructs each family to set their tents so their door faces the temple which is where King Benjamin was speaking from.

Last year we took on the tradition of setting up our own Conference Reverence Tent. I told Jakob Friday morning that we would be listening to conference on Saturday. He very excitedly reminded me of the Conference Reverence Tent. He even went on to say "This will be the greatest Sunday EVER!" ... Mission Accomplished!
The night before conference we clean the house and then read a story about either King Benjamin or a story in the church magazine (The Friend) that shares another families story about their Conference Reverence Tent. We then gather the blankets and clothes pins and set up our tent with the opening facing our computer (we watch General Conference online.) And to top it off I plan and make lots of goodies and games for us and the kids to share throughout conference. We bring in Jakob's art desk and art supplies and Caleb's puzzles and a few toys to keep them entertained. The best resource that I've found for ideas is Sugardoodle.net. She lets everyone list their ideas on her site.

So how does it work out? Well, let's just say that I REALLY appreciated Elder Bednar's talk today about the value of consistency in a family. Leif and I are trying to consistently show our children the importance of listening to the prophet and following his counsel. Do they grasp what we are trying to teach them? Yes, I believe they do. Is it perfectly reverent? No. Our goal at this point is to become more and more reverent throughout the growing years. This is our mission and prayer.

LDS Youth Murder Mystery Dinner Activity

Wednesday night our ward sponsored a Tri-Ward Youth Activity. We live in a small town. We have two wards in our town and one ward in a town just west of us. We planned and carried out a Murder Mystery Dinner for the youth. It turned out Fantastic! The kids were so excited about the activity that they told EVERYONE at the school. We ended up having just over 90 people come to the activity. For our small area that is a wonderful turn out!!

My family owns Hunt Mysteries. It is a Murder Mystery Dinner Theater Company. Because I was raised planning and carrying out Murder Mystery Dinners, I was given the "honors" of being in charge of the nights events. Because this was a church activity, I wanted to find an LDS version of a Murder Mystery. So naturally, I went to the ever-faithful Sugardoodle.net. They have several LDS themed Murder Mystery Activity ideas. Once I found the game we wanted to play I began delegating.
The second best part of the whole night was to witness the follow-through from every leader who accepted a responsibility. We made really cute centerpieces for all of the tables, salad, spaghetti, bread, and brownies and ice cream.The decoration theme was Halloween and it turned out perfect!

The VERY BEST part of the whole night was watching all of the youth participate with enjoyment and enthusiasm. For anyone who works with youth, you know what I mean. At the end of the game my husband and I gave a finale run through of what the story was really about and who the the murderer was. The story we chose came from the Book of Mormon about the prophet Nephi prophesying about the king's death. When we came to the part in the finale when I read who the murderer was the kid's filled the room with cheers of triumph because the majority of them had come to the correct conclusion. Tickled by their reaction, I continued with the finale and closed the night with my testimony of the fact that we have a living prophet on the earth today just as they did in the days of old. The spirit was there to testify to not only the youth who attend the activities regularly, but to those who don't come as often and those who are investigating Jesus Christ and his church. It was a night I will not soon forget. I hope it is the same for those who attended as well.
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