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An Online Comment About Relief Society Lessons

An Online Comment About Relief Society Lessons

I was browsing X (formerly known as Twitter) and one of the accounts I follow posted the following:

I feel like Relief Society lessons almost always turn into “Just love others” and “Do the small, tiny, things daily” and it’s… *deflated balloon noise*

The first comment that someone made on this post read, “What would the ideal Relief Society lesson be like in your opinion?” to which this woman responded:

Not dumbed down to “even just a tiny smile can change the world”. More centered on Jesus and how he can help us as sisters in our path of life. More about our divine nature and strengths as women. I need some rallying oomph from the sisterhood!

What has your experience been? Hopefully you are receiving that “oomph” from your quorums and organizations as you meet with them, but if not, what do you do?

Some additional comments on that post are as follows:

  • “My wife says the same thing.”
  • “I wish we got more meat than milk at church but perhaps that’s the micro application of wheat and tares. The Lord wants to see how we will spend our time, what we will prioritize, and how diligent we will be with seeking to find His mysteries.”
  • “Yeah I think it’s a bring your own meat to the meeting or else you only get milk. I’m lacking in beefing up lol but for real…”
  • “I always walk away wishing things were more real, too. But I think for that to happen, there needs to be trust. And often people aren’t willing to put the work into having that type of relationship with the individuals in there.”
  • “Yes, it involves a lot of trust to get real and say what’s on your mind spiritually. We are a newly realigned ward so we’re working on that aspect but it’s coming along.”
  • “We often hear, “You’re perfect the way you are, Oh My Goodness, you’re so beautiful, la, la, la.” The last thing I want to hear. We need Jesus!!”
  • “Yes! Not nearly enough calls to repentance in RS!”
  • “I really miss the days when women learned practical things in Relief Society like homemaking, caring for the elderly, raising kids. I also miss the lessons about art, education, and travel. I have really seen how so many of our grown young women suffer from the lack of these type of lessons.”
  • “I would love to go to more Relief Society activities that were more practical. Teach practical skills and relate it spiritually.”
  • “I think stuff like this is part of the reason there has been such an emphasis on individual and family study. We should do what we can to uplift the lessons we are in and teach but we can’t rely on others for the knowledge and understanding we need.”
  • “I am so glad to hear this from someone else besides me and my daughters. I get so much more out of Relief Society when I ignore the lesson and read the scriptures.”
  • “These comments are making me thankful for the ward I moved in to last year. Granted, I don’t attend RS, but Sunday School and Priesthood have been spot-on and testimony growing. Just a suggestion, learn to be a discussion driver.”
  • “If there’s something from that week’s lesson material you loved, found interesting, or had a question about, bring it up. You’re probably not the only one who thought about it, and it may spur a good discussion.”

One thought I had as I was reading these comments was focusing on teaching in the Savior’s way. Here are some principles that are listed in the General Handbook to help enhance the teaching in the ward.

Principles of Christlike Teaching

When teaching the gospel, parents, teachers, and leaders follow the example of Jesus Christ, who is the Master Teacher. Teaching in the Savior’s way is a sacred trust and responsibility.

Leaders share the following principles of Christlike teaching with teachers in their organizations. These principles are explained in more detail in Teaching in the Savior’s Way.

Love Those You Teach

Everything the Savior does is an expression of His love (see 2 Nephi 26:24). Leaders and teachers follow His example by showing love for those they teach. They pray for those they teach by name, seek to connect with and understand them, and focus on individual needs. They reach out to members of their class or quorum who do not attend.

Teach by the Spirit

To inspire people to have faith in Jesus Christ, teachers must teach by the Spirit. Teachers seek the Spirit’s guidance as they prepare and teach, and they strive to live worthy of His influence each day.

Teach the Doctrine

The Savior taught His Father’s doctrine. Following the Savior’s example, teachers focus on the essential, saving truths of the gospel. They teach using the scriptures, the teachings of latter-day prophets, and approved curriculum materials. Teachers lead inspired discussions and ensure that their teaching is edifying and doctrinally sound. Approved materials are listed in the current Instructions for Curriculum on ChurchofJesusChrist.org.

Invite Diligent Learning

Teachers encourage members to be responsible for their own learning. They support members in their efforts to learn the gospel individually and with their families. They invite members to share what they are learning and to act on it. A person’s faith grows when he or she actively participates in learning the gospel and applies its principles in daily life.

How are your Relief Society meetings? If you feel like they are uplifting and meaningful, would you comment below and let us know what is going right? Is there something that your Relief Society leaders and teachers do to make the meeting impactful?

This video below, though 5 years old, has some great tips for helping teachers be more effective in their teaching.

Marie Brennan

Thursday 21st of September 2023

I love Relief society and I love the sisters in our ward. We use the general conference talks as a spring board for discussion in our classes. It is my understanding that this is what is recommended. The discussions are uplifting and the sisters often share their personal experiences in trying to live gospel principles. I have found in my personal life that trying to live the principles that Christ taught in the Sermon On The Mount, is a full time job, involving repentance daily. Our Relief Society lessons help with that.

Unknown

Friday 15th of September 2023

My intent is not to be offensive but I believe that participants of any class receive what they bring to it. If you received enlightenment and revelation from the Holy Ghost as you prepared for class, then that’s exactly what you will receive as you share those things in a class setting. We are responsible for our own learning. Remember, the Holy Ghost is the teacher. Be prepared to receive what he wants you to know.

James Zundel

Sunday 12th of November 2023

@Unknown, I completely agree. The Holy Spirit of Promise is the real teacher. If we follow and heed the promptings of the Holy Ghost, we will not fail. Doctrine and Covenants 8:2-3 "Yea, behold, I will tell you in your mind and in your heart, by the Holy Ghost, which shall come upon you and which shall dwell in your heart. Now, behold, this is the spirit of revelation; behold, this is the spirit by which Moses brought the children of Israel through the Red Sea on dry ground."

Ben Arkell

Friday 15th of September 2023

I agree with your thoughts. At the same time, we can get even more out of a lesson if what is being taught is truth and doctrine vs. popular sentiment and false philosophy.

Karen Keller

Thursday 14th of September 2023

Let the Spirit guide our attitude and we will always hear what we should and what we need. Teachable means humble and Visa Versa

Elaine

Wednesday 13th of September 2023

We tried to beef up our RS several years ago. We asked the sisters to read the talk in advance and come in prepared to discuss instead of listen to a lecture. It was amazing for those that came prepared. The discussions were really interesting and thought provoking. However, only half of the sisters were ready for that. The other half didn't like the responsibility. A few said they felt left out because they didn't read the lesson. They felt we shouldn't do RS that way and so of course as soon as we were released, the RS went back to spoon feeding the milk.

Anonymous

Wednesday 13th of September 2023

Yes! Same! But not only are our lessons not uplifting, they are downright awful because certain sisters dominate the lessons with their comments that are either way off topic, or not appropriate. I usually have no problem offering to help out in primary on RS Sundays because even when other sisters or I try to help out with Christ-centered comments that are on topic and actually answer the question, we are cut off by those who are louder.