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Saturday, January 28, 2017

Notes from Fireside for parents of youth with Elder Ballard and Elder Rasband - Jan. 27, 2017

Fireside for parents of youth - Jan. 27, 2017

The first part of the fireside the general authorities answered questions that had been submitted ahead of time.  The last part of the fireside the general authorities responded to questions from the congregation.

Opening Remarks

Elder M. Russell Ballard:
A Big challenge of our day is spiritual apathy.

How to overcome apathy:
Basic fundamentals -- prayer, family prayer, scriptures, FHE and family council -- are how we overcome spiritual apathy. Don't get distracted. Remember what our purpose here is. Keep in mind where it is we are trying to go and what we are trying to become.

Technology is a real enemy to family life.

A father is always a father and so it is with a mother. To kids, grandkids and great grandkids. That is the promised blessing.

Answers to submitted questions

Elder Rasband:
How to help youth deal with social media?
Teenagers involvement with social media:
Be familiar with the strength of youth pamphlet. "If you're not sure if something is not appropriate, talk to your parents and leaders." Know the contents of the booklet!!

Don't get them to stop using Facebook and Instagram, be prepared to communicate with them on social media. As members of the church we are at war with Satan--think war chapters in Book of Mormon. Read the ward chapters again. Alma chapter 43:30: stratagem!!! Parents & leaders need to strategize to defeat the enemy use prayer, counseling. Bring up questions in church councils and family councils.  Joseph Smith was a youth asking a question. The Savior is the at the heart of every answer to every question.

There are lots of music downloads available on youth section of LDS.org. The church is trying to meet the youth in the social media they are already at. Be where the youth are. He is avoiding the terminology that social media is the plague of our day.

Find the good uses of internet technology.

He told the story of the youth during King Benjamin’s time that fell away because they didn’t understand the teachings of their parents.  We parents need to be inspired and through strategizing so we can raise our children to understand and believe in the words of us, their parents.

Elder Robbins:
Dedicate - 1 FHE per month to strength of youth pamphlet.

Scriptures are a parenting manual. The councils we have now are War councils since we are at war with Satan.

How do you help children when their self-worth is tied to the internet?
1.when their self-worth is ties to number of likes they get on their posts  2. When they unrealistically compare their bodies to false images that have been airbrushed and edited. 3. When they see that everyone else is posting their "A" material and they have to deal with their lowest points and trials.

Parenting principles -
1. youth are trying to find their identity on the internet. They can find that on family search. Help them spend more time on that. Know our history. Our history is our identity.  This will increase self worth.
2. The more time youth spend on the internet, the lower their self-worth will be. D&C 88:124- cease to be idle. Section 88 was like a New year's resolution to the church, it was given at the end and beginning of a New Year. When we spend too much time on the internet then the excess time of what is needful is considered idleness. Go to bed early rising early. Revelation comes early. We will find greater self-worth as we go to bed earlier and wake up early and spend less time on the internet.
3. Praise kids and find them doing something right. Catch your children doing something right. Reflecting the principle from Heavenly Father --this is my beloved son in whom I am well pleased. It takes effort to find kids doing something right – but that is a quality of a perfect parent.

Elder Costa:
How do you talk to your child about Pornography without sparking curiosity or interest? How to protect them from porn?
1. Gone are the days where your kids will not be exposed to pornography. Gone are the days where you can assume they haven’t been exposed to it.
2. Personal father interviews are a way to find out what's really going on. There is Power in a father son/ mother daughter interview. Identify the difference between a pattern and an incident-- In the interviews you need to discern that. Incidents can be healed by close monitoring by parents, but for patterns the course of action is different.
3. His family rule for using electronic devices that he adopted from his daughter’s mission rule--Turn on your electronic device, only after your intention is clear. Determine what you will be doing on the internet. These days we turn on our phone right when we wake up and we don't know what we're turning it on for. Turn it on with a purpose then turn it off.
4. Hope!  There is hope. You can get rid of those images you've been exposed too.

Elder Ballard: was chairman on missionary board when preach my gospel was released. 

How to prepare youth to serve missions?

Preparing Youth serving missions-- starts very early. Starts in developing a spirit of missionary service in the ward. Know who the friends of your children are. Encourage seminary and the programs of the church because it puts good people together. Youth need to get a job, to earn some money.
**They need to know how to work. Teach the kids how to take care of things and their territory in their homes. When they leave a mess you can teach, “That's not the way we do things in our family” and teach that they need to know how to take care of things for themselves their whole lives.
**Kids need to Read the Book of Mormon from cover and be able to testify that it is true. Be willing to pay the price necessary to testify of it.
**Sit with your children and ask them to bear their testimony to you about who Jesus Christ is. Help them learn who he is. Help them be able to respond to anyone who he is.
**be able to withstand a secular world.
**these days they have to be the best teachers of the doctrine of Christ in the history of the church because they have to cut through so much.
**go through the whole preach my gospel manual.
**get in their minds and hearts the value of one soul. To do that, help them know the Savior's mission in gethsemane. They will see those they meet on their mission as a son or daughter or God.
**Simple steps but take them and take them early.

Questions from the Congregation Portion

How can we help family members who have fallen away because of learning that Joseph Smith being sealed to so many young women?
Elder Ballard:  We have no idea what relationship Joseph Smith had with those young women he was sealed too. Once people lose sight of their purpose and they start going to google and the blogosphere they can lose their testimony. Ask them how long has it been since they’ve read from the Book of Mormon? Give the Lord equal time!!  When you get in the devils side to find info and start neglecting scriptures you lose your testimony. Stay anchored to the teachings of the gospel in the standard works.  Read the church’s material about polygamy and the subject.
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What advice would you have for blended families and kids have to go to another home where they aren't not members?
Elder Robbins: teach them to be self-reliant and how to recognize the whisperings of the Holy Ghost. They need to know how to make decisions on their own with reliance on the Holy Ghost. The perfect parent never forces His children. Story from church news—Son says: “Dad I'm not going to church today.”  Dad says: “You don't have to tell me that, it's not my church. Get down on your knees and tell that to Heavenly Father. It's His church.” ** Lead your kids to the crossroads where the Holy Ghost can direct them.

To what extent do we encourage our young women to serve missions?
Elder Costa: Young men have a priesthood duty, but for the sisters it is an invitation. The Holy Ghost will guide that decision. Just let her decide.
Elder Rasband: As a mission president he loved to have the sisters serve missions. They raise things up.

How to explain to a family member why a child with gay parents can't be baptized if they have family support?
Elder Rasband: Church doesn't want to get in the way of families. The gay parents are in the decision making process of those children and they church doesn't want to cause friction.  Read the releases the church put out about that subject.

Closing remarks


Elder Rasband:
Stand in Holy Places and go forward without fear.

Elder Ballard:
Take a few minutes tonight, to think about your own life. If there is anything that is going on that hadn't ought to be, take care of it so the Holy Ghost can be your guide and so you can answer questions of kids and family members. We need to do all we can to be worthy of the Holy Ghost.

Give sacrament meeting the dignity and reverence it deserves.

In your family, be candid and open and honest.

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