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Priesthood’s Blessings to Womanhood: The View from 1944

By: Ardis E. Parshall - January 31, 2014

This talk was given at a Carbon Stake (Utah) quarterly conference in 1944, by a young woman named Shirley Miles.

Priesthood’s Blessings to Womanhood

When the sun shines upon the earth, it casts its warming rays equally upon both men and women, brightening their day sand giving them light and warmth and sustenance.

Thus it is with the priesthood. Like the sun, its blessings reach out to all members of the church, men and women alike. And like the sun, it brightens our days and gives us light and warmth and sustenance of a spiritual sort.

For as we walk through life, we find that we must have some standard, some guiding set of principles by which to govern the order of our lives. It is as if we started out in the early morning before the sunrise, when the earth is darkest, searching for a path. With the rising of the sun, we are able to see the correct road upon which to set our feet. So it is with those who are privileged to bear the priesthood, or with those who share in its blessings. We look to it for our guide in life; and there we find the standards for which we are searching, the light which shows us the ay to go.

To young people who have had the opportunity to live in the light of the gospel and of the priesthood, life has a different meaning. An LDS boy who holds the priesthood, or an LDS girl who associates with members of the priesthood, and who knows what it is to have a clean spirit and to understand the teachings of the Lord, is set apart from youth who are denied these great blessings.

God has said, “Be ye clean that bear the vessels of the Lord.” To LDS young people this is as the sun which lights our days. It is a thought that should greet us each morning with the rising of the sun, and stay with us throughout each day. A young person who guides his life in being clean enough in heart, soul, and mind, to be a servant of God has truly found the right path.

A Mormon boy knows that in order to hold the priesthood, he is expected to abide by the laws of the gospel and the Word of Wisdom. He accepts this as his responsibility to God and to himself. With an LDS girl, it is purely a matter of looking into her own heart, and finding there the reasons for which she keeps these same standards.

An LDS girl has the opportunity each day to mingle socially, spiritually, and intellectually, with the kind of young men who will be worthy husbands and fathers. These young members of the priesthood are of the highest order of young men in the nation and in the world. When an LDS girl associates with them, she is standing full in the light of the sun. It is then that she may see and understand why she must be as clean and pure in heart as if she were a member of the priesthood herself.

The blessings of the priesthood to young woman hood then, are many: There is the blessing of associating with the highest type of manhood and of being guided by their principles. There is the blessing of knowing that she may always find understanding and helpfulness in these young men, and of knowing that she need look no further than her daily associations with them for happiness and fulfilment. There is the great blessing of being able to share the joys and the spiritual uplift of walking beside these servants of God through time and throughout all eternity in the sunlight of purity and righteousness.



1 Comment »

  1. I’m going to assume that Carbon Stake covered Carbon County, including, possibly, Price, Helper, Sunnyside, etc. These towns were probably considerably more ethnically and religiously diverse than many other towns in Utah. So Sister Miles’s comments were likely intended to encourage young women to date within the Church. My mother, living in Sunnyside, would have been about 16 in 1944. I wonder if she might have been present to hear this advice. If so, it apparently didn’t sink in … :-). When she and my father married in her own mother’s house in 1953, my father was Catholic. (He didn’t convert until several years later as a student at BYU.) Tellingly, my grandmother’s biggest concern was not her future son-in-law’s religion, but the fact that he was Italian. My parents were both very favorably impressed when the ward bishop who married them told them: “Each of you should attend the other’s church, and when you find the one that best suits you, you should join it.”

    Comment by Gary Bergera — January 31, 2014 @ 8:36 am

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