In the 19-teens – and I do not know how much earlier or later the practice extended – it was a regular part of the Sunday School curriculum for what we now call middle-schoolers to learn to bear testimony. This was done within the class, not in the general Sunday School exercises. Its purpose was somewhat different from the purpose of bearing testimony in a ward’s fast and testimony meeting because it was explicitly meant to teach children to recognize testimony and give them practice in bearing it.
This was a difficult concept for some teachers, apparently, so the Deseret Sunday School Union occasionally gave the teachers a “refresher course” in how to conduct this part of their responsibility. In 1913,
apostle Religion Class General Board member John Henry Evans gave such a lesson to Sunday School teachers.
The Secret of Blueberry Hill
By Rosa Lee Lloyd
Lila was alone in the cellar. She sat on the edge of the old brass bed wondering where to find enough food for five people.
Casey belonged to them now. With one accord they had reached out their arms of love to a stricken boy and soothed him until the shock lessened. Now he had gone uptown on his bicycle to inform the mortuary of the tragedy of his mother and little Pearl.
Johnny had gone with him riding the handle bars of Casey’s bicycle. Lila had to smile remember how ridiculous he looked.
“We’ll take turns pedaling,” he told Casey. “Let’s just hope this bike can take the load.”
“It’s a good bike,” Casey said firmly. “Miss Lucinda gave it to me. She bought the best.”
The life of a working class family in Bolton, England, was not easy at any time, but in 1918, during the last months of the terrible Great War, when Walter Shortle was 12 years old, it got worse. His mother fell ill with tuberculosis, so acute that it was labelled “galloping consumption.” Their stepfather told Walter and his twin sister Ida that their mother was dying, and that the doctor would send an ambulance the next morning to take her body away. His mother asked to see her friend, a Mrs. Cooperthwaite, and Ida was dispatched to bring her. Mrs. Cooperthwaite, a Mormon (unlike the Shortle family), called a local elder to come with her.
“That evening an Elder Partington called at the house. … As we stood nearby the bed, he anointed the head of our dear mother and gave her a blessing.
“The following morning, Dr. Bennett came by to inform us that the ambulance would be along within the hour to take Mother away. As he stood in the doorway, she sat up in her bed. The doctor, being somewhat surprised, called out, ‘Lie down woman, you must not sit up.’
“‘But I am better, doctor,’ replied my mother.”
The doctor examined her and said, “Mrs. Shortle, you have cheated the devil. There is no sign of consumption.”
By Sidney Bailey Smith
Although ‘twas a tendency I strove to smother,
I am forced to confess that I couldn’t do other
Than greet him and treat him just like my own brother,
Though viewed with disdain by the eyes of the world,
Though taunts and abuse about him were hurled,
His count’nance was calm and his lip never curled –
His lip never curled, for his foes he’d no scorn;
His face was as radiant and smiling as morn,
He’d always a kind word to cheer the forlorn,
The children all loved him, and that’s a good sign;
As they perched on his knee and their arms did entwine
Round his neck – good as saying, “I’m his,” “He is mine,”
There was something about him quite hard to explain,
A something for which I would give much to gain;
A something he had which I have not, ‘tis plain,
Ah, well, he is gone! But I’m hoping some day
To know why I loved him in such a fond way,
While others would shun him and scornfully say,
From the Juvenile Instructor, 15 March 1878 —
Find first a father’s name whose failing powers his son deceived;
Then name that father’s mother, who the promised heir received;
Next name a mother who in grief her son from home must send;
Her husband’s father next appears, God’s chosen faithful friend;
Then find an only brother’s name, who sought his brother’s life;
And, last, a woman, who, unloved, became that brother’s wife;
Now who was he that with all these relationship could claim?
The initial letters of their names combined will give his name;
The father , grandfather, the mother, grandmother, and wife;
The brother – all are his, who gave a mighty nation life.
I’ve turned off comments for this post to allow later-comers to play; if you’d like to solve the puzzle, or any part of it, click here to go to a hidden page for comment. That way, everyone can play without seeing earlier answers.
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In the summer of 1906, while he was European Mission President, Heber J. Grant made a tour of the missions. After his return to Liverpool he related this story to the elders there, and one of them wrote this account for publication in the Millennial Star:
An Audience with King Oscar II.
While attending the conference of Swedish Elders held recently in the city of Stockholm, President Grant suggested to a party of sight-seers who were with him that it would be interesting to call on his majesty King Oscar II and greet him pleasantly. All agreed to the enjoyment of such a pleasure, but the question was, how could it be accomplished? Kings are not easily approached, as they are usually hedged in by many formalities which are not easily overcome. “However, we can only try,” said President Grant. They had heard of the many gracious things which the Swedish monarch had done and his tendency at times to lay aside formality, so they took courage.
On the afternoon of July 4th the party went by tram-cr out to Rosendal Palace, the king’s summer residence, located a short distance from the city. It is a small, modest building situated amid green lawns and trees. As the party strolled up the pathway leading to the palace, they were surprised to see the lack of guards or of restrictions. People came and went along the road a few rods from the front door. Children played on the grass, and with the exception of a tent some distance away among the trees around which were a few soldiers, there was no sign of police or guards.
As announced on July 31, the Keepa’ninny who made the 40,000th comment here would win a prize, a print copy of She Shall Be an Ensign, to be delivered when it is published in the spring. That comment has been made, and the winner is …
Holly, a seminary teacher in the southern hemisphere, who commented on yesterday’s Sunday School lesson. Thanks, Holly!
(Is it too early to announce that the writer of the 80,000th comment, probably to be made sometime in 2025, will win some other prize? Hm?)
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This installment of the serial in one of the last issues of the Relief Society Magazine is crazy long, no doubt in order to get the whole story printed before the Magazine ceased publication. I’ve divided it into the parts I think the author intended, and will post them as Chapters 4-A, 4-B, and 4-C.
The Secret of Blueberry Hill
By Rosa Lee Lloyd
Synopsis: Lila and Norman go for a walk and Norman indicates deep feeling for Lila, but refrains from speaking of his love because of respect for Aunt Lucinda. Elizabeth is afraid that Lila may be hurt because of Scott’s attentions to Elizabeth. The funeral is one of grace and dignity with friends coming many miles to pay tribute. Norman boards his plane just as an approaching tornado threatens the town of Skylark.
The black funnel-shaped cloud roared toward them as they ran to the parking lot. Johnny had parked his car near the entrance so they were among the first to swing out onto the highway.
“We’ll be lucky if we beat it home!”Johnny muttered. “That old cellar will feel mighty cosy.”
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