Keepapitchinin, the Mormon History blog
 


Whistling Carols

By: Ardis E. Parshall - December 04, 2014

Whistling Carols

By Evelyn Fjeldsted

Up and down the street he went each night
Bicycle spinning on his route,
Whistling carols loud and clear
“Joy to the world” and “Peace on Earth.”

And as he whistled stars came out,
And blinked approval of his joy,
For David’s music long ago
Could not have brought more peace and cheer
Than David in our little town,
Whistling on his paper route.

(1962)

Merry Christmas from the Oahu Stake Presidency, 1945

By: Ardis E. Parshall - December 04, 2014

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Advent: Plympton’s Christmas

By: Ardis E. Parshall - December 04, 2014

From the Children’s Friend, December 1960

Plympton’s Christmas

By Jane Dalton Weinberger

Only five days ‘till Christmas but there was no merriment in the big white house on the top of Beach Street hill. All the Hathaways were sad, very sad.

True, they went about the business of wrapping and decorating and bringing in pine boughs. The Hathaways love holidays and have many family traditions. Each year they like to do the same special things in the same special ways, but this year John, Joel, Jerry, Jane, Jean and Judy had little heart for the preparations. There was none of the usual hilarious gaiety to make the old house ring with the happiness of the six Hathaways. And no joyous barks of Plympton joining the fun, because Plympton was missing.

Plympton, their dog, was lost. Practically everyone in the whole town was looking for him; still he stayed lost.

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Mulek of Zarahemla: Chapter 8

By: Ardis E. Parshall - December 03, 2014

Mulek of Zarahemla

By J.N. Washburn

Previous Installment

Chapter 8

Synopsis: Mulek loved Zarahemla, the city of his forefathers, where two factions were striving for power, one ruled by Amalickiah, a man of tremendous powers and winning manners, who had caused a rupture in he country, and one by Moroni, young chief captain fo the armies of the Nephites, who went everywhere, encouraging, instructing, pleading with the people to unite in the country’s defense. Accustomed to receiving the adulation of the people, Mulek was consumed with jealousy at his fall from favor. In order to call attention to himself he had mocked the priests of the church and allied himself with Amalickiah. Then, to win their praise he decided to support Moroni’s projects. Mulek was eager to win the favor of the girl, Zorah, niece of Amram, a boatmaker. He devised ways of meeting her, but Zorah was too intent on the political unrest to be interested in him, and was lavish in her praise of Moroni, which added to Mulek’s envy. He determined in some way to win Zorah’s approval. When, therefore, one of his friends approached him with the idea that he become king – even as his forefathers had been kings – he entertained the thought. A general election was called for and granted by Pahoran, chief judge, concerning which kind of government was the more desirable. In the voting the king-men lost, at the very moment when Amalickiah led the Lamanites against the land. When the king-men were asked to support the government, they refused. Beside himself with worry, Pahoran sent word to Moroni, in the land of Bountiful, to come posthaste to the defense of Zarahemla. Moroni came with all speed to the defense of the capital. With great loss of life and devastation, the king-men were vanished. Mulek, fighting to the last, was finally disarmed and dragged off to prison.

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Mormon Stuff to Give for Christmas, 1964

By: Ardis E. Parshall - December 03, 2014

From the Improvement Era, December 1964 —

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A New Relationship between Relief Society and Bishopric, 1920

By: Ardis E. Parshall - December 03, 2014

There is a common narrative that Correlation killed the independence and vigor of the Relief Society circa 1970, particularly when the Church’s women were stripped of the right to raise and control their own finances. After all, women were the ones charged by Joseph Smith with relieving the poor, which required means. One of the major purposes of the early visiting teaching program was to collect goods and money for the Society’s work; the first major practice of the Society was to sew clothing for, first, workmen building the Nauvoo Temple, and then later for all the needy of the ward.

I’m not going to dispute that, but I am going to try to complicate it a little. Long before Correlation as we know it, the Relief Society and Priesthood had danced around the issue of Relief Society funds and Priesthood oversight. The first semi-public awareness of those negotiations appeared in 1920, when the First Presidency sent a circular letter to stake presidencies, bishoprics, “and all Church Authorities,” which read:

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Advent: Cynthia Curtis and Christmas

By: Ardis E. Parshall - December 03, 2014

From the Improvement Era, December 1948 –

Cynthia Curtis and Christmas

By Janice Olson
(Senior at BYU High School)

Cynthia Curtis quickly jumped out of her car in front of the luxurious house surrounded by beautiful gardens. She pulled her mink coat up around her shoulders. “I don’t see why it has to snow so much. If only Dad would take us to some warm place during the winter months!”

She paused at the front door. “If I can only get upstairs before Dad starts on his idea of bringing three children home from the orphanage for Christmas. Why should we turn our home into a place for any riff-raff whom no one else will take?”

Entering the hall she removed her coat and handed it to the small, dark-haired maid, who had been so faithful these many years. She made a dash to slip past her father who was telephoning in the hall, but he put the phone down when he saw her. “Oh, there you are, Cynthia. I want you to see the tree. It is a big one to stand on the floor. Every other year we have bought a tiny little tree for the table.”

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Choir Practice

By: Ardis E. Parshall - December 02, 2014

Choir Practice

By Helen Maring

This is no mood of idle whims,
These sweet young voices singing hymns.
The choir leader measures time
And brings the rhythm from the rhyme.
The strength of Christian feeling sings
And notes have sudden lifting wings.
The tone expresses depth. Chords grow
With light and beauty down the row
Of singing throats. Expression – beat –
And faith expressed in song is sweet
And full with meaning, strong with mood –
And God hears in his solitude.

(1945)

Mormon Stuff to Give for Christmas, 1964

By: Ardis E. Parshall - December 02, 2014

From the Improvement Era, December 1964 —

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“Marriages Forbidden in Scripture”

By: Ardis E. Parshall - December 02, 2014

Marriage – unlawful marriage – was the topic of endless newspaper editorializing in the mid-19th century. “Apart from all religious considerations,” urged one writer, “let us count the social and domestic cost of any indifference to the proposed change in our marriage laws. The first downward step would not be the last!” Tolerating marriages that violated the laws of God and man “would produce social misery and inconvenience to thousands of the community.” “If these marriages were not forbidden in [scripture], the code of marriage was no code at all.” The plea that such marriages provided homes to women who otherwise would remain unmarried moved opponents not at all.

Were these unlawful marriages the polygamous marriages of the Latter-day Saints? Well, no.

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