Saturday, September 26, 2009

Reflections from the General Relief Society Broadcast......

I just finished watching the Relief Society Broadcast a few minutes ago. I watched it with my 20 year old daughter in the comfort of our home. As I watched and listened to the messages, I was feeling a bit "homesick". Why you may ask? I was feeling a bit homesick because I had the privilege to sing in the broadcast last year.

As I watched the sisters in their crisp white blouses, I remember the discussions from the pulpit at our practices and behind the scenes regarding wearing "plain white blouses" during our rehearsals. At the time, Sister Merilee Webb was the conductor of the choir. She constantly provided spiritual messages and reminders that we truly are daughters of our Heavenly Father.

Sister Beck gave a wonderful explanation as the the reasons why we were asked to wear white. She stated that no matter where she and the members of the presidency went in the world, that the women often attended meetings in white shirts. This was despite the challenging circumstances under which they lived. The leadership wanted all sisters, no matter where they lived in the world to feel a kinship and to feel like a part of the world-wide sisterhood because we were wearing white blouses. We were also asked not to wear jewelry except for a modest watch and our Wedding Rings. This again was to encourage all to feel a part of the world-wide sisterhood that we enjoy since jewelry is foreign to some members of the church throughout the world..

As I watched the sisters sing tonight, I recognized the corsages that they were wearing. Sister Beck had told us that she was asked what color(s) they should be, and she didn't know. So, her grand-daughter suggested the colors purple and pink...and so they are. After the broadcast, the corsages were reverently taken off and stored for use this year. This is something I never would have paid much attention to if I had not had the opportunity to be behind the scenes.

I noticed where the camera's and technical persons were ..... more than I probably should because this was a bit familiar to me. I enjoyed watching the Organ being played with such skill (I sat adjacent to it last year) and enjoyed watching Sister Jolley lead the choir this year. I have had the opportunity to sing with a choir she has lead in the past. She is very inspiring and also fun-loving. Last year, Sister Webb also was awe-inspiring and fun-loving. It must be a requirement for this particular calling.

I enjoyed hearing each member of the Presidency speak. As we had heard from them and seen them "up close and personally" last year, I felt as if they were speaking to me right in my livingroom. I truly have a love for each one of them. I fondly remember the discussion on what type of purse we should bring. The suggestion was to bring a small black purse....I mean small (holding a wallet, and a few toiletry items). Sister Thompson happened to be at the next practice when the question was raised again directly to her. She held up a really large black jest. I loved her spontaneity.

I feel that these women are "down to earth". As Sister Beck described the reasons that we will no longer be calling meetings "Home, Personal, and Family Enrichment Meetings" and will now just call them "Relief Society Meetings", this feeling of being "real" came to the forefront again. In fact, earlier this year, I was in a local Grocery Store. Sister Beck was shopping and I decided to take the opportunity to thank you for letting the sisters in our area participate in the Broadcast. After a few kind words, she asked if I could help her find the "Mother's Cookies" for her grandchildren. Believe it or not, they were nowhere to be found!

Finally, there is nothing like having the opportunity to sit just above the Prophet and his counselors, and to have them and the board verbally thank us. The Relief Society Board blew kisses to us. Tonight, I saw that President Monson raised clasped hands as if he were cheering the choir.

I am grateful for the opportunity that I had last year to participate in such a great world-wide meeting of sisters in the Gospel. Even more, I am grateful to be a part of the world-wide sisterhood that has the motto "Charity Never Faileth".

If you didn't take the opportunity to listen (and there were many great messages tonight), look for rebroadcasts on BYUTV and KBYU. If you would like, you can enjoy each speakers remarks at the following links:

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