Sunday, July 28, 2013

Family Home Evening Lesson Plans: A New Approach

“Individual members are encouraged to independently strive to receive their own spiritual confirmation of the truthfulness of Church doctrine. Moreover, the Church exhorts all people to approach the gospel not only intellectually but with the intellect and the spirit, a process in which reason and faith work together.” (“Approaching Mormon Doctrine,” Mormon Newsroom, May 4, 2007)

My sons are growing up. They no longer need diapers, car seats, or help cutting their meat. All of them can read independently. My oldest can even drive. If all goes according to plan, he should be serving a mission in about two years. Which leads me to the subject of the day.

I've done a pretty good job teaching my children how to live the gospel of Jesus Christ. But after reflection, I believe I haven't done enough to prepare them for people who will try to tear down their faith through argument. I don't want to teach them how to debate—I just want to introduce them to a few of the controversial subjects in Church history and teachings that anti-Mormons may use as points of attack. These things are only touched on briefly at Church meetings, and I think knowing a little more would prevent them from being blindsided. I'd also like them to learn about other religions so they can understand and respect other people's beliefs.

Thus my current project: Family Home Evening lesson plans that cover a broad range of possibly controversial topics from a believing Mormon's viewpoint. I'll use resources like BYU Studies, the Neal A. Maxwell Institute for Religious Scholarship, the Foundation for Apologetic Information & Research, and the official Church website.

I will post my lesson plans on this blog, mostly for my own reference. But feel free to use them for your own family if you want. Keep in mind that my children range from ages 8 to 16. Many of these lessons may not be appropriate for younger kids.

So ... I start tomorrow with a lesson about the 1978 revelation allowing all worthy male members, including African Americans, to hold the priesthood and receive temple blessings. Wish me luck!