Pres. Hinckleyaddresses role,spirit of women

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    JOANNA KASPE

    Assistant City Editor

    President Gordon B. Hinckley addressed the women of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in the Sunday morning session of the 166th Semiannual General Conference, noting their divine role and the tribulations that sometimes accompany that role.

    No other religious organization in the world affords women so many opportunities for development, sociality, leadership, responsibility and the accomplishment of good, President Hinckley said.

    “There is a strength and great capacity in the women of this Church. There is a leadership and direction, a certain spirit of independence, and yet great satisfaction in being a part of this, the Lord’s kingdom, and of working hand in hand with the priesthood to move it forward,” President Hinckley said.

    While he mentioned the divine role of women in the family and the fortunate situation of many women who rear families with loving husbands, he also addressed the concerns of women who faced other challenges such as abusive relationships, single, lonely or raised families alone.

    “I regret that there are some men undeserving of the love of their wives and children,” President Hinckley said, rebuking those men who are abusive and calling them to repentance.

    “What a terrible price you are paying for your anger,” he said to those men, counseling that they discipline themselves, master their tempers, and request the forgiveness of the Lord, their wives and children.

    To the single women of the Church he said, “Do not give up hope. And do not give up trying. But do give up being obsessed with it.”

    President Hinckley suggested that the prospects of the single adult will most likely brighten if they forget about being single and become actively involved in activities.

    “I believe that for most of us, the best medicine for loneliness is work and service in behalf of others. I do not minimize your problems, but I do not hesitate to say that there are many others whose problems are more serious than are yours,” President Hinckley said.

    The church has a great obligation to are women who “have lost their husbands through abandonment, divorce and death,” he said.

    President Hinckley read a letter from a single mother who found Support in the Church, emphasizing that the letter said much about the way in which the Church functioned.

    “I hope that every woman who finds herself in the kind of circumstances in which this woman lives, is similarly blessed with an understanding and helpful bishop, with a Relief Society president who knows how to assist her, with home teachers who know where their duty lies and how to fulfill it, and with a host of ward members who are helpful without being intrusive,” he said.

    President Hinckley also offered insight to the message delivered by President Ezra Taft Benson encouraging women to stop working to spend time with their children. While he sustained President Benson’s message, President Hinckley said he recognized that many women must work to provide for their families and counseled them to do the best they could in their situation.

    Concerning older women, President Hinckley said that although they may still face challenges, they hold a beauty of peace and wisdom in their countenances.

    “The bad memories of the past have largely been forgotten while the good memories return and bring sweet and satisfying enrichment to life,” he said.

    President Hinckley concluded by saying, “I bear testimony before the entire world of your worth, of your grace and goodness, of your remarkable abilities and tremendous contributions, and invoke the blessings of heaven upon you …”

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