In the Friday morning keynote address of Women’s Conference at BYU, a historic first-ever Sister-to-Sister event was held where the presidents of each auxiliary organization in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints joined together for a conversation. Sister Jean B. Bingham of the Relief Society, Sister Bonnie H. Cordon of the Young Women and Sister Joy D. Jones of the Primary answered questions that had been submitted by women around the world in a discussion led by Sheri Dew.
When We Feel We Are Never Enough
The first question came from a young mother. She spoke of how she is a stay-at-home mom and a secretary in the Young Women’s Presidency in her ward. “How do we deal with the overwhelming concern that we are never enough? I feel overwhelmed and fatigued… I really do try,” the question read.
Jones began by sharing her love for the sister. She said the sister was expressing feelings that we all have. We all live in different circumstances and lead different lives, but we share similar concerns. It is easy to feel like we are not enough… when in reality, through our Savior, we are enough.
Cordon then added, “Sometimes when I feel like that, I just have to get on my knees. I ask the Lord, ‘tell me again you love me, I just need to know.’” She then said, “When I feel that extra dose of love… I know that I can do it. It’s okay.”
When Inclusion Becomes Difficult
Another question shared during the discussion asked about serving with priesthood leaders that sometimes make it difficult to work together.
Bingham began with sharing a few instances where she has found herself in similar circumstances.
“Seek to understand those priesthood brethren. Pray for them. True love never fails. When we ask that question, 'Is it I?' That’s a really great place to start,” Bingham said.
Cordon added to Bingham’s counsel, saying “You never know what circumstances people are coming from.” She shared a story of an instance her daughter-in-law had where she could choose to be offended at the insensitivity or another, or she could choose to help that individual understand the expanded picture. In choosing to help others understand our circumstances, we show greater compassion and love.
The next question had to do with inclusion. Many of those that are childless, have an unconventional marriage, are a part of the LGBTQ community, or have circumstances that allow for their lives to be different than those around them can feel like second-class citizens, and the question addressed this, asking “How can we feel more included?”
Cordon began by reading 3 Nephi 17:7, emphasizing that those who were afflicted in any manner should be brought to the Savior as He asked.
“If we come together with one accord and go forth, we know the promise: ‘He did heal them, every one.’ May we come to the Savior together, that we may put our arms together and have everybody feel important,” Cordon said.
“We can make every single person feel like they belong, because they do,” Bingham said.
We Need Christ and Each Other
To conclude the discussion, each of the women were given time to share their strongest impression as to what the women in the Marriott Center and abroad needed to hear.
Jones began, saying she wishes for our hearts to feel peace through Jesus Christ.
“Oh, how I pray that you will seek Him,” she said.
Cordon followed, sharing a story of her grandson playing hide-and-seek. Her grandson likes to be found, so he often hides in visible spots and makes noises as to be sure he is not missed. She connected this Christ, saying, “Our Savior never hides from us. He always gives us what we personally need.”
“I pray that we can do what we can do, cheerfully. And then let’s stand still, because we will see the Lord’s influence and love in our lives,” Cordon said.
Bingham concluded, saying “My heart reaches out to yours.” She said we are all daughters of God and He loves each and every one of us.
“Sisters, we need each other. We need unity…. We each have gifts and talents and abilities and strengths to share. When we recognize that as sisters we can support one another, we will truly become sisters in Zion and the kingdom will roll forth,” Bingham said.