Monday, September 30, 2013

General RS Women's Broadcast - Saturday, September 28th, 2013

It was a beautiful autumn evening in the Salt Lake Valley, as sisters gathered together in the Conference Center and in surrounding Stake Centers for the General Relief Society Meeting. The South Jordan Utah River Stake was fortunate to be invited to attend the meeting downtown at the conference center this year. There were lots of warm memories made by those sisters who had tickets to attend downtown, and lots of warm memories made by those who came to watch the broadcast at the Stake Center. We weren't sure how many sisters to expect at the Stake Center because many sisters were going to the conference center downtown, but shortly after 5:30 the sisters started streaming in and the chapel was filled almost, but not quite, to overflowing. 

There is an unmistakable feeling of joy when Relief Society sisters meet together.  When we meet as a Stake, we feel that sweet sisterhood as we give and receive embraces from sisters we haven't seen for awhile, and sit shoulder to shoulder together. This year we heard our inspired General Relief Society presidency and our prophet give us counsel on covenants, teaching children about how acts of service and kindness are a way of keeping our baptismal covenants, and receiving and acting on personal revelation. 

Three generations attending together...
(Each age is beautiful, don't you think?)

Mothers, daughters, & granddaughters...

Brother Mike Wilson, his sweet wife & daughter.
We SO appreciate Brother Wilson! (our High Council representative to the RS)
His unselfish service, and that of all our Priesthood brethren add so much to Relief Society.

Sweet Shari Gibbons (at right) & her friend Marcie.
Shari enthusiastically used her creative touch to
put together this beautiful Fall table decor.
Thank you!

We appreciate the Priesthood and all their help -
(L to R - Anne Petersen, David Bennett, Jennie Bennett, Barbara Sweat, Dennis Sweat, Mike Wilson)
These good men make our callings a joy.

As a presidency, we hope you were able to enjoy
the proceedings of this wonderful meeting.
If you missed it, you can still enjoy it by logging on HERE.

After the broadcast we enjoyed delicious bread and butter (made all the sweeter since President Monson told a story about a loaf of homemade bread!) and veggie trays and dip. The tables were beautifully decorated with fall colors by Sister Shari Gibbons of the River 9th ward.  Everyone enjoyed a great evening, where we were fed spiritually, and had a nice get-together following the conference. Relief Society is the vehicle of so much service and happiness.

Monday, September 9, 2013

Mending Day - Wonderful Opportunity to Serve the SLC South Missionaries

On August, 28, 2013 - the sisters of the South Jordan Utah River Stake were given an opportunity to provide seamstresses to mend clothing and provide sewing services for the missionaries of the Utah Salt Lake City South Mission. 

It is always exciting and challenging to do something you have never done before! What a sweet experience it was for the six sisters who participated. We arrived in the morning, set up sewing machines in a classroom at the Stake Center, inventoried the basket of zippers, patches and buttons provided by the mission home and waited. Soon the Elders and Sisters started arriving for their conference and before we knew it we were in business. And business was brisk! 

There were requests to shorten suit pants, take in seams, sew on buttons, mend seams, and try our best to repair rips and tears on thread-bare fabrics. It was a joy to see and feel this clothing that was worn away by diligent, young servants of the Lord. I believe each of us thought about their mothers, and our efforts were in their behalf. Many of the sisters who participated have sons and daughters currently serving throughout the world and it was a powerful way to connect with them from home.

So much work was accomplished, especially with suits and pants that in the beginning seemed impossible to fix. Zippers were put in by sisters who had
never done work like that, and they looked like they had been done by professional tailors. The opportunity to serve these missionaries was relatively small, but appreciated and enjoyed by each of the sisters that day. In a thank you letter we received from the mission secretary the next week, we learned that the one pair of pants that we thought could ONLY be discarded (but were still fixed the best we could) are now being worn by the grateful missionary.

It was a great morning, and we look forward to being able to do it again some time!

Friday, August 9, 2013

Called to Serve (Lunch to the SLC South Missionaries!)

President Sohm was contacted by President & Sister Chambers of the Utah SLC South Mission to see if we could help provide a luncheon for the SLC South Mission Tour presided over by Elder Marvin Arnold, 1st Quorum of the Seventy held on August 8th.  Here is an explanation from President Chambers as to how rapidly the work is progressing in our area and why they needed our service with such short notice:

"As you are aware, Utah Salt Lake City South Mission was divided and eleven of our stakes became part of the East Mission on July 1, 2013.  As a result, we find that several of the opportunities for service lunches to missionaries during the remaining months of 2013 were scheduled to be provided by stakes that are now part of the Utah Salt Lake City East Mission.  Thus we have several meetings that lunches are not scheduled at this time.  We have an increased number of missionaries coming to the Salt Lake City South Mission and we have a desire to have more time to get to know each one personally."

As always, when we presented the opportunity to serve by helping with this lunch - we were overwhelmed by the willingness of the sisters of our stake to respond and volunteer.  Thank you!

So many sisters helped cook, and some came to serve the meal in addition to cooking.  It was a joy to be a part of.  We have no doubt we will have this opportunity again in the near future, and we are sure our sisters will respond as cheerfully as they did this time!

The meal was so appreciated - and the Sisters were served first (isn't that sweet?)
Salsa Chicken over Baked Potatoes, Salad, Rolls, & Texas Sheetcake w/Ice Cream.

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Come... Serve With Us

Thanks to the sisters of the Advertising Committee:
Chairman:  Marilynn Beesley - 9th Ward
 LynAnn Arnell, Nikki Peisley, Pamela Peterson, Annette Findlay, Natalie West, 
Emilee Wright, Missy Collins, Tammy Tenney, Nedra Sproul 
(a special thank-you to Tracey Smith of the 6th ward for creating the beautiful poster, graphics, & program)

River Stake Women's Conference 2013
"Come... Sit With Us!"

Our Women's Conference theme this year helps us focus on 
the qualities of Charity and what it means when we say the 
"pure love of Christ." We learn charity, provide charity and 
receive charity as we"sit together" as sisters in Zion.

This past year, the Ward Relief Societies of the South Jordan River Stake have become aware of so many who could use help.  In the midst of so much need, the Stake RS Presidency made the decision to channel the funds for a delicious dinner (in past Women's Conferences) to service projects instead.

Over 200 sisters joined in during the day of our Women's Conference to complete over 700 projects.  That evening, we still had over 300 attend the chapel meeting.  Here is a glimpse of the happy hours spent from 9AM to 1PM.  We have amazing sisters - so willing to donate, work, and complete assignments so these local needs could be met.

The sister who chaired the committee for service was Laurie Reeve of the 5th Ward.  Many, many hours were spent meeting as a group, identifying needs, contacting organizations, dividing up responsibilities, organizing donations, and setting up the flow of the event.  Laurie has such a testimony of service, and it radiated to all who participated that day.

Laurie Reeve - Service Committee Chair
Her dedicated committee included:

Kathy Timothy, Susan Bangerter, Jolene Newman, Cherie Whitaker, Holly White, Andrea Peterson, Dee Bianucci, 
Heidi Martell, Connie Fenley, Sheila Mann, Kristy Anderson, Anne Murton, Marcia Todd

Donations Boxes like these were in each ward Relief Society.
They were turned in overflowing with generous donations.

The committee set up the cultural hall so everyone would have plenty of room to work.

Cheerful thoughts & magazine pictures were paired to add to the
River Crest Branch Welcome Kits...
(This one was choice!)
These kits are given to help elderly sisters feel at home
on the day they arrive in their new residence.

(Above & below) are the beautiful journals made for the
"Hearts Knit Together" project for battered women.

There is not a happier sound on earth than that of women visiting as they work together for good.  All ages & all stages in life joined us to serve.  Single sisters, mothers with children, mothers & daughters, grandmothers... so many gave of themselves!  Their faces say it all - happiness comes from service.

At the end of the service project - this is what was accomplished:
Welcome Kits - for the River Crest Branch Sisters - 30
Beaded Bracelets - 28
Beaded Necklaces - 19
Stretchy Headbands - 64
Girls Hairclips - 64
Baby Jingle Boxes - 31
Scrapbook Journals - 120
Fleece Lapquilts - 66 completed, 54 partially completed
Children's Book Bags - 43
Matching Scarf/Hat Sets - 52
Stuffed Felt Hearts - 150
Donations (uncounted) of products, supplies, cash, etc...

Total Projects:  721

Laurie Reeve received this letter of thanks from one of the many organizations that benefited from the day of service:

To the Wonderful Relief Society Sisters of the South Jordan Utah River Stake:

What an amazing response your stake had for your day of service!!!!!!!

It was Like Christmas all day yesterday as your individual wards delivered your beaded necklaces and bracelets, the darling headbands and hairclips, the cute jingle boxes, the journals that were done so exquisitely, the array of hearts in so many colors and the beautiful blankets! We had so much delight in organizing and putting away all your hard work!  I felt so blessed to give some of you a tour of our project room. 

I was also praying for the beautiful hats and scarves, towels, the women's hygiene products and cash that we needed so much to get the 105 women's kits done by the end of the month!  Just like the honey bees that Brother Ballard talked about in October conference, you were an answer to prayers and your combined efforts made a huge impact!!!

There is so much violence in the world that brings so much pain and heartache in the lives of so many.  We are so grateful that with the combined efforts of so many, we are able to provide some encouragement with these welcome kits that contain a message of hope and love to those who are going through so much trauma in their lives.  Thank you so much from all of us at Hearts Knit Together.  May the Lord bless you with his Spirit in abundance for your efforts.


Linda Simmons, Project Coordinator
Hearts Knit Together
An Inner City Project

At 1:00 PM the Cultural Hall began an amazing transformation.  Projects and donations were quickly moved into the Primary Room so the evening meeting could take place.  Many hands made light work!

Barbara's kindred-spirit friend - Debbie Solberg - (from her prior ward)
who spent the day unselfishly working alongside us, cleaning up, organizing,
taking most of these wonderful photographs, and being a true friend!
Thank you!

The day was just getting started!  That evening we gathered for the chapel meeting.  (Click on "Older Posts" at the bottom of this page to view the meeting, Instant Choir, beautiful decorations, and delicious refreshments)