Young Women Lesson: Why is Joseph Smith’s mission important to me?

The Impact of Other People on our Lives

In the novel, The Five People You Meet in Heaven, author Mitch Albom imagines a character, Eddie,  crossing the veil after death and being greeted by five people who preceded him in death. While two of these people were very close to Eddie during his life, two others were strangers who crossed paths with Eddie only briefly during their lives. These brief meetings changed the course of each others’ lives in profound ways that Eddie was unaware of while he lived.  The fifth person was someone who lived before Eddie was born, but her life impacted Eddie because her actions shaped the place he would eventually be born into and the business where he would someday be employed.

Provide each class member with a piece of paper and invite them to write their answers to these questions.

  • Think of two people who are close to you, such as family members or friends.  How do your actions affect them?  What kind of impact can you make in their lives, for good or ill?
  • Think of two situations in which you interacted with people you don’t know.  How could your actions in these situations have affected other people around you, for good or ill?
  • Think of two people who died before you were born.  How did their actions affect history and the life you are living today?

After the writing activity, ask if anyone would like to share any of the things they thought about or wrote down. If class members would like to keep their thoughts and answers private, that is fine, too. Allow for privacy or sharing, depending in the preferences of the people in the group.

The Impact of Joseph Smith

The Sacred Grove, Palmyra, New York

Tell the class that today we will discuss someone from history who has impacted all of their lives in at least one way, because they are all presently in attendance at a class of the church he began: Joseph Smith.

In his October 2014 General Conference talk about Joseph Smith, Elder Neil L. Andersen encouraged the youth of the church to learn about Joseph Smith in two ways. One of these ways is to:

Joseph Smith’s account about the first vision is available in Joseph Smith-History, in the Pearl of Great Price. We will listen to this account together as we watch Ask of God: Joseph Smith’s First Vision.

Share this video, which illustrates how Joseph Smith described having a vision when he was just a teenager, which would lead to him founding the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS).

Ask of God: Joseph Smith’s First Vision

Ask class members:

  • Can any of you can think of any ways Joseph Smith’s legacy affects you today?

List their ideas on the board.

The Book of Mormon

The other way Elder Neil L. Andersen encouraged the youth of the church to learn about Joseph Smith in his October 2014 General Conference talk about Joseph Smith is as follows:

  • “Find scriptures in the Book of Mormon that you feel and know are absolutely true. Then share them with family and friends in family home evening, seminary, and your Young Men and Young Women classes, acknowledging that Joseph was an instrument in God’s hands.” -Elder Neil L. Andersen

An important way in which Joseph Smith impacted modern members of the LDS church is by giving us the Book of Mormon.

Ask class members to take some time to look up one of their favorite Book of Mormon scriptures.  Invite them to share the scripture they selected with the rest of the class, explaining why it is meaningful to them.

April Young Bennett

April Young Bennett is the author of the Ask a Suffragist book series and host of the Religious Feminism Podcast. Learn more about April at aprilyoungb.com.

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3 Responses

  1. Kathy says:

    Thank you for this! I’ve felt a little bit at a loss about this lesson. Your thoughts and ideas helped so much.

  2. alli says:

    Thank you so much! I am prepping last minute as my entire family was sick this week. I LOVE your take–especially the intorductory activity.

  3. Melissa says:

    Thank you!! Last minute I was asked to give this lesson as a fill in and I was really feeling lost. I appreciate your thoughts and ideas to help!

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