Chapter 16: Bringing Up Children in Light and Truth Teachings of Presidents of the Church: Joseph Fielding Smith

Chapter 16: Bringing Up Children in Light and Truth

Teachings of Presidents of the Church: Joseph Fielding Smith

Key Principles

  1. We have to be the example of what we want our children to become.
  2. If we have a plan in place, it is easier to create the home environment we want.

Readiness Activity:

Pass out a sheet of paper to each member in the class. Tell them that you are going to do some origami (you can fold the paper into whatever shape you want or whatever shape you have origami instructions for). The first time, only give verbal instructions to the members. Do not show them any step. No demonstrations! As you go along only giving verbal instructions the members will begin to get confused, especially if the instructions are not the most clear. After you are done, have the members hold up their finished products. Ask why there are so many varying finished products, and what would have made it easier (to see it done). Then, have them unfold or give them a new piece of paper, and walk them through the same instructions giving verbal instructions and visual demonstration.

Here is a good example of an origami project.

Class Study:

Following this example go to page 209 and have someone read the first two paragraphs under Set a righteous example. The key is for us to live the way we want our children to become. The rest of that section gives 9 areas that we should work on as a part of a successful family setting. Ask the class to pick 2-3 of the sections and read through them. They are looking for 2 things: 1) the key teaching/phrase from each section and 2) the specific behavior that they would want to live in order to teach it to their children. Example: under the section Teach children to pray, one key phrase is “I hope you are teaching your children in your homes to pray.” The behavior that I want to live is to do personal prayer every morning and night as well as praying together as a family. You might even discuss ways you can encourage your kids to do their own personal prayers every day.

With each recommendation write down on the board the specific behavior. This becomes like the origami instructions. Once you have the instructions that you can show to your kids, life becomes easier. Have class members select 1-3 of the ideas listed that they want to start using in their life.


Close by reading the second paragraph in the section To withstand the influence of the adversary, parents must bring up their children in light and truth. (On page 206) This gives us the “Why” behind what we are trying to do. We try to live this way in order to protect our children. Our homes are the best defense against the adversary, “How good do you feel your defenses are?”


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