President Russell M. Nelson, Elder D. Todd Christofferson, Elder Ronald A. Rasband, Sister Bonnie H. Cordon and Sister Michelle D. Craig share messages of gratitude, honor and love for all women in commemoration of Mother’s Day on their social media accounts. The leaders highlight the many unique gifts, talents and power that women bring to move families, communities and the world for good. They also express their deep gratitude for all women throughout the world who take part in the many unique and diverse facets of motherhood, noting the challenges that often accompany the divine role.
President Nelson shared:
Today—and every day—I am thankful for the guidance of strong, valiant women in my life. My mother, my sisters, my daughters, my granddaughters, my departed wife, Dantzel, and my dear wife, Wendy, have influenced my life in remarkably wonderful ways.
Many years ago, the First Presidency issued a statement that has had a profound and lasting influence upon me: “Motherhood,” they wrote, “is near to divinity. It is the highest, holiest service to be assumed by mankind. It places her who honors its holy calling and service next to the angels” (general conference, Oct. 1942).
I believe this statement refers not only to women who have given birth or adopted children in this life—it refers to all of our heavenly parents’ adult daughters. Every woman is a mother by virtue of her eternal divine destiny!
It would be impossible to measure the influence that women have, not only on families but also on the Lord’s Church, as wives, mothers, and grandmothers; as sisters and aunts; as teachers and leaders; and especially as exemplars and devout defenders of the faith.
Dear sisters, I say to you as I have said before: We need you! We need your strength, your conversion, your conviction, your ability to lead, your wisdom, and your voices. I love you and pray for you each day.
Sister Cordon shared:
It can be difficult to imagine our moms as young women. Here is mine from 1949. I love seeing her laugh with friends. It reminds me of a quote from our dear prophet, Russell M. Nelson, “The joy we feel has little to do with the circumstances of our lives and everything to do with the focus of our lives” (Oct. 2016 general conference).
Elder Christofferson shared:
In many countries around the world today is Mother’s Day—a day we celebrate and honor women and mothers. Women bring with them into the world a certain virtue, a divine gift that makes them adept at instilling such qualities as faith, courage, empathy, and refinement in relationships and in cultures.
I have been remarkably blessed by the moral influence of women, in particular my mother and my wife. Whether you are single or married, whether you have borne children or not, whether you are old, young, or in between, your moral authority as a woman is vital, and perhaps we have begun to take it and you for granted. Certainly there are trends and forces at work that would weaken and even eliminate your influence, to the great detriment of individuals, families, and society at large. Both men and women have an obligation to exert a strong moral influence for good and to help one another strengthen and preserve that power in each other.
Dear sisters, we rely on the moral force you bring to the world, to marriage, to family, to the Church. We rely on blessings you bring down from heaven by your prayers and faith. We pray for your security, welfare, and happiness and for your influence to be sustained. On this special day and always, we cherish and celebrate you.
Sister Craig shared:
Every season of our lives brings different challenges, different blessings. I remember a time when my children were all young and my husband was in school, working full time, and had a busy church calling. I felt he was progressing and learning, while I was running on empty, just going through the motions.
One night as I slipped into bed I remembered I had not read my scriptures, and frankly, I didn’t feel like it. I was tired and feeling a little sorry for myself. I laid there feeling guilty, so I opened up my scriptures and told myself that reading just one verse would be fine and would “fill the requirement” of reading my scriptures that day. The Lord blessed me that night while I sat on the edge of my bed; I opened my scriptures to a verse that has since become one of my very favorite….
D&C 64:33 “Wherefore, be not weary in well doing, for ye are laying the foundation of a great work. And out of small things proceedeth that which is great.”
I will never forget the feeling I felt as I read and re-read that verse, my heart was softened. The Spirit whispered to me that the ‘great work’ that the Lord spoke about could be my life, it could be my family – if I continued doing the small things, that in the end would make a big difference – even if I did feel weary at times. The same holds true for each one of us. I put that scripture on my refrigerator where I saw it many times a day – it served as a visual reminder to keep doing those small and simple things that were of most importance with my little family and in my personal worship and development. Small and seemingly simple things like personal and family prayer, family home evening, and scripture study. Small and simple things that have made, and are still making all the difference in my life.
Elder Rasband shared:
Every year, I look forward to today—the day we honor women and mothers from all backgrounds and circumstances. When I travel, I often express my love for those gathered by making a heart with my hands. Today, I send all the love in my heart to you—dear women and sisters around the world.
When I think of those who have helped make me who I am, I think ﬁrst of my sweet and selfless eternal companion, Melanie. Through the years, she has helped mold me like potter’s clay into a more polished disciple of Jesus Christ. She knows when to draw me back, slow me down, and get it right.
I am also thankful for my daughters and granddaughters, who also influence me in positive and loving ways. I also think of my mother, who was a loving leader in our family and who nurtured my love of the scriptures. It is due to her influence that I have a deeply rooted faith in our Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ.
Dear sisters, we love you. You have profound influence upon families and on the world. Please know that you are cherished and loved.