"Relief of poverty, relief of illness; relief of doubt, relief of ignorance--relief of all that hinders the joy and progress of a woman."
--John A Widtsoe

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Making our Sacrament more Christ-Centred 3/3

What We Can Do to Prepare for the Sacrament

Some of the items and suggestions in this list came out of our discussion in our Relief Society Meeting last Sunday.  You are welcome to add to these ideas on our Facebook page, to encourage others to make our Sacrament more Christ-Centred.

  1. Remember the sacredness and holiness of the Sacrament.
  2. Put ourselves into the correct attitude before coming to church.
    "The Chapel Doors seem to say to me, "Shh, be still."  For this is a reverent place to be, "Shh, be still."
  3. The Chapel is a Sacred Space.  Keep conversation and business outside in the foyer. (By all means, be welcome to fellowship and greet one another while in the foyer. We are genuinely happy to see each other.)  Once you enter the Chapel, recognise that you are now entering a sacred space.  Now is time for reflection and meditation on spiritual things.  (The prelude music can help.)
  4. Participate in the elements of the Sacrament Meeting. Listen to the invocation and respond with 'Amen'.  Sing the hymns and understand their meaning.  During the Sacrament service itself, meditate upon Jesus Christ's atonement and what it means to you.  Truly listen to the Sacrament prayers and understand the covenants you renew.
    Meditation hint:  Pick a focus and dwell on that.  
    • Think about Christ in Gethsemane. What thoughts went through his head during that time?
    • Think about Christ's hands. What did they accomplish?
    • Think about how Christ treated others.  How can we emulate his example?
    • Think of Christ's miracles. What did he do?

  5. Educate your children. The Sacrament is for the whole family. Teach them to sing hymns, teach them to meditate and give them appropriate focal points during the Sacrament so they, too, can understand what the Sacrament means.
    "Being quiet" is not necessarily reverence, and reverence isn't necessarily being quiet. It is better to whisper spiritual things in children's ears than to insist upon complete silence.
    Do they know that they should be thinking about Jesus Christ at this time?  It is your job to teach this.  Children are less likely to misbehave when they are focused on something.  Bored children will find things to keep themselves occupied.
    A board book or quiet book about the Sacrament or Jesus Christ can help children focus their thoughts.
    Please don't let children play with the Sacrament cups. Not only are they noisy, but these are the vessels of a sacred token and are not toys.
    Freely offer and accept assistance from other adults to help with unsettled children.
  6. Find a way to discover joy through the Sacrament.

Please join us for Part 1, which summarises the importance of the Sacrament, and Part 2, which asks several questions regarding our attitude. Your comments, sisters, on our Facebook page are welcome.

Want to read more about the Sacrament?