Parenthood Is a Sacred Duty
September 2016

“Parenthood Is a Sacred Duty,” Liahona, September 2016, 7

Visiting Teaching Message

Parenthood Is a Sacred Duty

Prayerfully study this material and seek for inspiration to know what to share. How will understanding “The Family: A Proclamation to the World” increase your faith in God and bless those you watch over through visiting teaching? For more information, go to reliefsociety.lds.org.

Faith, Family, Relief

Relief Society seal
family sitting around the table

Our Heavenly Father established families to help us teach correct principles in a loving atmosphere. President Thomas S. Monson said: “Give your child a compliment and a hug; say, ‘I love you’ more; always express your thanks. Never let a problem to be solved become more important than a person to be loved.”1

Susan W. Tanner, former Young Women general president, taught: “Our Father in Heaven exemplifies the pattern we should follow. He loves us, teaches us, is patient with us, and entrusts us with our agency. … Sometimes discipline, which means ‘to teach,’ is confused with criticism. Children—as well as people of all ages—improve behavior from love and encouragement more than from fault-finding.”2

“If we faithfully have family prayer, scripture study, family home evening, priesthood blessings, and Sabbath day observance,” said Elder Quentin L. Cook of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, “our children will … be prepared for an eternal home in heaven, regardless of what befalls them in a difficult world.”3

Additional Scriptures

1 Nephi 8:37; 3 Nephi 22:13; Doctrine and Covenants 93:40; 121:41

Living Stories

“I was reading the newspaper when one of my young grandsons snuggled up to me,” said Elder Robert D. Hales of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles. “As I read, I was delighted to hear his sweet voice chattering on in the background. Imagine my surprise when, a few moments later, he pushed himself between me and the paper. Taking my face in his hands and pressing his nose up to mine, he asked, ‘Grandpa! Are you in there?’

“… Being there means understanding the hearts of our youth and connecting with them. And connecting with them means not just conversing with them but doing things with them too. …

“We must plan and take advantage of teaching moments. …

“… The more I live, the more I recognize that the teaching moments in my youth, especially those provided by my parents, have shaped my life and made me who I am.”4


  1. Thomas S. Monson, “Love at Home—Counsel from Our Prophet,” Liahona, Aug. 2011, 4.

  2. Susan W. Tanner, “Did I Tell You … ?” Liahona, May 2003, 74.

  3. Quentin L. Cook, “The Lord Is My Light,” Liahona, May 2015, 64.

  4. Robert D. Hales, “Our Duty to God: The Mission of Parents and Leaders to the Rising Generation,” Liahona, May 2010, 96, 95.