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Mormon Families Across South Pacific Make Plans for 2016

Last night many members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints across Australia, New Zealand and the islands of the South Pacific gathered in their homes to make plans for 2016.

Each Monday evening, Latter-day Saints around the world turn off their televisions, computers and devices to spend time together as families.  Last night’s “family home evening”—as Mormons call the weekly family night—was an opportunity for Church members to talk about ways to strengthen faith and family relationships in 2016.

The activity was inspired by an invitation last month from the Pacific Area Presidency of the Church—Elders Kevin W. Pearson, O. Vincent Haleck and S. Gifford Nielsen—to sit down together as couples and families to set family and personal goals for the year. Singles were invited to also make goals for personal and spiritual growth.

Anticipating this unique family opportunity, Elder Kevin W. Pearson encouraged families to gather by saying that the plan and accompanying home evening are opportunities to “focus on individual faith in God.”

“The purpose is to strengthen families and individuals by increasing faith and trust in Heavenly Father and in Jesus Christ and His Atonement.”

He added, “Every great accomplishment begins with a vision. A shared family vision will bring focus and unity to family efforts. Please remember that each individual in the family is a beloved son or daughter of our Heavenly Father. We invite each member to set their own personal goals.”

Using the hashtag #PacificAreaFHE (Pacific Area Family Home Evening) members of the Church from across the Pacific region have been sharing photos and comments on Facebook about their participation in the goal-setting exercise.

Kimberly Daniels, from Melbourne, wrote, “Have just set some personal and family goals for 2016. Can't wait for self-improvement, becoming better and helping others to be their best selves! How wonderful it is to know that we need never be content with mediocrity. Life can become rich, full and sublime as we work towards inspired goals.”

Lesa Bartlett, also from Australia, reported, “Had a great family night setting our 2016 area and family goals.”

Laura Clarke from Auckland, New Zealand, wrote, “Our family has finished writing our goals and are willing to strengthen our faith through them.”

Shane Rogers from Brisbane, wrote, “Just completed a family night discussing how we can increase our faith in Jesus Christ and His Atonement by focusing our efforts in four specific areas:

1.    Honour the Sabbath day at home and at church.
2.    Increase spiritual and temporal self-reliance.
3.    Hasten the work of salvation.
4.    Seek the blessings of the temple.

“It was nice to hear that the children recognise that there are ways we can improve by taking small steps in the right direction.”

Read more comments and see more pictures by searching #PacificAreaFHE on Facebook or clicking here.

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