“We recognize that there are enormous forces arrayed against women and families. Recent studies find there is deterioration in devotion to marriage, with a decrease in the number of adults being married. For some, marriage and family are becoming “a menu choice rather than the central organizing principle of our society.” Women are confronted with many options and need to prayerfully consider the choices they make and how those choices affect the family.
“These are very emotional, personal decisions, but there are two principles that we should always keep in mind. First, no woman should ever feel the need to apologize or feel that her contribution is less significant because she is devoting her primary efforts to raising and nurturing children. Nothing could be more significant in our Father in Heaven’s plan. Second, we should all be careful not to be judgmental or assume that sisters are less valiant if the decision is made to work outside the home. We rarely understand or fully appreciate people’s circumstances. Husbands and wives should prayerfully counsel together, understanding they are accountable to God for their decisions.
“You devoted sisters who are single parents for whatever reason, our hearts reach out to you with appreciation. Prophets have made it clear “that many hands stand ready to help you. The Lord is not unmindful of you. Neither is His Church.” I would hope that Latter-day Saints would be at the forefront in creating an environment in the workplace that is more receptive and accommodating to both women and men in their responsibilities as parents.
“The remarkable pioneer woman Emily H. Woodmansee penned the text of the hymn “As Sisters in Zion.” She correctly asserts that the “errand of angels is given to women.” This has been described as “nothing less than to do the direct and immediate bidding of our Father in Heaven, and ‘this is a gift that … sisters … claim.’”
“Dear sisters, we love and admire you. We appreciate your service in the Lord’s kingdom. You are incredible!”