Christmas2015

Christmas 2015

One tradition that has developed in our family, as a compromise between myself and my husband, is to choose a Christ-centered theme around which base that year’s celebrations. The centerpiece is the Christmas tree, which we decorate with new homemade ornaments created specifically for and customized to our family for that year. The children look forward to this activity, as it fills the month of December with art and music, adding to the festivities already found in cookie making, gift-giving and feasting. Some themes have included our family history; missionary work around the world; peace, love, and joy on earth; and the Nativity story. But by far, my favorite years have always seemed to be the when we’ve chosen the Book of Mormon as our theme.

In 2011, we had a toddler in the house. Our solution to the curiosity that we knew would inevitably come to the Christmas tree was to make it edible. “Suffer the little children to come unto me and forbid them not, for of such is the kingdom of heaven.” So I decided to just go with the flow and encourage rather than prohibit those wandering little fingers on the tree. Our theme for that year was the Tree of Life from the Book of Mormon. I already had an Angel Moroni tree topper from a previous Christmas. So out he came from his box and up to crown the top of the tree. Along with him came the blue ribbon I had made and decorated its long tails with the words from 1 Nephi 11:22-23

Knowest thou the meaning of the tree which thy father saw? Yea, it is the love of God which sheddeth itself abroad in the hearts of the children of men; Wherefore, it is most desirable above all things… Yea, and the most joyous to the soul.

Next, I was overjoyed to find a set of Christmas lights at the store, which had rather large clear white bulbs, each measuring about the size of an apricot. We bought two boxes and strung them over the tree. There was no “twinkling” effect to the lights that year, but rather they popped and blazed as if the houselights were on. The brilliant tree lit up the room it was in, as well as most of the rest of our one-story home. We made round white sugar cookies to represent the fruit of the Tree of Life, wrapped them in plastic wrap with a ribbon, and hung them on the tree. For variety, and to add a three-dimensional effect to the two-dimensional “fruit” of the cookies, we also made rice crispie treat balls. Well, let me say, this tree was QUITE popular with our little one. I have fond memories of the games the children played with the baby around the tree that year. The low branches were always mysteriously bare at the end of the day, and our little one would point that fact out very diligently. When I create this tree again, as the grandchildren arrive, I will try to add 10 other “white fruit” goodies, along with confectionery green healing leaves, as mentioned in Revelations 22:2

 In 2015, we chose the theme of the Book of Mormon again. This time we decided that cardboard, paper-doll type jointed ornaments were the order of the day. I was surprised at how much gospel discussion and teaching this activity afforded us, as we worked together every day on adding to our tree. The pictures below are all of the ornaments that were created by myself and three of my children.

LehiKLM

Lehi

Jointed, cardboard-backed paper doll ornament with spinning scene wheel. This is the Isrealite prophet, Lehi, who was a contemporary of Jeremiah. He led his family out of Jerusalem and sailed to the Promised Land (America). Like his forefather, Joseph of Egypt, he was a visionary man. The scene wheel depicts Lehi’s vision of the Tree of Life, an allegorical parable in which the rod that leads to the tree represents the Word of God (Christ), and both the Tree and the sweet white fruit represent the Love of God (which, because of the Atonement, also represents Christ). Artist: Katie, 11/27/15.

sariah

Sariah, wife of Lehi

Sariah, rather young and blond with pigtails, per my daughter, the wife of the prophet Lehi. (Artist, EJM. 12-4-2015.)

NephiSEM

Nephi

Nephi, righteous son of the prophet Lehi, made by SEM and EJM. 12-3-2015

LamanLemuelSEM

Laman and Lemuel

Here we have Laman and Lemuel, the lukewarm-to-outright-rebellious older brothers of the prophet, Nephi. (In total, Lehi had six sons, and these two were the oldest.) SJM really had a ball making these two. The one that looks like Bruno from Popeye is Laman… And when I told him Neal A Maxwell’s wry comment about Lemuel, the unoriginal rebel because he was just a follower of everything Laman said to do, we got this bobble headed “yes man” Lemuel. LOL. 12-3-2015.

SamIAmSEM

Sam

This is Sam, Nephi’s other older brother, who was good- following the counsels of God through Nephi and his father Lehi. SJM’s comment here was, “Everybody needs a brother, Mom. Nephi has just GOT to have Sam.” That boy kept on praying for a baby brother… or sister… every single day. And he was answered by Christmas 2016. Ornament created 12-3-2015.

SamuelKLM

Samuel the Lamanite

Jointed, cardboard-backed paper doll ornament with spinning scene wheel. This is Samuel the Lamanite, a righteous prophet who testified to the wicked Nephites of the coming of Christ. In five years, he would be born in the land of their fathers. Signs in the heavens would include a new star, and a day and a night and a day with no darkness. Arrows could not hit him as he preached from high up on the city walls. (Artist: Katie. 11/27/15)

SamuelTellsOfMary

Samuel Tells Of Mary

Many Book of Mormon prophets knew ahead of time about the circumstances surrounding the birth of Christ. In addition to Samuel the Lamanite, Nephi saw into the future, and beheld Mary, the pure and virtuous mother of our Savior. (Artist: Katie, 12-4-2015, with help coloring from EJM.)

SamuelSLM

Samuel the Lamanite

Cardboard-backed paper ornament of Samuel the Lamanite by SLM, 11/27/15.

Abinadi

Abinadi

Jointed, cardboard-backed paper doll ornament of the prophet, Abinadi, who died as a martyr for testifying of Christ, and of the wickedness of the Nephite King Noah and his people, for disobeying the 10 Commandments. I admit to taking some liberties with this depiction, such as by giving him “wings of fire”, making him a young man, and including what is known as the Mystic Symbol on his clothes and book. (Artist: Katie. 11/27/15)

AbinadiSEM

Abinadi by SEM

 

CaptainMoroniSEM

Captain Moroni

Cardboard-backed paper ornament depicting Captain Moroni, who rallied his people to defend themselves against encroaching evil in their land. (Artist: SLM, 11/27/15).

maidservant

The Maidservant of Morianton

Cardboard-backed paper ornament of a pivotal but unnamed Lamanite maidservant who was a domestic abuse survivor. She escaped her master and warned the Nephite general, Moroni, of pending Lamanite strategy. (Artist: ALM, 11/27/15).

NephiteFortification

Nephite Fortification

Cardboard-backed paper ornament of Nephite fortifications which included high mounds of earth, timber palisades, watch towers and a controlled place of entrance. Yes, I am learning a lot from Nephite Explorer about the Hopewell/Nephite earthworks. But when I was drawing the soldier in the tower, it reminded me of Monty Python. So the banner was created by my funnybone. There is NO scriptural text that reads, “Your mother is a hamster, and your father smells of elderberries” (Artist, Katie. 11/27/15).

almaangel

Alma and the Angel

Cardboard-backed paper ornaments of Alma the Younger and the angel. This son and I realized while reading the text earlier this year that the same angel who his father and the righteous Saints prayed into warning him, (which changed his life), also came back later to praise, comfort and direct him. What a tender mercy of the Lord! (Artist, SLM, 11/27/15).

AlmaJr

swordlaban

Sword of Laban

Close-up of the sword of Laban. According to accounts retold on Nephite Explorer, it was last seen unsheathed with these new words engraved upon them. (Artist, SLM, 11/27/15).

AmmonKLM

Cardboard-backed paper ornament of servant/missionary Ammon. Drawn at EJM’s request by Katie. Colored by EJM 11/27/15.

AmmonsSheep

Ammon’s Sheep

Cardboard-backed jointed (yarn knots) paperdoll ornaments of “Ammon’s sheep”, upon which EJM insisted so that her Ammon ornament would not be lonely, nor hurt the Lamanites for no reason. (Very tiny and intricate piecework for Mom!) Artist: Princess EJM, November 28-29, 2015

GoldenPlates

The Golden Plates

Cardboard-backed paper ornament of the gold plates from which Joseph Smith, Jr translated the Book of Mormon by the gift and power of God. Drawn by ALM for EJM, which she colored. 11/27/15.

GoldPlates

Gold Plates

We believe the Book of Mormon was translated from sacred, ancient gold plates by the prophet, Joseph Smith, through the gift and power of God. It is another testament of Jesus Christ. (Artist: Katie, 12-3-2015).

Ministering Angels

Ministering Angels

Cardboard-backed paperdoll ornaments depicting the angels which came down and ministered with him when the resurrected Jesus Christ visited the Nephites and Lamanites in the Americas. I drew the angel -with wings- at my little one’s request. They ministered to the children one by one. EJM then created two more jointed children almost all by herself, and went on to make many more angels and children (11/27/15).

 

grandma angel

“Grandma Angel”

“Grandma Angel” surrounding the little children with fire and the Holy Ghost, at the coming of the resurrected Christ to the Americas. By EJM, 11-27,28-2015.

 

GreenieBeanie

“Mr. Greenie Beanie” Angel

Boy Angel that EJM created and named Mr Greenie Beanie. 11-28,29-2015.

 

Ornamentback

(ornament back)

We have been saving cereal boxes for this annual event all year long.  The kids use glue sticks to attach their art, and I use rubber cement (attaching to the printed side of the box, in order to have a plain back.) We used regular-sized and mini brads for the joints, as well as yarn when we ran out of brads.

 

AngelByEJM

Angel by EJM

 

 

zeniff

Zeniff

Cardboard-backed jointed paperdoll ornament of Zeniff, whose example teaches us to beware of overzealous individuals who pit their will against God’s and man’s. Red flags to watch for: dissatisfaction with prior prophetically guided actions (such as moving from the land of Nephi), contentiousness, and insisting upon their own will, way and timing. (Artist: Katie. 11/28/2015).

WickedNoah'sThrone

King Noah’s Throne

I made this throne of the wicked Nephite King Noah, more because I had extra gold paper and to amuse my son, than for any other reason. Noah really did burden his people this extravagantly. Anyway, one of SEM’s favorite movies is Nacho Libre, so I wrote “King Noah is #1” on the chair seat, as an homage. It totally cracked my son up. (12-3-2015). That throne remains unoccupied, as King Noah became a crispy critter. (Buhbye, prophet-killing bad guy.) Noah’s father Zeniff is there in the background, which is a little spooky but yet appropriate, as one of the cautionary lessons of the BOM.

pachyderms

Pachyderms

Cardboard-backed paper ornaments of North American pachyderms, as mentioned in the Book of Mormon and whose bones have been found here according to Nephite Explorer. (Artist: SLM, 11/28-29/2015).

BrotherOfJaredKLM

Mahonri Moriancumer, aka the Brother of Jared

The Book of Mormon contains the histories of two peoples: the Jaredites (probably the Adena) and the Nephite/Lamanites-Mulekites (probably the Hopewell). This ornament depicts the story of the Brother of Jared, who prayed to the Lord not to have the language of his family and friends confounded just after the fall of the Tower of Babel. God heard his prayers and instructed him on how to build barges to cross the waters into the Promised Land. Then there is a marvelous exchange between the two of them as the BofJ presents the problem to the Lord of how the barges, which are dark inside, are to be lit. The Lord threw the ball back into the BofJ’s court and asked him to propose a solution. Jared studied the issue out and decided to make 16 clear stones and take them back to the Lord, asking him to light them. The Lord did so, but in the process, the BofJ saw the finger of the Lord, and realizing he had a bodily form, momentarily feared. The Lord commended him for his great faith and then fully appeared before the BofJ. I had fun making this ornament around the Christmas light, so that the stone would “glow.” (Artist: Katie. 12-4-2015)

BroOfJared

Mahonri Moriancumer, aka the Brother of Jared

Cardboard-backed paper ornament of the Brother of Jared, whose clothes are based on SJM’s copy of the illustrated children’s BOM storybook. We found him and his little sister reading it for hours yesterday and today. (Artist: SJM, 11-28-2015).

KingBenjaminKLM

King Benjamin

Nephite King Benjamin, who built a tower on temple grounds in Zarahemla, to deliver parting words to his people. He pled with them to commit themselves to serving God. “When ye are in the service of your fellow men, ye are only in the service of your God.” (Artist: Katie, 12-1-15)

KingBenjaminSEM

King Benjamin

King Benjamin, by SEM. 11-29-2015.

 

StriplingWarriorGarland

Stripling Warriors for a garland

I was thinking of making a garland of Helaman’s 2060 Stripling Warriors… with the help of a copy machine. But I ran out of time. Here are 30 of them. My favorite is the little guy on the  bottom row, fourth boy from the left. I was thinking of that cottage industry quote from Boyd K. Packer the whole time, so that is why each boy is so individual in his appearance and in the “family crest” upon his shield of faith. The boy in the middle row, fifth from left, looks like my oldest son.  The young man in the top row, fifth from left ended up looking like Kaden, a boy I have taught in Primary. (Artist: Katie. 11-29-2015).

The ministry of the prophets and apostles leads them ever and always to the home and the family. That shield of faith is not produced in a factory but at home in a cottage industry.

The ultimate purpose of all we teach is to unite parents and children in faith in the Lord Jesus Christ, that they are happy at home, sealed in an eternal marriage, linked to their generations, and assured of exaltation in the presence of our Heavenly Father.

Lest parents and children be “tossed to and fro,” and misled by “cunning craftiness” of men who “lie in wait to deceive” (Eph 4:14), our Father’s plan requires that, like the generation of life itself, the shield of faith is to be made and fitted in the family. No two can be exactly alike. Each must be handcrafted to individual specifications.

The plan designed by the Father contemplates that man and woman, husband and wife, working together, fit each child individually with a shield of faith made to buckle on so firmly that it can neither be pulled off nor penetrated by those fiery darts.

It takes the steady strength of a father to hammer out the metal of it and the tender hands of a mother to polish and fit it on. Sometimes one parent is left to do it alone. It is difficult, but it can be done.

In the Church we can teach about the materials from which a shield of faith is made: reverence, courage, chastity, repentance, forgiveness, compassion. In church we can learn how to assemble and fit them together. But the actual making of and fitting on of the shield of faith belongs in the family circle. Otherwise it may loosen and come off in a crisis….

This shield of faith is not manufactured on an assembly line, only handmade in a cottage industry. Therefore our leaders press members to understand that what is most worth doing must be done at home…

 

RainbowTwins

The children who saw Christ

Twins, a boy and a girl, who were there when Christ came to the American continent. Artist: EJM. 11-30-15.

 

ChildByEJM

Child by EJM

 

 

AnotherChild

Another Child

Another child surrounded by angels and the Holy Ghost (and apparently Angel Moroni by EJM! 12-4-2015.

 

wifenephi

The Wife of Nephi

The wife of Nephi, one of the daughters of Ishmael.  Artist, Katie. 11-28 & 30-2015

 

StriplingWarriorMother

Stripling Warrior and His Mother

Due to the missionary efforts of 5 young Nephite boys and their companions, there was a great conversion to Christ among their brethren Lamanite people. These converts made a vow to God never to shed blood again, and buried their weapons of war. They taught their children faith in the Lord Jesus Christ such that when war threatened again, 2000 of their young sons (who had not made the vow) went to face the foe with full confidence in the providences of the Lord. Not one of these young boys were killed in the battle. (Artist: Katie. 12-1-2015).

 

HelamanSEM

Helaman


Helaman, mighty Nephite military leader and son of Alma the Younger, who led the 2000 stripling Ammonite warriors into battle to defend themselves against aggressors. These young men were later joined by 60 more youth, making a total of 2060 Sons of Helaman. Artist, SJM. 12-2&3-2015.

WifeOfBenjamin

Queen of King Benjamin


The wife of King Benjamin, holding baby Mosiah, by EJM. How very interesting that she came up with this idea on her own. While I know she modeled her queen after my drawing of Nephi’s wife, she told me that there had to be a “Queen Benjamin” because there had to be a righteous mama to raise a righteous King Mosiah. Then she and her brother got into this delightful discussion about how the Book of Mormon was partially a family story. “Did you know she was the grandma of Ammon, Aaron, Omner and Himni?” “Uh-huh. She must have been really proud of them, huh?” (12- 2&3-2015)

 

KingMosiahSEM

King Mosiah

King Mosiah, righteous son of righteous prophet and King Benjamin, was the last of the Nephite kings before the reign of the judges. He is described as having fine silks and gold. SEM made sure he had them.  12-4-2015

When I said Mosiah looked a little bit like Elvis, SJM colored his hair from black to brown and asked, “Did that help?” 

 

MrAndMrsKingMosiahEJM

King and Queen Mosiah


King Mosiah and his wife. “He is singing HA-LAY-LOO-LAH!” . This child, who even makes her dolls and horses into family units, did the same thing for our Christmas tree. Making sure everybody was together, she hung them next to their father-in-law, my King Banjamin in the tower, and the Queen she made for him. Artist: EJM

TreeOfLifeEJM

Tree of Life


The Tree of Life, by EJM. This tree, representing the Love of God, or Christ, is central to the message of the Book of Mormon, and ties in beautifully to other stories of trees in holy writ, connected to the house of Israel. 12-3- 2015

MormonSEM

Mormon II

Mormon, son of Mormon and father of Moroni, who was among the last of the Nephite generals and righteous Nephite followers of Christ. It was his sorrow to watch his people destroy themselves because they refused to follow the God of this land, who is Jesus Christ. That is why SJM drew him sad. When I asked why his head was so small, he responded that his head was normal- he was just wearing a lot of armor, LOL. 12-3-2015

MormonKLM

Mormon II

This ornament represents the saddest but most poignantly beautiful parts of the Book for Mormon: having a sacred, important mission, and fulfilling it, despite living in the midst of the most evil of times. They did not have to do it, but like our Savior, they did. Righteous Nephite General, Mormon, the son of Mormon, watched his people destroy themselves and their entire civilization. He spent years of his life compiling and editing his nation’s “Library of Congress” or “Vatican vault” into just one book. He wrote the things of MOST importance to OUR TIMES, from all those countless stories, for OUR SAKES, because he foresaw that his people’s story, and the Jaredite story, would play out again with us, the Gentiles, aka, the United States of America. Then he guarded this set of plates with his life, until he lost it in battle. Then his son Moroni kept up the lonely vigil, as the light of his nation flickered and went out. Anyone who would not deny the Christ would be put to death, and he would not deny the Christ… When he wrote in those last few pages, only 28 Christians were left. But it was not the end, and Providence did not allow these two magnificent and mighty men of God to labor in vain. We have the Book of Mormon in print, in over 46 languages, flooding the earth with the message of the truthfulness of the Gospel of Jesus Christ and of the reality of the living God! He or she that hath ears to hear, let them hear. (Artist: Katie)

 

cropsEJM

Nephite Crops

EJM insisted on making sure we represented the crops the Nephites grew in their fields. Again, her own idea entirely. I am intrigued with how one so small sees so simply and yet profoundly. 12-3-2015

Liahona

Little one with Liahona ornament

Say hello to my beautiful baby! She is holding our version of the Liahona, which was a ball or director which led Lehi and his family from Jerusalem and through the wilderness to the promised land. It only worked when the family was being obedient to the commandments of God. The lessons of the Liahona help my children to understand how the Holy Ghost works in our lives. (Artist, Katie. 12-3-15).

thepointerPeeking inside, you can see the little director arrow.  I admit I am kind of proud of myself for making so many “golden” or “bronze” things out of one big $1 dollar store bag.  (Artist, Katie. 12-3-15).

We never could figure out why it kept pointing back in the eastward direction. We decided it was pointing toward our local branch building.

SignsInSky

Western Hemispheric Signs of the Birth of Christ

Our tree topper represents what the Nephites and Lamanites saw in the sky, here, on the American continent, the night that our Savior was born. Just as prophesied 5 years prior by Samuel the Lamanite, there was a day and a night and a day with no darkness, and a new star appeared in the sky. (Artist, Katie. 12-3-2015).

AlmaSrKLM

Alma and The Waters of Mormon

The one person who heard and believed the testimony of the martyred prophet, Abinadi, was a fallen priest named Alma, had served King Noah rather than God. He repented of his sins, turned back to God, and began teaching Abinadi’s message to whoever dared hear him, for King Noah sought his life. He and his followers gathered by the Waters of Mormon, and he baptized many unto repentance there. (Artist: Katie, 12-4-2015).

NephiSamSEM

Brothers, Nephi and Sam

SJM decided to make another Nephi all by himself. Here he is, on the left, beside his big brother Sam, with his hammer for building the boat and the sword of Laban at his side. (12-4-2015).

jacobSEM

Jacob, Brother of Nephi

Jacob, the little brother of Nephi, who later succeeded him as prophet-leader. (Since a thread of patriarchal order runs through the BOM, I wonder if perhaps this brother-to-brother reign change was because Nephi had many daughters and no sons? But this is speculation. ) Artwork by SJM

jareditebarges

Jaredite Barges

These are supposed to be two Jaredite barges. The account describes them as being tight like unto a dish, with openings for air and light at the top and the bottom of each vessel. They were of divine design and traveled through the waters like a great fish or whale might do. (Frustrated, frazzled artist who hung them back by the trunk, Katie.  ) Created 12-4-2015.

 

Hagoth

Hagoth

Here is the inventive Nephite leader, Hagoth, who SJM says he modeled after himself: with long legs and a little body. Things were getting really ugly for the Nephites, so Hagoth got the bright idea to build ships and sail away with 5,000+ men and their wives and children. My mother always taught me that he was the founding ancestor of the Hawaiian people, but the scriptural passage made no sense to me until I saw Wayne May’s lecture about Hagoth on TrueNorthTV.org !!! 🙂 Now I am totally geeked about it. (12-4-2015).

NephiteTemple
The prophet Nephi’s account in the Book of Mormon states that the Nephites built a temple patterned after that of King Solomon’s, only not as richly furnished. I decided to try my hand at such a description, making a wooden version with accents of gold, and setting it in North American taiga. Wow. This is really something! 🙂 (Katie, 12-4-2015)

I think this is SEM’s favorite creation for that year. Here is poor Amulek, a Nephite missionary, cast into prison. The door pops open and makes the wall fall down. “Snap, Crackle, Pop! Ammonihah Krispies!” So don’t worry, things worked out okay for our heros, cuz our God had their back. 12-4-2015.

Amulek2SEM

Amulek

Amulek by SJM. I found some mini-brads on clearance at Michael’s, and then the kids went absolutely crazy with the creating because they were then able to do everything without any help at all from Mom.

ShiblonSEM

Shiblon by SEM

From left to right, King Lamoni and King Lamoni’s Father, by my son SEM 🙂

EnosKLM

Enos

This is Enos, the son of Jacob (a younger brother of the prophet Nephi). He had a conversion experience in the woods, while pondering upon the words of truth spoken by his fathers. Perhaps he had taken them for granted, but after that full day of responding to his hungering soul, by pouring it out to the Lord all the day long, he understood their importance, and HIS importance and everyone’s precious importance, in the eyes of God. (Katie, 12-4-2015.)

ENOSbySEM

Enos by SEM

SticksOfJudahAndJoseph

The Sticks of Judah and Joseph

These passages of scripture kept returning to my mind while making these our ornaments, especially the one I wrote on the tree. Our Christmas tree this year has a double-in-one trunk, as well. When we found it out in the woods, my oldest child recognized immediately what that symbolism was, even before we had completely harvested it. Artist: me.

 

Leilani

The Children of Lehi


My mother sent these ornaments to the children this year. She designed them herself, making over 30 of them for all her family members. I am delighted with how well our heavenly lady, Leilani, goes with the theme of our tree… For she represents the present-day posterity of the Book of Mormon people, whose posterity I am, and my children are. 

Gideon

Gideon

Gideon, the Nephite patriot. When he was a young man, he saw King Noah’s excesses destroy his people. Remember that his people were of splinter Nephite group that followed Zeniff to reclaim the Land of Nephi – like our Plymouth Rock- from the Lamanites, who had taken it over when God led Nephi to move farther north. (Lehi had died, and Laman/Lemuel wanted to kill him and his brethren.) Gideon pursued King Noah up a tower at one point, determined to slay him for his corruption, nonrepentance, the murder of Abinadi, and the persecution of Alma and his little band of saints. (It is better that one man should perish than a whole nation dwindle and perish in unbelief) But, King Noah, fearing for his own life, and relying on the honor of Gideon, pointed out the arrival of an invading Lamanite army on their borders. Gideon showed mercy, letting King Noah go, and going to defend his people. Years later, after much suffering under slavery to the Lamanites (who won that invasion) patriot Gideon helped come up with the strategy that ultimately freed his people to escape back to the place where the main body of the Nephites were still living. Finally, when he was an old man, he saw the same dangers of priestcraft, like has been with King Noah, creeping back into Nephite society through a false teacher named Nehor. For boldly defending what was right and true, Nehor angrily attacked Gideon, who died. This because Gideon was too old and weak by then to defend himself. In my opinion, Gideon died a Christian martyr to liberty in God’s law. He was correct in seeing the grave danger, the snake in the grass, of Nehor’s priestcraft, for it did indeed eventually bring down the entire Nephite/Lamanite (Hopewell) civilization. (Artist: Katie)

 

GideonSEM

Gideon, by SEM

Our family has enjoyed our Book of Mormon Christmas Tree so much that we will probably repeat that the theme this Christmas, in 2018. Especially since big sister is currently serving a full-time mission to declare the joyful news of the Restored Gospel and the Book of Mormon.

screen-capture-13

Myrrh Wise Man. Artist: Katie Moore

As a side-note:  Although I’ve made a “Samuel the Lamanite” Wise Man (Helaman 16:7-8), one of these days I would also like to create a full-fledged figurine scene reflecting the events which occured across the world from Bethlehem in the Book of Mormon lands. I think that we as an LDS people woefully neglect this bonafide “rest of the story” Christmas story. I, for one, would like to see dual-hemispheric decorations among my people, to more appropriately go with our worldwide, dual-hemispheric celebrations. This means that at Christmas, we set up scenes from the Old and New Worlds on our mantle pieces or sofa tables. This means that at Easter, we remember the Old Testament Paschal Lamb; New Testament Gethsemane, Calvary and triumphant Empty Tomb; and the Book of Mormon visit of the Resurrected Lord to the people of Lehi who survived the post-crucifixion destruction.  One year, when I was allowed to do so by our branch president and the Primary president to whom I was counselor, our Primary children put on the traditional costumed Christmas Nativity pageant along with the addition of the Book of Mormon account. There were non-members and less-active members present when we did this. It was a powerful, powerful thing, when we read both scriptural accounts and watched the children re-enact both. I hope that others there felt the same spirit that I did that night. When I go to the other side of the veil, I want to be able to look President Benson in the eye and tell him that I heeded him; that I tried very hard not to neglect the Book of Mormon.

ETBMormon

 

 

 

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