The sacred and eternal nature of families is regularly taught and believed among Mormons today. But it wasn’t seen as quite as obvious to Church members in the middle of the 19th century. The teaching that our family relationships extend past this life and are modeled on the family relationship we had before this life developed throughout the life of Joseph Smith, culminating with the King Follett discourse (given just before his death) and with the temple ordinances. The teachings of Lorenzo Snow on this subject (seen in the Lorenzo Snow manual chapter 9) thus represent a very developed understanding of how these relationships fit in the plan of salvation. For many earlier Church members, however, it seems to me that these teachings were mostly comfort on the loss of loved ones, especially children. And it is in comforting those who have lost children that the eternal nature of families can be seen. An example is the poem selected for this lesson.
For some time now I’ve been planning a series of posts looking at the LDS presence in different countries around the world. But unlike what has been done elsewhere, I want to find and present information that gives a view of what life may be like for most LDS Church members in that country. I also hope to give an idea of the development of Mormon culture in the country, mention a few of the well-known or notable citizens of that country who are Mormon, as well as a brief idea of the distribution and development of the Church in the country. In honor of the yesterday’s best-known Mexican holiday, Cinco de Mayo, I thought I would start with Mexico.