Nearly every week, we partake of the Sacrament, often casually, sometimes by rote. However, this simple ordinance should demand our utmost attention. Its significance and power are without precedent. Perhaps it is time to take another look at this singular ordinance.
Line upon Line
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It felt like a miracle. After years of careful campaigning, we had finally convinced India to enact a National Leprosy Day. It had been a hotly contested journey—between those in power, many of them believing that those with leprosy had been cursed by God—and those who worked with the leprosy-affected, trying to afford those afflicted, the slightest shred of dignity. But the miracles were just beginning.
“Ouch?” I thought to myself while doing a stretch at our ward’s Relief Society yoga class. The pain in my hip continued to increase. Watching me hobble in and out of stake conference and squirm on the bench during the meeting, my ministers were waiting in front of our home when we arrived. They announced that they were going to give me a blessing. I offered no resistance. The words of the blessing taught me an unexpected lesson.
For many years, a daily practice of repentance never quite made sense. It was a mystery to me. Why would I need to repent each day if repentance was for emergencies? I remember thinking that if I needed daily repentance, I should reconsider my lifestyle and that instead of repenting daily I should consider not sinning daily to an extent that required repentance. If sin is the only thing we use repentance for, this thinking might be adequate. But here's another way to think about repentance.
For the past eight years, I’ve been helping run the Mormon Lit Blitz, an annual contest for flash fiction, short essays, and poems that explore Mormon themes and experience. This year, for the first time, we published twelve finalists in six languages—Spanish, Portuguese, English, Japanese, Tagalog, and Estonian. As we reflect on our experience, we wanted to share four things we learned from this contest.
As members of the Church of Jesus Christ, we have been given the privilege to gather Israel on both sides of the veil. President Nelson has told us that absolutely nothing happening on the earth right now is more important. We’re not alone in this arduous yet joyful pursuit. There are angels available and willing to help us.