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When Sister Joy D. Jones and her husband began their life together, they dreamed of having the perfect family, she said, “with perfectly obedient children who all played the piano, were great at sports, and modeled reverence and respect at every Church meeting.”

Later, however, they subscribed to the “Pan Theory,” she said, which is “simply that our Heavenly Father is in control, we trust Him, and if we do our best, in the end, everything will ‘pan out.’”

Sister Jones, Primary general president, and her counselor, Sister Bonnie H. Cordon, spoke jointly during a session of BYU Women’s Conference on May 4 about the need for “intentional parenting.” Sister Cristina B. Franco, who was recently called to serve as Sister Jones’ second counselor, is serving with her husband in the Argentina Resistencia Mission until July.

In her remarks, Sister Jones pointed out that parents often have big dreams for their children and a heart full of the best of intentions. “To have a chance of achieving those parental dreams, we know that we can’t sit back, hold our breath, and wait as our children ‘accidentally’ do the right things — or the wrong things — while growing up. Airplanes fly on autopilot — children don’t.”

Intentional parenting, she explained, “is parenting with a goal in mind. It is deliberate; it is planned and purposeful.”

Sister Cordon shared the counsel given by President Russell M. Nelson, president of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, who said, “No other work transcends that of righteous, intentional parenting.”

To read the full article on Deseret News, click here