The Church Historian's Press

28 August 1873

Pleasant Grove Relief Society; Pleasant Grove Meetinghouse, Pleasant Grove, Utah Territory

One-story, light stucco building with a bell turret

Now known as the Old Bell School House, this school constructed in 1861 in Pleasant Grove, Utah Territory, was also used as a ward meetinghouse. This photograph was taken in 2020.

Special Meeting for Miss E. R. Snow

Visitors Present. Miss Eliza R. Snow and Mrs Elizabeth [A.] Howard of Salt Lake City [. . .]

Sister Snow, said Sisters, after having traveled a journy sufficient to go around the world, through the blessings of God I am in your midst to day. I visited many [p. 133] churches Mosques and Cathedrals.

looked on the condition and faces of the people and when I compare them with the people before me to day, how great the contrast Their countenances denote grief and sadness I noticed a great difference between the Roman and Greek Catholics. in the Roman the service is in Latin and the people do not understand but in the Greek the service is in modern Greek which the people understand and they have a more cheerful countenance. The Later Day Saints having a knowledge of their sins being forgiven and of the truth are the most cheerful. I have seen in some countries that the women were mere beasts of burden and their faces were down cast they had no hope of God to cheer them; I made it a point when I could to address them, it seemed to be a gratification to them to be noticed by any one.

Joseph Smith the Prophet said in every age of the world when the church was fully organized. Woman was organized in Relief Societies. At the time of its organization in this dispensation he called on Elder John Taylor to act as chairman protem and Dr Willard Richards secretary protem They were then organized after parliamentry order with Prest. Secretary Treasurer &c The sisters could help relieve the poor and there by help relieve the Bishop.

They are not only to relieve the poor but to help in the salvation of souls.

I don’t know whether you have any poor or not but you should know the condition of every family in the ward. I believe the society in this place is [p. 134] more united and attend their meetings better than any other society in the Territory if I have been correctly informed. There is no woman who posesses ordinary intellict but can do some good.

Do you undersand the workings of the society in the salvation of the souls of men? When the government shall pass into the hands of the saints politically and financially. men shall be well qualified for the position.

I spoke of the Relif Societies in Utah for the relief of the poor among the gentiles and they could see and said it was the best organization for the relief of the poor they ever heard of but they could not appreciate it in its higher sphere. It is Woman that gives tone <and character> to society in laying the foundation of proper education in children,. woman’s first duties are at home to make her home a heaven and educate those who shall be judges in Israel and rulars of the world.

Not that we expect to get a head of the brethren, we may do our best and our brethren will be a head of us but if we move along in our calling it will hurry them up causing them to improve lay aside every cigar and immoral action

It seems that the powers of darkness are exerting themselves more than ever. We have had pursicution [persecution] mobs &c to contend with, but now we have a flattering enemy to contend with who is working under cover holding out worldly inducements which are delusive. We would better meet the bayonet of the enemy than his smiles, this state of things are dangerous Well says one I don’t like those religious folks, sister Eliza you are getting too [p. 135] religious. When I get more religious than the Savior and the ancient saints then call me in question.

Some have not time to pray they have many excuses, so much to take care of haven’t time to call the family together to pray when the husband is away When we were in poor circumstances we had plenty of time to pray.

We now have so much to take care of our time and attention is all occupied. The sister here attend<ed> meeting here very well but if you are not getting a little negligint [negligent] you are far ahead of other settlements

I see a great contrast between the children of to day and those of the early members of the church, they had the holy spirit upon them, they spoke in tongues and had the interpretation A few of our young men are sent abroad to preach the gospel in Babylon to get the Holy Ghost and learn its influence our children should be trained at home under the influence of the spirit and be in posession of it even all of our young folks. I want to say a little to mothers upon this subject of bringing up your children I am as much interested as you are in the rising generation for the future for this work depends much upon the proper training of the rising generation.

Why <do> so many turn away to the gentiles? it is becaus they have not been properly taught.

Every Mother wants her sons to prosper in the work and their daughters like polished stones, but the education of children is neglected till wrong habits and ideas are [p. 136] established and it is the difficult to to change them to the right way. Their education should be founded in honesty, and that this may be the case you must be honest yourselves.

When children, whose parents have no fruit, bring in fruit that was got unlawfully the parent will probably tell the child he must not take it without permition [permission] from the owner at the same time they will eat the fruit or make use of the eggs as the case may be and thereby confirn [confirm] the act; children though small are close observers in all these things and thus a parent without thinking may lay the foundation of dishonesty.

Conscience is manufactured like cloth. It is the result of education and if that is wrong the conscience is not correct. The conscience should be the result of education founded in honesty and a correct understanding of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

Teach your children to be polite at the table and good manners, these little things have more to do in forming character than book education I am in favor of book education but the other <is> of more importance. a child with good manners will pass through the world without book knowledge a great deal better than one with book knowledge without good manners.

They must have example as well as precept, always be punctual in all promises. When I was a little girl my Father [Oliver Snow] put me in posession of property that is, that I could earn myself he used to borrow money of me and give his note which he paid punctually, he told his friends he would rather keep his word and contracts with children than grown people, and thereby establish with them the principle of honesty and punctuality. While we are assisting to educate others we are educating our<selves> [p. 137] We must learn to act from principle in-stead of feeling; our feelings may change but principle never changes.

Plurality of wives is one of the best principles to educate woman. When we <have> bad feelings let us smother them, and not give publicity to them, for then they are hard to get rid of. We must learn to honor every institution which the Lord has revealed I was taught plural marriage by the Prophet Joseph and knew him to be a man of God I did not understand it as I do now When I received and entered into this order, the prospect was that I should not be recognized as an honorable wife in this life. the system was not then recognized by the saints even, and those who entered into it were looked down upon by the great majority, only a few had any knowledge of the system.

When I embraced the gospel I was filling an honorable position in the world and when the world looked down upon me on account of my religion I cared nothing about it. I asked no adds of them. But when the saints looked down upon me I felt it, but to day the scene is all changed, the second or tenth wife is just as honorable as the first among the saints, I dont mean the milk and water saints.

Then if we are going to be coworkers with the brethren let us honor ourselves and the principles revealed. When the first wife submits for her husband to take another she is the most God like woman on earth and if the second wife feels to honor the first and the principles she is equally noble. We must be so absorbed in this great work and not let our selfishness which is of [p. 138] the earth interfere, we should be careful <and> not set our aim too low. Let our affections be set on good principle. For my part if I profess to be a saint to be a whole hearted one, if we try to serve the world and the kingdom too we will fail in both. Keep a firm hold on the principles of salvation.

We are called to labor with our brethren, We want some lady M. D.s to study the science of <medicine,> anatomy, obstetrics &c there now is a chance for you quite a number are attending the lectures given on Salt Lak on this subject. Have we not young ladies as smart and intelligent as those in the world, th[e]y are advancing in this direction and doing well. It is proper that the Relief Societies instead of sending means after the poor abroad that they meet the expense of those students who may be selected from among the young ladies to attend a medical school.

I feel like going among some of the R. societies saying wake up. I have heard Prest. [Brigham] Young say that the Lord would call out a people from this people that will build up his kingdom I want to see the young women organized into societies, we have some in the city and among them we have some of the best secretaries in the country and they are getting the spirit among them.

I am thankful for your faith and prayers to assist me and instead of being lifted up in pride, it makes me feel humble. Girls dont you want to be handsom? intelligence will make you look interesting but the spirit of the holy Ghost will make you handsome.

[. . .] [p. 139] [. . .]

Mrs M. [Margaret] T. Smoot said [. . .] Considers we have all enjoyed a feast in having our b[e]loved sister Snow with us again.

[. . .] [p. 140]

Source Note

Pleasant Grove Branch, Utah Stake, Relief Society Minutes and Records (1868–1901), vol. 1 (1868–1892), pp. 133–140, CHL (LR 7006 14).

Cite this page

28 August 1873, Pleasant Grove Relief Society; Pleasant Grove Meetinghouse, Pleasant Grove, Utah Territory, The Discourses of Eliza R. Snow, accessed June 25, 2024