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27 May 1881


Utah Central Stake Relief Society; Provo, Utah Territory

[Editorial Note: This discourse was reported in several sources. Two versions are transcribed below. For more information, see the source note following each transcript.]

I. From the Relief Society Minutes

Present on the stand [. . .] Sister E. R. Snow, from Salt Lake City [. . .]

[. . .] Prest Ma [Margaret T.] Smoot said. I am pleased to meet with you again and see so many familiar faces. I am thankful that we are favored today with the company of our beloved sister Snow – for we all claim her. She is our head. To counsel and guide and advise I have been used to call on the Bretheren first. (to speak) but Sister Snow says that it is proper for us to speak first and let the stronger follow. that if we say anything that needs correcting it can be corrected. I will now give way for Sister Snow.

Sister Snow. Said I am pleased to meet with so many fellow laborers in this great cause. I respect the Priesthood as much as any one, but do not feel like speaking after them we are striving to do right. Obedience is our motto. There is no other safegaurde but obedience. and I tremble when I see any one taking any other course. and we want to make it a study perfect obedience to every principle which God has revealed. When there is a duty to perform the Lord gives us our own agency, and then if we try to do it he will be sure to help us but we must be willing. and this is a surety to success never neglect a duty, never leave a loop hole for satan to enter sisters read that Revelation to Sr Emma [Smith] found in the Doctrine and Covenants. We do not want to stop short of Celestial glory, for that is the only glory that secures to us our family ties that opens to us all our happiness. to attain Celestial glory it will take all our powers. it will be our good works that will save us at last. Let us try to encourage and save those that are on the background and bring them back into the fold We want to be as near like our Heavenly Father as we can. What a comfort it is to know that our Heavenly Father has passed through the same trials that we are passing through and can feel for us. Let us be humble and prayerful and lift thy heart to God continualy. I love you all and hope to meet you all and not one lost is my desire. amen. [p. 82]

[. . .]

Afternoon session was mostly taken up by Sister Snow with instructions concerning the endowment clothes. enjoined upon them to have them all as near one pattern as possible

[. . .] [p. 83]

Source Note

Provo Utah Central Stake, Relief Society Minutes and Records (1878–1973), vol. 2 (1878–1891), pp. 82–83, CHL (LR 9629 14); Caroline R. Daniels, Secretary.

II. From the Woman’s Exponent

[. . .] Present on the stand, [. . .] Sister E. R. Snow from, Salt Lake City, was also with us, [. . .] President Margaret T. Smoot said, I am pleased to meet with you again and see so many familiar faces. I am thankful that we are able to meet together, and that we are favored to-day with the presence of our beloved Sister Snow, for we all claim her; she is the head of our Relief Societies to counsel advise and guide us. I have been used to call on the brethren to speak first, when there were any with us, but Sister Snow says it is proper for us to speak first, and let the stronger follow the weak, that if we say anything that needs correcting it can be corrected.

Sister Snow said, I am pleased to behold so many that I am favored to accept as fellow laborers in this great cause. I respect the Priesthood as much as any one, but do not feel like speaking after them, but if they speak after us they can correct our errors if we make any. We are all striving to do right. Obedience is our motto, there is no other safe ground but perfect obedience, to every principle which God has revealed. I consider this is a sacred organization, and if we do not avail ourselves of it, it will be our loss, I think it is important. Those duties that pertain to temporal things are apt to engross our time, and we neglect our eternal interests, and unless our minds are stirred up continually we lose sight of them, but by coming together our spirits gain strength. We need spiritual food, and sometimes I fear our spirits will be small, will not mature, and will not be worthy to enter the presence of our Father. We want to perform every duty for He does not require more of us than we can perform. When there is a duty to perform the Lord gives us our own agency and then if we try to do it He will be sure to help us, but we must be willing, and this is a surety to success, never neglect a duty, never leave a loop hole for Satan to enter. The sisters are doing a good work. We do not know what we would have been without these societies. Joseph Smith said they always existed wherever there was a perfect organization of the Church, and the Elect Ladies meant the Presidents of these Societies. The speaker advised the sisters to read the revelation in the Doctrine and Covenants given to Emma Smith. We do not want to stop short of Celestial glory, for that is the only glory that secures to us our family ties, that opens to us all our happiness, nothing should get between us and our religion, let the spirit govern us instead of the flesh, there is no dividing our interests, and to attain Celestial glory will take all our powers, let us be up and doing; it will be our good works that will save us at last; let us try to encourage and save those that are on the back ground and bring them back into the fold. Let us never be discouraged and we will never fail. We want to be as near like our heavenly Father as we can. Let us have faith for our families when they are sick, and let every mother teach her children the principle of faith, or else they cannot stand in the day of trial. If any of us lack faith in God let us seek to the Lord diligently, that we may receive of his holy Spirit. I feel that we do not live as near him as we should. What a comfort to know that our Heavenly Father has passed through the same as we are now passing through and can feel for us. We should be humble and prayerful our hearts lifted up to God continually and it will soon be second nature. I feel that I love you all, and hope to meet you all and not one lost is my desire, Amen.

[. . .]

[. . .] Afternoon, 1 P. M. Conference commenced by the usual exercises, after which Sister Snow gave the sisters some special instructions. [. . .] [p. 22]

Source Note

Caroline Daniels, “R. S., Y. L. M. I. A. and Primary Reports: Provo,” Woman’s Exponent 10, no. 3 (1 July 1881): 22.