The women of the Wandsworth Stake, in South London, were treated to an artistic afternoon of card making, knitting, quizzing and gaming activities to celebrate the 172nd birthday of the Relief Society women’s organisation of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints.
Joseph Smith's prophetic words to the Nauvoo Female Relief Society in 1842, indeed came to fruition on the afternoon, 'I now turn the key to you in the name of God, and this society shall rejoice and knowledge and intelligence shall flow down from this time - this is the beginning of better days to this society'.
The women’s leader, Ruby Martin, took the opportunity to thank the women for the service they performed in making a large number of heart shaped bags for the children’s charity ‘Kids Company’. She said that the founder of the charity, Camilla Batmanghelidjh, really appreciated the bags. One member affirmed 'the children will know they are loved and being thought of.”
Church leaders mingled with the women enjoying the afternoon and sharing their talents. The younger women enjoyed being taught by the older ones the diminishing art of knitting and crocheting.
In addition to the fun filled afternoon, knowledge and intelligence definitely flowed as each woman uplifted another with conversion stories. For example, Karen Adams, of the Peckham congregation, touched the hearts of the women with her recollection of her moment of epiphany. The Financial Services worker was being taught by the missionaries and they told her of Heavenly Father speaking to Joseph Smith. She said 'for me, that's when I knew the Church was true. In the Bible Heavenly Father always spoke to his prophets so why wouldn't He still speak to them now?' she reasoned. The mother of six added that she could not understand why 'people find it so hard to accept this fact'.
The afternoon ended with remarks from Stake President, Roderick Anatsui, congratulating the efforts from the women in attendance and emphasising the need to extend the hand of welcome to new members, particularly by inviting them to the forthcoming Women's Conference.