Guardians of Virtue

This year our Young Women in Excellence was centered around the inspired message shared by Sister Elaine Dalton during General Conference April 2011.  It was titled:  "Guardians of Virtue".

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In the words of Sis. Dalton, "Heavenly Father loves you and wants you to be happy. The way to do this is to 'walk in the paths of virtue' and 'cleave unto [your] covenants. In a world ever growing in moral pollution, tolerance of evil, exploitation of women, and distortion of roles, you must stand guard of yourself, your family, and all those with whom you associate. You must be guardians of virtue."
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INVITATIONS
Printed on medium weight paper, creme colored, with a beautiful embossed design, elegant font, burned edges, rolled, and tied with gold ribbon.


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PROGRAM
Artwork for our program was commissioned from a husband (Ben) of one of our YW Leaders.

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Conducting:  Young Women President
Opening Song:  Hymn #244, "Come, Come Along"
Opening Prayer:  (offered by one of the young women)
Young Women Theme:  (lead by one of the young women)
Welcome:  Young Women President
Personal Progress Overview and Recognition:  Personal Progress Leader
We also asked a couple of  the young women, who had most recently completed their Personal Progress, to take a moment to share their thoughts and experiences.
Armor of God Presentation:  Graduating Seniors
Musical Number:  "Guardians of Virtue"
Listen to it here.  Print sheet music.  Watch music video below.
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Women of Faith and Virtue Presentation:
  • Three young women were invited to the front.  Each represented a different "Woman of Faith and Virtue".
  • These were the women we chose:  Esther  (Courage), Sariah (Lehi's wife), and a Pioneer Girl.
  • In turn, we discussed each woman and what made her a "Woman of Faith and Virtue".  This was open to all in attendance.  I am always inspired by the knowledge the youth have of the gospel.
  • You could also have a  few prepared paragraphs (written in first person), to be read by the three young women.
  • It also would had been fun to have them dressed as the women they were representing.  But, imaginations worked well enough.  :)
Signing of the Decree:
The young women were invited to become Guardians of Virtue, by signing a decree which stated, "We, the Young Women of the (enter ward name here), do hereby declare that we will be Guardians of Virtue".
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Video Presentation:  (the young women in action throughout the past year - put to music)
Closing Remarks:  Bishop
Closing Song:  Hymn # 255, "Carry On", or Hymn #243, "Let Us all Press On"
Closing Prayer:  (offered by one of the young women)
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PROJECT DISPLAY
Shield name plates were made for each of the young women to place next to their projects.  I simply cut black card stock into 4 x 6 rectangles and trimmed one end to make it look like a shield.  Ribbon was glued across the front and a gold Young Women logo sticker was placed in the middle of the ribbon.  I used different colored ribbon for each class.
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REFRESHMENTS
a feast of banana splits*
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TAKE-A-WAY
I ordered each of the young women a 5x7 copy of the Shield of Faith artwork (featured below).
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by Judy Cooley available through Deseret Book
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You could also print this quote (borrowed from Jodi Marie Robinson) and glue on the back of "Shield of Faith" (adding the young women's names of course):
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"My name is ____________________ and I am Guardian.
And I will stand as a witness at all times,
and all things, and in all places,
as I strive to live the Young Women values.
And I do all of this because I believe in being a Guardian of Virtue."
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This (below) is what I ended up putting together for our take-a-way.  L-O-N-G story!  Short version, though I ordered well in advance from our local LDS bookstore, they put in a completely different order.  Unfortunately, I didn't find this out until the day of our event.  If you want the long version, give me a call.  (Venting is probably better done off line.)  :)  Let's just say that I was so frustrated and a bit sad, because the "Shield of Faith" would have been a perfect reminder for the girls.
I ran to Micheal's, on a prayer, and found these white magnolia candle tins for $1.00 each.  I scooped up 25 of them and a matching white magnolia stem.  As I drove home I prayed again that I could find a way to connect the gift and the theme.  I quickly tied each of the candles up with some black raffia and placed them in a box ready to head over to the church.

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After the "Women of Faith and Virtue" presentation (above), I took the white magnolia stem and placed it in our armor of god decorated madien form (below).  I reminded the young women that as cheesy as it may sound sometimes, they are like a flower.  (Also pointing out that these beautiful white magnolias are in bloom right now in our area.  Hoping that they would be reminded of the lesson, when they see a magnolia in bloom.)  I continued by pointing out that each of them are a beautiful creation, a daughter of Heavenly Father.  And he loves them.  He has given them everything that they need to protect themselves, and to be guardians of virtue.
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Story Time Felts has this wonderful "Armor of God" set available for purchase.
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ADDITIONAL HELPS

8 comments:

  1. I was wondering where you got your armor? The shield,sword,and helmet.

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  2. Shannon, The armor was borrowed from one of our YW counselor's sons. I believe the sword was something they made.

    You should be able to find armor at the Dollar Tree. They have it in their Halloween section right now. I am confident they have it both in Utah and California. I have seen it with my own eyes. :)

    -Terri

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  3. We used your evening as inspiration for our YWIE last night. Thanks so much for sharing. I linked back to you here: http://inkablinka.com/2011/12/guardians-of-virtue.html

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  4. Kristen, I just took a look at your YWIE. Loved it! Are you the one who did the artwork for the armor of god paper doll? It turned out so cute. Thank you for sharing! It'll be fun following your blog. :)

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  5. I think this idea is awsome and should be used by everyone everywher

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  6. Thank you for sharing. I'd like to take snippets of this and use it in our lesson on Sunday.

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  7. Is there a way to gain access to and permission to use the artwork by Ben that was used for your programs?

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  8. The Armor of God paper doll artwork is from a set from StoryTime Felts. They are a small Utah business. I do not think that they have granted permission for people to print that set. You should probably remove it from your blog.

    https://storytimefelts.com/index.php?route=product/search&search=Armor%20of%20god

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