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Elder Russell M. Nelson: Honoring women is sacred duty

Once asked why he chose a career in medicine, Elder Russell M. Nelson responded that it was because, in his opinion, the highest and noblest work in life is that of a mother, and since that option was not open to him, he thought caring for the sick might come close.

Elder Nelson of the Quorum of the Twelve quoted a First Presidency statement of many years ago to support the theme of his priesthood session sermon Saturday evening: " 'Motherhood,' they wrote, 'is near to divinity. it is the highest, holiest service to be assumed by mankind. It places her who honors its holy calling and service next to the angels.' "

He remarked that because mothers are essential to God's plan of happiness, Satan opposes their work and would destroy the family and demean the worth of women.

"You young men need to know that you can hardly achieve your highest potential without the influence of good women, particularly your mother, and in a few years, a good wife," he counseled. "Learn now to show respect and gratitude. Remember that your mother is your mother. She should not need to issue orders. Her wish, her hope, her hint, should provide direction that you would honor. Thank her and express your love for her. And if she is struggling to rear you without your father, you have a double duty to honor her."

Speaking of the divine potential of daughters of God, Elder Nelson warned against pornography as being degrading of women, evil, infectious, destructive and addictive.

"The body has means by which it can cleanse itself from harmful effects of contaminated food or drink," he explained. "But it cannot vomit back the poison of pornography. Avoid it like the plague."

Fathers, he said, should have unbounded love for the mothers of their children and accord them the gratitude respect and praise they deserve.

"Husbands, to keep alive the spirit of romance in your marriage, be considerate and kind in the tender intimacies of your married life," he said. "Let your thoughts and actions inspire confidence and trust. Let your words be wholesome and your time together be uplifting. Let nothing in life take priority over your wife — neither work, recreation nor hobby."

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