I was able to attend the World Wide Training for the new church handbooks in November. It was a great meeting and I have LOVED reading the handbook. I've read it several times. It has so many wonderful things in it that have blessed our family already as well as clarified some things.
I won't quote anything from the handbook, but the church as put the whole handbook on line for everyone to read. Here is the main link for Book 2.
One section that I've found particularly useful is the "Music in the Home" section located in the music section. Here is the link for this particular section.
Since reading this section we have made music a more active part of our home. We sing a hymn before families prayers twice a day. We have done this in the past, but it never stuck. We have made it a priority now.
I've also tried to implement more singing in the car together when we are driving. Since we aren't listening to the radio, rarely CD's, and movies there can be a lot of dead air time. We read a lot and look out the car window a lot. (It takes us 45 minutes to go grocery shopping and that's driving through sagebrush the whole time). The kids like to see how fast they can sing the Books of Scripture songs that are found in the primary book. We learned them last year and they still sing them all the time.
We've added back into our morning routine singing time. Why is it that I'm always going in cycles with things? We've been singing a lot of Christmas hymns and Children's Christmas music this month. We have learned a lot of regular hymns too. They have really enjoyed learning, "Carry On."
What I find that is interesting is that when my children are playing they are singing hymns. I often discover them humming hymns too. The radio has never been apart of their lives nor has popular music infiltrated their heads so they've never had those songs stuck in their minds. Now though they have had so much more expose to hymns and that is what they have swirling around in their grey matter and in their souls.
It is such a blessing to hear their sweet spirits sing the songs of Zion more regularly now.
Also it talks about parents encouraging their children to learn musical skills to help in church. I've mentioned in a post tonight that we dropped out of formal piano lessons. However, we still play the piano a lot. I have taught piano lessons in the past and so I've become their music teacher. They continue to progress in the piano, musical theory and conducting. We just have elected to forgo the rigors of regular practice times and lessons for the sake of other things. It has been interesting to note though that two of the children continue to regularly practice the piano on their own. They seem to delight in it more now that the formal rigors have been removed. Liberty can play many of the primary songs as well as many of the simplified hymns. I have always taught them, and they have understood, that one of their duties in the church is to learn the piano and music conducting so they will be able to serve in the church. I am confidant that they will remain motivated.
I love beautiful music. Music has the capacity to touch the soul in a marvelous way. We are truly blessed to have our hymns. I am even more committed to instilling within my children a deep knowledge of the great hymns.