Today & the Tribulations

As the “Emergency Preparedness Specialist” in our local congregation (Ward) I had the privileged of working with many individuals to prepare a workshop for the neighborhood and this is what we did to prepare for happiness in our everyday lives and the coming tribulations.

5:30pm – Set Up

Working with the presenters to arrange the various rooms and displays.

Prior to the meeting play these videos to set the tone:

6:30 to 8:30 – Opening in the Main Room – overflow

– Young Men and Women with the Primary Children in the Relief Society room. (Could be done in the Primary room or outside at the Pavilion)

Presided over by & Conducting: _____________________

Opening Prayer: ________________ (blessing on the food)

Open Hymn #229 Today, While the Sun Shines
§ Conductor: _____________
§ Pianist: ________________

10 minute talk on Provident Living given by: ________________

When we consider what the Prophets Have Warned it is easier to understand why we need to be “prepared” both spiritually, mentally and physically.

“Those who smugly think these calamities will not happen, that they somehow will be set aside because of the righteousness of the Saints, are deceived and will rue the day they harboured such a delusion. The Lord has warned and
forewarned us against a day of great tribulation and given us counsel, through His servants, on how we can be prepared for these difficult times.
Have we heeded His counsel?” – Ezra Taft Benson, October 1980 General Conference

We Have Been Warned

The Lord has said, “Be faithful, praying always, having your lamps trimmed and burning, and oil with you, that you may be ready at the coming of the Bridegroom” (D&C 33:17). This counsel refers to the parable of the ten virgins, which illustrates how we are to prepare for Christ’s Second Coming (see Matthew 25:1–13).

Life is fragile, peace is fragile, civilization itself is fragile. The economy is particularly vulnerable. We have been counseled again and again concerning self-reliance, concerning debt, concerning thrift. So many of our people are heavily in debt for things that are not entirely necessary. When I was a young man, my father counseled me to build a modest home, sufficient for the needs of my family, and make it beautiful and attractive and pleasant and secure. He counseled me to pay off the mortgage as quickly as I could so that, come what may, there would be a roof over the heads of my wife and children. I was reared on that kind of doctrine. I urge you as members of this Church to get free of debt where possible and to have a little laid aside against a rainy day.

We cannot provide against every contingency. But we can provide against many contingencies. Let the present situation remind us that this we should do.

As we have been continuously counseled for more than 60 years, let us have some food set aside that would sustain us for a time in case of need. But let us not panic nor go to extremes. Let us be prudent in every respect. And, above all, my brothers and sisters, let us move forward with faith in the Living God and His Beloved Son.

I do not know what the future holds. I do not wish to sound negative, but I wish to remind you of the warnings of scripture and the teachings of the prophets which we have had constantly before us.

I cannot forget the great lesson of Pharaoh’s dream of the fat and lean kine and of the full and withered stalks of corn.

I cannot dismiss from my mind the grim warnings of the Lord as set forth in the 24th chapter of Matthew.

I am familiar, as are you, with the declarations of modern revelation that the time will come when the earth will be cleansed and there will be indescribable distress, with weeping and mourning and lamentation (see D&C 112:24).  (The Times in Which We Live – Gordon B. Hinckley, President of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. October 2001 Address)

For many there is the core belief that “if ye are prepared, ye shall not hear.” (D&C 38:30)

5 minute instruction on how the workshop will proceed given by: ___________

Breakout themes, locations, times
Food & Mingle Plans


Middle Cultural Hall – Your Home is Your Castle, Your Temple, Your Sanctuary!

Back Cultural Hall – The Coming Tribulations

Relief Society Room – Primary (instructed by the YM/YW)

7:00 to 7:25           Breakout #1

Middle Cultural HallTopic: Family Finances Pamphlet

“We encourage you wherever you may live in the world to prepare for adversity by looking to the condition of your finances. We urge you to be modest in your expenditures; discipline yourselves in your purchases to avoid debt. … If you have paid your debts and have a financial reserve, even though it be small, you and your family will feel more secure and enjoy greater peace in your hearts” (All Is Safely Gathered In: Family Finances).

Marriage and Family Relations – Managing Family Finances

  • Pay an honest tithing.
  • Live on less than you earn.
  • Learn to distinguish between needs and wants.
  • Develop and live within a budget.
  • Be honest in all your financial affairs.

Five principles of economic constancy – From an address by President Tanner in the general welfare session of the October 1979 general conference of the Church (see Conference Report, Oct. 1979, 117–21; or Ensign, Nov. 1979, 80–82).

3 things you don’t really need

Back Cultural HallTopic: Signs of the Times

Do we live in the times leading up to the return of our Lord and Savior, his long awaited 2nd Coming? For centuries people have thought and acted as if it were then, 100 AD, 1000 AD, the 1800’s etc. But why is it today?

Consider for a moment what happens in the Book of Mormon related to his fist coming to earth as the Son of God:

3 Nephi Chapter 1
Nephi, the son of Helaman, departs out of the land, and his son Nephi keeps the records—Though signs and wonders abound, the wicked plan to slay the righteous—The night of Christ’s birth arrives—The sign is given, and a new star arises—Lyings and deceivings increase, and the Gadianton robbers slaughter many. About A.D. 1–4. *continue reading the following chapters proceeding Christ’s arrival to the Nephites

How does this relate to us today? Seriously consider its application.

Now consider the words of Christ himself as they relate to our day:

D&C 1:4 And the voice of warning shall be unto all people, by the mouths of my disciples, whom I have chosen in these last days.

D&C 115:4 For thus shall my church be called in the last days, even The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

Elder Bernard P. Brockbank shared that “Before the second coming of Jesus Christ, certain promised signs and wonders are to take place, making it possible for his Saints to know the approximate time of his coming. Jesus said: “Now learn a parable of the fig tree; When his branch is yet tender, and putteth forth leaves, ye know that summer is nigh:

“So likewise ye, when ye shall see all these things, know that it is near, even at the doors.” (Matt. 24:32–33.)

President Kimball gave this counsel, “The leaves are commencing to show on the fig tree.” That is prophetic.

For example we know that the gospel will be preached to the world, specifically the Gentile Nations (not the Jew nor the Heathen) So consider then what Elder Bednar had to say in 2014:

At 2014 Education Week, Elder Bednar instructed that by using Social Media to share the Gospel we are…
“fulfilling the mandate to preach to all the world. There isn’t any way we could print enough Books of Mormon, or send enough missionaries out and there are still countries which won’t allow us in – but, most of the world does have internet, and this is how the church will fulfil our responsibility.”

… the times of the Gentiles is come in … But they receive it not; for they perceive not the light, and they turn their hearts from me because of the precepts of men. And in that generation shall the times of the Gentiles be fulfilled.” D& C 45: 28–33

“The judgments of God will be poured out on the wicked to the extent that our Elders from far and near will be called home, or in other words the gospel will be taken from the Gentiles and later on carried to the Jews.”
1868 Heber C. Kimball

Let there be no confusion, we live in the days leading to the return of our Lord and Savior and upon us will soon begin the tribulations foretold.  Now is the time for us to be the Watchmen on the Tower.

“What are some of these signs and wonders that shall take place in the last days, prior to the second coming of Jesus Christ?”

Last Days Road Map

The Year with No Rainbow

Scriptural Perspective to Surviving the Last Days – Hugh Nibley

Signs of the Times – Randy Crooks

Blood Moons (Tetrad)
* Times & Seasons – PDF

Harbinger & Shemitah
* The Shemitah
* The Harbinger
* Feast of Trumpets Program
* Symbolism of Passover

7:30 to 7:55         Breakout #2

Middle Cultural HallTopic: Mental & Family Relations

A young woman offers a prayer of gratitude. Young Women leaders teach that hearts can be softened and changed through gratitude. Photo by Henrik Als.

Avoiding addiction and staying in control, spirit over body.

“The Lord wants you to have the spirit of gratitude in all you do and say?” (For the Strength of Youth, 18). Following are five reasons why gratitude is a transforming attribute. Also included are questions you may wish to consider and apply in relation to gratitude. It is a blessing and opportunity to be grateful in all things. (Details Here)

  1. Being grateful is a commandment and helps us to become a Zion people.
  2. We continually strive to follow the Savior’s example and apply His teachings in our daily life.
  3. Ancient and modern prophets teach the importance of gratitude.
  4. Prayers reflect our gratitude to the Lord.
  5. Recognizing our blessings and expressing gratitude increases our happiness.

“Gratitude is deeper than thanks. Thankfulness is the beginning of gratitude. Gratitude is the completion of thankfulness. Thankfulness may consist merely of words. Gratitude is shown in acts.” —President David O. McKay (1873–1970)

Back Cultural HallTopic: Concerns and Coming Attractions

A Witness and a Warning – Too many Americans have lost sight of the truth that God is our source of freedom—the Lawgiver—and that personal righteousness is the most important essential to preserving our freedom. So, I say with all the energy of my soul that unless we as citizens of this nation forsake our sins, political and otherwise, and return to the fundamental principles of Christianity and of constitutional government, we will lose our political liberties, our free institutions, and will stand in jeopardy before God.

No nation which has kept the commandments of God has ever perished, but I say to you that once freedom is lost, only blood—human blood—will win it back.

There are some things we can and must do at once if we are to stave off a holocaust of destruction. (continue reading the 4 things declared by President Benson)

The “Call Out” – The Great Gathering

“Tent Cities” – Why Tent Cities

Acts 2:17-20
And it shall come to pass in the last days, saith God, I will pour out of my Spirit upon all flesh: and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, and your young men shall see visions, and your old men shall dream dreams.  And on my servants and on my handmaidens I will pour out in those days of my Spirit; and they shall prophesy. And I will shew wonders in heaven above, and signs in the earth beneath; blood, and fire, and vapour of smoke:  The sun shall be turned into darkness, and the moon into blood, before that great and notable day of the Lord come.

Mark 13:22, Matthew 24:24
For false Christs and false prophets shall rise, and shall shew signs and wonders, to seduce, if it were possible, even the elect.

In October 2001, just after the destruction of the world trade centers and the tragedy of the loss of all the lives of those who perished there, President Hinckley said this in his opening address of General Conference announced Joel 2:28 was fulfilled:

“The era in which we live is the fulness of times spoken of in the scriptures, when God has brought together all of the elements of previous dispensations. From the day that He and His Beloved Son manifested themselves to the boy Joseph, there has been a tremendous cascade of enlightenment poured out upon the world. The hearts of men have turned to their fathers in fulfillment of the words of Malachi. The vision of Joel has been fulfilled wherein he declared:

“And it shall come to pass afterward, that I will pour out my spirit upon all flesh; and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, your old men shall dream dreams, your young men shall see visions: And also upon the servants and upon the handmaids in those days will I pour out my spirit. And I will shew wonders in the heavens and in the earth, blood, and fire, and pillars of smoke. The sun shall be turned into darkness, and the moon into blood, before the great and the terrible day of the Lord come. And it shall come to pass, that whosoever shall call on the name of the Lord shall be delivered: for in mount Zion and in Jerusalem shall be deliverance, as the Lord hath said, and in the remnant whom the Lord shall call” (Joel 2:28–32).

8:00 to 8:25         Breakout #3

Middle Cultural HallTopic: Living Life & Giving Back (more than enduring to the end)

Doing Something “Today”. How fragile life, how certain death. We do not know when we will be required to leave this mortal existence. And so I ask, “What are we doing with today?” If we live only for tomorrow, we’ll eventually have a lot of empty yesterdays. Have we been guilty of declaring, “I’ve been thinking about making some course corrections in my life. I plan to take the first step—tomorrow”? With such thinking, tomorrow is forever. Such tomorrows rarely come unless we do something about them today. As the familiar hymn teaches:

There are chances for work all around just now,
Opportunities right in our way.
Do not let them pass by, saying, “Sometime I’ll try,”
But go and do something today. 7

Let us ask ourselves the questions: “Have I done any good in the world today? Have I helped anyone in need?” What a formula for happiness! What a prescription for contentment, for inner peace—to have inspired gratitude in another human being. (May We So Live By President Thomas S. Monson)

Living life with purpose as we each have so much to share with one another.  Sometimes we are in need of a helping had which is how others are blessed as they serve us.  Other times we are the angles to those in need, blessing them with the talents we’ve received from out Father in Heaven.

How can we help and bless the following people:

  • Our families (extended families, babysitting, family reunions, geneology)
  • Our Ward families (accepting callings)
  • In the World (serving missions)

Find ways to give back, no matter what your circumstance might be, by visiting

Back Cultural HallTopic: Preparing for the Trials Ahead

For the American Fork West Utah Stake – Emergency Preparedness Plan
Family’s Forever Emphasis
Stake Emergency Preparedness Handbook
Preparedness Family Booklet
Hillcrest 1st Ward
Family’s Forever Emphasis & Preparedness Plan
Preparedness Handout
Home Maintenance Checklist (Spring and Fall)
It’s About Prudence, Not Paranoia
Personal and Family Preparedness Talk in Church
Ward Congregation / Neighborhood Preparedness Workshop
Preparedness Presentation

Ten Principles of Preparedness
Visit for details on this list of priorities (details here)
1. Spiritual Preparedness
2. Mental Preparedness
3. Physical Preparedness
4. Medical Preparedness
5. Clothing/Shelter Preparedness
6. Fuel Preparedness
7. Water Preparedness
8. Food Preparedness
9. Financial Preparedness
10. Communication Preparedness


Emergency Preparedness Handout (Pat Patton)

8:30 Food & Mingle – Preparedness Potluck with food & drinks
Gather in the serving area, Serving Area to the West of the Kitchen (Meet and Mingle)

Collect feedback forms

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