READ Official Declaration 2 (1978): https://www.lds.org/scriptures/dc-testament/od/2
Explain that in 1978, after many years of prayer by LDS people and their leaders, President Spencer W. Kimball received a revelation to end a policy put in place by President Brigham Young in the 1850s that prevented Black LDS people from holding the priesthood or going to the temple.
- How do you think the policy impacted Black LDS people? Why was the change important for Black LDS people? Why was the change important for all LDS people? How did this change impact you and your family?
READ 2 Nephi 26:33: https://www.lds.org/scriptures/bofm/2-ne/26.33?lang=eng#p32
Explain that in the world today, there are many situations in which Black people are treated differently or have fewer opportunities and more challenges because of the color of their skin, but that all people are equally beloved of God.
- How do you think Black people feel when they are treated differently because of the color of their skin? How do you think God feels when Black people are treated differently because of the color of their skin? What would God want us to do if we see unkind or unjust treatment of our brothers and sisters?
Explain that if we see something unkind or unjust happening, we can stand up instead of standing by quietly and letting it happen: not bystanding, but upstanding.
WATCH “Bullying–Stop It,” Mormon Channel (February 2014); discuss how to adapt this to racial bullying and insensitivity.
- If someone makes a racial slur or is unkind to another, say, “No,” “Stop it” or “That’s enough.”
- If someone makes unkind, prejudicial, or stereotypical remarks about people of a different race or religion, even if no one of that race or religion is present, say, “I don’t agree,” or “I have a different perspective.”
- Stand next to the person being bullied. Smile at them, tell them your name, and suggest that you walk away together.
- If you witness racial bullying or racist remarks on social media, upstand by telling the person to “stop it” and “that’s not funny.”
For families with younger children:
- Read about Rachel, who started a kindness challenge at her school to end bullying, in the August 2016 Friend.
- Sing “I’ll Walk With You”
From the August 2016 Friend
For families with older children:
Watch Zandra Vranes, “My Calling as Trek ‘Ma’ Gave Me New Perspective” (July 2017)
Watch Nobody Knows: A History of Black Mormons (2012): trailer on YouTube.
Watch Sistas in Zion present tips on being respectful to African-American people at Church: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xbU12Ff-E7Q
From the Friend (2007)