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Friday, June 17, 2011

A Father's Day Celebration in Elders Quorum

by Pete Codella (bio)

In the LDS faith most men, when they turn 18, meet on Sundays with a group of men in what’s called elders quorum. The ages of men in this group vary greatly. Most men stay in this group from their 20s to their 50s until they join the ranks of the high priest group.

Going back several years and wards, I was part of an elders quorum that had a Father’s Day tradition. They would provide a slice of Marie Callender’s pie to all the elders quorum members on Father’s Day. I thought it was great, both the sweet treat and the tradition.

You see, at church, most congregations go out of their way to honor and recognize mothers on Mother’s Day. I can remember my mom receiving flowers, chocolate, books and a few items of homemade food or décor as a gift from the ward on Mother’s Day. And certainly moms do deserve a lot of credit and recognition.

I’d venture to say though that most congregations do less on Father’s Day. At least, such was my experience until I encountered the aforementioned tradition in my old ward. The best I did before that was a candy bar.

I’m not saying there should be a contest between recognition for Mother’s and Father’s Day. I’m just saying there should be something equally special for both. Of course, every gift is unequally valued depending on the receiver, but that’s another story.

So, imagine my dismay when I realized our new ward has a ‘tradition’ of holding stake conference on Father’s Day. (In the LDS faith, wards are the common Sunday congregation and multiple wards make up a stake.)

There’s no way we could celebrate Father’s Day as an elders quorum on Father’s Day because the meetings are different. And it would be lame to celebrate a week later. That would be like getting a late birthday card in the mail.

So, since I’m in charge of elders quorum in our ward, we celebrated Father’s Day on June 12.

True to the old tradition, I purchased a variety of desserts, set-up a fancy table including a tablecloth (eat your heart out Relief Society!), and served cheesecake and four-layer chocolate cake with a glass of milk to each member of elders quorum. (We would have had pie, but Marie Callender's in Bountiful, Utah has closed - so sad.)

Who knows, perhaps the tradition will take in my new ward. And perhaps some of you will adopt similar traditions to honor fathers in creative ways just like we honor mothers.

Happy Father’s Day!

Image via Mike's Table.

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