News Release

100 Years of Family Home Evening

Every Monday night, members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints around the world gather together with their families for a Family Home Evening.

Since 1915, the family home evening program, established by Church leadership, has encouraged Latter-day Saint parents to build and strengthen family relationships.

A typical family home evening begins and ends with a prayer and usually includes singing, scripture reading, a short lesson on a religious or practical topic, and refreshments. Or, instead of a lesson, the family might participate in a service project or join in an activity together. Family home evenings are geared to involve all members of the family.

The Church provides family home evening materials, lesson outlines and suggestions to help families of all faiths plan and implement this weekly time together.

family home evening

100 years ago, President Joseph F. Smith (1838–1918) thoughtfully advised Church members in April 1915 to “inaugurate a 'Home Evening’ throughout the Church, at which time fathers and mothers may gather their boys and girls about them in the home and teach them the word of the Lord.”

Subsequent Church leaders encouraged the practice, but it was not until 1965, some 50 years later, when Church membership had significantly grown throughout the world, that President David O. McKay (1873–1970) encouraged parents to consistently observe one night each week as a family night and provided a teaching manual to support the practice. In 1970, President Joseph Fielding Smith (1876–1972) designated Monday night as the weekly family home evening and directed that no other Church functions should conflict with that schedule.

President McKay, in his renewed emphasis on family home evening, promised that “great blessings” come to those who carry out this responsibility. Family home evening lessons have brought member families closer to one another and have brought a great measure of peace and harmony in many homes.

Current Church President Thomas S. Monson concurred. “We cannot afford to neglect this heaven-inspired program. It can bring spiritual growth to each member of the family, helping him or her to withstand the temptations that are everywhere. The lessons learned in the home are those that last the longest.”

Aaron Sherinian and his wife, Emily, of Arlington, Virginia, are among Church members who follow that prophetic counsel.

"Family home evening is all about these crazy people that we share our life with–our family," said Aaron.

"Family home evening is a tradition we have along with millions of other members of the Church around the world," Emily added. "It's about carving out the time to put those things that are most important – family, faith, service and friendship – to really put those things first."

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