~by Michelle

“The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men [and women] to do nothing.” -Edmund Burke

Stephanie at Diapers and Divinity did it again. She wrote another home-run post (Pornography: Satan’s Power Tool) that I hope you’ll take a minute to read. She has numerous links and quotes, and one of my favorite parts of her post is her bold invitations to women, mothers, and wives (as well as resources for wives of men who are currently struggling with addiction). She writes with both charity and clarity.

Stephanie quotes from a BYU Women’s Conference talk Julie B. Beck gave — one that is on my mind and the mind of many other Mormon women I  have talked to.

We have a huge problem in our families with pornography and the influence that it is having in our families. The powerful feeling that has been coming over me is, “Sisters, fight—fight, sisters.”You have the responsibility in your homes. Many of our women are being drawn into this behavior also. At our last general conference, President Thomas S. Monson gave “a word of caution to all—both young and old, both male and female.” This is our responsibility. [emphasis from Stephanie]

Stephanie continues:

When I heard her say this, I felt the Holy Ghost.  This is part of our call as “lionesses at the gate” of our homes.  Even with our best efforts, this plague can affect our families, but it must be in spite of our best efforts.  The danger is too great to be ignored.

There are many dangers around us today that require our best efforts. There are things we can do in our homes, our churches, our communities, our networks of friends and family. We can seek personal inspiration from God about how we might use our skills and talents, our passions and abilities, and great tools like social media (or just a simple snail-mail letter) to do some good.

So what can we do? I have been taking notice of what various Mormon women are up to, how they are taking a stand in their own way, and in their own circles of influence. I wanted to share a few of those things with you. [Edit: I’m going to keep adding to this list as I find more examples of women taking a stand. Help me add to it in the comments below!]

– Jocelyn has created and shared a beautiful Family Home Evening idea for young children: “God Gave You a Body” (she covers modesty, awareness about inappropriate touching (sexual abuse prevention ideas for young children), avoiding inappropriate media, and more — all in an age-appropriate way, all in ways that teach the powerful doctrine about the importance of our bodies in God’s plan)

– A college student (quoted in Stephanie’s post), wrote an article about the plague of pornography, to help people to be aware of how rampant the problem is.

– My friend has helped create an anti-pornography campaign in the parent-teacher association in her school.

– A Mormon woman is working on a new film for Christians to shed more light on pornography addiction, hoping to help reduce fear and shame associated with talking about it, with the hopes that more people can find healing. (If you are a Christian and have walked the path of addiction recovery and are willing to share your story, please let them know.)

– We’ve already featured the women at Beauty Redefined, who are trying to help people be more aware of how the media distorts truth about women and their bodies, and normalizes pornography. They encourage people to not only be educated, but also to speak up when companies participate in the sexualization/objectification of women. Other organizations out there are doing similar things if this is something that strikes a chord with you.

– We’ve also mentioned the desire Elise at MMB has to help bring hope to people personally affected by pornography use. She wrote a post this week.

Voices for Virtue (which was started with one  Mormon woman’s idea, and is now 72,000 people strong) is a Facebook organization that has the focus of helping youth and young adults stay spiritually strong and sexually pure, and to get connect with others who are working toward the same goal. It’s also a place where those struggling can ask questions and get input from others. This month is “gold ribbon” month, with webcasts on various topics related to dating, chastity, and choices.

– A Mormon young woman took on a project to help organize a supply of modest prom dresses for young women in her community. (I love how she also has helped girls not have to spend large sums of money for a new prom dress!)

– BYU Women’s Services has held a 5K against abuse and pornography. (They are also doing a boatload of other awesome things. Take a look!)

– Emily at The Lioness at the Gate wrote a post about preparing ourselves and our families against the storm.

Relief Society Lesson on Pornography by Megan Hanks

I know this doesn’t begin to scratch the surface of what good people are doing. What else have you seen people doing to take a stand for virtue? What can you do – in your own home, in your community, with your passions and talents and resources? How can you join the many others raising their voices to uphold moral values? Share your ideas here. Share links to what others are doing, too, including what other denominations and organizations are doing to take a stand.

I echo Stephanie’s words:

I just want to conclude with something else I know to be true.  Satan is powerful, but goodness is more powerful.  We have the power within us to withstand temptation and fight against evil.  We do.  So though the storm rages and the sledgehammer swings down upon us, the rock of our Redeemer will help us to stand.  [Women, and men], unite!