I was talking to another member of the Mormon Church and he is unhappy that on fast Sunday some people, mostly grandmas, take small children up to bear testimony. He says that children below the age of eight should not or could not have a testimony and that this should not go on. What do you say about this subject?
Lendall, from Monon, Indiana
Let’s see what we could do about the situation. We could recommend to the bishop that he change the procedure. It would be necessary to send a copy of the request to the stake president because the bishop could not change such an established procedure without the approval of higher authority. Undoubtedly the stake president would deny such a request, so the next stop is the president of the church. What would you say to him? “I think that you are doing things wrong. Those little kids don’t know what they’re talking about.” Do you think that you could say, “I’ve received a revelation that this is not the way testimony meetings should be held.”
As you can see, all that is ridiculous. The church procedures that are intact in the kingdom were undoubtedly given under the inspiration of the Lord after much sincere prayer. Jesus Christ approves of them. Would your friend like to try to change the Savior’s mind?
Here are some thoughts on the subject expressed by the prophets. If your friend takes umbrage to these statements, then I would conclude that he is in deep trouble.
Elder Boyd K. Packer, The Spirit Beareth Record, Ensign, June 1971, p.87
“We would do well not to disregard the testimonies of the prophets or of the children, for he imparteth his words by angels unto men, yea, not only men but women also. Now this is not all; little children do have words given unto them many times which confound the wise and the learned. (Alma 32:23.)”
• Proverbs 22:6
Ttrain up a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not depart from it.
Spencer W. Kimball, The Teachings of Spencer W. Kimball, edited by Edward L. Kimball, p.138
“Children can express feelings. We have critics who say it is silly to have little children bear their testimonies and that they cannot know it is true. Undoubtedly their knowledge is limited. But they can have feelings, and testimonies are feelings, not merely the accumulation of facts. Testimonies come from the heart.