Fort Collins Temple Open House Announced!

Open House and Dedication Dates Announced for Fort Collins Colorado Temple

Second temple in this western state

The First Presidency of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has announced the open house, cultural celebration and dedication dates for the Fort Collins Colorado Temple.

The free public open house for the Fort Collins Temple will begin on Friday, August 19, and go through Saturday, September 10, 2016, except for the Sundays of August 21 and 28 and September 4.

The cultural celebration will be held Saturday, October 15, and the temple will be dedicated the next day on Sunday, October 16, in three sessions, 9:00 a.m., 12:00 p.m. and 3:00 p.m. The dedication will be broadcast to members of the Church in Colorado and in the Fort Collins Temple district; the three-hour block of meetings will be cancelled for that Sunday.

Church President Thomas S. Monson announced construction of the temple at the Church’sApril 2011 general conference.

The Fort Collins Temple will serve approximately 44,000 members of the Church from northern Colorado and southern Wyoming.

The temple is located on the southeast corner of the intersection at Trilby Road and Timberline Road, across the street from a Latter-day Saint meetinghouse in Fort Collins.

This will be the second temple in Colorado — the Denver Temple was dedicated in 1986. There are more than 150,000 Latter-day Saints in Colorado.

Family Councils: Sister Folkman’s Talk From Stake Conference

At the adult session of our most recent Stake Conference, Sister Folkman gave a beautiful talk about Family Councils. Her talk generated a great deal of wonderful discussion throughout the stake, and so we wanted to share her talk on the blog for all of us to ponder and consider. Thank you, Sister Folkman, for sharing.

Councils As A Single Mother

I am content- meaning, I guess we are the same as every family. I am 1 mom VS 4 boys, and that presented real challenges. I learned to control the environment.

Tina Taylor gave great advice years ago to read scriptures while boys are eating. When eating, they are an engaged audience. Use family dinner time as a critical time to have discussions.  We learn from the Family Dinner Project:

Do family dinners have any scientific benefits?
Over the past 15 years researchers have confirmed what parents have known for a long time: sharing a family meal is good for the spirit, the brain and the health of all family members. Recent studies link regular family dinners with many behaviors that parents pray for: lower rates of substance abuse, teen pregnancy and depression, as well as higher grade-point averages and self-esteem. Studies also indicate that dinner conversation is a more potent vocabulary-booster than reading, and the stories told around the kitchen table help our children build resilience. The icing on the cake is that regular family meals also lower the rates of obesity and eating disorders in children and adolescents. What else can families do that takes only about an hour a day and packs such a punch?

The rest of the world might say discussion, but we in the Church might say “council.”  The lord’s church is always ahead of the world’s advice.

Boys and teenagers might have a limited grunting vocab, but this is a natural time to open up. All electronics are off. That is rude to me at any meal.   I grew up in Virginia and Maryland, my mother is from Georgia, Southern’s talk at dinner. We usually start with the high point of the day and the low point of the day. And how we could react or deal in stressful, bad or challenging situations and just talk.

Get them beyond “HUH” and “WHAT!”

We talk about things. For example, “What do you do when” …all the stuff of high school. People offer you alcohol or marijuana or sexual pictures.  What do you do when you are in a scary car ride or at an inappropriate place? We practice and plan. It has helped them to thank in advance

We also like to tell stories of my childhood and theirs to rehash.

Another captured audience time or more controlled environment is while driving (while I am driving, not with a learning driver). While driving, I am NOT on the phone.

We drive to Breckenridge monthly to my sisters 2nd house- this is time to just talk and discuss needed topics. This stops me from telling them ” you need to do…” which is a quick shut down.

Rotate who sits in front, no head phones, we ask questions and wait.

While we are driving a beautiful drive they relax and talk about issues- sometimes.

As single moms, or, well, anyone- we all need councils with other involved priesthood.

We need advice / council from Bishops, Home teachers, brothers, brother-in-laws, fathers, and older children.

I have been very blessed with priesthood help who have prayed with me, for me, who have seen that I needed help. The precious advice of these excellent men is  a great treasure in my family memory.

Bishop Parry in Las Vegas helped me when I was going through the divorce.  What  a hero to help me plan a happier future.

Bishop Wray spent time advising me and helping to save a son in serious turmoil. He was a righteous Bishop and adviser who helped me with planning and with very tough decisions. He helped me see I have to let go of hurts and situations that can emotionally take me down.

Bishop Cutler saw another son who needed a loving father, and took C. on as a son. C. and G. and S. love you and Bishop Fotheringham because you love them and care about them.

With these bishops I have discussed the needs of my boys and made plans to help them be good fathers and men without an engaged father. Bishops and bishopric’s are amazing priesthood leaders. Thank you Bishops and stake leaders for your love and care from all those you have served.

The wives and families who support them are unsung heroes, thank you.

We have had home teachers who could see I needed help or advice and we worked out a plan. In council, home teachers organized the ward members to help paint the exterior of my house, taking out an old playground and putting in new sod, fixing mowers and frozen pipes, blowing out sprinklers, giving blessings for my boys, letters of support to my boys, discussing my needs- giving me moral support.

One home teacher David Clark came over Mother’s Day morning with a beautiful corsage. He talked to my boys about getting Moms flowers and helping to show their love and appreciation for mothers and women. Brother Clark passed away the following Mother’s Day morning. Michael Clark, David’s son, was at my door with a corsage. He followed his father and what a powerful lesson to my boys. Michael reminded my boys to take care of their mother. They have followed that beautiful example for Mother’s Day.

The Lords church is organized through the priesthood. Please don’t consider Home Teaching as just a check mark DONE to be counted off. Wives please encourage and support the priesthood serving in their callings. As a single sister and mother I have needed the organization of home teaching to help me. I have needed priesthood council and will continue to need that help.

Council of family as adult children

A silver lining of going through my divorce was the tight bond created with my brothers and sisters and parents. They are committed to helping and loving me and my children, their advice and care has often been our salvation.

As a family we have had fasts and many conference council calls to determine needs and what help can be given for my family. The strong commitment we have to each other, to discuss and plan, have served us well. I am glad to have fasted, prayed and helped nieces, nephews brothers and sisters and not been the only needy person. Those conference calls are tight glue bonding us together; we have 3 to 4 per year for family needs- with other calls dedicated to planning family trips, and now, as our children get older, weddings. We hold these on the Sunday night of General Conference.

Thankfully we have a long precedent of discussing, planning, and giving assignments to carry out a goal.  We needed that structure of councils for a catastrophic event.  My beautiful mother got Alzheimer’s and because of her disease and confusion she had a very serious, ultimately deadly, accident.

We cared for our mother for 24 hours a day for 6½ months at Littleton Hospital after this tragic accident. At Littleton hospital they thought MOM was some celebrity because her husband and children never left her alone for 6 ½ months. 24 hours a day, until she passed away. There were many scary days and nights.  We have love and respect for each other- all of the 7 brothers and sisters who all gave up vacation time, sleep- pretty much all personal time- to serve each other and our Father as we served Dorothy Coates. We had to have schedules and rosters to help her. One of the intensive care nurses at Littleton Hospital I know from work. She and I were with my mother the first 2 nights, in intensive care- what an angel blessing. She marveled with me later over the months of our commitment. This nurse said the nurses knew you were Mormons or Catholics- they come and take care of their families.

We had daily, weekly calls to organize all our efforts to prepare and support each other. Our plans worked and we met our goal to care for our mother.

A final family council that has been a big part of our family are missionary councils. My son C. is in Belem Brazil- quick shout out to all the missionary Moms.  You are awesome!!! Your child is becoming through the Lords plan the adult they were meant to be. WELL DONE!

I have 3 other nephews serving right now and another nephew working on his papers. 11 grandchildren from my parents have served. We are a missionary focused family.

We have conference calls as they prepare to go. We discuss what the Elder will need and how to support them. My brother was in the RI Stake presidency and while the Boston Mission 1st counselor he created a list of things to do spiritually and mentally to prepare to go. We discuss these items and how to prepare the next missionary.

BEFORE they leave we have all the missionaries who have served in the family give advice to the missionary going out. Grandpa who has been a mission president writes a letter. This advice is written down so the elder or sister can remember and review.  Other close friends write council-loving words of advice to keep because we can’t call and have council for that missionary as they serve.

After they return, the returning elder gives council to us on how to be better missionaries at home and serious advice for the next missionary going out. This is such a joyous time to see their growth and to feel their testimony. But the events must be planned and scheduled to happen. A part of family dynamic.

The Lords church is organized and so should we be. Sometimes we are mired in just functioning. BUT planning and preparing for better is so important to have them happen.  The Lord is in our lives, I know Jesus Christ is our savior, Our gospel of good news and a hopeful future is Joyous. Counciling to prepare, plan, and execute makes our joyous future and time here happen. I say this in the name of Jesus Christ amen.













Missionary Monday: Because of Him

Instead of highlighting one of our missionaries this Monday (we need more submissions- send us your missionary letters, please!), we are showing YOU a great and easy way to be a missionary!

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints has put together a fantastic resource for us to share with our family and friends in regards to Easter. They have shared a program called “Because of Him” and have invited us to share it as well.

In addition to testimonies and teachings of Christ, here is a video they put together to go along with their message:

They also share the Easter story, and why Christ is essential in our lives.

For more information and to share the message of Christ to others, please visit:

P.S. This would also make a great FHE lesson!

Meet The Stake Young Women’s Leaders!

We are incredibly fortunate in Highlands Ranch to have leaders who love and bless our stake and our neighborhoods on a daily basis. In this post, we invite you to meet our unbelievable stake Young Women Leaders- thank you for all that you do for the the youth in our stake!

2014 YM/YW Theme:

The 2014 theme for all young women and young men is:

 “Come unto Christ and be perfected in Him”  
(Moroni 10:32)

We all love to receive invitations to special events such as birthdays, weddings, graduations and other celebrations.  These important dates are marked on our calendars and we are excited!  Sometimes a lot of thought and preparation go into the gift we will give, what we will wear, or the travel arrangements we need to make to be certain we don’t miss the celebration.  Our invitation to “Come unto Christ” is one invitation we do not want to miss! 

Fortunately, our Savior’s invitation is not a one-time event.  It is a life long process of obedience to the commandments, learning, keeping baptismal covenants, and building our faith.  It is the same path the young women of our stake are following to enter God’s holy temple to make additional promises with our Heavenly Father and participate in saving ordinances.  Our young women know they are daughters of God and have responded to our Savior’s divine invitation as they strive to live righteously each and every day.

Kerry Bright, Stake YW President

I am the luckiest woman in the Highlands Ranch Stake because I have the privilege of associating with over 250 of the most remarkably devoted, talented, smart, lovely girls ages 12-18.  Their dedication and enthusiasm for living the gospel of Jesus Christ is absolutely inspiring!   I also get to serve alongside amazing women who are truly disciples of Christ. 

My life has been a bounty of blessings. I had a happy childhood in Southern California with two brothers and the best parents in the world.  I studied and graduated from beautiful BYU Hawaii.  With a lot of faith, this was the only university I applied for and knew without a doubt it was where I needed to go.  BYU Hawaii was the only university my husband applied for, too.  I am mindful of the Lord’s hand in helping us find one another!  Our marriage has brought remarkable joy to my life, as have our 3 wonderful children. 
Biking, boating, skiing, hiking, walking, traveling, and cooking are a few of my favorite things.  But honestly, I love to do anything with the people I love the most, my family!  I am honored and humbled to be a mother and recognize the magnitude of the trust that women are given in partnering with God to help guide his spirits back to Him.

My knowledge of the truthfulness of the gospel of Jesus Christ is my greatest treasure.  Jesus Christ is God’s Son and the Savior of the world in whom we can overcome anything and everything.  We are daughters and sons of God, our Heavenly Father and he loves us always, and we love him!

Shelley Stolk, Stake YW 1st Counselor

Serving the Young Women of the Highlands Ranch Stake is one of the greatest blessings of my life.    I love teenagers (including my own) and am continually amazed by their strength, their testimonies and their resolve to live good, Christ-centered lives. It is truly a humbling experience to “lead” them.

On a personal note, I come from the greatest family that ever existed and I’m so grateful for the knowledge I have that families are forever.  Marrying my husband was the single best (and most important) decision I ever made and as a result, I have 4 great kids.  I currently work part-time as a Registered Nurse and love the opportunity it gives me to offer comfort and “fun” to an otherwise difficult illness and/or experience. 
I know that our Heavenly Father loves each one of us and is acutely aware of our needs, our struggles and our desires.  During the very darkest times of my life, I have felt His peace and warmth wash over me, leaving no doubt that my Heavenly Father loves me and wants me to return to Him.

Shanna Babbitt, Stake YW 2nd Counselor

Serving in the Stake Young Women Presidency in Highlands Ranch is the best calling ever!  I have lived in Highlands Ranch for almost 12 years and I have been impressed by the beautiful, talented and strong young women of the stake.  When we moved here I was blown away with the commitment and strength as I served with the young women.  I know that our Heavenly Father truly loves each one of these girls as the Spirit has touched my heart time and time again as I spend time and service in this program. I want to be better when I am around them.

I have been married 18 years to my awesome husband and have 4 fabulous children.  Three of them are currently in the YM/YW program and I love it!  I know that living here has taught them and strengthened them in the Gospel.  I love to be outdoors here in Colorado and spend time with my family and friends.  I am grateful for my Savior and Heavenly Father as they are patient and loving with me as I learn and grow.

Stephanie Stones, Stake YW Secretary

Serving in Young Women’s is my favorite assignment in the church.  I have a special place in my heart for teenagers and the struggles they face at this time of their lives.  The gospel becomes real to them at this stage and it is humbling to have even a small part in helping them gain and strengthen testimonies that will bless the rest of their lives.

I was born in the Northwest. I went to BYU-Idaho and served a mission in Pusan, Korea. I am married to the man of my dreams and we are the lucky parents of two great teenagers. While they are in school, I work at home as a hairstylist. When I get time to myself I love running, biking, online scrapbooking or planning our next family adventure. Simply said, I have come to know through experience and prayer that the teachings of the gospel of Jesus Christ are true. As I live the teachings, I am happy, my life is richer, and I feel peace. The gospel of Jesus Christ makes sense to my mind and brings peace to my heart.  I strive to live the teachings and example of Jesus Christ and treat others as He would. I try to never shy away from opportunities to help someone who may need something big or small.