Another fun chastity lesson. I thought long and hard about this lesson. I started my planning just as given in the lesson manual (found here). It didn’t seem horrible, but I felt like there was more of a message that I wanted to convey.
I kind of wanted the framework to be different.
I was also struck by the quote that Sister Dalton gave: “Happiness is the object and design of our existence; and will be the end thereof, if we pursue the path that leads to it; and that path is virtue.” (Joseph Smith, see Sister Dalton’s full talk here.)
Anyway, I always get a little nervous about teaching the Chastity lesson. Of course, you will find many people that think the lesson manuals are a bit antiquated. Unfortunately, I tend to agree. However, I feel that the concepts and objectives are true principles. It’s just some of the stories that seem a little old. (The terminology, too – “parking?” Even I never said “parking”!)
So, I wanted to teach the principles in the lesson, but I also wanted to give the stated objective – “To decide to be chaste.” some context. I chose the concept of our bodies being temples to be the framework of the lesson.
The idea of treating our bodies as a temple goes to more than just tattooing or piercings. Really, anything we do will affect us – spiritually, emotionally, and physically. In this lesson, we talked about the law of Chastity, why it is so important, how other commandments and principles can help us keep the law, and how when we are Chaste, we then treat ourselves like a holy temple.
If you want the full lesson I gave, you can find it here. You may want to prepare a handout where they could write notes – about each aspect of the Temple as described in D&C 109:8 (ie: House of Prayer, House of Fasting, etc.). Before hand, to save time during the lesson, I made word-strips with each commandment that will help us in various ways. (You will understand if you look at the full lesson plan – each word strip was the advice written in bold). Then, the girls wrote down the information (along with any other notes they wished) on their handout.
Oh – I happen to be the 1st counselor, so I teach the fourteen and fifteen year olds. I think that, at that age, they are really starting to decide what they will do. They responded really well to this lesson. We had a very frank and open discussion. I think that they saw the relationship between the commandments we have been given, how they may help us with the law of chastity, and how the law of chastity helps our temples to house the Spirit of God.
Things never got too awkward, and I didn’t have to tell any weird, old-school stories. Good luck with the lesson! I hope this helps you out. If you have any other ideas, please comment and share.