Why doesn't our church have a nursery program during sacrament meeting? Wouldn't the added reverence surely help people worship more fully? These questions may have occurred to many a tired parent, but there is a very simple reason why we include all ages in our worship services: the Spirit can testify truth to even the very young (and sometimes disruptive) members of a congregation. Why it would certainly be easier to have young children in a different room, even the very small can learn about eternal truths by being present when they are taught. In a wonderful article that appeared in the Ensign, Joan Hughes and Helen Hughes recounted some important scriptural lessons about children:
"When the Savior ministered to the Nephites following His Resurrection, He
took care to include the children in the transcendent acts of worship that took
place. It is recorded that “he took their little children, one by one, and blessed them, and prayed unto the Father for them.” He said to the multitude, “Behold your little ones.” The adults watched in awe as angels descended “as it were in the midst of fire; and they came down and encircled those little ones about, and … the angels did minister unto them” (3 Nephi 17:21, 23, 24).
Our children were not there; nor were they present during the Savior’s mortal ministry when He said, “Suffer the little children to come unto me, and forbid them not: for of such is the kingdom of God” (Mark 10:14). Yet our children are also precious to Him, and their hearts can be touched by the Holy Ghost. One of His opportunities to so touch our children is in sacrament meeting, the sacred worship service held in His name for all Church members."
We invite all to attend their local LDS church meetings. We hope that you will feel of the reverence that church members have during sacrament meeting and you will be patient with the little ones that are also there to learn more of our Heavenly Father's plan for all of us.
For LDS parents, two great articles about helping your child learn reverence are found here and here. It is certainly a work in progress in our family! If you have any suggestions for helping children learn these traits, I would certainly love to hear any advice.