The late prophet David O. McKay asked Dorothy Porter Holt to lead young Mormon women for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (inadvertently called the “Mormon Church” by some). Dorothy served as counselor in the Young Women’s Mutual Improvement Association (YWMIA) which is presently called the LDS Young Women’s organization (a global organization for Mormon female youth) (Caroline H. Benzley, “134 Years Young!”, New Era, November, 2003). She had divine guidance from God to help young girls strengthen their testimonies of Christ. As an LDS youth, I was taught my potential as a daughter of God and to have faith in Jesus Christ. Every week in Young Women’s meeting and activities, I grew closer to my Savior.

Mormon Women Lead the Young Women’s Organization

LDS Relief Society Young WomenAs an LDS woman leader, she had an equal but complimentary role to men in the church. For eleven years, Dorothy served as the Young Women’s second counselor with several LDS women leaders such as Florence Smith Jacobsen (sixth YWMIA president) and Margaret Romney Jackson Judd (first counselor) (Florence Smith Jacobsen). In 1984, Dorothy served six years as the Relief Society President of the LDS Hospital Branch (local congregation). Relief Society is an organization for adult women worldwide, the oldest and largest such organization in the world. Dorothy also served five years in a special assignment for the Church Public Communications Department. She and her husband hosted visitors from around the world (“Obituary: Dorothy Porter Holt,” Deseret News, August 10, 2006).

During her presidency service from 1961-1972, Dorothy blessed the lives of many Mormon young women. Important milestones included youth conferences held worldwide, the 1969 YWMIA centennial celebration, the annual Promised Valley presentations, the restoration of the Beehive House and Lion House, and the publication of the New Era (magazine for youth) (Florence Smith Jacobsen). The New Era magazine contains messages from modern leaders (called of God) written to the audience of Mormon youth. I love reading the uplifting examples of youth worldwide who live and stand up for their beliefs. (See this link to read this month’s issue.)

Mormon Women: Dorothy Porter Holt’s Biography

Dorothy was born on February 5, 1912, to Joseph Smith Porter and Elizabeth Lambert Porter in Salt Lake City, Utah. Dorothy married Albert Palmer (Butch) Holt in 1932 in the Salt Lake Temple and gave birth to five children. From 1979 to 1980, she served a mission with him at the Washington D.C. Temple Visitor’s Center. She and her spouse were called by a prophet of God to share the gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ. They left their family and home to voluntarily teach others that families are eternal and have great purpose in God’s plan. A temple is the House of the Lord where holy ordinances are performed. I know that our Heavenly Father wants us to return to Him and that couples can be married for the eternities (or sealed together) inside of the Lord’s House. Any worthy and righteous LDS member can enter a Mormon temple, if he or she prepares to receive such blessings.

This short movie explains why Mormons build temples:

Her husband died in 1992 and she died on August 9, 2006 (“Obituary: Dorothy Porter Holt”, Deseret News, August 10, 2006).

Dorothy was a loving mother, grandmother and friend. Her heart and home were always open to family, friends and many others. Her home was a gathering place, and she welcomed anyone needing a place to stay. She taught the importance of a loving family by gathering the family together for frequent dinners and memorable family reunions. She was an optimistic and cheerful person, always looking on the bright side of life. Her strong faith in God and her loving example were an inspiration to all who knew her (“Obituary: Dorothy Porter Holt”, Deseret News, August 10, 2006).

About Keith L. Brown
Keith L. Brown is a convert to The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, having been born and raised Baptist. He was studying to be a Baptist minister at the time of his conversion to the LDS faith. He was baptized on 10 March 1998 in Reykjavik, Iceland while serving on active duty in the United States Navy in Keflavic, Iceland. He currently serves as the First Assistant to the High Priest Group for the Annapolis, Maryland Ward. He is a 30-year honorably retired United States Navy Veteran.

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