Home Campus The evolution of “For the Strength of Youth”

The evolution of “For the Strength of Youth”

Thou shalt not wear pants outside your home or apartment if you are a lady. Thou shalt not be a contortionist dancer. Thou shalt not wear curlers in your hair while you are in public.
These ideas were contained in the very first edition of For the Strength of Youth in 1965. There have been ten editions of it since then.
Between the years of 1965 and 1972, seven editions were published.
Much of the direction in the early variations of the pamphlet was geared toward proper etiquette and appearance.
According to the section of  “Good Grooming,” in the 1965 edition, “Not only should clothes be clean, but nails, skin, and hair should have the glow of health that bespeaks meticulous care in grooming.”
In the 1965 edition, youth were instructed that “it is not polite to run in and out of motel or hotel rooms late at night, making a disturbance which keeps other guests awake.”
In 1990, the church revised the pamphlet for the youth of the church once again.
“The title For the Strength of Youth is not new,” said Ardeth Kapp, a previous Young Women general president in an article from LDS Living magazine. “But because of the trend toward immorality and other ills in society, and also because of the expansion of the Church into new geographical areas over the years, a more comprehensive, more explicit statement of Church standards was needed.”
Kapp said it was a time when wearing pants instead of a skirt to look proper wasn’t the problem anymore.
Rather, low-cut shirts and short shorts were the trend.
In 2001, the length of the pamphlet  increased from 19 pages to 44 pages. This time the pamphlet had more emphasis on spiritual principles such as agency and accountability.
In 2011, the church issued another revised edition of the pamphlet for its youth. Sister Elaine S. Dalton, the young women general president said “The standards have not changed, but times have changed,” according to an LDS Living article.
Technology, work and self-reliance, and mental health were included in the 2011 edition.
Dalton said the pamphlet was dated to address many of the problems and challenges young people face today.
Dalton also said the purpose of the date was to more fully teach the youth about the doctrine behind the standards and the blessings promised to them that come from obedience to the standards.
“It is our hope that these standards will be thoroughly studied in our homes and in Church classes, and that the principles taught in them will go down into the hearts of the youth of the Church,” said David L. Beck, the young men general president when the newest pamphlet was released, according to an article from www.lds.org.

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