A few years ago, youth in the Butterfield Ward, Tucson West Stake of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, wanted to do something to honor some of the older members in their congregation—people they may not interact with on a regular basis. That thought grew into a tradition that has blessed the lives of all involved each Christmas season.
Bishop Shawn Harline said that the youth “look forward to it every year. It gives them an opportunity to share talents we don’t always see, and an opportunity to share with others outside their peers.”
This year’s event was called “Soup and a Show.” The youth and leaders decorated the cultural hall and prepared soups, salads, rolls and dessert. Upon arrival, guests were escorted to their tables—tables at which they sat intermingled with the youth. The youth then served those they had invited before getting food for themselves. Conversations during the meal allowed youth and their guests to find common interests and share stories.
After everyone had eaten, the program began. Talents shared were all based on a Christmas theme and ranged from readings and skits to musical performances to a carol “played” on twin basketballs.
Karen Breckon, an adult leader of the Young Women, told how the youth had planned and executed the program completely on their own. Although the Beehive president was recently called, she took it upon herself to organize her entire class in presenting their funny rendition of “Twas the Night Before Christmas.” Another girl, who is recently just learning about the church, volunteered to sing only the Sunday before the event. She delivered an acappella solo in her clear, beautiful voice.
Attendees enjoyed the evening, calling it a “very nice” evening filled with talented young people. Youth who were asked described it as “fun.” This appears to be a tradition that will bring joy to many for years to come.