Wednesday, October 31, 2012

For All the Saints Blog Tour

Welcome to the blog tour for the book For All the Saints by Kristen  Smith Daley!

For All the Saints provides an uplifting account of the ways in which the Lord builds his kingdom through ordinary men and women. Set in Boston, Massachusetts and its surrounding areas, the book draws upon the experiences of hundreds of members, ranging from prominent Church leaders to brand new converts. Their collective insights teach powerful lessons about commitment, faith, sacrifice, and leadership that are applicable to us all, no matter our corner of the vineyard.
Drawing upon accounts both humorous and profound, these Saints remind us of the impact one person can have when partnered with the Lord. They also instill a sense of gratitude for the contributions of those who precede us and demonstrate that the Lord’s promises are sure, as we each play a role in a work much larger than our own vantage point might suggest.

Kristen Smith Dayley lives in Issaquah, Washington, with her husband and children. Although she loves the Pacific Northwest, she insists on regular pilgrimages to New England, where her early childhood was nurtured by Make Way for Ducklings and the Freedom Trail. Kristen’s first experience with confession and repentance occurred at the age of five, after she shoved dead leaves and grass through the mail slot of the bishop’s office at Cambridge’s Longfellow Park Chapel. Despite that misdeed, she was allowed to return when she was admitted to Harvard Law School and even served as Relief Society president of the Cambridge University Ward (perhaps as penance). Kristen is a practicing attorney and aspires to develop some hobbies outside of Church and family when time allows.
To learn more about the author and For All the Saints, you can visit the website at:

The LDS church in Boston and surrounding areas has a long history. At times the membership has been quite small, while at other times the numbers threatened to overwhelm the infrastructure they had there. Part of what made things successful in good times and bad were the individual members there. Some were called to be leaders while others managed to serve in smaller capacities. No matter how "small" the calling seemed, true service and love was given, and these things helped to make the church very successful in this area. In the end it was the people that made all the difference.

There were two main components to the book: a history if the church in New England and stories of the people who lived in the area at various times. These two things are intertwined though, so it's not a straight history. More than that, the book uses the examples of the various people's stories to teach a broader lesson about how we are able to serve and contribute within the church. By tying the stories in with the history, it keeps the book from getting too dry or plodding. The story is able to be told in leaps and bounds while still making sense in the big picture. At times trying to keep the names of people straight could seem a bit overwhelming, but in the end the names were less important than the things they did. Those were the main ideas that stuck out to me.

One this I really felt was emphasized was the idea of just serving the best way you can no matter what. We will not all be serving in the "high profile" leadership callings, but that doesn't keep us from being able to perform great acts of service. Learning to offer up whatever you can, no matter how small it may seem, can help people in ways that we cannot even conceive. Another thing that stuck out to me was just the sheer faith these people had. In congregations big or small, they were often called upon to do things they thought might be near impossible. However, they often pressed forth offering all they had and were able to accomplish things they never imagined. I found this book to be very inspiring. It reminded me of a lot of things that I often forget as I get so involved in my day-to-day life, and it led me to renew my commitment to do the best I can in everything I do. It also made me grow to love all of the people who worked so hard to build firm foundations in the New England area. Their good deeds have and will continue to have effects beyond their mortal lives, and we can all have the chance to make that kind of impact on the world around us.

Book provided for review.

Be sure to check out all the books on the tour. Thanks for stopping by!

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