News Release

Davao Stake Celebrates 175 Years of Relief Society


March 17 has always been a significant day for all women members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Across the globe, they celebrate the founding of the Relief Society Organization.

Relief Society, founded in 1842, is one of the largest women’s organizations in the world. This celebration commemorates the sacrifices of the early members of the church before it was organized.

In observance of the worldwide celebration of the organization of Relief Society, local units held activities to commemorate this significant event. Davao Philippines Stake (Diocese), led by its local Relief Society President Teresita Gabuat, celebrated the organization’s founding on March 11. It was attended by 200 women, 18 years old and above, who were all dressed in pioneer costumes - clothing of the early members of the church.

The activity's theme, “A Restoration of an Ancient Pattern,” paid tribute to the past presidents of the organization which began with Emma Smith. To date, Relief Society has been led by 16 presidents. The current general president is Linda K. Burton along with her counselors Carole M. Stephens and Linda S. Reeves. They lead the organization worldwide under the direction of the First Presidency of the Church.

Weeks of preparation were done by the women members in Davao Stake. Their love for the organization was evident in the program. They shared different songs and dances that relived memories of the early members of the Relief Society organization.

The event was concluded with a message by the local priesthood leader in the Stake. His message focused on the purposes of the Relief Society and how March 17 is not just an ordinary date. Women members celebrate more than just its founding and that is to reflect upon the works of Relief Society - the foundation of its organization. The purpose of Relief Society states to help ‘prepare women for the blessings of eternal life: to increase faith in Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ and His Atonement, to strengthen individuals, families, and homes through ordinances and covenants, and to work in unity to help those in need’.

Teresita Gabuat during her remarks emphasized, "Always remember the huge roles women have in the church, in the homes, and in the community." Indeed, it was a great day to evoke in the minds and in the hearts of every woman how this great female discipleship began and what every woman can do to continue the work it has been doing since its founding.


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