The doctrine of a Heavenly Mother is a cherished and distinctive belief
among Latter-day Saints.

– “Mother in Heaven” gospel topics essay,
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints
The Books

CHERISH: The Joy of Our Mother in Heaven
Published by BCC Press, April 2023

Cover design: Kate Purcell

CHERISH 2: The Love of Our Mother in Heaven
Published by D Street Press, April 2024

Follow on Instagram @cherisheddoctrine

Cherish is an offer of a loving embrace. This collection of poetry, reflections, and exquisite art is organized around the Gospel Topics essay, “Mother in Heaven.” Quotes from Church leaders and the scriptures help guide readers to celebrate this cherished doctrine. Come share the joy!

“As a man who values his relationship with his earthly mother, I just recently have begun to consider the joy of having a Mother in heaven. I have been on a personal and uplifting journey as I uncover this doctrine. I’m making up for lost time by communing with my Heavenly Mother through daily meditation.” – Mauli Bonnor 

“Holding firmly to their empowering conviction that “if our Heavenly Parents are infinite beings, then there are infinite touch points to honor them,” Ashli, Trina, and McArthur have gathered an exquisite collection of diverse personal vignettes on this cherished doctrine. With an unwavering focus on Jesus Christ and His divine love, each contribution thoughtfully directs our gaze toward Him while simultaneously strengthening our connection to our Heavenly Parents’ infinite care and reinforcing our divine identity as Their beloved children. Seasoned with inspiring quotes from trusted sources and helpful tethers back to the “Mother in Heaven” Gospel Topics Essay, this lovely compilation is a feast worth savoring deeply and sharing generously!” – Melinda W. Brown

“When I walk into an art classroom with a wall full of figure drawings, I’m struck by the wonder, the humanity, and the multi-dimensionality of so many artists depicting a single subject. One artist’s line quality, a second artist’s gesture, a third artist’s tone—each helps me better understand and appreciate the person depicted. Every drawing necessarily captures the model from a unique angle and perspective. This book presents us with a similar experience. Through poetry, prose, and imagery, each contributor gives us a unique glimpse of Heavenly Mother, adding dimensions to our current understanding. May the contents of this book give us greater insight, greater hope and partnership, and greater commitment to the feminine divine.” – J. Kirk Richards 

“This beautiful compilation is a gift and blessing for all those seeking for further understanding of the sacred and holy doctrine of our Heavenly Mother.” – Katie Hughes

“What a precious resource full of beautiful art and testimony that both affirms gospel truths of our divine heritage and expands the heart to confirm these principles through the Holy Spirit. My heart filled with joy and light as I devoured it.” – Shima Baradaran Baughman

The Woman at the Well, The Light of the World Garden
By Angela Johnson, Ashton Gardens, Lehi, Utah
Photography by Trina Caudle
The Essay

“We have heavenly parents, a Father and a Mother. The doctrine of a Heavenly Mother comes by revelation and is a distinctive belief among Latter-day Saints. … Very little has been revealed about Mother in Heaven, but what we do know is summarized in a gospel topic found in our Gospel Library app.” – Elder Dale G. Renlund, April 2022.

The Gospel Topics essay “Mother in Heaven” includes the following references:

Footnote 1: Genesis 1:26–27Moses 3:4–7Romans 8:16–17Psalm 82:6Doctrine and Covenants 132:19–20.

Footnote 2: Gospel Topics essay, “Becoming like God.”

Footnote 2: “Mother in Heaven,” Encyclopedia of Mormonism (1992). By Elaine Anderson Cannon.

Footnote 2: “A Mother There’: A Survey of Historical Teachings About Mother in Heaven,” BYU Studies 50: 1 (2011), p. 70-97. By David L. Paulsen and Martin Pulido.

Footnote 3: “History of the Young Ladies’ Mutual Improvement Association of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints,” Deseret News (1911), p. 16. By Susa Young Gates. Summary: Zina Diantha Huntington recalled that when her mother died in 1839, Joseph Smith consoled her by telling her that in heaven she would see her own mother again and become acquainted with her eternal Mother.

Footnote 4: “Come to Me,” in “Poetry, for the Times and Seasons,” Times and Seasons 6 (Jan. 15, 1845), p. 783. By W.W. Phelps.

Footnote 5: “The Significance of ‘O My Father’ in the Personal Journey of Eliza R. Snow,” BYU Studies 36: 1 (1996), p. 84–126. By Jill Mulvay Derr.

Footnote 6: “The Origin of Man,” Improvement Era, Nov. 1909, p. 75–81. By the First Presidency (President Joseph F. Smith).

Footnote 7: “The Vision Beautiful,” Improvement Era, Apr. 1920, p. 542. By Susa Young Gates.

Footnote 8: “The Family: A Proclamation to the World,” Sept. 1995. By the First Presidency (President Gordon B. Hinckley).

Footnote 9: When Thou Art Converted: Continuing Our Search for Happiness, Deseret Book (2001), p. 62. By Elder M. Russell Ballard.

Footnote 10: “The Influence and Responsibility of Women,” Relief Society Magazine, Feb. 1964, p. 85. By Elder Harold B. Lee. (Word search for “General Session of the Relief Society Annual General Conference”.)

Footnote 11: 3 Nephi 18:19–21Matthew 6:6–9John 17:1, 5, 21, 24–25; see also Matthew 4:10Luke 4:8; and 3 Nephi 13:917:15.

Footnote 12: President Gordon B. Hinckley, “Daughters of God,” October 1991 general conference.

Footnote 13: “Our Mother in Heaven,” Latter-day Saints’ Millennial Star 72, no. 39 (Sept. 29, 1910): 620. By Elder Rudger Clawson (editor of the periodical and likely author).

Footnote 14: 1 Corinthians 11:11.

Footnote 15: Elder Dallin H. Oaks, “Apostasy and Restoration,” April 1995 general conference.

Trina Caudle, McArthur Krishna, Ashli Carnicelli
Individual photos blended by Mindy Sebastian
The Curators

Ashli Carnicelli is a convert to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, and writes a bi-monthly newsletter bearing her testimony of Christ called “The Pearls.” She and her husband Tony are the parents of four daughters and reside in Charleston, South Carolina.

Trina Caudle is an editor, writer and reader focusing on personal stories. She and her family live in the Washington DC area.  

McArthur Krishna has published almost twenty books, many with Deseret Book. The art from Our Heavenly Family, Our Earthly Families was the first art portraying Heavenly Mother published by Deseret Book (by Caitlin Connolly). She believes in being a “doer of the Word.”

Listen, Learn & Love podcast hosted by Richard Ostler, May 7, 2023

In Her Image podcast hosted by Kate Gregory, May 28, 2023

Faith Matters podcast hosted by Tim and Ashley Chaves, July 23, 2023

Blessing to Believe, Nurture & Dream
By Lindsey Larsen Myer
included in Cherish, page 457
The Resources

Seeking Heavenly Mother

The Eternal Heavenly Mother,” Square Two Vol. 12 no. 1, Spring 2019. By Allison Welch.

Why Heavenly Mother is Essential,” Meridian Magazine, Nov. 1, 2021. By McArthur Krishna.

What the ‘Mother in Heaven’ Gospel Topics Essay Teaches Us About Our Eternal Mother,” Meridian Magazine, Apr. 25, 2022. By Jessica Woodbury.

A Mother’s Day Sermon,” Library House Editing blog, May 18, 2023. By Trina Caudle.

Heavenly Mother Matters,” Restore conference by Faith Matters, October 2023. By McArthur Krishna.

Why Heavenly Mother is Essential for Women Understanding Their Eternal Destiny,” Square Two Vol. 16 no. 3, Fall 2023. By McArthur Krishna and Bethany Brady Spalding.

“My dear brothers and sisters, Jesus Christ invites us to take the covenant path back home to our Heavenly Parents and be with those we love. He invites us to, ‘Come, follow me’.”

** President Russell M. Nelson, April 2019