Priesthood blessings and the dedication of homes are two ordinances that can help foster peace and tranquility within LDS families.
According to the late Elder John A. Widtsoe: "Out of the homes issues the spirit of the people. As the homes are conducted, so the Church in a large measure will be. We have good reason, therefore, to dedicate our homes and all our possessions to the mighty purpose of the restoration of the gospel. Dedicated homes are the best abiding places of peace and happiness." (Evidences and Reconciliations, p. 328.)The importance of such a practice has long been emphasized in the Church, as illustrated by the counsel of President John Taylor in October 1881: "If you build a house, dedicate it to God; also your garden, your cattle and sheep, and all that you possess, and pray that His blessing may rest upon you and upon everything that pertains to you." (Journal of Discourses 22:313.)
President Spencer W. Kimball on one occasion asked a congregation of Saints how many of them had dedicated their homes. "I remember when my youngest son came home from his mission," he continued. "We had moved from Arizona, had purchased a new home, had moved into it, and were quite comfortable, and we called all the family together and invited this youngest son who had just filled his mission to offer the dedicatory prayer on our home. So we feel that that home is blessed, and it has a special significance. it belongs to the Lord, and we have the opportunity of using it." (The Teachings of Spencer W. Kimball, p. 339.)
Both the General Handbook of Instructions and Melchizedek Priesthood Leadership Handbook speak of home dedicating as an appropriate action within families.
"Church members may dedicate their homes as sacred edifices where the Holy Spirit can reside and where family members can worship, find safety from the world, grow spiritually, and prepare for eternal family relationships. Homes need not be free of debt to be dedicated." (Melchizedek Priesthood Leadership Handbook, p. 14.)
Besides dedicating homes, husbands and fathers who hold the Melchizedek Priesthood may also bless their wives and children, and give priesthood blessings in homes where there is no priesthood holder when requested. These blessings of love, counsel and encouragement can be great sources of peace and comfort to family members.
President Ezra Taft Benson said: "In a particularly stressful time, or in the anticipation of a critical event, one can seek for a blessing under the hands of the priesthood. . . . Fathers, so live that you can bless your own wives and children." (Teachings of Ezra Taft Benson, p. 214.)