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Lesson 6: Types, Shadows, and Symbols of Jesus the Christ03.01.19

2Nephi 11:4; Moses 6:63Scriptural symbols of Christ

Show several pictures of well-known signs or symbols such as the following:

After students identify the meaning of each sign, ask them for examples of other easily recognized signs or symbols.

Divide students into pairs. Invite each pair to study and compare 2Nephi 11:4 and Moses 6:63. Ask them to discuss what these passages have in common and what they teach about Jesus Christ and the purpose of Gods creations. After the pairs have discussed their findings, ask the class:

How would you state a central truth recorded in these scripture passages? (Students should identify the following truth: All things were created to testify of Jesus Christ.)

What are some examples of things that have been given of God that are the typifying of (2Nephi 11:4), or symbolic of, Jesus Christ?

Tell students that all scriptures contain types, shadows, symbols, and similitudes of Jesus Christ. Explain that types, shadows, symbols, and similitudes are representations of greater realities. For example, the Liahona described in the Book of Mormon is a representation of the words of Christ. In this portion of the lesson, we will focus on types and imagery found in the Old Testament. Much of this imagery is in the form of people, objects, events, and circumstances (it might be helpful to write these categories on the board). Copy the following list of scripture references on the board, or provide it to students on a handout:

Old Testament Types, Shadows, and Symbols of Christ

Fulfillment in the Life of Christ

Genesis 22:114

John 3:16; 19:1618; Jacob 4:45

Exodus 3:78, 1012

Matthew 1:21; 2Nephi 6:17

Exodus 12:3, 57, 1314, 46

John 1:29; 19:14, 3136; 1Peter 1:1819

Exodus 16:1415, 18

John 6:510, 4851

Leviticus 8:15, 30; 17:11

Hebrews 9:22; 13:12

Leviticus 16:26, 17

Hebrews 9:612; 10:1112

Leviticus 22:1922

Hebrews 9:14; Doctrine and Covenants 20:22

Numbers 21:49

John 3:1415; Helaman 8:1315

Jonah 1:17; 2:10

Matthew 12:3840

Assign one or more students to study each set of scripture passages and to prepare to explain the Old Testament symbolism and how it points to Jesus Christ. After sufficient time, ask students to report what they discovered.

If time permits, consider also discussing some of the symbols of Christ identified by Elder RussellM. Nelson of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles in his article In This Holy Land (Tambuli, Feb. 1991, 1019).

As a class, discuss the following questions:

Why do you think all things have been created to represent or to symbolize the Savior?

What is the value of continually seeking to discover how all things testify of Jesus Christ? (Make sure students understand the following principle: We can learn more about Jesus Christ as we come to recognize the imagery, types, and symbols that testify of Him.)

How has something that symbolizes the Savior strengthened your faith in Him?

What could you do to recognize Christ in the symbols we have been given?

Explain that this segment of the lesson will focus on a different aspect of the gospel of Jesus Christ that contains symbols and images of Christ. Invite students to search 2Nephi 11:26, looking for those things that Nephi took delight in. You may want to suggest that they mark what they find.

Point out the phrase the covenants of the Lord in verse5. Explain that covenants and ordinances are an important part of Jesus Christs everlasting gospel. There are many elements of covenants and ordinances that are symbolic and teach about and lead us to Jesus Christ. Display the following statement by Elder BruceR. McConkie (191585) of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, and ask a student to read it aloud:

Every divine ordinance or performance ordained of God, every sacrifice, symbolism, and similitude; all that God ever gave to his peopleall was ordained and established in such a way as to testify of his Son and center the faith of believing people in him and in the redemption he was foreordained to make (The Promised Messiah: The First Coming of Christ [1978],28).

What is a doctrine or principle taught in this statement? (One possible answer is that we will see symbols of Christ in gospel ordinances if we look for them.)

How can this knowledge be helpful as we participate in gospel ordinances?

Invite students to study Romans 6:36 and 3Nephi 18:7, 11 silently, looking for symbols that refer to the Savior. Then ask:

To help students feel the truth and importance of learning to recognize types and symbols of Christ, ask questions like the following:

What is a symbol of the Savior that has great meaning to you?

How do you ensure that you notice this symbol?

How has seeing this as a symbol of Christ blessed your life?

Invite students to apply the principles in this lesson by inviting them to write down how they can better recognize types, shadows, and symbols of the Savior in the scriptures, in the ordinances of the gospel, and in their daily lives. Encourage them to select a day in the near future on which they will consciously look for images, objects, or events that remind them of the Savior. Encourage them to keep a list of what they find and to share their list with a family member or friend or perhaps through social media.

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Lesson 6: Types, Shadows, and Symbols of Jesus the Christ

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President Thomas S. Monson03.01.19

President Thomas S. Monson, who served as President of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints beginning in February 2008, as a counselor in the First Presidency from 1985 to 2008, and as a member of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles from 1963 to 1985, passed away on January 2, 2018. President Monson, 90, died at his home at 10:01 p.m. surrounded by his family, according to Church spokesperson Eric Hawkins. He was preceded in death by his wife, Frances, who passed away in 2013. They are the parents of three children.

The emergency-room patient seemed ready to be released, but a Salt Lake City doctor and his staff felt hesitant. While the mans treatment and recovery appeared complete, his unkempt appearance and unstable living conditions raised concerns. Do you have any family members, any friends that could help you follow through with your treatment? asked the doctor. Not really, the patient responded, until a recollection surfaced: Actually, I do have a friend who takes care of me sometimes. His name is Tom Monson.2

President Thomas S. Monson gives his signature wave following a session of the April 2013 general conference.

President Thomas Spencer Monson was a special friend of the underdog and of the down-and-outers, as one longtime friend put it.3 During his entire life, including more than three decades of intense responsibilities as a member of the First Presidency, he made personal visits to elderly friends and strangers an enormous priority and, when prompted by the Spirit, even took time out of important meetings to offer priesthood blessings to sick children. When he attended professional sporting events, instead of inviting prominent associates or public officials to attend with him, he brought friends from his growing-up years in a humble neighborhood. He attended every West High School reunion wearing his Tom Monson name badge. This same Thomas Monson, according to one of his sons, was completely non-discriminatory as to an individuals public status, persona, or other distinguishing accomplishments: a humble friend from 50 years previous would receive the sameor moreattention as a governor, senator, or prominent businessman.4

President Thomas S. Monson. Photo by Tom Smart, Deseret News.

People of high station and low, along with millions of friends and followers both in and out of the Church, lost a loyal friend with the passing of the 16th President of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Maintaining that I have always needed the help of the Lord, and I have always asked for it,5 President Monson left behind an administration marked by an outreach to the world at large through humanitarian aid, Church web pages that created greater transparency and helped members understand complex issues, public relations campaigns aimed at helping the world understand the Church, and a flurry of innovations aimed at furthering the work of salvation. Among these were lowering the age at which young men and young women could serve full-time missions, an expansion of the ways that missionaries could reach out to others (including the use of technology), and online forums bringing Church leaders and members together in virtual face-to-face discussions. During his tenure a new Church handbook was produced that emphasized Christian discipleship. Family history work was simplified, making it easier to research and submit names to the temple for proxy baptisms and other ordinances of salvation.

President Thomas S. Monson leans over to shake hands with a boy after a session of the October 2013 general conference. Photo by August Miller, Deseret News.

Despite his many significant accomplishments, few would dispute that President Monsons most important legacy consists of his powerful personal example. One of his favorite scriptures, found in Acts 10:38, describes Jesus of Nazareth as someone who went about doing good. President Monson could always be found doing good in ways the Savior exhorted us to: giving food to the hungry, taking in the stranger, clothing the naked, visiting the sick, and entering the prisons of loneliness and despair that often encage the desolate (see Matthew 25:3440). His humanitarianism, emphasis on people over programs, and dedication to following the Spirit led one reporter who covered President Monson for decades to write, I have met few people who make such great effort to lift and bring comfort, consolation and cheer to others.6 A lifetime filled with family, hardship, opportunity, and, of course, service helped create ThomasS. Monsons exemplary Christlike legacy of personal ministry.

On the corner of 500 South and 200 West, not far from the railroad tracks running through Salt Lake City, George Spencer and Gladys Condie Monson raised a family through the Great Depression surrounded by Gladyss relatives, descendants of pioneers from Scotland. Georges grandparents had joined the Church in Sweden and England before emigrating to America and settling in Salt Lake City. On August 21, 1927, the first son and second child of George and Gladys was born, Thomas Spencer Monson, named after his maternal grandfather, Thomas Sharp Condie, and his father.

George Spencer and Gladys Condie Monson, parents of Thomas S. Monson.

Surrounded by family, the Monsons extended their love to many others as well. Visits from hungry transients passing through town were not uncommon in the neighborhood, and Gladys Monson received and fed them as though each had been an invited guest, President Monson later recalled.7 She also sent weekly Sunday dinners to Old Bob down the street, who regularly offered Tom a dime for the delivery. I cant accept the money, Tom thoughtfully replied. My mother would tan my hide.8 On Sundays, Toms father would sometimes carry Uncle Elias, his brother crippled from arthritis, to his 1928 Oldsmobile, with Tom in tow, and drive him around the city.

During this period of my life I was much impressed by the actions of my mother and father, President Monson observed. It didnt dawn on me that they rarely attended church.9 He also recalled an ambience of tolerance and goodwill: I never heard my father speak a negative word toward another person. In fact, he would not remain in the room if anyone were speaking disrespectfully or negatively toward another person.10

Not surprisingly, these attitudes and actions started rubbing off on Tom. Overjoyed one Christmas to receive an electric train set, he nevertheless begged his mother forand receivedan additional car from a less-impressive train set meant as a gift for a widows son down the street. Later, when Tom and his mother delivered the gift and Tom saw the boys exuberance over the meager train set, pangs of guilt set in. He ran back home to retrieve not only the car he had taken from the set, but also one of his own.11 Tom later offered his two pet rabbits for Christmas dinner to a friends family who had never tasted turkey or chicken.12 And when a woman took issue with Tom and his buddies hitting baseballs into her yard during their neighborhood games (she often snatched the baseballs and kept them), Tom decided to defuse the situation. Without a word passing between them, he regularly watered her yard in the summer and raked leaves from her lawn in the fall. Then one day she invited him in for milk and cookiesand handed over a boxful of baseballs.13

Still, President Monson frequently acknowledged that his boyhood good deeds coexisted with a mischievous streak that sometimes led to a scolding. He and a cousin once collected neighbors stray dogs and put them into a backyard coal shed, six of which overran Toms father when he went to open the door.14 One afternoon a Primary president pulled Tom aside and said she was saddened by the rowdy behavior of many of the boys in Primary opening exercises. Tom offered to help. The Primarys disciplinary problems, he recalled, ceased that moment.15 Still, temptations persisted. He once convinced a friend to skip out on an afternoon Primary class with him. They would make their escape right after Tom took a penny from his pocket and dropped it in the donation box for Primary Childrens Hospital. They would then use a dime he had in his pocket to go to Hatch Dairy for Fudgsicles. The plan went awry, however, when the boys discovered Tom had inadvertently donated the dime instead of the penny. So both returned, where Tom dejectedly donated the penny as well. For a long while, he later said, I felt that I, perhaps, had the most substantial investment in the Primary Childrens Hospital.16

A young Tom Monson rides a tricycle in front of his childhood home.

Frequent visits to a family cabin in Provo Canyon initiated a lifelong love of duck hunting, camping, fishing, and swimming in the river; once Tom even rescued a girl swept into dangerous whirlpools.17 He told of one experience when he and a friend unwisely set fire to some weeds near the family cabin. As always, he used the story as a framework to share an important gospel principle.18

Thomas S. Monsonpictured on the left as a 13-year-old boy in Vivian Park and on the right with his son Clark on July 19, 1971had a lifelong love for the outdoors.

Visits several times a week down the street from his Salt Lake City home to the Chapman public library initiated a love of books and writers, which later enabled him to quote at length from favorite poets such as Wordsworth, Longfellow, Bryant, Tennyson, and Shakespeare.19

One particular interest, raising pigeons, which was developed in youth and continued through adulthood, taught young Tom a lesson in stewardship when an Aaronic Priesthood quorum adviser gave him a pigeon that continually returned to the advisers home, thus creating a weekly priesthood interview opportunity with the boy.20 However, it was a beloved Sunday School teacher, Lucy Gertsch, whom Tom credited with giving him a foundation for his testimony of Jesus Christ. Her love for a class with rowdy boys transformed their unruly behavior as they listened to Sister Gertschs Spirit-filled lessons on the Bible.21

The economic constraints of the Great Depression forced Tom at age 12 to begin working for his father, who managed a printing company.22 The shadow of World WarII, however, loomed larger than even the Depression as Tom made his way through high school. Each young man knew that if [the war] continued, he would be in the military, President Monson said of his teenage years.23 An excellent student with a love of history, he enrolled at the University of Utah at age 17.24 He seriously considered becoming a history teacher, but instead pursued a business degree, while also enjoying institute of religion classes taught by Dr. Lowell Bennion and Dr. T. Edgar Lyon.25

A good student, Tom Monson enrolled at the University of Utah at age 17 after graduating from West High School in Salt Lake City, Utah.

While at the university he met the love of his life. After being introduced to Frances Johnson at a Hello Day dance, Tom subsequently called on her. He later reflected that I was not prepared for the dignity and quiet which prevailed [in her home], comparing his more boisterous home with that of the Johnsons.26 Francess father noticed the Monson name and, with tears in his eyes, hugged Tom after the two realized that Toms great-uncle Elias had introduced the Johnson family to the gospel in Sweden.27 Both Tom and Frances loved big bands and frequented dances with band leaders such as Tommy Dorsey and Glenn Miller.28

In 1945, Tom joined the U.S. Naval Reserve. During the first three weeks of boot camp, he later jokingly said, I was convinced my life was in jeopardy. The navy wasnt trying to train me; it was trying to kill me. But spiritual experiences accompanied the hard times. After a chief petty officer lined up everybody one Sunday and directed the Catholics, Jews, and Protestants to their meeting places, he approached Tom and asked, And just what do you guys call yourselves?

Tom Monson joined the U.S. Naval Reserve in 1945.

Until that very moment, President Monson later recalled, I had not realized that anyone was standing beside me or behind me on the drill ground. Almost in unison, each of us replied, Mormons!29

One night just before Christmas, Toms LDS friend Leland Merrill, who was in the adjoining barracks bunk, began groaning in pain. In desperation, he whispered, Monson, Monson, arent you an elder? and asked for a priesthood blessingwhich Tom had never before performed. Praying quietly for help, Tom received an answer: Look in the bottom of the sea bag, where at 2:00 a.m. he found a missionary handbook, which gave instructions on how to bless the sick. With about 60 curious sailors looking on, I proceeded with the blessing, he later said. Before I could stow my gear, Leland Merrill was sleeping like a child.30 Tom also learned from others during military service and admired a young Catholic man who knelt to pray every night when we Mormon boys would pray while lying on our bunks.31

Tom served for a year and returned home to graduate with honors from the University of Utah, going on to work as an advertising executive for the Church-owned Deseret News. Several months after graduating, he married Frances Johnson in the Salt Lake Temple on October 7, 1948. I learned quite early to stand on my own feet, Sister Monson said of their early years together.32 Almost immediately, the Lord asked young Brother and Sister Monson to begin their tireless participation in building the kingdom of God.

Tom Monson married Frances Johnson in the Salt Lake Temple on October 7, 1948.

In May 1950, Tom and Francess bishop, John R. Burt, was called to the stake presidency. Asked who should serve as bishop in his stead, Bishop Burt paused for several minutes: I was trying to figure out how to explain to [the stake president] why I thought a 22-year-old kid should replace me as bishop.33 Thus began young ThomasS. Monsons ministry over the Temple View Sixth-Seventh Ward, with its 85 widows and the largest demand for welfare services in the Church at the time. Serving as bishop in this particular ward reinforced and intensified Toms already strong charitable instincts. He visited every widow at Christmastime, bringing gifts of candy, books, or roasting chickens.34 He grew so close to his widows that he made yearly visits to many of them long after being released as bishop, even managing to speak at all 85 funerals during his tenure as a General Authority.35 My inadequacy humbled me, he recalled of the five years he served as bishop; but he was grateful that I developed very young in life a spirit of compassion for others who might be in need, regardless of age or circumstance.36 He ministered to everyone in his ward boundaries, including those of other faiths, and sought out less-active members even when it meant going to a gas station one Sunday morning where he encouraged a young man working in a grease pit to return to his quorum meetings.37

Bishop Monson (center) with the last two of his six counselors: Elwood A. Blank (left) and William M. Larsen (right).

This particular calling also imparted a difficult lesson. While attending a stake leadership meeting, Bishop Monson felt a strong prompting to leave at once to visit an older ward member being treated at the veterans hospital. Unfortunately, the stake president was speaking, so the young bishop impatiently waited until he finished before rushing to the hospital. As he ran to the mans room, a nurse stopped him. She asked, Are you Bishop Monson? and proceeded to tell him that the patient was asking for you just before he died.38 Bishop Monson drove home that night vowing to never again fail to act on a prompting from the Holy Ghost, a commitment reflected over and over again in the remainder of his Church service.

Tom Monson about the time of his call as bishop.

He went on to serve as a counselor in the stake presidency at age 27 and as a mission president in Canada in 1959, at age 31. Missionaries under his guidance remember a leader so in tune with the Spirit that he often followed impressions to visit a missionarys apartment just before the missionary was about to do something wrong.39 He focused on the missionaries by learning all of their names, counseling with them about their problems and concerns, and essentially doing everything he could to prevent early departures and disciplinary councils. By this time, the Monson family had grown to include two young children, Thomas Lee and Ann Frances. A third child, Clark Spencer, was born in Canada. The family enjoyed more time together on this mission assignment than they were accustomed to, and Tom developed a loyalty to Canada still apparent in 2010, when, as President of the Church, he dedicated the Canada Vancouver Temple with a Canadian flag on his lapel and changed the opening song to O Canada.40

Upon returning home to Salt Lake City, Tom became general manager of the Deseret Press, and Frances busied herself with raising children, serving in ward callings, and supporting her husband as he served on various general Church priesthood committees.

Tom Monson, assistant manager of the job press, inspects color images of the Improvement Era made at the Deseret News Press with (left to right) George Veenendaal, foreman; Herman deMik, press operator; Doyle L. Green, managing editor of the magazine; and Louis C. Jacobsen, manager of the job press.

Toms extensive involvement in Church committees such as Adult Correlation, Missionary, or Genealogy, in fact, led him to believe that an invitation to President DavidO. McKays office would somehow be related to his current assignment. It was not. President McKay extended the call to serve as a member of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, replacing Elder N.Eldon Tanner, who had been called as a counselor in the First Presidency. Tom felt so overwhelmed and surprised he couldnt speak. Finally, he assured President McKay that any talent with which I might have been blessed would be extended in the service of the Master in putting my very life on the line if necessary.41

President Monson agreed to keep the sacred call confidential to everyone except his wife and did not sleep at all the night before general conference on October 4, 1963. Upon arriving at conference, he sat among the members of the Priesthood Home Teaching committee on which he served. A friend next to him, Hugh Smith, told him of a strange coincidence: the last two times a General Authority had been called, that man had been sitting next to Hugh.42 After Thomas Monsons name was called, Hugh Smith looked at me and said simply, Lightning has struck for the third time. I believe the walk from the audience to the stand was the longest walk of my life.43

Thomas S. Monson sits in the audience at general conference on October 4, 1963, just before it is announced that he had been called at the age of 36 to the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles.

ThomasS. Monson, at age 36, became the youngest man called to the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles since 1910, when Joseph Fielding Smith joined the Quorum at age 33. His service with the Twelve spanned 22 years, from 1963 until his call to the First Presidency under President Ezra Taft Benson in 1985, and included service on every major committee of the Church, frequently as the chair.44 During this time, Church membership evolved from a homogeneous group centered in the western United States into a worldwide, highly diverse global community.45 He was called to the apostleship by President DavidO. McKay but went on to serve under President Joseph Fielding Smith from 1970 to 1972 and then under HaroldB. Lee from 1972 to 1973. It was during President SpencerW. Kimballs tenure, from 1973 to 1985, that President Monson led a scripture publications committee that in 1979 produced a 2,400-page edition of the King James Version of the Bible that included a Topical Guide, Bible Dictionary, and pioneering footnote system. President Monson also participated with President Kimball in the landmark revelation that all worthy male members would receive the priesthood.46

Elder Thomas S. Monson sits next to Elder Gordon B. Hinckley, Elder Howard W. Hunter, and Elder Richard L. Evans. Elder Ezra Taft Benson stands at the pulpit during general conference.

But to members confined behind the Iron Curtain throughout the postWorld War II years, President Monsons greatest accomplishment as a member of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles was his overseeing of the Eastern European Saints. The actual blessings he brought to our country and to Europe, observed German First Presidency member DieterF. Uchtdorf, are so real and so significant and so singular in their value that I really believe that the Lord had prepared him to be an instrument in changing the history of Germany.47 The Communist government of the German Democratic Republic severely repressed religious observance, yet Church members continued faithful despite discrimination, loss of job and educational opportunities, and frequent surveillance as they met together. President Monson visited them frequently, once studying the entire Church handbook with the intent of retyping the entire book after crossing into East Germany, because Church materials were not allowed to be taken into the country. He went to a branch office and started this task, and after several pages he glanced around and discovered a copy of the handbook on a shelf behind him.48 He worked tirelessly with East German officials to allow at least a few Saints to attend general conference and to visit the temple outside the country, but still East German Saints yearned for opportunities akin to those of other members around the world.

Then, in 1978, President Kimball promised President Monson that the Lord will not deny temple blessings to those worthy [East German] members and added with a smile, You find the way.49 As President Monson and East German Church leader Henry Burkhardt continued to petition the government for permission for six couples at a time to visit the Swiss Temple, they received an astounding suggestion from government leaders: Why dont you build a temple here? In October 1982, the First Presidency announced that a temple would be built in Freiberg, German Democratic Republic, the first temple ever constructed in a Communist country. This announcement was almost as inconceivable as the miraculous agreement President Monson, then-Elder RussellM. Nelson of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, and East German Church leaders later made with government officials and head of state Erich Honecker to allow missionaries to enter and leave the country before the collapse of the Berlin Wall.50 I am a living witness, wrote President Monson, of how the hand of the Lord has been made manifest in watching over the members of the Church in what once were Communist-ruled countries.51

In front of the Freiberg Germany Temple, dedicated in 1985. From right: Elder Thomas S. Monson with his wife, Frances; Elder Robert D. Hales with his wife, Mary; Elder Joseph B. Wirthlin with his wife, Elisa; Emil Fetzer.

Yet, amidst world-changing events and overwhelming administrative duties, President Monsons ministry continued to focus on the promptings of the Holy Ghost and on reaching out to the one. After offering a blessing to a friend in a veterans’ hospital, President Monson felt he had accomplished more good in that visit than in a week of meetings at Church headquarters.52 Stories abound of detours taken from General Authority duties as President Monson retreated to hospital rooms, nursing homes, and solitary bedsides to visit the sick and the lonely waiting for him. When stake meeting schedules in Shreveport, Louisiana, wouldnt allow President Monson time to visit a terminally ill girl who had asked for a blessing from him, he was nevertheless prepared when, during the Saturday evening leadership session, I heard a voice speak to my spirit, he said. The message was brief, the words familiar: Suffer the little children to come unto me, and forbid them not: for of such is the kingdom of God (Mark 10:14).53 He made the 80-mile (129 km) trip to Christal Methvins home the next morning, blessing her in a Spirit-filled family gathering before she died four days later.

When meeting with impoverished East German members, President Monson would give away his suits, shoes, calculator, and even a set of marked scriptures.54 And he never forgot his fellow members from the Sixth-Seventh Ward, watching out for aging and low-income friends like Ed Erickson, whom President Monson invited to family gatherings and birthday celebrations. In a 2009 talk, he taught: Have the courage to refrain from judging and criticizing those around you, as well as the courage to make certain everyone is included and feels loved and valued.55

President Monsons honesty and friendliness engendered bridge-building and goodwill for the Church among various religions, civic organizations, and community leaders. He had grown up in a diverse neighborhood, felt close to relatives of different faiths, and genuinely professed, I think there are good people everywhere.56 He mingled readily with others, many of whom are not necessarily members of the Church, he observed, but are community spirited and civic minded individuals.57 Community leaders like one former publisher of the Salt Lake Tribune, a Catholic, voiced their appreciation: If hes ever met you, Tom Monson is your friend. The Church gave this community special unification through friendship when it elevated Tom Monson to the First Presidency.58 A Salt Lake community advocate once observed, I dont know if people know how much the LDS Church gets involved with the nonprofit world. President Monson is very aware of what the needs are.59 Another faith leader wrote to President Monson: You always open your heart to meet the needs and requests of the Salvation Army. Certainly you and your associates have overwhelmed us with your warmth and gracious spirits.60 He attended and spoke at activities held in conjunction with the 1993 dedication services of the restored Cathedral of the Madeleine in Salt Lake City and also spoke at Catholic funerals for close friends.61

President and Sister Monson meet with Bishop George H. Niederauer of the Catholic Diocese of Salt Lake City at the Cathedral of the Madeleine.

Hobbies like pigeon-raising offered respite from the pressures of President Monsons duties and inspired his great-grandchildren to call him Grandpa Birdie. His passion for raising pigeons was reflected in a merit badge on pigeon-raising offered by the Boy Scouts of America for a time. His service on the Scouts National Executive Board began in 1969 and continued through the years as he received the Silver Beaver Award, the Silver Buffalo Award, and international Scoutings highest award, the Bronze Wolf, in 1993. However, one former chief Scout executive, Roy Williams, joked that President Monson couldnt quite get over the Scouts decision to abandon a pigeon-raising merit badge.62

Hobbies like pigeon-raising offered respite from the pressures of President Monsons duties and inspired his great-grandchildren to call him Grandpa Birdie.

President Monsons interests ranged broadly. While a member of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, he earned a masters degree in business administration, and throughout his travels he liked to visit military cemeterieshallowed places that evoke, he said, thoughts of shattered dreams, unfulfilled hopes, grief-filled hearts and lives cut short by the sharp scythe of war.63 He loved to study about World War II and, on a lighter note, relished Perry Mason reruns on television at night, though he sometimes fell asleep and missed the ending.64 He was fond, too, of musicals. I am what my wife, Frances, calls a show-a-holic, he once told a general conference audience.65 He also enjoyed his share of New Years Day football games in which I can start out neutral watching two football teams, but within minutes I have selected the team which I think ought to win.66 He could talk about chickens for an entire flight with a seatmate and, at a Boy Scouts of America prayer breakfast at the White House in 1989, found a shared love of English springer spaniels with United States president George Bush.67

His deepest interest, of course, was his family, which grew to include 8 grandchildren and 12 great-grandchildren. While his time at home was limited, his children remember playing games, fishing, duck hunting, weeding gardens, going to movies, swimming, and sleigh riding with their father.68 Two particular memories stand out for son Tom: playing checkers as a young boy with his father and having his father fly to Louisville, Kentucky, to give him a blessing because he had contracted pneumonia during military basic training.69 Daughter Ann enjoyed the Sunday evening reports her father shared with the family after returning from Church assignments. And Clark especially cherished the day his father drove 40 miles (64 km) out of his way so that he and Clark could examine a hawks nest near Randolph, Utah.70 President Monson relished mowing the lawn and participating in family Ping-Pong tournaments in the basement of their home.71

Thomas S. Monson with his wife, Frances, and their children, Tom, Ann, and Clark.

ThomasS. Monson served for 22 years in the First Presidency, starting in 1985 as Second Counselor to President Ezra Taft Benson and then continuing in that role with President HowardW. Hunter in 1994. Thirteen of those years, from 1995 to 2008, were at the side of President GordonB. Hinckley, who called President Monson to be his First Counselor.72 President Monsons tenure in the First Presidency drew on his varied background in Church administration and left him with a heavy workload that made it difficult to leave the office. President Hinckley became the most traveled President in Church history, and this particular administration kept extremely busy. Smaller temples enabled the pace of temple building to rapidly increase; an enormous new Church Conference Center was constructed to enable thousands of members to attend general conference and other functions; worldwide training meetings via satellite broadcast began; and a Day of Celebration in Rice-Eccles Stadium at the University of Utah commemorated the 200th birthday of the Prophet Joseph Smith, with 42,000 youth from Salt Lake Valley and Wyoming performing.73

President Ezra Taft Benson with counselors Gordon B. Hinckley and Thomas S. Monson in 1986.

As always, though, in the words of Elder RonaldA. Rasband of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, President Monson was never too busy for people,74 and in the winter of 2000, one person he took time out for was his wife. After she suffered a severe fall, he spent several weeks taking his paperwork to her hospital room until, finally, Frances became alert enough to voice her first words: I forgot to mail the quarterly tax payment.75 Another recipient of his kindness was Church News reporter Gerry Avant, who frequently covered President Monsons travels and was once invited to some sightseeing with the Monsons because, as President Monson told her, youve been working hard.76

President GordonB. Hinckley died on January 27, 2008. The First Presidency was dissolved and President Monson returned to his position as President of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles. The man who grew up near the railroad tracks, instigated mischievous childhood antics in Primary, and willingly shared his meager belongings even during the Great Depression would soon become the leader of millions of Latter-day Saints worldwide. Ive never speculated on what might lie down the road for anything in my life, he said in an interview shortly before he was to be sustained as President of the Church in a solemn assembly during the April 2008 general conference. I didnt know but what President Hinckley would outlive me. He said, Ive always followed the philosophy, Serve where youre called, not where youve been or where you might be. Serve where youre called.77

ThomasS. Monson was set apart and ordained as the 16th President of the Church on February 3, 2008, choosing President HenryB. Eyring to serve as his First Counselor. For his Second Counselor, he chose President DieterF. Uchtdorf, a multilingual German convert to the Church and a member of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles since 2004. The new First Presidency symbolized the global nature of the expanding Church.78 At a press conference on February 4, 2008, President Monson told reporters, As a Church we reach out not only to our own people, but also to those people of goodwill throughout the world in that spirit of brotherhood which comes from the Lord Jesus Christ.79

The First Presidency of the Church is announced at a news conference on February 4, 2008: President Thomas S. Monson; President Henry B. Eyring, First Counselor; and President Dieter F. Uchtdorf, Second Counselor.

This spirit of brotherhood and reaching out to others became hallmarks of President Monsons administration. Church leaders worked regularly with Catholics, Evangelical Christians, and other religious and community groups in supporting moral causes such as traditional marriage. Church leaders invited other faith leaders to speak at LDS campuses and bolstered support for religious freedom with online resources.80 President Monson and members of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles also encouraged Church members to reach out to other faiths in service and community building and enhanced already existing humanitarian connections with other institutions to relieve the staggering needs of people affected by natural and man-made disasters worldwide. During the first five years of President Monsons tenure, the Church contributed to relief efforts in the aftermath of earthquakes in Haiti and Nepal, a Japanese tsunami, and floods in Thailand. It also offered help in immunizing people in underdeveloped countries, providing clean water to remote villages, easing food crises internationally, and offering disaster relief in the United States.This global aid and influence was noted by Slate.com, which in 2009 ranked President Monson first in a list of the 80 most powerful octogenarians in America.81

Also under President Monsons leadership, Church public relations began an outreach to help others better understand the diversity of Latter-day Saints. The Im a Mormon campaign featured Latter-day Saints who worked for such diverse organizations as Harley Davidson, the Library of Congress, and rock bands. Church headquarters also launched websites for youth and others, and the Church-owned BYUtv channel and website began producing high-quality programs to appeal to a wider audience. On the Churchs website, a series of high-quality videos began appearing, showing scenes from the New Testament that could be appreciated by people of many faiths. Other online resources included the publication of several Gospel Topics essays, designed to address complex issues in a straightforward and scholarly manner, and the website Mormon and Gay, providing relevant Church teachings and featuring personal stories from gay Latter-day Saints and their families.

Perhaps the most substantial changes that transpired during President Monsons tenure, however, took place in historic administrative developments. Significant changes impacted the way the Church leads, functions, teaches, and proselytes. In 2009, the Church distributed a DVD and pamphlet on welfare principles and in 2010 released a new handbook of instructions for Church leaders, accompanied by two worldwide training broadcasts. The new handbook stressed working in councils through open and honest discussions, alleviating the load of the bishop through delegation, and, most important, helping Church members become true disciples of Jesus Christ. Also in 2010, international training by members of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles began implementing priesthood leadership conferences and area reviews that included a comprehensive overview of humanitarian service, welfare needs, missionary work, and temple work.

President Thomas S. Monson speaks at Brigham Young University in Provo, Utah, on November 1, 2011. Photo by Ravell Call.

One of the most dramatic developments to occur under President Monsons direction was announced in the October 2012 general conference when President Monson declared that men could begin serving full-time missions at age 18 and women at 19. This unprecedented policy change lowering age requirements Churchwide generated an eagerness for missionary work that resulted in historically high numbers of men and especially women serving full-time missions. The creation of new missionary training centers and new missions accompanied the rising number of missionaries, which reached 85,000 at the end of 2014. Members became part of the hastening of the work (see D&C 88:73) as well, better preparing sons and daughters for missions within the home and participating more fully in their local missionary programs. Technology and online proselyting, as well as the creation of sister training leadersa leadership role for sister missionariesalso added to the exhilarating sense of progress and innovation that the mission-age-change announcement created.

Enabling young women to serve missions at younger ages dovetailed with an ongoing effort during President Monsons tenure to better involve women in leadership roles, decision making, and ward and stake council participation. To better help Latter-day Saint women and men appreciate the crucial role sisters have played in the gospel in every dispensationespecially during the Saviors ministry and during the Restoration period from 1830 to the presentthe Church published Daughters in My Kingdom and encouraged its use in the home, in Relief Society and Young Women, and in quorums. In 2014, the general womens session of general conference replaced the general Relief Society and Young Women meetings, with all females ages 8 and older invited to attend this twice-a-year meeting.

Better and more interactive teaching methods, especially in helping youth become full participants in the gospel, also became a priority of President Monsons administrative innovations. The 2013 implementation of Come, Follow Me, a youth curriculum designed to bless the youth in their efforts to become fully converted to the gospel of Jesus Christ,82 offered teachers and youth alike better ways to teach as Jesus Christ did. It used online resources, youth participation, and Spirit-inspired discussions in building faith and gospel understanding. Similar efforts to improve all teaching in the Church came in 2016 with the new resource Teaching in the Saviors Way and the introduction of monthly teacher council meetings in wards and branches.

Also during President Monsons administration, announcements of new temples to be built throughout the world continued. Temple dedications and rededications saw President Monson traveling to locales around the globe, including Cebu City, Philippines; Curitiba, Brazil; Kyiv, Ukraine; Panama City, Panama; and Kansas City, Missouri. In 2013, the introduction of online resources to help members find their ancestors resulted in an 11 percent increase in family names submitted by members for temple ordinances in what was called a banner year for family history.83

President Thomas S. Monson at the cornerstone ceremony of the Twin Falls Idaho Temple on August 24, 2008. Photo by Scott G. Winterton, Deseret News.

Despite the heavy demands on his time, however, President Monson remained Thomas Monson, the Church leader who, in the words of Elder JeffreyR. Holland of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, will show up, probably unannounced, at the funeral of a rank-and-file employee. I cant think of anything that exemplifies more the ministry of President Monson than that kind of individualized attention.84

On May 23, 2013, he presided at the funeral of his own beloved wife, Frances, after she passed away on May 17 in a Salt Lake hospital. She has been supportive from the day we married, said President Monson at the services, calling her the ideal wife and mother.85 He fulfilled the remainder of his presidency as a widower, often accompanied to special events by his daughter, Ann.

During President Monsons tenure, improved Sabbath day observance was emphasized as a means of increasing faith in Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ. Beginning in 2015, a coordinated and sustained effort at all levels of the Church and in the home urged members to make the Sabbath a delight (see Isaiah 58:13) by focusing on the Lord and their covenants with Him in order to reap the blessings promised to the faithful.

President Monson also continued to remain aware of those estranged from the Church and never treated them as unfit for the kingdom. When an older man who had not been involved in the Church for 20 years came to a General Authority for advice on coming back, he pulled out the letter that had motivated his own desire to return: You have been long enough away, and it is time to come back. Tom.86 According to President Monson, I find there is a little bit of sainthood in everybody, and I look for it.87

Even as President of the Church, he maintained his sense of comradeship with others, said Elder L.Tom Perry (19222015): Hell talk about the BYU game or the Jazz [basketball team]; hes a great sports fan. And then hell get down to business.88 And he always maintained his sense of humor. At a 2009 gathering with the members of the Mormon Tabernacle Choir, he sat down at the gigantic organ and offered up his rendition of To a Birthday Party from a beginners piano book.89 In 2013, the Church celebrated its 100 Years of Scouting with a program that also paid homage to President Monsons lifelong support of Scoutingjust one of many interests that kept him connected to his fellow beings, whom he loved to comfort and make happier, inviting all Scouters, regardless of religious affiliation, to participate.

Boy Scouts of America National President Wayne Perry announces President Thomas S. Monson as the recipient of the Honor Medal on October 29, 2013. Photo by Scott Winterton, Deseret News.

Feeling the nudge of the Lord, the promptings, President Monson said in a 1997 interview, brought him the most joy, especially in situations like the one in which he had visited his father in the hospital and, rushing afterward to get to his next meeting, felt he should nevertheless wait near the elevator. A family asked him to offer a blessing to their mother, who was struggling between life and death, and he agreed. Later that day, he received word that each family member had kissed the mother and said a peaceful good-bye after the blessing and before she died.90

Ive had that happen to me all through my life to the extent that I try to keep the antennae up, President Monson observed. And countless individualssome of whose stories have been told, but many more whose encounters with Thomas Monson remain unknowncan attest to this remarkable mans connection with the divine. You develop an appreciation that Heavenly Father knows who you are, reflected President Monson. He says, Here, go do this for me. I always thank Him.91

And his witness to the world was unfailing. With all my heart and the fervency of my soul, said President Monson, I lift up my voice in testimony as a special witness and declare that God does live. Jesus is His Son, the Only Begotten of the Father in the flesh. He is our Redeemer; He is our Mediator with the Father. He it was who died on the cross to atone for our sins. He became the firstfruits of the Resurrection. Because He died, all shall live again. Oh, sweet the joy this sentence gives: I know that my Redeemer lives! [Hymns, no. 136]. May the whole world know it and live by that knowledge.92

The following teachings are from President Monsons ministry as President of the Church and are arranged chronologically.

Following Promptings: The sweetest experience I know in life is to feel a prompting and act upon it and later find out that it was the fulfillment of someones prayer or someones need. And I always want the Lord to know that if He needs an errand run, Tom Monson will run that errand for Him (On the Lords Errand [DVD, 2008]).

Receiving Divine Help: Remember that this work is not yours and mine alone. It is the Lords work, and when we are on the Lords errand, we are entitled to the Lords help (To Learn, to Do, to Be, Ensign or Liahona, Nov. 2008, 62).

Love for Others: What is most important almost always involves the people around us. Often we assume that they must know how much we love them. But we should never assume; we should let them know (Finding Joy in the Journey, Ensign or Liahona, Nov. 2008, 86).

Service: Unless we lose ourselves in service to others, there is little purpose to our own lives. Those who live only for themselves eventually shrivel up and figuratively lose their lives, while those who lose themselves in service to others grow and flourishand in effect save their lives (What Have I Done for Someone Today? Ensign or Liahona, Nov. 2009, 85).

Marriage: Choose a companion carefully and prayerfully; and when you are married, be fiercely loyal one to another. Priceless advice comes from a small framed plaque I once saw in the home of an uncle and aunt. It read, Choose your love; love your choice (Priesthood Power, Ensign or Liahona, May 2011, 68).

Temple Blessings: Until you have entered the house of the Lord and have received all the blessings which await you there, you have not obtained everything the Church has to offer. The all-important and crowning blessings of membership in the Church are those blessings which we receive in the temples of God (The Holy Templea Beacon to the World, Ensign or Liahona, May 2011, 93).

Atonement of Jesus Christ: I believe that none of us can conceive the full import of what Christ did for us in Gethsemane, but I am grateful every day of my life for His atoning sacrifice in our behalf.

At the last moment, He could have turned back. But He did not. He passed beneath all things that He might save all things. In doing so, He gave us life beyond this mortal existence. He reclaimed us from the Fall of Adam.

To the depths of my very soul, I am grateful to Him. He taught us how to live. He taught us how to die. He secured our salvation (At Parting, Ensign or Liahona, May 2011, 114).

Prayer: Our Heavenly Father is aware of our needs and will help us as we call upon Him for assistance. I believe that no concern of ours is too small or insignificant. The Lord is in the details of our lives (Consider the Blessings, Ensign or Liahona, Nov. 2012, 88).

Trials: We know that there are times when we will experience heartbreaking sorrow, when we will grieve, and when we may be tested to our limits. However, such difficulties allow us to change for the better, to rebuild our lives in the way our Heavenly Father teaches us, and to become something different from what we werebetter than we were, more understanding than we were, more empathetic than we were, with stronger testimonies than we had before (I Will Not Fail Thee, nor Forsake Thee, Ensign or Liahona, Nov. 2013, 87).

Gods Love: Your Heavenly Father loves youeach of you. That love never changes. It is not influenced by your appearance, by your possessions, or by the amount of money you have in your bank account. It is not changed by your talents and abilities. It is simply there. It is there for you when you are sad or happy, discouraged or hopeful. Gods love is there for you whether or not you feel you deserve love. It is simply always there (We Never Walk Alone, Ensign or Liahona, Nov. 2013, 12324).

Preparedness: We live in turbulent times. Often the future is unknown; therefore, it behooves us to prepare for uncertainties. When the time for decision arrives, the time for preparation is past (Are We Prepared? Ensign or Liahona, Sept. 2014, 5).

Example: As the world moves further and further away from the principles and guidelines given to us by a loving Heavenly Father, we will stand out from the crowd because we are different. Those things which make us different from most of the world also provide us with that light and that spirit which will shine in an increasingly dark world (Be an Example and a Light, Ensign or Liahona, Nov. 2015, 88).

Choices: May we maintain the courage to defy the consensus. May we ever choose the harder right instead of the easier wrong.

As we contemplate the decisions we make in our lives each daywhether to make this choice or that choiceif we choose Christ, we will have made the correct choice (Choices, Ensign or Liahona, May 2016, 86).

Charity: Let us examine our lives and determine to follow the Saviors example by being kind, loving, and charitable. And as we do so, we will be in a better position to call down the powers of heaven for ourselves, for our families, and for our fellow travelers in this sometimes difficult journey back to our heavenly home (Kindness, Charity, and Love, Ensign or Liahona, May 2017, 67).

The Book of Mormon: I implore each of us to prayerfully study and ponder the Book of Mormon each day. As we do so, we will be in a position to hear the voice of the Spirit, to resist temptation, to overcome doubt and fear, and to receive heavens help in our lives (The Power of the Book of Mormon, Ensign or Liahona, May 2017, 87).

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President Thomas S. Monson

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Tattoos and Your Mission02.09.19

Not only are tattoos a defacement of your body, but getting one could affect your ability to go on a mission.

Imagine you are standing outside a beautiful white temple. Its walls and grounds are immaculate. On the lawn near the front door is a painter. He has displays of his art for all to see.

A few minutes later, you see this painter turn around, pull out cans of paint, and start to paint on the walls of the temple. His painting isnt ugly, but it just doesnt belong there. Do you say anything to him? Do you ask him to make his picture bigger and more colorful and offer to pay him for his work? Or do you say, You cant do that! This is a holy temple!?

What would you do if it were your temple? The Apostle Paul said, Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you? For the temple of God is holy, which temple ye are (1 Cor. 3:1617).

A tattoo is graffiti on the temple of the body, said President Gordon B. Hinckley.1

Tattoos are permanent. They are not only physically damaging, but through disobedience to the voice of the prophets, choosing to get one causes spiritual damage also. On top of that, something you might not have thought about before is that having a tattoo will affect your application to be a missionary.

When Bobby Collins (name has been changed) sent his mission papers off, he was surprised that he did not get back a large white envelope containing his mission call. Instead, he received a letter from the Churchs Missionary Department asking about his tattoo.

When Bobby graduated from high school, he wasnt sure if he wanted to go on a mission. He moved away from home to work, and he liked the independence of not having his parents around all the time. At about the same time, his best friend and his cousin both got tattoos. That kind of lowered my guard, he says.

Bobby had always been good at art, so he designed his own tattoo. He knew tattoos were discouraged by the Church and that his mother wouldnt like it, and before he went to get it, he asked his brother what he thought about it. His brother had some good advice. He said, Life already gives us so many scars. Why would you want another one?

But Bobby had already made up his mind. Six weeks and 700 hard-earned dollars later, he had a huge tattoo all the way up one leg. It was really painful. It was bloody, he remembers. And getting one made it easier to think about getting more. He didnt get any more, but after strengthening his testimony of the gospel, he did decide he wanted to serve a mission.

As painful as getting his tattoo was, the pain of regret that Bobby felt was much worse. He was very worried about whether or not he would be able to serve a mission. He wanted to get the tattoo removed but couldnt afford to. He worried what his future spouse and children might think of it.

That letter from the Missionary Department scared me a lot, Bobby says. My biggest fear was that this one thing was going to hold me back from serving a mission.

Bobby had to do what the Missionary Department asks all missionary applicants who have tattoos to do. On his original application he told them a little about his tattoo. The letter he received later requested a few more details, including an explanation of when and why he got it and where it is located on the body as well as a description or photograph of it. He was also asked to describe how he felt about it.

When a missionary candidate with a tattoo applies, General Authorities review each case and decide whether that candidate will be allowed to serve a mission. Some cannot.

Bobby did receive his mission call. He is grateful to be a missionary and sorry that, now a representative of the Lords Church, he once decided to get a tattoo.

For some missionaries, having a tattoo means being assigned to serve in a place where their tattoo is either culturally accepted or to a colder climate where long sleeves, and tights for women, will cover their tattoos. A tattoo can limit not only where you can serve, but, depending on its content and your feelings about it, it could also determine whether you can serve at all.

I just hope people will follow President Hinckleys counsel, Bobby says. I know that he is a prophet of God. If he says its important, then its important.

Bobby has some counsel of his own too, the same counsel his brother gave him: Even though we can be forgiven through the Atonement, why do something else thats going to leave us scarred?

You are a child of God. Your body is His creation. Would you disfigure that creation with portrayals of people, animals, and words painted into your skin?

I promise you that the time will come, if you have tattoos, that you will regret your actions. They cannot be washed off. They are permanent. Only by an expensive and painful process can they be removed. If you are tattooed, then probably for the remainder of your life you will carry it with you. I believe the time will come when it will be an embarrassment to you. Avoid it. We, as your Brethren who love you, plead with you not to become so disrespectful of the body which the Lord has given you. President Gordon B. Hinckley, A Prophets Counsel and Prayer for Youth, Liahona, Apr. 2001, 37.

Inna Prokopenko is a registered nurse and licensed master aesthetician in Salt Lake City, Utah. She has attempted to remove many tattoos in her years of work. Here is some of what Inna has to say about tattoos:

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Polynesian Pearls – ensign – lds.org02.09.19

Pearls are the product of patience. They grow layer upon layer, gaining luster with time. In French Polynesia, faith in the restored gospel has also grown in such a manner. That growth began in 1844, when the first missionaries arrived, and generation by generation, it has provided hope and meaning. Today Latter-day Saints make up 8 percent of the population20,000 members in 79 congregations. They are known as people who care for each other and for those around them. Like pearls, their glow is gentle. But as they reflect the light that comes from Christ, they truly shine. Here is a glimpse at some of these Saints.

Just off the road on the far end of the island of Tubuai, Ronny Harevaa and his wife, Sandrine, tidy up the ground around a small stone monument. It is dedicated to the memory of Elder Addison Pratt, the first Latter-day Saint missionary to visit this island 450 miles (700 km) south of Tahiti. Addison Pratt grew up in New Hampshire in the United States of America, but at age 19 he became a seafarer. He traveled to what are now the Hawaiian Islands, then sailed the Pacific, Atlantic, Caribbean, and Mediterranean before marrying and settling in New York. In 1838 he and his wife joined the Church. By 1841 they had gathered with the Saints in Nauvoo, Illinois. In May 1843 Addison Pratt was called by the Prophet Joseph Smith to help begin missionary work in the Pacific. On April 30, 1844, he and two other elders, Noah Rogers and Benjamin Grouard, arrived on Tubuai.

The islanders were eager to have a missionary among them, and Elder Pratt remained. He began learning Tahitian and preaching. The first convert was his interpreter, another American. Six of seven sailors on the island were also baptized and confirmed. Then on July 22, 1844three years before Latter-day Saint pioneers arrived in Utahthe first Polynesian converts were baptized. By February 1845, 60 of the 200 inhabitants of Tubuai had joined the Church. From these beginnings and from the work of Elder Rogers and Elder Grouard on other islands, the Church spread throughout what is now French Polynesia.

Today on Tubuai, Ronny Harevaa is the president of the Tubuai Australes District, which numbers 593 members in five branches. Quite a few of the members are his relatives, and President Harevaa has learned much from them. There is a deep heritage and history here, he says, a great love of the Church and family.

Most people on Tubuai dont have a lot of material things, but they have all they need to be happy, says Lucien Hoffmann, president of the Mahu Branch. Here you can get fruit from the trees, vegetables from the ground, and you can go fishing whenever you want. And when you ask people to help those who are sick or in need, they are always ready.

My wife and I chose to live on Tubuai to be close to our parents, President Harevaa says. Its a wonderful place to be together as a family. In fact, he has a brother who lives next door, another brother who lives in the house beyond that, and his father serves as one of his counselors. There are enough Harevaas on Tubuai that many people refer to President Harevaa as President Ronny, just to keep things straight.

In front of the Mahu chapel, one of three meetinghouses on Tubuai, Sandrine points out another monument honoring Addison Pratt. I think Elder Pratt would be pleased to know that after more than 160 years, the Church is still strong here, she says. And it is still growing.

One recent convert is Johan Bonno, who was born in the Marquesas Islands, the northernmost part of French Polynesia. Although he had led a rough life, he became interested in the restored gospel because of a schoolteacher who had moved to the Marquesas from Tubuai. Maimiti spoke to me of the true Church, he explains. She taught me about the Book of Mormon. Little by little, I let go of the bad things in my life. She invited me to church, and little by little good things entered in.

They married and moved to Tubuai. My father-in-law invited me to a missionary open house, and there I felt a powerful, comforting feeling, Johan explains. It filled me with a desire to know the truth. I prayed in earnest about Joseph Smith. I came to understand that the Lord had restored the Church through him. Johan was soon baptized and confirmed.

Today Johan and Maimiti are preparing to be sealed in the Papeete Tahiti Temple. Having the light of the temple in our life will be like trading a 15-watt bulb for the brightest sunshine, he says. For Johan, learning of the restored gospel required building a layer of faith. So did getting married, moving to Tubuai, and joining the Church. Now going to the temple will add yet another layer to a pearl that keeps on growing.

When 23-year-old Spencer Moroni Teuiau received his mission call, he couldnt stop smiling. After four years of delays waiting for dental procedures to be completed, this young man from the island of Raiatea received his call on his birthday. He remembers reading aloud phrases from the letter: minister of the restored gospel, advocate and effective messenger of the truth, ambassador of the Savior, and thinking, Wow! With all my weaknesses Im going to have to trust in the Lord.

But that is something he is used to doing. Moroni grew up in the Church. He is the third of six children to serve a full-time mission, and he recalls dreaming about serving a mission ever since I was a little boy. He remembers memorizing missionary scriptures during his four years of seminary and listening to returned missionaries talk about their missions. But he also remembers dental examinations, adjustments, and years of wearing an apparatus. There were times when I almost gave up, he says. However, with the encouragement of his family and his own perseverance, he kept hope alive. Today he is faithfully serving in the Tahiti Papeete Mission.

For Moroni and other young Latter-day Saints like him, the Church on Raiatea is a haven of strength. Garry Mou Tham, 16, a third-generation Latter-day Saint from the Avera Ward, explains. Here, he says, we are different from the outside world. We have good relationships with friends and parents. We have the teachings of the prophets to remind us to stay close to our family, to read our scriptures together, and to have home evening. We know the Church is going to progress, and we choose to be part of the Lords great work.

Garrys friend Fari Le Bronnec, 14, agrees. He talks about two things that keep him safe from the world: seminary and prayer. Seminary gives you a spiritual boost each morning, he says. And prayer can give you a boost anytime you pray with faith. The seminary and institute program is strong in French Polynesia, with a total of 740 seminary and 524 institute students in 20042005.

Another source of strength is the example members provide for those who are interested in the gospel. Such an example helped bring Adrien and Greta Teihotaata and their children into the Church. Although they had been without religion for years, we decided we wanted to change, Sister Teihotaata says. We asked the Lord to guide us. Just a few days later, neighbors invited them to an open house at the Uturoa Ward. We decided to come back on Sunday, Brother Teihotaata recalls, and at church, we were impressed that everyone was involvedteaching, going to classes, taking care of children. They really seemed to love each other.

It was fast Sunday, and when testimony meeting began, we felt something peaceful we had never felt beforethe Holy Ghost. We said, This is something we need, Sister Teihotaata says. The family met with the missionaries and continued learning. Though their oldest son did not join the Church, Brother and Sister Teihotaata and their five other children were baptized and confirmed in 1998. Since then, keeping the commandments, studying the scriptures, and going to the temple have strengthened us in our testimony, and so has the continuing example of members who have taught us and helped us, says Sister Teihotaata.

Another member is at the stake center this day, one who was baptized in 1956. The Church wasnt so well known on Raiatea back then, says Harriet Brodien Terooatea. There werent many members, and meetings were held in a little house that had one room for a chapel and one room for the missionaries. But little by little, the Church grew. Kind of like a pearl.

One way to see how far the Church has come in French Polynesia is to talk with the public affairs council in Papeete, Tahiti. At a recent meeting, they reminisced about some significant events:

The Church in French Polynesia celebrated its 160th anniversary in October 2004. Events included (1) public exhibits about the Church; (2) a spectacular in the stadium, featuring dancing, singing, choruses, and multimedia presentations; (3) a sports day including traditional competitions such as carrying bananas on a bamboo pole; and (4) a fireside with speeches from Church and government leaders, as well as a 500-voice choir. Many activities were covered by newspapers and broadcast on national television.

Church officials have paid several courtesy visits to government officials, and several Latter-day Saints presently serve in the national assembly. The government has expressed thanks for the benefits the Church brings, especially its role in teaching family values.

A 400-voice LDS choir performed before an audience of 30,000 during French president Jacques Chiracs visit to French Polynesia in July 2003. The event was televised not only in French Polynesia but also in France. The choir left many in tears when they sang I Know That My Redeemer Lives (Hymns, no. 136) and God Be with You Till We Meet Again (Hymns, no. 152).

The Papeete Tahiti Temple celebrated its 20th anniversary in October 2003. To mark the event, members of the Paea Tahiti Stake did temple work from 7:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m. so all endowed members could perform at least one ordinance.

The Church has come of age here, says Marama Tarati, the Churchs national director of public affairs. Throughout French Polynesia it is recognized as a force for good. On Tahiti the Church has beautiful meetinghouses, congregations filled with faithful Saints, andas the brightest jewel of allthe temple, a well-known landmark in the capital city.

The light of the temple has come into many lives. Before I became a member of the Church I did not know what my life would be after death, explains Marguerite Teriinohopua. Her family learned of the Church because another family prayed to find them. Ernest Montrose, now first counselor in the Faaa Tahiti Stake presidency, was at that time bishop of the Heiri Ward. When missionaries encouraged members to pray to find investigators, I figured our family should go first. Inspiration came. Bishop Montrose invited a coworker, Danielson Teriinohopua, to bring his family to a home evening with the missionaries.

We were at the same time praying to be guided to the truth, recalls Danielson, who is now a member of the high council. At the end of the evening, we told them we wanted to know moreimmediately. Bishop Montrose scheduled another meeting the next night, then the next and the next. Within weeks the Teriinohopuas were baptized and confirmed, and a year later they were sealed in the temple. Today I have a response to my questions, Marguerite says. In the temple I feel great peace and joy.

Chanterel Hauata of the Heiri Ward also knows the joy of attending the temple. Although a benign brain tumor caused him to go blind six years ago, in the temple he sees clearly. It is a place of clarity, he explains. In the temple we learn of eternity. It lifts us beyond this mortal life.

The Pepe Mariteragi family has also felt the blessings of the temple. When they gathered at the family home in Paea in October 2003, they spoke about Tepahu, Pepes wifetheir mother and grandmother. She passed away seven months ago, explained Lucien, one of her sons, but our hearts are still turned toward her.

It is thanks to the gospel that we are able to deal with such things, said Jean-Marie, another son. The blessings of the temple give us the understanding that we can be an eternal family.

This spreading of the gospel across generations is another indication of the maturity and strength of the Church. Bishop Moroni Alvarez of the Tavararo Ward and his wife, Juanita, talk about heritage that stretches back to his grandfather. They spread out seminary and institute diplomas for all six of their children and photos of all six while they were serving full-time missions. They talk about children married in the temple and grandchildren being raised in the Church. We talked and studied and prayed together and shared our testimonies, Bishop Alvarez explains. Now they do the same with their children.

Talk with Jared Peltzer, 21, of the Matatia Ward, Paea Tahiti Stake, as he prepares to leave for a mission in the Philippines, and youll meet his older brother Lorenzo, 30, who served in French Polynesia several years ago, and two younger brothers, Narii, 18, and Hyrum, 14, who plan to be full-time missionaries. We didnt have a missionary tradition in the family until now, says Jared. But when Lorenzo went, it made me want to go, and now were encouraging our younger brothers too. Layer upon layer, the pearl keeps growing.

If you live on Takaroa, you know about pearls. Many of those who live on the island owe their livelihood to pearl farming. Some raise the oysters in which the pearls grow. Others clean the shells, attach the oysters to cords, insert pearl starts, hang oysters in the water, harvest the pearls, or make jewelry and souvenirs.

We take things Heavenly Father has given us and bring out the beauty that is in them, explains Tahia Brown, who works at one of the dozens of pearl farms that dot the island. She and Marie Teihoarii, both former branch Relief Society presidents, love to display necklaces, table decorations, and other crafts made by Latter-day Saints. I learned to do this from my mother, Sister Brown explains. Most of the sisters here do this or some other craft that requires skill. We work to earn food and to make good use of our time but also to create things of beauty.

Pearls and shells arent the only things of beauty created here. Sisters like Tera Temahaga weave plant strands into exquisite fans, hats, and baskets, while others like Tipapa Mahotu use cloth and thread to sew brightly colored quilts and pillows. Tradition holds that quilt making was first taught by Addison Pratts wife, Louisa, who came to the islands in 1850.

Another evidence of the craftsmanship of the people of Takaroa is the tallest building on the islanda beautiful white church built starting in 1891. The building is remarkable for the heritage it represents. Political situations in French Polynesia and the United States forced missionaries to withdraw from the islands in 1852. Missionaries did not return until 1892. But when they did, they found a congregation of 100 on Takaroa that had remained faithful. And these Latter-day Saints were in the process of building a large chapel where they could worship together. Within a month, missionaries baptized and confirmed 33 new members, and the congregation began growing again.

Today the chapel presides over the village, just as the Church presides over our lives, says Sister Mahotu, 82. She traces her LDS roots back to her great-grandparents. The chapel, she says, reminds us of the heritage our ancestors have given us. It reminds us that we can be faithful like they were.

At the Family History Center located in an addition to the chapel, director Suzanne Pimati labors to honor those ancestors. She regularly organizes firesides and spends many hours on the phone encouraging everyone on the island to attend. I am eager for everyone to find his or her ancestors, she says. The Spirit of Elijah is strong on Takaroa. And with a computer to help the work along, Sister Pimati plans for many names to be sent to the temple.

At one time, the population of Takaroa was 90 percent LDS, explains Thierry Teihoarii, president of the Takaroa Tuamotu District. By the 1950s population was in decline, but in the 1960s the cultured pearl industry brought people back. Today there are two branches on Takaroa, with a total of 380 members out of 1,000 residents on the island. There are also four branches with an additional 450 members on neighboring islands.

Our greatest challenge is still those who leave our islands, President Teihoarii explains, particularly the young. Though many of the youth go away to boarding schools, for those who remain, seminary and institute become their main source of education. Seminary helps them not to forget the gospel, President Teihoarii says.

So does going to the temple. Every year we make trips to perform temple ordinances, and the youth do baptisms for the dead, President Teihoarii says. It encourages the youth a lot. It isnt just the accomplishment of saving enough for the trip. They know that if they want to go to the temple they must be worthy, and that helps them to stay strong.

Though his calling sometimes requires him to be gone on visits to other islands, President Teihoarii says his family has been greatly blessed. The first thing I do when I come home is to share the faith and testimonies of the members with Marie and my two daughters. These are uplifting times for my family. We truly feel the Spirit is with us. His wife agrees. There is so much to learn in the Church, she says, and also many blessings. There is sweet work to do, and as we do it, the Church will prosper.

It is evening on the island of Takaroa. The sun is going down. The shadows lengthen around the white chapel as the Saints gatherteens for seminary, Sister Pimati to do family history work, President Teihoarii to meet with two branch presidents. It is the crepuscule, a time of gentle light. Light like that which shines from a pearl.

Photography by Richard M. Romney, except as noted; photography of pearls and water by Christina Smith

Throughout French Polynesia, Latter-day Saints build on a heritage that began here in 1844. Top: Tera Temahaga of Takaroa shows handmade crafts. Heiana Teriipaia, Garry Mou Tham, and Fari Le Bronnec (above) and the Teihotaata family (left) of Raiatea say the gospel helps them stay strong. Bottom: On Tubuai, Sandrine and Ronny Harevaa care for the monument to Elder Addison Pratt.

Top: The Taumihau family joined the Church in Tahiti. Above right: Jewelry carver Johan Bonno (shown with his wife, Maimiti) joined the Church in Tubuai.

Above: Iosua Brothers, a patriarch in Tahiti, was baptized and confirmed on Moorea in 1968. Like many others, he has seen the Church become a force for good all over the islands. Below: On Takaroa, the rising generation includes Ranitea and Vehina Teihoarii and Vaimiti Nyjland.

Right: In a place known for craftsmanship, the temple is revered as the brightest jewel of all. Opposite page, top: On Tahiti, patriarch Tiatia Teio and his wife, Imihaa, feel the temples influence. So do deacons Jesse Pereitai and Jean-Philippe McGrevy. Below: The French Polynesian flag flies over Raiatea and Spencer Moroni Teuiau.

Tahia Brown of Takaroa works at one of the dozens of pearl farms dotting the island.

Left: On Tahiti, Bettey Tama prepares to baptize Eddy Tama.

Clockwise from above: The Takaroa chapel. This chapel presides over the village, says Tipapa Mahotu. Church leaders Pierre Tumarae, James L. Brown, and Thierry Teihoarii meet at the chapel. Suzanne Pimati runs the Family History Center.

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Chapter 23: Alma 1402.09.19

As Church members became proud, their negative examples became a stumbling-block to those who did not belong to the Church (see Alma 4:912; 39:11). President GordonB. Hinckley related the story of a young man who faced terrible odds to learn about the gospel because of the way Church members treated him:

He was not a member of the Church. He and his parents were active in another faith.

He recalls that when he was growing up, some of his LDS associates belittled him, made him feel out of place, and poked fun at him.

He came to literally hate this Church and its people. He saw no good in any of them.

Then his father lost his employment and had to move. In the new location, at the age of 17, he was able to enroll in college. There, for the first time in his life, he felt the warmth of friends, one of whom, named Richard, asked him to join a club of which he was president. He writes:

For the first time in my life someone wanted me around. I didnt know how to react, but thankfully I joined. It was a feeling that I loved, the feeling of having a friend. I had prayed for one my whole life. And now after 17 years of waiting, God answered that prayer.

At the age of 19 he found himself as a tent partner with Richard during their summer employment. He noticed Richard reading a book every night. He asked what he was reading. He was told that he was reading the Book of Mormon. He adds:

I quickly changed the subject and went to bed. After all, that is the book that ruined my childhood. I tried forgetting about it, but a week went by and I couldnt sleep. Why was he reading it every night? I soon couldnt stand the unanswered questions in my head. So one night I asked him what was so important in that book. What was in it? He started to read where he had stopped. He read about Jesus and about an appearance in the Americas. I was shocked. I didnt think that the Mormons believed in Jesus.

On a subsequent occasion this young man and his friend were traveling. Richard handed him a Book of Mormon and asked that he read it aloud. He did so, and suddenly the inspiration of the Holy Spirit touched him.

Time passed and his faith increased. He agreed to be baptized.

That is the end of the story, but there are great statements in that story. One is the sorry manner in which his young Mormon associates treated him.

Next is the manner in which his newfound friend, Richard, treated him. It was totally opposite from his previous experience. It led to his conversion and baptism in the face of terrible odds (in Conference Report, Apr. 2006, 6263; or Ensign, May 2006, 5960).

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Hope, an Anchor of the Soul – James E. Faust02.09.19

My dear brothers and sisters and friends, I come to this pulpit grateful for the inspiration and dedication of those who built this sacred, holy, historic Tabernacle. I pay tribute to President Brigham Young, who was the guiding genius in building this unique edifice and marvelous organ. At the same time I rejoice that, under the inspired leadership of President Hinckley, we are building a magnificent house of worship to accommodate the needs of an ever-growing Church. This new building is an expression of hope for the Church in the coming century.

This morning I would speak unto you, as Moroni said, concerning hope.1 There are tremendous sources of hope beyond our own ability, learning, strength, and capacity. Among them is the gift of the Holy Ghost. Through the marvelous blessing of this member of the Godhead, we can come to know the truth of all things.2

Hope is the anchor of our souls. I know of no one who is not in need of hopeyoung or old, strong or weak, rich or poor. As the prophet Ether exhorted, Wherefore, whoso believeth in God might with surety hope for a better world, yea, even a place at the right hand of God, which hope cometh of faith, maketh an anchor to the souls of men, which would make them sure and steadfast, always abounding in good works, being led to glorify God.3

Nephi admonished those of his day, Wherefore, ye must press forward with a steadfastness in Christ, having a perfect brightness of hope, and a love of God and of all men , feasting upon the word of Christ, and endure to the end, behold, thus saith the Father: Ye shall have eternal life.4

Everybody in this life has their challenges and difficulties. That is part of our mortal test. The reason for some of these trials cannot be readily understood except on the basis of faith and hope because there is often a larger purpose which we do not always understand. Peace comes through hope.

Few activities are safer than serving a mission for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

Missionaries are literally in the hands of the Lord. We wish that all of them could be kept totally out of harms way all of the time, but that is not realistic. Missionaries, their families, and leaders trust fully in the Lords watch care, and when a rare tragedy strikes, they are sustained by the Spirit of Him whom they serve.

Last summer I visited Elder Orin Voorheis at his parents home in Pleasant Grove, Utah. He is a big, handsome, splendid young man who served in the Argentina Buenos Aires South Mission. One night, about 11 months into his mission, some armed robbers accosted Elder Voorheis and his companion. In a senseless act of violence, one of them shot Elder Voorheis in the head. For days he hovered between life and death, unable to speak, hear, move, or even breathe on his own. Through the faith and prayers of a host of people over a long period of time, he eventually was taken off life support and brought back to the United States.

After months of extensive hospitalization and therapy, Elder Voorheis became stronger, but he was still paralyzed and unable to speak. Progress was slow. His parents decided that they should bring their son home and care for him in the loving atmosphere of their own family. However, their modest home lacked the space or equipment to give the needed therapy. Many kind neighbors, friends, and benefactors pitched in to build an addition to the home and provide physical therapy equipment.

Elder Voorheis is still almost completely paralyzed and unable to speak, but he has a wonderful spirit and can respond to questions with hand movements. He still wears his missionary badge. His parents do not ask, Why did this happen to our noble son, who was serving at the call of the Master? No one has a certain answer except perhaps in circumstances where higher purposes are served. We must walk in faith. We recall the Saviors reply to the question, Who did sin, this man, or his parents, that he was born blind? The Savior answered that no one was at fault but that the works of God might be manifest in him.5 Rather than harbor bitterness, the members of the Voorheis family bow their heads and say to the Lord: Thy will be done. We have been grateful for him every day of his life, and with the help of others we will willingly bear the burden of caring for him.

My purpose in visiting Elder Voorheis was to join his father, his bishop, his home teacher, and others in giving him a blessing of hope. Some may ask, Is there hope for Elder Voorheis in this life? I believe there is great hope for everyone! Sometimes we ask God for miracles, and they often happen but not always in the manner we expect. The quality of Elder Voorheiss life is less than desirable, but the influence of his life on others is incalculable and everlasting both here and in Argentina. Indeed, after his accident the Kilmetro 26 Branch, where he served in Argentina, grew rapidly and quickly qualified for the construction of a chapel.

Hope is trust in Gods promises, faith that if we act now, the desired blessings will be fulfilled in the future. Abraham against hope believed in hope, that he might become the father of many nations. Contrary to human reason, he trusted God, fully persuaded that God would fulfill His promises of giving Abraham and Sarah a child in their old ages.6

A few years ago, Sister Joyce Audrey Evans, a young mother in Belfast, Northern Ireland, was having trouble with a pregnancy. She went to the hospital, where one of the nurses told her she would probably lose the baby. Sister Evans replied: But I cant give up. You have to give me hope. Sister Evans later recalled: I couldnt give up hope until all reason for hope was gone. It was something I owed to my unborn child.

Three days later she had a miscarriage. She wrote: For one long moment, I felt nothing. Then a profound feeling of peace flowed through me. With the peace came understanding. I knew now why I couldnt give up hope in spite of all the circumstances: you either live in hope or you live in despair. Without hope, you cannot endure to the end. I had looked for an answer to prayers and was not disappointed; I was healed in body and rewarded with a spirit of peace. Never before had I felt so close to my Heavenly Father; never before had I felt such peace.

The miracle of peace was not the only blessing to come from this experience. Some weeks later, I fell to thinking about the child I had lost. The Spirit brought to my mind the words from Genesis 4:25 [Gen. 4:25]: And she bare a son, and called his name Seth: For God, said she, hath appointed me another seed.

A few months later, I became pregnant again. When my son was born, he was declared to be perfect. He was named Evan Seth.7

Peace in this life is based upon faith and testimony. We can all find hope from our personal prayers and gain comfort from the scriptures. Priesthood blessings lift us and sustain us. Hope also comes from direct personal revelation, to which we are entitled if we are worthy. We also have the security of living in a time when a prophet who holds and exercises all of the keys of Gods kingdom is on the earth.

Samuel Smiles wrote: Hope is like the sun, which, as we journey towards it, casts the shadow of our burden behind us. Hope sweetens the memory of experiences well loved. It tempers our troubles to our growth and our strength. It befriends us in dark hours, excites us in bright ones. It lends promise to the future and purpose to the past. It turns discouragement to determination.8

The unfailing source of our hope is that we are sons and daughters of God and that His Son, the Lord Jesus Christ, saved us from death. How can we know that Jesus truly is our Savior and Redeemer? In human terms His reality is almost undefinable, but His presence can be known unequivocally by the Spirit if we continually seek to live under the shadow of His influence. In the Book of Mormon we read the account of Aaron expounding the gospel to Lamonis father. He told him, If thou wilt bow down before God and call on his name in faith, believing that ye shall receive, then shalt thou receive the hope which thou desirest.9 The old king followed this to the letter and received a witness of the truth that Aaron had imparted. As a result, he and all his household were converted and came to know the Lord.

Our greatest hope comes from the knowledge that the Savior broke the bands of death. His victory came through His excruciating pain, suffering, and agony. He atoned for our sins if we repent. In the Garden of Gethsemane came the anguished cry, O my Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me: nevertheless not as I will, but as thou wilt.10 Luke described the intensity of the agony: And being in an agony he prayed more earnestly: and his sweat was as it were great drops of blood falling to the ground.11

All of us can find hope in Peters experience during the events leading to the Crucifixion. Perhaps the Lord was speaking to all of us when He said to Peter:

Behold, Satan hath desired to have you, that he may sift you as wheat:

But I have prayed for thee, that thy faith fail not: and when thou art converted, strengthen thy brethren.

Peter responded, Lord, I am ready to go with thee, both into prison, and to death.

Then the Savior told him, Peter, the cock shall not crow this day, before thou shalt thrice deny that thou knowest me.12

As Peter watched the events unfold, he was identified as a disciple of Christ. A maid said, This man was also with him, and Peter answered that he knew Him not. Two others identified Peter as His disciple. Peter again denied knowing the Savior. And while he was speaking a cock crowed.

And the Lord turned, and looked upon Peter. And Peter remembered the word of the Lord, how he had said unto him, Before the cock crow, thou shalt deny me thrice.

And Peter went out, and wept bitterly.13

This experience strengthened Peter to the point that he would never fail again and was known as the rock. His hope became firmly anchored to an eternal Rock, even our Redeemer, Jesus Christ.14 As the chief Apostle he carried the work forward faithfully and valiantly.

As Peter gained hope after a moment of weakness, you, I, and everyone can enjoy the hope that comes from the knowledge that God truly lives. Such hope springs from the belief that if we have faith, somehow He will help us through our challengesif not in this life, then surely in the life to come. As Paul said to the Corinthians, If in this life only we have hope in Christ, we are of all men most miserable.15 In the eternal scheme of things, wrongs will be righted. In the perfect justice of the Lord, all who live worthily will be compensated for blessings not enjoyed here.

In my opinion, there has never been in the history of this Church a reason for so much hope for the future of the Church and its members worldwide. I believe and testify that we are moving to a higher level of faith and activity than there ever has been. I pray that each of us will be found holding up our end of the line in this great army of righteousness. Each of us will come before the Holy One of Israel and account for our personal righteousness. We are told that he employeth no servant there.16

There has come with my apostolic calling a sure witness of the life and ministry of the Savior. I declare with Job, I know that my redeemer liveth.17 My witness of this is in heaven.18 Jesus is the Christ, the Savior of all mankind. Joseph Smith was the inspired Prophet who restored the saving keys, authority, and organization delegated to him under the direction of God the Father and His Son, the Lord Jesus Christ. Of this I testify in the holy name of Jesus Christ, amen.

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Hope, an Anchor of the Soul – James E. Faust

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Dress and Appearance02.09.19

Your body is sacred. Respect it and do not defile it in any way. Through your dress and appearance, you can show that you know how precious your body is. You can show that you are a disciple of Jesus Christ and that you love Him.

Prophets of God have continually counseled His children to dress modestly. When you are well groomed and modestly dressed, you invite the companionship of the Spirit and you can be a good influence on others. Your dress and grooming influence the way you and others act.

Never lower your standards of dress. Do not use a special occasion as an excuse to be immodest. When you dress immodestly, you send a message that is contrary to your identity as a son or daughter of God. You also send the message that you are using your body to get attention and approval.

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Immodest clothing is any clothing that is tight, sheer, or revealing in any other manner. Young women should avoid short shorts and short skirts, shirts that do not cover the stomach, and clothing that does not cover the shoulders or is low-cut in the front or the back. Young men should also maintain modesty in their appearance. Young men and young women should be neat and clean and avoid being extreme or inappropriately casual in clothing, hairstyle, and behavior. They should choose appropriately modest apparel when participating in sports. The fashions of the world will change, but the Lords standards will not change.

Do not disfigure yourself with tattoos or body piercings. Young women, if you desire to have your ears pierced, wear only one pair of earrings.

Show respect for the Lord and yourself by dressing appropriately for Church meetings and activities. This is especially important when attending sacrament services. Young men should dress with dignity when officiating in the ordinance of the sacrament.

If you are not sure what is appropriate to wear, study the words of the prophets, pray for guidance, and ask your parents or leaders for help. Your dress and appearance now will help you prepare for the time when you will go to the temple to make sacred covenants with God. Ask yourself, Would I feel comfortable with my appearance if I were in the Lords presence?

How does my testimony of the gospel influence my choice of clothing?

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Dress and Appearance

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Ariana Grande Is Totally Over the Tattoo Misspelling Debacle02.02.19

Kevin Winter/Getty Images

Ariana Grande has no tears left to cry when it comes to her misspelled tattoo.

On Jan. 29, Grande debuted a new tattoo on the palm of her hand right under her fingers. There was just a bit of a mishap, however, because people noticed that the ink said “shichirin” and not “7 Rings,” which it was supposed to say in Japanese. Ashichirin is actually a small charcoal grill.

She wrote about the typo in a now-deleted tweet and made fun of herself a bit too while she was at it. “It hurt like f–k n still looks tight. I wouldn’t have lasted one more symbol lmao. But this spot also peels a ton and won’t last so if I miss it enough I’ll suffer thru the whole thing next time,” she wrote. “also.huge fan of tiny bbq grills.”

The singer fixed it two days later, but there was apparently yetanother mistake. The additional kanji made the tattoo translate to “Japanese BBQ Finger.”

Perhaps that was intentional?

The tattoo debacle comes just before she’s set to release her second album in six months,Thank U, Next. It’s due to drop Feb. 8.

On Saturday, Grande took to Twitter (where she normally shares much of her information) and told her fans she just wants to focus on music and not the mistake. She wrote in one tweet, “i also went back and got it fixed with the help of my tutor to be more accurate. i can’t read or write kanji obviously.what do you want me to do? it was done out of love and appreciation. what do you want me to say?”

The “God Is a Woman” artist then defended her choice and said she really made an effort to correct it. “u kno how many people make this mistake and DON’T care just cause they like how it looks? bruh…. i care soooo much,” she wrote. “what would u like me to do or say? forreal.”

She also said the tattoo wasn’t meant to be any type of cultural appropriation, just “appreciation.” She wrote, “there is a difference between appropriation and appreciation. my japanese fans were always excited when i wrote in japanese or wore japanese sayings on my clothing. however, all of the merch with japanese on it was taken down from my site not that anyone cared to notice.”

Grande got really personal in one tweet and described her “crippling anxiety.” She wrote, “i have crippling anxiety lol. i don’t like hurtin ppl. people on this app really don’t know how to be forgiving or gentle when someone has made an innocent mistake.”

Grande wrote in another tweet that she “wanted” to move there one day” and loves Japan. She had one final request for her fans: “i’m made of love and nothing else. i jus wanna sing, man. wake me up when tour starts.”

Don’t miss E! News every weeknight at 7, only on E!

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Inkaholik Tattoos & Piercing Studio in Miami, Fl – Kendall …01.24.19

Expressing yourself has never felt so powerful. At Inkaholik, the award-winning tattoo shop Miami, the artists are ready to make

your artistic dreams become a reality. This incredible tattoo studio has the best color realism tattoo artists, taking tattoos to a whole new level. With a wide range of tattoo services, including black/grey realism, black work, watercolor, tribal, cover ups, sleeves, simple, neo & traditional, Japanese tattoos, couples, and lettering, the ways to express yourself with tattoo Miami has truly become limitless. Bring in your own ideas, or even your photographs to be used as your tattoo design. Or, have one of our artists use their creative talent to initially put your ideas onto paper before turning them into ink. The inner passion that drives our artists to create beautiful artwork has never failed to amaze our customers. Check out our large art gallery that highlights how we have helped countless other people turn their dreams into ink.

Inkaholik was also voted the best for piercings in Miami. Tattoo Miamis body piercing artists are certified by the State of Florida in order to make sure your piercings are meaningful and 100% safe. Some of the piercings include ear piercing, naval piercings, eyebrow piercing, and nipple piercing. The goal of our piercings is to make every person feel confident and comfortable with their body, and our state of the art staff will make sure that every customer receives just that.

With 3 Tattoo shops to better serve our clients, serving Miami, Coral Gables, Miami Beach, Pinecrest, Kendall, Doral, Brickell, South Miami, Homestead, Cutler Ridge, Coconut Grove, North Miami Beach, Aventura, Sunny Isles and surrounding areas. Call us or pass by to one of our amazing locations to get your tattoo or piercing done by the Inkaholikt pros.

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$80 Tattoo Vs. $875 Tattoo01.19.19

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