Thursday, January 31, 2008

Tribute to an amazing man

Last Sunday, the prophet and president of our church, Gordon B. Hinckley passed away at the age of 97. This man had a profound impact on my life and the lives of many, many others. He was the prophet when I became a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and for this reason will always have a special place in my heart. I was priveleged to hear him speak in person on many occasions, and just by being in his presence you could feel the Spirit emanate. I am glad that he has now been reunited with his sweet wife but I will miss him dearly.

Here is what President George W. Bush had to say about him:

“Laura and I are deeply saddened by the death of our friend, Gordon B. Hinckley. While serving for over seven decades in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, Gordon demonstrated the heart of a servant and the wisdom of a leader. He was a tireless worker and a talented communicator who was respected in his community and beloved by his congregation. As President of his church, he traveled to more than 60 countries to spread a message of love and optimism to the millions of people around the world who shared his faith.
A Mayflower descendent and the grandson of Mormon pioneers, Gordon was a deeply patriotic man. His leadership and service strengthened the Board of Trustees of Brigham Young University, the Boy Scouts of America, and the 2002 Winter Olympic Games in Salt Lake City. In 2004, I was honored to present him with the Medal of Freedom, our Nation’s highest civil award, in recognition of his lifelong public service.
Laura and I will miss Gordon’s friendship and wisdom. Our thoughts and prayers are with his five children and the rest of the Hinckley family.” -George W. Bush

And here is a really touching tribute from Glenn Beck:

And finally, President Hinckley's testimony:
“I hope that all of you will remember that on this Sabbath day you heard me bear my witness that this is God’s holy work. The vision given the Prophet Joseph in the grove of Palmyra was not an imaginary thing. It was real. It occurred in the broad light of day. Both the Father and the Son spoke to the boy. He saw Them standing in the air above him. He heard Their voices. He gave heed to Their instruction.

“It was the resurrected Lord who was introduced by His Father, the great God of the universe. For the first time in recorded history, both the Father and the Son appeared together to part the curtains and open this, the last and final dispensation, the dispensation of the fullness of times.

“The Book of Mormon is all that it purports to be—a work recorded by prophets who lived anciently and whose words have come forth “to the convincing of the Jew and Gentile that Jesus is the Christ, the Eternal God, manifesting himself unto all nations” (Book of Mormon title page).

“The priesthood has been restored under the hands of John the Baptist and Peter, James, and John. All the keys and authority pertaining to eternal life are exercised in this Church.
“Joseph Smith was and is a prophet, the great Prophet of this dispensation. This Church, which carries the name of the Redeemer, is true.

“I leave you my testimony, my witness, and my love for each of you, in the name of Jesus Christ, amen.”

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