Monday, March 1, 2010

Evening With A General Authority - Henry B. Eyring

We saw Henry B. Eyring on Friday Night and it brought me back to my years in LDS Church Education in a way that nothing else could have.  The man is as great a joy to me and a representation of the love of God as almost as anyone could be. 
He was the Church Commissioner of Education when I joined Church Education in 1983  and I loved him instantly.  The first time I heard him talk, I believe, he was awaiting the birth of his last daughter, and his glorious, sonorous voice and beautiful choice of words, phrases, illustrations and stories always kept me amazed.  How did he do it?  When they called him into the Presiding Bishopric, I felt personally robbed.  
He spoke of thirty-three years ago at just such an “Evening with a General Authority” where he first spoke, where they walked across to the Hotel Utah for some refreshments when he knew most of the attenders.  I had been there probably twenty-eight years ago and remember the intimacy of that time.  Now, he says, there are 40,000 of us in 100 countries watching in the Tabernacle, on the Internet and on closed circuit.  Wow.
He spoke to teachers today, though we as retirees and spouses were also invited to the Tabernacle,  He said “Your students were taught in the Spirit World when others were not.”  “Qualify for and claim your gifts.”  “Always Remember his love for you.”  “I am grateful to be a teacher of the Gospel with you.”  These were the kinds of comments he made.  The Spirit absolutely filled the room.  
His focus mainly was on The Charted Course, a classic talk given by J. Reuben Clark on August 8, 1938, in Aspen Grove which we as teachers read many times in CES which encouraged us to always teach straightforwardly and directly.  It says in part:  
“The youth of the Church, your students, are in great majority sound in thought and in spirit. The problem primarily is to keep them sound, not to convert them.
      The youth of the Church are hungry for things of the Spirit; they are eager to learn the gospel, and they want it straight, undiluted.”
But President Eyring quoted it extensively which touched my heart so deeply and I must write much of that all here as well.  please read:
In all this there are for the Church and for each and all of its members, two prime things which may not be overlooked, forgotten, shaded, or discarded:
First: That Jesus Christ is the Son of God, the Only Begotten of the Father in the flesh, the Creator of the world, the Lamb of God, the Sacrifice for the sins of the world, the Atoner for Adam's transgression; that He was crucified; that His spirit left His body; that He died; that He was laid away in the tomb; that on the third day His spirit was reunited with His body, which again became a living being; that He was raised from the tomb a resurrected being, a perfect Being, the First Fruits of the Resurrection; that He later ascended to the Father; and that because of His death and by and through His resurrection every man born into the world since the beginning will be likewise literally resurrected. This doctrine is as old as the world. Job declared: "And though after my skin worms destroy this body, yet in my flesh shall I see God, whom I shall see for myself and mine eyes shall behold, and not another." (Job 19:26, 27)
The resurrected body is a body of flesh and bones and spirit, and Job was uttering a great and everlasting truth. These positive facts, and all other facts necessarily implied therein, must all be honestly believed, in full faith, by every member of the Church.
“The second of the two things to which we must all give full faith is: That the Father and Son actually and in truth and very deed appeared to the Prophet Joseph in a vision in the woods; that other heavenly visions followed to Joseph and to others; that the Gospel and the holy Priesthood after the Order of the Son of God were in truth and fact restored to the earth from which they were lost by the apostasy of the Primitive Church; that the Lord again set up His Church, through the agency of Joseph Smith; that the Book of Mormon is just what it professes to be; that to the Prophet came numerous revelations for guidance, upbuilding, organization, and encouragement of the Church and its members; that the Prophet's successors, likewise called of God, have received revelations as the needs of the Church have required, and that they will continue to receive revelations as the Church and its members, living the truth they already have, shall stand in need of more; that this is in truth the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints; and that its foundation beliefs are the laws and principles laid down in the Articles of Faith. These facts also, and each of them, together with all things necessarily implied therein or flowing therefrom, must stand, unchanged, unmodified, without dilution, excuse, apology, or avoidance; they may not be explained away or submerged. Without these two great beliefs the Church would cease to be the Church.”
This also is my Testimony.  
Please read the entire Charted Course if you can:


Bonnie said...

I'm really glad to get the article by J. Rueben Clark again. The few years I had that association were some of the most memorable of my life! It was one of the hardest things I've ever done because my health was in horrible shape, but it was also so rewarding! Oh, I'd love to attend anything associated with it again. Thanks again for sharing, it brought back wonderful memories for me.

Bonnie said...
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