Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Doctrine & Covenants Section 133

Hello Brethren, this post is the flood of insight and understanding in regards to D & C Section 133. I say "Flood" because it seemed as I read, nearly verse after verse... ( 1 - 74 ) a little "ding" popped into my head and a reference (Whether complete, or small and simple) of scriptures came to mind. I hope that as I follow the instructions of the Quorum of The Twelve (Richard Scott and others; Which said to take notes and write them while fresh in your mind) that you all may be edified and without any misunderstanding. I would even encourage you to pray, even now.

I felt urged all day long to open up to the Doctrine & Covenants, but didn't know why. Heck, I think I need a quick chastisement in not listening to the promptings of the Spirit. But in reading (As this Blog Post Says) D & C 133, I can see some bright insight concerning this new work.... the West Texas "Marvelous Work & Wonder" as petitioned to the Saints here in the Plainview TX Branch by President Shumway and his counselors on December 20th, 2009.

Early on, about Nineteen Months after the Church was organized, (Dated November 3rd, 1831 in Section Heading of 133) there were many whom sought after the instruction of the Lord. Many Elders, both whom had regular callings, and even Elders in the Mission Field, sought after the divine guidance of the Savior as to how best accomplish that of which they had been called to do. Joseph Smith The Prophet then petitioned the Lord, and this Section (133) was the result. Here is what I'd like you to read, and then I'll follow what I felt to be a good understanding.

To respond to those whom asked, The Lord exclaimed:

 1 Hearken, O ye people of my church, saith the Lord your God, and hear the word of the Lord concerning you—
  2 The Lord who shall suddenly come to his temple; the Lord who shall come down upon the world with a curse to judgment; yea, upon all the nations that forget God, and upon all the ungodly among you. 
So, the Lord calls attention, then reminds them of their imperfections and even accentuates he will arrive and curse those whom forget Him, and those whom are ungodly. (I take that perhaps as those whom hide sin from the faces of man... or their respective leaders.)

He then continues: 

  5 Go ye out from Babylon. Be ye clean that bear the vessels of the Lord.
  6 Call your solemn assemblies, and speak often one to another. And let every man call upon the name of the Lord. 
He encourages the Saints to leave Babylon (Defined in the scriptures as "The World"). When he speaks of being clean vessels, I think he refers to the proper use of and administration in Priesthood Ordinances. (As found in Section 84 of the Doctrine & Covenants) Then verse 6 may easily speak for itself, but consider this as you consider not only the council given us by Elder Webb of The Seventy, but the ideal and mission placed before us by President Shumway! Our Ward Councils need constant and continual edification... to meet frequently. As he said in verse 6 also, "... and speak often one to another." Frequent meetings are needed. AND not only together, but we should also pray fervently; as said in verse 6 also "... Let EVERY man call upon the name of the Lord." 

To continue his counsel to those Elders, the Lord reminds them again;

 14 Go ye out from among the nations, even from Babylon, from the midst of wickedness, which is spiritual Babylon.
  15 But verily, thus saith the Lord, let not your flight be in haste, but let all things be prepared before you; and he that goeth, let him not look back lest sudden destruction shall come upon him.

The Lords command for them (And us as we liken ourselves to the scriptures) could be summed up in saying "Live in the world, but be not of it." My understanding of verse 15 is, that as we flee from the spiritual babylon..... don't leave unprepared. Don't leave yourself vulnerable to the adversary. Prepare! How do we prepare? Consider The words of one of the Latter-Day Prophets.

The late President Spencer W. Kimball defined those drops of oil for us a few years ago when he said:

“There are oils that keep the gospel burning brightly. One type of oil is the oil of family prayer. It illuminates us and makes us bright and cheery but is difficult to obtain at midnight. One drop or two will not keep the lamp burning long. …

“Another type of oil is the oil of fasting. The last midnight is late to start disciplining our lives in preparation for the great day of the Lord. …

“Another oil that is not available at midnight is the indispensable oil of home service. This rare oil of service is accumulated through visits to the sick, through lending a helping hand. …

“There is another oil that all will need—rich or poor, sick or well. Its light is brilliant and increases with use. The more that is used, the more that is left. It is easy to purchase in the day but not available at night. This is the tithing oil.

“There is one … oil that is so precious that without adding it to the other oils no wick will burn. Without it, the light from all the others will dim and go out. This is the oil of chastity.”

One should not flee out into the world without these precious drops of oil. Thats the Savior's caution when (again in verse 15) "... let not your flight be in haste..." We need to prepare well. The caution to not look back, may be similar as the reasons the Lord cautioned Lot, and Lot's wife to not look back. Elder Jeffrey Holland of the Quorum of the twelve, in a BYU speech given... titled his talk:

Remember Lot's Wife

It is Luke 17:32, where the Savior cautions, "Remember Lot's wife."

What did He mean by such an enigmatic little phrase? To find out I suppose we need to do as He suggested.
Let's recall who Lot's wife was.

The original story, of course, comes to us out of the days of Sodom and Gomorrah when the Lord, having had as much as He could stand of the worst that men and women could do, told Lot and
his family to flee because those cities were about to be destroyed. "Escape for thy life," the Lord said, "look not behind thee . . . ; escape to the mountain, lest thou be consumed" (Genesis 19:17).

With less than immediate obedience and more than a little negotiation, Lot and his family ultimately
did leave town but just in the nick of time. At daybreak the morning following their escape it says, "The Lord rained upon Sodom and upon Gomorrah brimstone and fire from the Lord out of heaven; and
he overthrew those cities" (Genesis 19:24‐25).

Surely with the Lord's counsel "look not behind thee" ringing clearly in her ears, Lot's wife, the record
says, "looked back," and she was turned to a pillar of salt.

So, if history is this important ‐‐ and it surely is ‐‐ what did Lot's wife do that was so wrong? As something of a student of history, I have thought about that and offer this as a partial answer. Apparently what was wrong with Lot's wife is that she wasn't just looking back, but that in her heart she wanted to go back. It would appear that even before they were past the city limits, she was already missing what Sodom and
Gomorrah had offered her. As Elder Maxwell once said, such people know they should have their primary residence in Zion but they still hope to keep a summer cottage in Babylon. It is possible that Lot's wife looked back with resentment toward the Lord for what He was asking her to leave behind. We know that Laman and Lemuel did when Lehi and his family were commanded to leave Jerusalem. So it isn't just that she looked
back; she looked back longingly. In short, her attachment to the past outweighed her confidence in the future. That,apparently, was at least part of her sin.

Prayer and counsel are needed badly over any and ALL things. I know that to be true brethren, and such is my testimony to you, In the name of Jesus Christ Amen.


Monday, December 28, 2009

"....mine angels round about you, to bear you up." (D & C 84:88)

My Dear Brethren, I wanted the occasion to do, as typically has been done since this blog has been created, to share with you some powerful, moving, and special videos. [ *As always noted, those whom receive e-mail messages concerning new posts to blog; You will need to visit the blog to watch the videos* ] I am so moved at one of the videos, that I decided to feature it at the top of the blog page, above all new posts, under only the blog title and Quorum Presidency information. Please, take the time to at least watch this great video, about forgiveness.... given by James E. Faust in April 2007.

And traditionally, I now also place other great videos at the bottom of the blog page for your edification. The 2 new ones, are the talk on "Pride" as written by Ezra Taft Benson, yet delivered by Gordon B. Hinkley. We approach the time for resolutions, for changes to our lives, or perhaps our natures. Let us resolve to better live the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Let us better magnify our callings: Let us move the work forward and double the Lubbock Stake as envisioned by our new Stake Presidency with a resolve to not stop short of what the true potential of the priesthood has, and offers us!

Remember The Promise of The Lord:

"And whoso receiveth you, there I will be also, for I will go before your face. I will be on your right hand and on your left, and my Spirit shall be in your hearts, and mine angels round about you, to bear you up." (D & C 84:88)

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

New Mormon Messages Video

[ *As always noted, those whom receive e-mail messages concerning new posts to blog; You will need to visit the blog Click Here to watch the videos* ]

This is a GREAT Mormon Messages Video, not up on lds.org yet, but soon shall be. Enjoy!!

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Leadership Concerning Our "Ward Councils"

Hello Brethren! Before I start, I wish to take the time to say Merry Christmas!

     On Saturday, December 19th, 2009 the leadership of branch, ward and stake leaders convened to discuss a energized and enthusiastic mission to revamp the Missionary Effort. We had the distinct pleasure to be taught and edified by a General Authority, Elder Webb. The Lubbock Stake was blessed several weeks earlier with a visit from Elder Webb and Elder Christiansen. (I hope I am spelling their names correctly)
     Before much of any information was taught, the Presiding Authorities provided us with the knowledge that at the end of 2010, some new manuals should be in the hands of leaderships. (I believe, but am not sure if it was indicated simply for Branch Presidencies, Ward Presidencies or even Stake.... but they will be out.)

     I absolutely loved the opportunity to sit in the second row and look right up at all the speakers, and perfectly hear their council. (Both the meeting on December 19th, and the other several weeks earlier) Participation was essential. It still is. I knew at both meetings that I could not learn anything if I did not act on the promptings of the Holy Ghost to participate. It is my distinct affirmation, that the Leaders we sustained to the Stake Presidency were indeed called of God. 
     Their love of the Gospel of Jesus Christ shows in their concern and drive showing any and all whom are present that they were loved. To (As close as I can recall from my notes) quote President Shumway, "If you are here... you belong here!".
     Elder Webb mentioned some scriptures, and I took some notes there. I love how the scriptures can and ought relate to our day. The first scripture he used was D & C 44:2 which reads as follows:

      "And it shall come to pass, that inasmuch as they are faithful, and exercise faith in me, I will pour out my Spirit upon them in the day that they assemble themselves together." 

     Now, my understanding from this scripture is I think what Elder Webb wished others to see. When we discuss in our Ward Councils the Missionary Effort (Which seems to have adopted a name) "Member Missionary" ; Far too frequently, we would ask just for people to grab five names basically off the top of our heads from the High Priests, Elders and Relief Society, giving little, if any, thought or prayer or fasting into it. He may have also wished us to perceive what we needed to see!
     Truly, How often do we "Search, Ponder & Pray" concerning the Lord's will? As the Primary Song So clearly puts forth:

  " I love to read the Holy Scriptures and every time I do, I feel the spirit start to grow within my heart, a testimony that they're true, Search, Ponder & Pray, are the things that I must do, the Spirit will guide and deep inside I know the scriptures are true. So prayerfully I'll read the Scriptures each day my whole life through, I'll come to understand, I'll heed the Lords command and live as He would have me do, Search, Ponder and Pray, are the things that I must do, the Spirit will guide and deep inside I know the scriptures are true."

    Have we the conviction similar to the songs our children are taught by to have? I fall short for sure. So why is it so important for us to pray about it? Consider the countless invitations the Savior extends;

3 Ne. 27: 29
Therefore, ask, and ye shall receive; knock, and it shall be opened unto you; for he that asketh, receiveth; andshall be opened.  unto him that knocketh, it

D&C 4: 7
Ask, and ye shall receive; knock, and it shall be opened unto you. Amen. 

D&C 6: 5
Therefore, if you will ask of me you shall receive; if you will knock it shall be opened unto you. 

D&C 11: 5
Therefore, if you will ask of me you shall receive; if you will knock it shall be opened unto you.

D&C 12: 5
Therefore, if you will ask of me you shall receive; if you will knock it shall be opened unto you. 

D&C 14: 5 
Therefore, if you will ask of me you shall receive; if you will knock it shall be opened unto you. 

D&C 49: 26
Behold, I say unto you, go forth as I have commanded you; repent of all your sins; ask and ye shall receive; knock and it shall be opened unto you.

D&C 66: 9 
Lay your hands upon the sick, and they shall recover. Return not till I, the Lord, shall send you. Be patient in affliction. Ask, and ye shall receive; knock, and it shall be opened unto you. 

D&C 75: 27

Let them ask and they shall receive, knock and it shall be opened unto them, and be made known from on high, even by the Comforter, whither they shall go. 

D&C 88: 63
Draw near unto me and I will draw near unto you; seek me diligently and ye shall find me; ask, and ye shall receive; knock, and it shall be opened unto you. 

Previous to this, I mentioned 10 scriptures, where the Lord tells all whom read, to ask! Asking the Lord, whom knows our every desire both before we speak them and why, still wishes us to demonstrate our Faith by calling upon him! Prayer is essential to the Missionary effort... and because it is, Nephi cautions:

2 Ne. 32: 8
And now, my beloved brethren, I perceive that ye ponder still in your hearts; and it grieveth me that I must speak concerning this thing. For if ye would hearken unto the Spirit which teacheth a man to pray ye would know that ye must pray; for the evil spirit teacheth not a man to pray, but teacheth him that he must not pray

So, the adversary has a tool called "Rationalization" which is not at all rational, but rather foolish... He used it many times in the Scriptures, but, he drives very hard for us all to stay away from calling upon the Lord. Take a moment to study how not calling upon the Lord can stifle our progress... The brother of Jared, prior to building the ships to cross the great waters, failed to call upon the Lord for 4 years, and see what happened:

   And now I proceed with my record; for behold, it came to pass that the Lord did bring Jared and his brethren forth even to that great sea which divideth the lands. And as they came to the sea they pitched their tents; and they called the name of the place Moriancumer; and they dwelt in tents, and dwelt in tents upon the seashore for the space of four years.
   And it came to pass at the end of four years that the Lord came again unto the brother of Jared, and stood in a cloud and talked with him. And for the space of three hours did the Lord talk with the brother of Jared, and chastened him because he remembered not to call upon the name of the Lord.
   And the brother of Jared repented of the evil which he had done, and did call upon the name of the Lord for his brethren who were with him. And the Lord said unto him: I will forgive thee and thy brethren of their sins; but thou shalt not sin any more, for ye shall remember that my Spirit will not always strive with man; wherefore, if ye will sin until ye are fully ripe ye shall be cut off from the presence of the Lord. And these are my thoughts upon the land which I shall give you for your inheritance; for it shall be a land choice above all other lands.(Ether 2: 13-15)

It is there I make my (im sure for the reader) long awaited point on prayer... If we don't pray about the names of whom we wish to help, if we do not call upon him for that much needed revelation, we can't, as Elder Webb stated, tell them that "We have been prayed here." My goodness how great a point does Elder Webb make there.

Some time was turned over to President Robinson, where he expounded on further points, as were found in the last chapter of Matthew.

So, we have the scriptural drive, the spiritual understanding... now we need to understand this;

  And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth.
  Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost:
  Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you alway, evenend of the world. Amen. (Matthew 28: 18-20)
We have the means and motivation to do this work. The dream of doubling the stake and effectively implementing the Ward Council where we are, we can do it. In 3rd Nephi , the same significance is shown. The Savior calls out;
And it came to pass that he spake unto Nephi (for Nephi was among the multitude) and he commanded him that he should come forth.(3rd Nephi 11:18)
And this is my doctrine, and it is the doctrine which the Father hath given unto me; and I bear record of the Father, and the Father beareth record of me, and the Holy Ghost beareth record of the Father and me; and I bear record that the Father commandeth all men, everywhere, to repent and believe in me. 
 And whoso believeth in me, and is baptized, the same shall be saved; and they are they who shall inherit the kingdom of God. 
  And whoso believeth not in me, and is not baptized, shall be damned. 
  Verily, verily, I say unto you, that this is my doctrine, and I bear record of it from the Father; and whoso believeth in me believeth in the Father also; and unto him will the Father bear record of me, for he will visit him with fire and with the Holy Ghost. 
And thus will the Father bear record of me, and the Holy Ghost will bear record unto him of the Father and me; for the Father, and I, and the Holy Ghost are one. (3rd Nephi: 32-36)

So we have the power, the authority and means of moving the work forward! 

Wherefore, my beloved brethren, I know that if ye shall follow the Son, with full purpose of heart, acting no hypocrisy and no deception before God, but with real intent, repenting of your sins, witnessing unto the Father that ye are willing to take upon you the name of Christ, by baptism—yea, by following your Lord and your Savior down into the water, according to his word, behold, then shall ye receive the Holy Ghost; yea, then cometh the baptism of fire and of the Holy Ghost; and then can ye speak with the tongue of angels, and shout praises unto the Holy One of Israel. (2 Nephi 31:13)
We need to keep His commandments, and fear nothing. But if we dont understand why, we may not see;

Wherefore, now after I have spoken these words, if ye cannot understand them it will be because ye ask not, neither do ye knock; wherefore, ye are not brought into the light, but must perish in the dark. 
(2nd Nephi 32: 4)

We couldn't have asked for a better understanding!! So, to know, we must ask, and to ask means we have faith, and if we have faith, we can hope. This Branch has reached its time to rise up above its minimum requirements. The people here want the word;

D&C 123: 12
For there are many yet on the earth among all sects, parties, and denominations, who are blinded by the subtle craftiness of men, whereby they lie in wait to deceive, and who are only kept from the truth because they know not where to find it

In short brethren, this was a great meeting. We have been given all we need, now we need but use it and seek those whom are ready, the ones, that through fervent prayer, will accept this Gospel now! Its my personal Testimony that both members and Elders can be a powerful influence, and say these things in the name of Jesus Christ, Amen.

Friday, December 18, 2009

Some new things!

I have posted some neat, and Spiritually Uplifting videos on the blog and in this post...

 Remember, those getting email notifications can see these things @ http://plainvieweq.blogspot.com.

[ *As always noted, those whom receive e-mail messages concerning new posts to blog; You will need to visit the blog Click Here to watch the videos* ]

The American Revolution was the political upheaval during the last half of the 18th century in which the Thirteen Colonies among the possessions in North America of the Kingdom of Great Britain at first rejected the governance of the Parliament of Great Britain, and later the British monarchy itself, to become the sovereign United States of America. In this period the colonies first rejected the authority of the Parliament to govern them without representation, expelled all royal officials and set up thirteen Provincial Congresses or equivalent to form individual self-governing states. Through representatives sent to the Second Continental Congress, they originally joined together to defend their respective self-governance and manage the armed conflict against the British known as the American Revolutionary War (1775-1783, also American War of Independence). The states ultimately determined collectively that the British monarchy, by acts of tyranny, could no longer legitimately claim their allegiance. They then united to form one nation, breaking away from the British Empire in July 1776 when the Congress issued the Declaration of Independence, rejecting the monarchy on behalf of the United States of America. The war ended with effective American victory in October 1781, followed by formal British abandonment of any claims to the United States with the Treaty of Paris in 1783.

The American Revolution commenced a series of intellectual, political, and social shifts in early American society and government. The development of republicanism in the United States was particularly significant, including installation of a representative government responsible to the will of the people, thus rejecting the prevalent plutocracies of the inherited aristocracies in Europe at the time. However, sharp political debates broke out over the level of democracy desirable in the new government, with a number of Founders fearing mob rule.

The basic issues of national governance were settled with the unanimous ratification in 1788 of the Constitution of the United States (written in 1787), which replaced the relatively weak Articles of Confederation (ratified 1781) that framed the first attempt at a national government. In contrast to the loose confederation, the Constitution established a relatively powerful federated government. The United States Bill of Rights (1791), comprising the first 10 constitutional amendments, quickly followed. It guaranteed many natural rights that were so influential in justifying the revolution, attempting to balance a strong national government with relatively broad personal liberties. The American shift to republicanism, and the gradually increasing democracy, caused an upheaval of the traditional social hierarchy, and created the ethic that has formed a core of political values in the United States. 

Plainview Texas Branch; Lubbock Stake Announcements;

Saturday, December 19th, 2009: Leadership @ Stake Center; Brother & Sister Beardsley Temple Marriage @ 3pm

Thanks to The Plainview Branch!

My Dear Kind, and Gracious Family & Friends ....

It is not every day that a man can look upon his past life... take stock and then plot the future. Its not every day that we spend many good years in Apostasy (11 years for me) then of course, be blessed to return to the Gospel of Jesus Christ. To be given our "Second" or "Third" (Or even "Countless") amounts of tries to keep ourselves on the straight and narrow. The good Lord has seen to me that I've had those chances.

Over the course of those 11 years, I did lots of terrible things to myself and to others. On nearly 5 occasions when I lived in Las Vegas, NV (During the course of October 2005- May 2008) I nearly killed myself with serious abuse of both OTC and Prescribed Drugs. On two known occasions... I had effectively "Shut Down" my liver and Kidneys... left to mingle in the Hospital for weeks on end. Becoming a beast of a man.

But since my Sophomore Year @ Santa Rita High School, (1996-1997) I did not live it, study it, nor seek for it. "It" being "The Gospel". Many times, with many various friends we oft discussed religion.... which was popular amongst my peers. All knew I was a "Mormon" but, they called me a "Jack-Mormon" due to my choice to not live the standards many peers knew all about. I did everything a Mormon should not do, stopping just short of denying the Faith. I knew deep within my heart and soul that it was the Restored and True Church... but rationalized (As Satan sometimes does) that I "Could not be saved" or, "I can't be forgiven".

There is so much past to cover, and there were many many many sins I had to Repent of. Frequently, I felt discouraged and without Hope. My Beloved Grandma and Grandpa Beardsley tried to teach and nourish me the Gospel as loving family should. I offended many, and stole from them as well. Sadly, even from family members;

My life changed in a not so Patriotic way... on 9/11/01 (But the USA did). I was being driven home to my moms house in Tucson. Sad to hear that unfold on radio. Shortly thereafter, on December 22nd 2001 Melissa and I got married by Bishop Jenkins (From the Rincon Stake- Linken Park Ward)  Kids followed.... All things were progressing without incident until I lost all control of my habbits.

I need not divulge all details, but after 7 years, My Brothers in the Lord: Elder Rusk and Philpot snapped me out of all my darkness... and led me to the light. Now, 14 months later..... and a little over 24 hours from now (2:12am CST) I finally will get endowed and sealed to my family in the Lubbock Texas temple. The Elders did not act alone... many others did: They were:

President Porter

President Williams

Brother & Sister Derrick

President Longoria

President Martinez

Brother Calderon

Brother Olmsted

Brother Stone

Brother Davis

Sister Masters

There are a great many to name, but their counsel was greater than knowing their names. The helped change me... period.

To you, and them, and the Branch, My family and I Love You All Dearly.... and when we enter that temple on the 19th, it will be in Praise of our God, and in their Love for the Savior in loving me. I truly do love you brethren. Thank You Again

[ *As always noted, those whom receive e-mail messages concerning new posts to blog; You will need to visit the blog Click Here to watch the videos* ]

Plainview Texas Branch; Lubbock Stake Announcements;

Saturday, December 19th, 2009: Leadership @ Stake Center; Brother & Sister Beardsley Temple Marriage @ 3pm

Friday, December 11, 2009

Come See the Light

This Video Is A MUST WATCH: I have never been so moved by a video in my entire life. It hits home on everything that every Christian ever Spiritually Needs To See & Hear. I can't implore you enough, please, go to the blog and watch this video... I pray it touches you, the music too, the way it has me!!!

[ *As always noted, those whom receive e-mail messages concerning new posts to blog; You will need to visit the blog Click Here to watch the videos* ]

May The Lord Bless You All!

Plainview Texas Branch; Lubbock Stake Announcements;

Sunday, December 6th, 2009: **Fast Sunday**
Sunday, December 6th, 2009: 9:00a.m. PEC

**Sunday, December 6th, 2009: 7:00p.m. First Presidency Christmas Devotional @ Stake Center

Saturday, December 12th, 2009: Branch Social 6:00 p.m.

Sunday, December 13th, 2009: 9:00a.m. PEC

"In The Spirit Of Christmas" : New Mormon Messages Video

[ *As always noted, those whom receive e-mail messages concerning new posts to blog; You will need to visit the blog Click Here to watch the videos* ]

We all, too frequently get lost in the rush, the hustle, the busy and get buying season, and give little thought or heed to its true underlying message, "The Spirit Of Christmas" ... Enjoy brethren!

Plainview Texas Branch; Lubbock Stake Announcements;

Saturday, December 12th, 2009: Branch Social 6:00 p.m.

Sunday, December 13th, 2009: 9:00a.m. PEC

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

New, And Excellent Videos (Found At Bottom Of Blog)

[ *As always noted, those whom receive e-mail messages concerning new posts to blog; You will need to visit the blog Click Here to watch the videos* ]

Brethren, It never fails... my friend in the Lord, Seth Adam Smith, has created some wonderful, riveting videos that stir the Spirit... that move upon us the desire to take our conviction to the next level. It is for this cause that I have placed new videos on the blog (Scroll ALL the way down).

One of which hits the highlights of Elder Neil Maxwell's very first talk as an Apostle of the Lord, "O Divine Redeemer". Please, take the time to watch them.... you won't reget it at all.

Plainview Texas Branch; Lubbock Stake Announcements;

Sunday, December 6th, 2009: **Fast Sunday**
Sunday, December 6th, 2009: 9:00a.m. PEC

**Sunday, December 6th, 2009: 7:00p.m. First Presidency Christmas Devotional @ Stake Center

Saturday, December 12th, 2009: Branch Social 6:00 p.m.

Sunday, December 13th, 2009: 9:00a.m. PEC

Sunday December 13th, 2009: Chapter 47: “Praise to the Man”: Latter-day Prophets Bear Witness of the Prophet Joseph Smith

[ *As always noted, those whom receive e-mail messages concerning new posts to blog; You will need to visit the blog Click Here to watch the videos* ]

Chapter 47: “Praise to the Man”: Latter-day Prophets Bear Witness of the Prophet Joseph Smith,  

Related Scriptures: 2 Nephi 3:6–19; 27:6–26; 3 Nephi 21:9–11; D&C 1:17; 5:9–10; 21:1–6

Teachings of Presidents of the Church: Joseph Smith, (2007),541–57
“The Prophet Joseph Smith … was called of God, by the voice of God Himself, to open up the dispensation of the Gospel to the world for the last time.” (Joseph F. Smith)

From the Life of Joseph Smith

Following the death of the Prophet Joseph Smith and his brother Hyrum, the members of the Quorum of the Twelve who had been on missionary journeys in the United States returned as quickly as possible to Nauvoo. The members of the Twelve called a meeting of the Saints for August 8, 1844, at which Brigham Young, the President of the Quorum of the Twelve, spoke. As he did so, an extraordinary event occurred that was witnessed by many Saints.

President Young was miraculously made to appear and sound like Joseph Smith. “If Joseph had risen from the dead and again spoken in their hearing,” George Q. Cannon recalled, “the effect could not have been more startling than it was to many present at that meeting. It was the voice of Joseph himself; and not only was it the voice of Joseph which was heard; but it seemed in the eyes of the people as though it was the very person of Joseph which stood before them. A more wonderful and miraculous event than was wrought that day in the presence of that congregation we never heard of. The Lord gave His people a testimony that left no room for doubt as to who was the man He had chosen to lead them.”1

At the conclusion of this meeting, the Saints voted to have the Twelve preside over them. A little over three years later, in December 1847, the First Presidency was again organized, with Brigham Young sustained as the President of the Church.

Since the time of Brigham Young, each of the prophets who has presided over the Church has testified of the remarkable mission of the Prophet Joseph Smith. Joseph Smith was chosen in the Council in Heaven to be the great prophet and seer of the latter days. His mission was so important that it was foretold by ancient prophets, including the Old Testament prophet Joseph, who was sold into Egypt. Joseph of Egypt was himself a seer, and he prophesied at length about Joseph Smith:

“A seer shall the Lord my God raise up, who shall be a choice seer unto the fruit of my loins. … And his name shall be called after me; and it shall be after the name of his father. And he shall be like unto me; for the thing, which the Lord shall bring forth by his hand, by the power of the Lord shall bring my people unto salvation” (2 Nephi 3:6, 15; see also 2 Nephi 3:6–22).2
In December 1834, Joseph Smith Sr. gave the Prophet Joseph a blessing, confirming that he was the seer of whom Joseph of old had prophesied: “I bless thee with the blessings of thy fathers Abraham, Isaac and Jacob; and even the blessings of thy father Joseph, the son of Jacob. Behold, he looked after his posterity in the last days … ; he sought diligently to know from whence the son should come who should bring forth the word of the Lord, by which they might be enlightened and brought back to the true fold, and his eyes beheld thee, my son; his heart rejoiced and his soul was satisfied, and he said, … ‘From among my seed, scattered with the Gentiles, shall a choice seer arise … , whose heart shall meditate great wisdom, whose intelligence shall circumscribe and comprehend the deep things of God, and whose mouth shall utter the law of the just.’ … Thou shalt hold the keys of this ministry, even the presidency of this church, both in time and in eternity.”3

Through Joseph Smith, the choice seer of the latter days, the doctrines and saving ordinances of the gospel were revealed, and the true Church of Jesus Christ was once again established on the earth. The testimonies of ancient and modern prophets join together to proclaim that Joseph Smith was the instrument through whom God restored the fulness of the gospel for the blessing of “the whole human family, from eternity to eternity.”4

Testimonies of Latter-day Prophets

Joseph Smith was foreordained to his prophetic calling.

President Brigham Young: “It was decreed in the councils of eternity, long before the foundations of the earth were laid, that [Joseph Smith] should be the man, in the last dispensation of this world, to bring forth the word of God to the people and receive the fullness of the keys and power of the Priesthood of the Son of God. The Lord had his eye upon him, and upon his father, and upon his father’s father, and upon their progenitors clear back to Abraham, and from Abraham to the flood, from the flood to Enoch and from Enoch to Adam. He has watched that family and that blood as it has circulated from its fountain to the birth of that man. [Joseph Smith] was foreordained in eternity to preside over this last dispensation.”5
President Joseph Fielding Smith: “Joseph Smith was chosen to stand at the head of the work of the Lord in the last days, and his work was assigned to him through the fore-knowledge of our Eternal Father in the eternities before he was born. He came in the spirit of Elias to prepare the way for the coming of our Lord. No prophet since the days of Adam, save, of course, our Redeemer, has been given a greater mission.”6
President Ezra Taft Benson: “To get a vision of the magnitude of the Prophet’s earthly mission we must view it in the light of eternity. He was among ‘the noble and great ones’ whom Abraham described as follows:
“ ‘Now the Lord had shown unto me, Abraham, the intelligences that were organized before the world was; and among all these there were many of the noble and great ones; and God saw these souls that they were good, and he stood in the midst of them, and he said: These I will make my rulers; for he stood among those that were spirits, and he saw that they were good; and he said unto me: Abraham, thou art one of them; thou wast chosen before thou wast born.’ (Abraham 3:22–23.)

“So it was with Joseph Smith. He too was there. He too sat in council with the noble and great ones. Occupying a prominent place of honor and distinction he unquestionably helped in the planning and execution of the great work of the Lord to ‘bring to pass the immortality and eternal life of man,’ the salvation of all our Father’s children [Moses 1:39]. His mission had had, and was to have, impact on all who had come to earth; all who then dwelt on earth and the millions yet unborn. …

“The Prophet Joseph Smith was not only ‘one of the noble and great ones,’ but he gave and continues to give attention to important matters here on the earth even today from the realms above. For in the eyes of the Lord … it is all one great eternal program in which the Prophet Joseph plays an important role—all through the eternal priesthood and authority of God.”7

Joseph Smith’s First Vision is a fundamental part of our individual testimonies.

President Joseph F. Smith: “The greatest event that has ever occurred in the world since the resurrection of the Son of God from the tomb, and his ascension on high, was the coming of the Father and of the Son to that boy Joseph Smith, to prepare the way for the laying of the foundation of [God’s] kingdom—not the kingdom of man—never more to cease nor to be overturned.

“Having accepted this truth, I find it easy to accept of every other truth that he enunciated and declared during his mission … in the world. He never taught a doctrine that was not true. He never practiced a doctrine that he was not commanded to practice. He never advocated error. He was not deceived. He saw; he heard; he did as he was commanded to do; and, therefore, God is responsible for the work accomplished by Joseph Smith—not Joseph Smith. The Lord is responsible for it, and not man.”8
President Heber J. Grant: “Either Joseph Smith did see God and did converse with Him, and God Himself did introduce Jesus Christ to the boy Joseph Smith, and Jesus Christ did tell Joseph Smith that he would be the instrument in the hands of God of establishing again upon the earth the true Gospel of Jesus Christ—or Mormonism, so-called, is a myth. And Mormonism is not a myth! It is the power of God unto salvation; it is the Church of Jesus Christ, established under His direction, and all the disbelief of the world cannot change the fundamental facts connected with the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.”9
President Howard W. Hunter: “I am grateful for my membership in the Church; and my testimony of its divinity hinges upon the simple story of the lad under the trees kneeling and receiving heavenly visitors—not one God, but two separate, individual personages, the Father and the Son, revealing again to the earth the personages of the Godhead. My faith and testimony hinge upon this simple story, for if it is not true, Mormonism falls. If it is true—and I bear witness that it is—it is one of the greatest single events in all history.”10
President David O. McKay: “The appearing of the Father and the Son to Joseph Smith is the foundation of this Church. Therein lies the secret of its strength and vitality. This is true, and I bear witness to it. That one revelation answers all the queries of science regarding God and His divine personality. Don’t you see what that means? What God is, is answered. His relation to His children is clear. His interest in humanity through authority delegated to man is apparent. The future of the work is assured. These and other glorious truths are clarified by that glorious First Vision.”11
President Ezra Taft Benson: “The First Vision of the Prophet Joseph Smith is bedrock theology to the Church. The adversary knows this and has attacked Joseph Smith’s credibility from the day he announced the visitation of the Father and the Son. … You should always bear testimony to the truth of the First Vision. Joseph Smith did see the Father and the Son. They conversed with him as he said they did. It is the most glorious event since the resurrection of our Lord. Any leader who, without reservation, cannot declare his testimony that God and Jesus Christ appeared to Joseph Smith can never be a true leader, a true shepherd. If we do not accept this truth, … if we have not received a witness about this great revelation, we cannot inspire faith in those whom we lead.”12
President George Albert Smith: “When the boy prophet, in the woods of Palmyra, saw the Father and the Son, and realized that they were indeed personages, that they could hear and reply to what he said, it began a new era in this world, and laid a foundation for the faith of the children of men. They could now pray to our Father in heaven and realize that he could hear and answer their prayers, that there was a connection between the heavens and the earth.”13

The Prophet Joseph Smith was taught by God and angels.

President John Taylor: “Who was Joseph Smith? The Book of Mormon tells us he was of the seed of Joseph that was sold into Egypt, and hence he was selected as Abraham was to fulfil a work upon the earth. God chose this young man. He was ignorant of letters as the world has it, but the most profoundly learned and intelligent man that I ever met in my life, and I have traveled hundreds of thousands of miles, been on different continents and mingled among all classes and creeds of people, yet I have never met a man so intelligent as he was. And where did he get his intelligence from? Not from books; not from the logic or science or philosophy of the day, but he obtained it through the revelations of God made known to him through the medium of the everlasting gospel.”14
President Wilford Woodruff: “I have never read anywhere, that I know of, of the same power manifested in any dispensation to the children of men, which was manifested to the Prophet of God in the organization of this Church, when the Father and the Son both appeared to the Prophet Joseph in answer to his prayer, and when the Father said, ‘This is My Beloved Son; behold Him; hear ye Him.’ This was an important revelation, which has never been manifested in the same manner in any dispensation of the world, that God has given concerning His work. So in its organization, the Prophet of God was administered to by the angels of heaven. They were his teachers, they were his instructors, and all that he did, and all that he performed from the commencement, from that day to the day of his martyrdom, was by the revelation of Jesus Christ.”15
President Lorenzo Snow: “Joseph Smith, whom God chose to establish this work, was poor and uneducated, and belonged to no popular denomination of Christians. He was a mere boy, honest, full of integrity. … Like Moses he felt incompetent and unqualified for the task, to stand forth as a religious reformer, in a position the most unpopular, to battle against opinions and creeds which had stood for ages, having had the sanction of men, the most profound in theological obedience; but God had called him to deliver the poor and honest-hearted of all nations from their spiritual and temporal thraldom [bondage]. And God promised him that whosoever should receive and obey his message, and whosoever would receive baptism for remission of sins, with honesty of purpose, should receive divine manifestations, should receive the Holy Ghost, should receive the same gospel and blessings as were promised and obtained through the gospel, as preached by the ancient apostles, and this message, this promise, was to be in force wherever and to whomsoever it should be carried by the Elders, God’s authorized messengers. So said Joseph Smith, the uneducated, the unsophisticated, the plain, simple, honest boy.”16
President Harold B. Lee: “Joseph Smith, the young man not schooled in the theologies of the day, not schooled in the high schools of learning of his day, … [was] one who could be submissive to the teachings and whisperings of the Spirit. Joseph Smith could not have established this Church. He could not have brought forth the work of the Lord, the Book of Mormon. They may scoff at the Prophet Joseph Smith as a man. They may question how this Church began, but here the thing stands as a monument—the Book of Mormon itself. Joseph, the man, could not have done this, but Joseph, actuated by the power of Almighty God, could and did perform the miraculous service of bringing forth the kingdom out of obscurity in the restored gospel of Jesus Christ.”17
President David O. McKay: “It is of Joseph Smith, not only as a great man, but as an inspired servant of the Lord that I desire to speak on this occasion. Indeed, Joseph Smith’s greatness consists in divine inspiration. …

“ ‘How knoweth this man letters, having never learned?’ questioned the Jews as they marveled at the wisdom of Jesus [John 7:15]. So may we repeat the question regarding Joseph Smith, as we consider his outstanding accomplishments during the brief span of [fourteen] years between the organization of the Church and his martyrdom; as we contemplate the perfect harmony of the Restored Gospel with that of the primitive Church established by Jesus and his Apostles; as we note his penetrating insight into principles and doctrines; and as we see the incomparable plan and efficiency of the Church, established by the inspiration of the Christ whose name it bears. The answer to the question ‘Whence hath this man wisdom?’ is given in the stirring stanza:

“Praise to the man who communed with Jehovah!
Jesus anointed that Prophet and Seer.
Blessed to open the last dispensation,
Kings shall extol him, and nations revere.”18

President Howard W. Hunter: “We praise [Joseph Smith] for his capacity to commune not only with Jehovah but also with other personages of heaven. So many visited, gave keys, and tutored that ‘choice seer’ raised up in the latter days. … We praise Joseph Smith, too, for his diligence and capacity to translate and to receive hundreds of pages of revealed scripture. He was the revealing conduit. Through him, it has been estimated, more marvelous pages of scripture passed than through any other human in history.”19

The Prophet Joseph Smith was called of God to open the final dispensation and restore the fulness of the gospel.

President Spencer W. Kimball: “I bear witness to the world today that more than a century and a half ago the iron ceiling was shattered; the heavens were once again opened, and since that time revelations have been continuous.

“That new day dawned when [a] soul with passionate yearning prayed for divine guidance. A spot of hidden solitude was found, knees were bent, a heart was humbled, pleadings were voiced, and a light brighter than the noonday sun illuminated the world—the curtain never to be closed again.

“A young lad … , Joseph Smith, of incomparable faith, broke the spell, shattered the ‘heavens of iron’ and reestablished communication. Heaven kissed the earth, light dissipated the darkness, and God again spoke to man, revealing anew ‘his secret unto his servants the prophets.’ (Amos 3:7.) A new prophet was in the land and through him God set up his kingdom, never to be destroyed nor left to another people—a kingdom that will stand forever.

“The foreverness of this kingdom and the revelations which it brought into existence are absolute realities. Never again will the sun go down; never again will all men prove totally unworthy of communication with their Maker. Never again will God be hidden from his children on the earth. Revelation is here to remain.”20
President Gordon B. Hinckley: “The story of Joseph’s life is the story of a miracle. He was born in poverty. He was reared in adversity. He was driven from place to place, falsely accused, and illegally imprisoned. He was murdered at the age of 38. Yet in the brief space of 20 years preceding his death, he accomplished what none other has accomplished in an entire lifetime. He translated and published the Book of Mormon, a volume which has since been retranslated into scores of languages and which is accepted by millions across the earth as the word of God. The revelations he received and other writings he produced are likewise scripture to these millions. The total in book pages constitutes approximately twice the volume of the entire New Testament of the Bible, and it all came through one man in the space of a few years. In this same period he established an organization which … has withstood every adversity and challenge and is as effective today in governing a worldwide membership … as it was in governing a membership of 300 in 1830. There are those doubters who have strained to explain this remarkable organization as the product of the times in which he lived. That organization, I submit, was as peculiar, as unique, and as remarkable then as it is today. It was not the product of the times. It came as a revelation from God. …

“Within the space of that 20 years preceding his death, Joseph Smith set in motion a program for carrying the gospel to the nations of the earth. I marvel at the boldness with which he moved. Even in the infant days of the Church, in times of dark adversity, men were called to leave homes and families, to cross the sea, to proclaim the Restoration of the gospel of Jesus Christ. The Prophet’s mind, his vision encompassed the entire earth.
“For our general conference meetings twice each year, members gather in North, Central, and South America; in the British Isles and Africa; in the nations of Europe; in the islands and continents of the Pacific; and in the ancient lands of Asia. These are the flowering of the vision of Joseph Smith, the prophet of God. He was indeed a mighty seer who saw this day and greater days yet to come as the work of the Lord moves over the earth.”21
President Joseph F. Smith: “Whatever else the Prophet Joseph Smith may have done or may have been, we must not forget the fact that he was the man out of the millions of human beings that inhabited this earth at the time—the only man, that was called of God, by the voice of God Himself, to open up the dispensation of the Gospel to the world for the last time; and this is the great thing to bear in mind, that he was called of God to introduce the Gospel to the world, to restore the holy priesthood to the children of men, to organize the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in the world, and to restore all the ordinances of the Gospel, for the salvation not only of the living, but also of the dead, and he was called to this mission by God Himself. …

“… There have been other prophets, and great prophets, too, who have had angels minister to them, and others who have seen the finger of God, and who have been favored more or less; but where is the circumstance, and who is the man unto whom the Father and the Savior have appeared together in person, and declared themselves unto him? Where is that man? Nowhere that history records, except the Prophet Joseph Smith, and that while he was a youth. He was only a youth, comparatively in fact, when he was martyred, being only 38 years of age.

“… The Prophet Joseph Smith … communed with the Father and the Son and spoke with angels, and they visited him, and conferred blessings and gifts and keys of power upon him that were never before bestowed upon any human being other than the Son of God Himself. No man yet that ever lived upon the earth had all the keys of the Gospel and of the dispensations bestowed upon him as were bestowed upon the Prophet Joseph Smith in the temple at Kirtland when he was visited there by the Son of God, by Moses, and by Elias and Elijah, and when the heavens were opened unto him and he received the keys of power and authority by which he could lay the foundation of the work of God, broad and deep, to cover the earth with the knowledge of God, and with His power and glory.”22

The work of Joseph Smith blesses those who have lived on the earth, those who are now living, and those who will yet be born.

President Joseph F. Smith: “The work in which Joseph Smith was engaged was not confined to this life alone, but it pertains as well to the life to come and to the life that has been. In other words, it relates to those that have lived upon the earth, to those that are living and to those that shall come after us. It is not something which relates to man only while he tabernacles in the flesh, but to the whole human family from eternity to eternity. Consequently, as I have said, Joseph Smith is held in reverence, his name is honored; tens of thousands of people thank God in their heart and from the depths of their souls for the knowledge the Lord has restored to the earth through him, and therefore they speak well of him and bear testimony of his worth. And this is not confined to a village, nor to a State, nor to a nation, but this extends to every nation, kindred, tongue and people where the Gospel, up to the present time, has been preached.”23
President Joseph Fielding Smith: “In the same way that I know Jesus is the Christ–and that is by revelation from the Holy Spirit—I know that Joseph Smith is and was and everlastingly shall be a prophet of God.
“I revere and honor his holy name. With his brother, my grandfather, Patriarch Hyrum Smith, he sealed his testimony with his blood in Carthage Jail. And I, for one, want to be an instrument in the Lord’s hands of letting the ends of the earth know that salvation is again available because the Lord raised up a mighty seer in this day to reestablish his kingdom on earth.

“In a spirit of testimony and thanksgiving, I close with these inspired words from the Doctrine and Covenants: ‘Joseph Smith, the Prophet and Seer of the Lord, has done more, save Jesus only, for the salvation of men in this world, than any other man that ever lived in it.’ (D&C 135:3.)”24
President Gordon B. Hinckley, speaking in Carthage, Illinois, on June 26, 1994, in honor of the 150th anniversary of the Prophet Joseph Smith’s martyrdom: “The glorious work, begun by him who was killed at Carthage, has grown in a miraculous and wonderful way. … This marvelous work, which has sprung from the prophetic calling of the boy of Palmyra, has ‘come forth out of the wilderness of darkness,’ and is shining ‘forth fair as the moon, clear as the sun, and terrible as an army with banners,’ as the Prophet prayed it would (D&C 109:73). …

“We pause in reverence here this evening. We reflect on the miracle of the life begun in the green hills of Vermont and ended here in the jail of Carthage. That life was not long. But the fruits of that life have been something almost beyond comprehension.

“This great cause of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has been more precious than life itself to thousands upon thousands who have died in its service. Witnesses have gone into the world by the hundreds of thousands to bear testimony of Joseph Smith’s calling as a Prophet of God. The holy priesthood restored through him has fallen as a mantle upon uncounted numbers of men of integrity and virtue who have been clothed with this divine power. The Book of Mormon is going across the earth as another testament of the Lord Jesus Christ.

“To quote a truism uttered long ago and in different circumstances, ‘the blood of the martyrs has become the seed of the Church.’ The testimonies which were sealed here in these very precincts, on this ground where we meet tonight, that hot and sultry day 150 years ago, now nurture the faith of people around the world.”25


1. George Q. Cannon, “Joseph Smith, the Prophet,” Juvenile Instructor, Oct. 29, 1870, pp. 174–75.

2. Another account of ancient Joseph’s prophecies is given in the Joseph Smith Translation of the Bible, Genesis 50:24–36.

3. Joseph Smith Sr., blessing given to Joseph Smith on Dec. 9, 1834, in Kirtland, Ohio; in Patriarchal Blessings 1833–2005, Church Archives, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, Salt Lake City, Utah.

4. Joseph F. Smith, Deseret News, Mar. 7, 1883, p. 98; punctuation modernized.

5. Brigham Young, Deseret News, Oct. 26, 1859, p. 266.

6. Joseph Fielding Smith, “The Historical Background of the Prophet Joseph Smith,” Improvement Era, Dec. 1941, p. 717.

7. Ezra Taft Benson, “Joseph Smith—Man of Destiny,” address given on Dec. 3, 1967, in Logan, Utah, pp.
3–4; in Annual Joseph Smith Memorial Sermons (no date); punctuation and capitalization modernized; paragraph divisions altered.

8. Joseph F. Smith, Deseret Evening News, July 14, 1917, p. 9; punctuation modernized; paragraph divisions altered.

9. Heber J. Grant, “Some Things We Must Believe,” Improvement Era, Sept. 1938, p. 519.

10. Howard W. Hunter, “Joseph—The Seer,” address given on Dec. 15, 1960, in Logan, Utah; in Annual Joseph Smith Memorial Sermons (1966), 2:197–98; spelling, punctuation, capitalization, and grammar modernized.

11. David O. McKay, “Joseph Smith—Prophet, Seer, and Revelator,” Improvement Era, Jan. 1942, p. 54.

12. Ezra Taft Benson, address given on May 20, 1984, in Salt Lake City, Utah, p. 2; Ezra Taft Benson, Addresses 1943–89, Church Archives.

13. George Albert Smith, in Conference Report, Apr. 1917, p. 37.

14. John Taylor, Deseret News, June 2, 1880, p. 275.

15. Wilford Woodruff, Millennial Star, Apr. 28, 1890, p. 258; capitalization modernized.

16. Lorenzo Snow, Deseret News, Apr. 13, 1870, pp. 115–16.
17. Harold B. Lee, Teachings of Harold B. Lee, ed. Clyde J. Williams (1996), p. 372.

18. David O. McKay, “The Prophet Joseph Smith—On Doctrine and Organization,” address given on Dec.
 10, 1944, in Logan, Utah; in Annual Joseph Smith Memorial Sermons (1966), 1:9, 14; punctuation and capitalization modernized.

19. Howard W. Hunter, “The Temple of Nauvoo,” Ensign, Sept. 1994, p. 63; paragraph divisions altered.

20. Spencer W. Kimball, in Conference Report, Apr. 1977, pp. 114–15; or Ensign, May 1977, p. 77.

21. Gordon B. Hinckley, “Joseph Smith Jr.—Prophet of God, Mighty Servant,” Ensign, Dec. 2005, pp. 4–6.

22. Joseph F. Smith, in “Joseph, the Prophet,” Salt Lake Herald Church and Farm Supplement, Jan. 12, 1895, pp. 210–11; capitalization modernized.

23. Joseph F. Smith, Deseret News, Mar. 7, 1883, p. 98; punctuation modernized.

24. Joseph Fielding Smith, “The First Prophet of the Last Dispensation,” Ensign, Aug. 1971, p. 7.

25. Gordon B. Hinckley, “Joseph, the Seer,” Ensign, Sept. 1994, p. 71; paragraph divisions altered.

Plainview Texas Branch; Lubbock Stake Announcements;

Saturday, December 12th, 2009: Branch Social 6:00 p.m.

Sunday, December 13th, 2009: 9:00a.m. PEC

Saturday, December 5, 2009

The Final Vacancy In Elders Quorum Filled

Hey there brethren, I wanted to let you all know briefly, and I may not say it enough, but thank you for the support, the love, the counsel, edification you have all brought to me. I love you brethren. Your examples and words of kindness and guidance will never be forgotten.

One member whom I must mention who has helped me out without thought of reward, is our new Elders Quorum Secretary. I have ever been filled with his love as I see my family merge into a realistic love between us brethren in the Branch here in Plainview. I do mean a real family like love. My kids, as well as Melissa and I have happily watched as you wonderful Brethren have taken us under your wing... thanks!

Brother Olmsted, with this being said, we want to recognize you for your wisdom and guidance. We love you and want to recognize you for all your devotion to the work of the Lord. A vacancy filled is another brain we can all (Brain)Storm with!

Plainview Texas Branch; Lubbock Stake Announcements;

Sunday, December 6th, 2009: **Fast Sunday**
Sunday, December 6th, 2009: 9:00a.m. PEC

**Sunday, December 6th, 2009: 7:00p.m. First Presidency Christmas Devotional @ Stake Center

Saturday, December 12th, 2009: Branch Social 6:00 p.m.

Sunday, December 13th, 2009: 9:00a.m. PEC