Sunday, April 21, 2013


Today was the day! I gave my farewell talk. Ah.

Thank you so so so much to everyone who came and supported me. It meant so much to me, you are amazing. Thank you.

For the few who weren't able to make it i'm going to post my talk. It's pretty long, so I'm going to break it up into 3 parts. Keep coming back each day to finish it. ;)

Brothers and sisters, I now turn to another matter—namely, missionary service… As President Monson announced that young men may now serve at the age of 18, my mind was running so quickly I was barely able to comprehend what he said next. As we have prayerfully pondered the age at which young men may begin their missionary service, we have also given consideration to the age at which a young woman might serve. Today I am pleased to announce that able, worthy young women who have the desire to serve may be recommended for missionary service beginning at age 19, instead of age 21.

So brothers and sisters, here I am! It’s been a long time coming, when I received my mission call back in December I thought the latest I’d be sent into the field would be March, boy was I wrong. I have been called to the Tahiti, Papeete mission, and I’ll be headed to the Provo MTC along with 5 sisters and 2 brothers on May 1st

While the age change allowed me the wonderful blessing of serving my mission, it also gave me an opportunity I didn’t expect to have for quite a few years. In February I was able to receive my endowments in the Logan Temple, I think that day was more exciting than opening my actual call.

Temples are literally houses of God. They are sacred places of peace, and in them we are able to make covenants required for our salvation, not only for ourselves, but in behalf of family members who have passed without such opportunity. These covenants are the center of the gospel. Because of their importance it’s crucial to prepare yourself to enter the temple, not only for your first time, but for every time you may go after because preparing to go to the temple is a process, not a one-time event.

We start personally preparing in our youth, most directly to enter the temple in order to participate in baptisms for the dead. A former temple president taught, “There’s no such thing as a crash course for going to the temple. A person needs to have a testimony. If he or she has a testimony of God’s eternal plan he won’t be satisfied with anything but having the temple be a part of his or her life.”

The key to preparing for the temple is to gain a testimony. Once you have a testimony established, even if it’s small, you can begin to nurture it and feel confident in participating in temple ordinances. Testimonies, as Elder Hales taught, “…come when there is willingness to serve where we are called. They come when a decision is made to strive to be obedient. Testimonies come during efforts to help, lift, and strengthen others. They come from prayer and from studying the scriptures and applying them in our lives. Whatever our circumstances, there seem to be moments in each of our lives when we can be given the knowledge that God lives and that Jesus is the Christ. There is no greater search in life that we can embark upon than the quest to gain a testimony of the truth.”

It’s important to remember Alma’s words when he teaches, “behold, if ye will awake and arouse your faculties, even to an experiment upon my words, and exercise a particle of faith, yea, even if ye can no more than a desire to believe, let this desire work in you, even until ye believe in a manner that ye can give place for a portion of my words.”

A testimony is the seed of any spiritual progression. It is the key to eternal life, being able to live with our families in the Celestial kingdom, to becoming more like Christ our Savior, and ultimately having a fulfilling and happy life on Earth. Once our testimony has grown enough to allow us into the holy temples, we are ready to take our spiritual preparation to the next step. Many young men and women start preparing to serve missions or preparing for marriage. Our focus on temple preparation changes to preparing to receive our personal endowments. Elder James E Talmage, in The House of the Lord, tells us the covenants we make in the temple include the “promise to observe the law of strict virtue and chastity, to be charitable, benevolent, tolerant and pure; to devote both talent and material means to the spread of truth and the uplifting of the race; to maintain devotion to the cause of truth; and to seek in every way to contribute to the great preparation that the earth may be made ready to receive her King—the Lord Jesus Christ.

to be continued....


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