[MUSIC- "AWAKE AND ARISE"]
(SINGING) Awake and arise, oh ye slumbering nations! The heavens have opened their portals again. The last and the greatest of all dispensations has burst like a dawn o'er the children of men!
The dream of the poet, the crown of the ages, the time which the prophets of Israel foretold, that glorious day only dreamed by the sages is yours-- Is yours-- Is yours-- Is yours-- Is yours, O ye slumbering nations; behold! We'll sing and we'll shout with the armies of heaven, hosanana, hosanana to God and the Lamb! Let glory to them be the highest be given, henceforth and forever, amen and amen.
Oh, lift up your voices in song and in story. Let banner of peace in our lands be unfurled, for truth, heaven born, in its beauty and glory is marching triumphantly over the world.
The knowledge and power of God are expanding; the veil o'er the earth is beginning to burst.
Two hundred years ago on a beautiful spring morning in 1820, young Joseph Smith, seeking to know which church to join, went out into the woods to pray near his home in upstate New York, USA. [NON-ENGLISH SPEECH]
"We testify that those who prayerfully study the message of the Restoration and act in faith will be blessed to gain their own witness of its divinity and of its purpose to prepare the world." [NON-ENGLISH SPEECH]
[MUSIC- "HARK, ALL YE NATIONS!"]
(SINGING) Hark, all ye nations! Hear heaven's voice through every land that all may rejoice! Angels of glory shout the refrain: truth is restored again!
Searching in darkness, nations have wept; watching for dawn, their vigil they've kept. All now rejoice; the long night is o'er. Truth is on earth once more!
Oh, how glorious from the throne above shines the gospel light of truth and love. Bright as the sun, this heavenly ray lights every land today.
Chosen by God to serve him below, to every land and people we'll go, standing for truth with fervent accord, teaching his holy word. Oh, how glorious from the throne above shines the gospel light of truth and love. Bright as the sun, this heavenly ray lights every land today.
Come, come ye saints and shout the refrain: truth is restored again!
Hi, everybody. I'm Arianna. And I'm Aaron. Thank you for joining us for our young adult Face to Face event. We're here with Elder Rasband and Sister Rasband. Because of COVID-19 travel restrictions, we were meant to be in the Sacred Grove in Palmyra, New York, but instead we here in Goshen, Utah, on the set replica of ancient Jerusalem. In Jerusalem and the regions round about, Jesus taught the gospel, called Apostles, and established His church. But after His death and Resurrection and the death of the Apostles, the church He established became lost from the earth. Almost 1,800 years later, a young man--Joseph Smith--had a question for God and went to the woods to pray. His experience eventually led to Jesus Christ's church being restored to the earth again. Tonight, Elder and Sister Rasband will be answering questions you have submitted about this Restoration and the new proclamation to the world. Actually, this question started--this discussion started--a couple months ago when Elder Rasband asked us how the restored gospel helps us deal with the challenges of today's world. Some of your responses can be seen on the Face to Face website. We will now have an opening prayer offered by Emmanuel [? Combi ?] from Gabon, Africa.
Dear Heavenly Father, we're grateful to be here at this Face to Face event with Elder Rasband and Sister Rasband. We pray that their teaching will bring us close to Christ. And we pray for those families that lost their loved ones to COVID-19 that they may feel peace at this time. We are thankful for the Prophet Joseph Smith and his faithfulness to ask God which church is true. We're thankful for his decision to bring us all together. We say these things in the name of Jesus Christ, amen. Great. The song we heard before the prayer was "Hark, All Ye Nations!," sung by Conlon Bonner and Yaphet Bustos and accompanied by CJ Madsen and Charles Ferry. Exactly. So now before we begin our questions, Elder Rasband and Sister Rasband, would you like to share some opening remarks? Thank you.
Brothers and sisters, young adults all over the world, how grateful we are to be with you tonight. And I was so grateful for that opening prayer. Thank you, Emmanuel. There are a lot of people struggling and mourning with a worldwide pandemic and other natural and man-made disasters. And so as we come together tonight, please know, all of you who are in harm's way, that we love you and that you're in our prayers and we will, all united throughout the world, pray for each other that we have a happy outcome--every one of us--to these various pandemics and crises about us. Now, I want to take this moment also to thank those who have participated here in Goshen. It's no small miracle that we're even broadcasting to you tonight: The power is out in the city next door. We're running off of generator. And so we ourselves are participating by faith tonight to be with you. I want to thank these wonderful musicians, those who offer the prayers, our wonderful young hosts, our technical crew, and everyone who has participated to put this wonderful Face to Face broadcast together. Sister Rasband and I are very humbled by the assignment of our senior leaders to be with you tonight. We also pray for an interest in your prayers. If I may introduce us just a little bit, Elder Rasband and I have been married 47 years. And our wonderful five children married fabulous spouses, and they've given us 28 grandchildren with one on the way. And believe it or not, we have our first great-grandchild. Now, does she look like a great-grandmother? Answer me that question. She does not. In fact, the parents of that great-grandchild are here with us tonight as part of our young adults from our family. Well, as we mentioned we are in Goshen, Utah, in the beautiful set of ancient Jerusalem. If we were actually in the Holy Land, we would be in the Court of Women right here in this set, and that would be a wonderful part of the temple complex. If we were in Jerusalem, near this place Jesus encountered a woman who was taken in adultery. He saw her as a daughter of God and showed great mercy and compassion to her. And right through those great big doors is where the temple would actually be. We don't actually have the old Jerusalem temple here, but use your imagination now, and join with us here at this beautiful set as we go through our Face to Face broadcast. At the temple, the Savior was presented as a babe, and He visited there when he was 12 years old. He taught repeatedly at the temple. The temple was a great part of his life, and it can be central to our lives as well. Now I want to testify to all of you, both here in our small audience and throughout the world, that that same Jesus Christ who walked through the streets of the Holy Land and raised the dead, healed the afflicted, gave sight to those who were blind, did in fact come to the earth again in what we celebrate as the restoration of the gospel of Jesus Christ. I testify to all of you that is true and that we know--and you know with your own testimonies--that Jesus Christ and our Father in Heaven appeared to that boy, Joseph Smith. Now, last April at general conference, President Nelson introduced the Restoration Proclamation, and we've been having a wonderful season from last April till now enjoying the blessings and the benefit of that proclamation. We've been reading your questions for months, as you explained, and there have been thousands of them. Now, of course we're not going to have the time to get through very many of them tonight, but we have selected some that will be applicable to many of the questions that have been asked. Now, we're going to use scriptures, and we're going to use some quotes of the living prophets. So if you have your scriptures, feel free to follow along when Sister Rasband and I give you scriptural references. Now, Aaron and Arianna, I think we're ready to go. Let's start. Awesome. Thank you so much for that. That was wonderful. So our first question: we know, as you guys just said, you want to focus on the new proclamation, and many young adults have questions about how it came to be. Specifically a young adult from Chile asked, "What can you tell us about the process that brought the prophets, seers, and revelators to declare this marvelous proclamation?" Thank you. What a great question. And this is a perfect way to start our Face to Face broadcast tonight because, as I mentioned earlier, President Nelson actually announced the proclamation back at April conference, and we just want to repeat a very small portion of what he said. Sister Rasband, would you share that with us. Yes, I have it. "We wondered if a monument should be erected. But as we considered the unique historical and international impact of that First Vision, we felt impressed to create a monument not of granite or stone but of words--words of solemn and sacred proclamation--written, not to be carved in 'tables of stone' but rather to be etched in the 'fleshy tables' of our hearts." Thank you. Now I'd like to give you a little peek behind the scenes and tell you what we did for the months and months leading up to that proclamation. In President Nelson's wonderful way, he allowed all of the prophets and apostles, all 15 of us, to work on putting together the proclamation. We wrote it out. We edited it. I even think I have a couple words in that proclamation that I may have contributed. But, in the end, I want you all to know that we reached unity and we knew that what we were doing in preparing that proclamation to the world was the mind and the will of the Lord Jesus Christ. And then our dear prophet with his prophetic mantle finished the proclamation and prepared it for his reading in the Sacred Grove at general conference. It was a wonderfully special revelatory experience, and I bear my witness to all of you tonight that it's a true proclamation of what the Lord Jesus Christ would have us know. Wonderful. Thank you for sharing that. Thank you so much. All right, for our next question, the proclamation states that Jesus Christ has once again called the apostles to the earth to lead the church. So, Harriet from Wyoming asked, "What advice do you have for when we feel uncomfortable with certain Church teachings or policies? How can we continue to sustain our leaders when we may struggle with feelings of disagreement and confusion?" Yeah. Well, Harriet, that's a very important question, and it's one I have sincerely thought about before answering tonight. We'd like to begin by teaching you all a very critical doctrine. So we've asked Sister Rasband to read a couple of scriptures. You can follow along if you like, and then I'll comment more on Harriet's question. From Amos 3:7: "Surely the Lord God will do nothing, but he revealeth his secret unto his servants the prophets." And in modern revelation, the Lord added in Doctrine and Covenants 21:4-5, "Wherefore, meaning the church, thou shalt give heed unto all his words and commandments which he shall give unto you as he receiveth them, walking in all holiness before me; for his word ye shall receive, as if from mine own mouth, in all patience and faith." Now, dear, as you know, that scripture--that last scripture--was in the beginning of the Doctrine and Covenants given to the Prophet Joseph Smith, and it was about him. But it's also about every prophet who has followed the Prophet Joseph Smith up until this very day with President Russell M. Nelson. Now, I love a quote given back in the '70s by Ezra Taft Benson that I'd like to share with you tonight. President Benson said this: "Therefore, the most crucial reading and pondering which you should do is the latest inspired words from the Lord's mouthpiece," end quote. Now the prophet speaks to all of us frequently. It used to be that you'd have to wait till general conference or maybe an occasional article in one of the Church magazines. But now--and your generation knows this--the President of the Church--and all of the Apostles, frankly--are using their social media accounts to give their latest inspired teachings to the members of the Church. So I invite all you young single adults throughout the world--and I'm not trying to give a commercial here, but I am inviting you to follow the President of the Church, certainly, and the other members of the First Presidency and the Twelve as you can. And you will have the latest, most inspired teachings of God's prophet on the earth today. You know it reminds me of when we were just married, President Spencer W. Kimball had asked the Saints not to delay having children for excuses especially like "We don't have enough money." We were young; we were still in school; Elder Rasband was juggling two jobs. And yet he felt to pray about this and felt strongly that we needed to follow the prophet. I was young; I was nervous about having children. But I added my faith and my trust with his and we moved forward. That's when we established a very important--what would I say? a motto or something--for us to always follow the prophet. I recommend that to you. Always follow the prophet. Now, Harriet in Wyoming, I hope we've answered your question. There are going to be times when you're going to have questions, and we've got another question coming up later that deals with that very specifically. But as we begin our Face to Face broadcast, we wanted to firmly establish for all of you the importance of following God's living prophet on the earth. That's the safest, most sure way to follow the Lord's mouthpiece on the earth. Thank you so much. Yeah, I think that answered that perfectly. Our next question talks about--more about the proclamation. I mean, as we know, the proclamation says, "Those who prayerfully study the message of the Restoration and act in faith will be blessed to gain their own witness of its [truthfulness]." Our next question comes from somebody who seems to be struggling to gain that witness. Harry from California asked, I have serious problems with the truth claims of the Church, and I'm considering removing my name from the records of the Church. Can you give me a reason why I should stay?" I can't wait to talk to Harry about the reason why he should stay. Harry, the first thing I want to say to you and to any others who might be on the edge with that kind of a concern right now is don't you do it. Don't remove your name from the records of the Church. Maybe it would help to reframe your question this way: not as why you should stay but, perhaps, the more positive approach of why I and so many others choose to stay, including, I would suspect, hundreds of thousands of you who are watching this broadcast tonight. Think of it as "Why do I choose to stay?" I think this might be a good time to help answer this question if we were to show a video recorded earlier of Dominic, who won--or who has recently joined the Church.
I woke up one morning, and I was just crying. I remember going to brush my teeth, and I looked in the mirror. I remember just looking at myself and just like, "Really, this is who you are? This is what you want to be?" I kind of made a decision for myself that I wanted to be done. I wanted to end my life.
My name is Dominic Still, and I'm from Tri-Cities, Washington, born and raised. I've been pole vaulting for probably nine years now. With pole vault, you always go out on a miss, because that's how the competition ends. And so you're going to fail over and over and over again, and as long as you pick yourself back up and you're willing to keep striving, things will fall in place. But you've got to be willing to make the sacrifice. After graduating high school, I had an opportunity to go vault collegiately. Really my focuses were not on what they should have been. Before I found the Church, I was going down a pretty dark path dealing with some mental stuff, whether it was depression or some anxiety. And the way I really dealt with that was drinking or going out and partying or going to find some other outlet to in, a way, numb myself. I actually had a friend who went to church, and she was out of town that time, but I was like, "I need something more than what I have right now, and I need to go to church." So I walked in a little late to the sacrament meeting on a Sunday, and I'm in black skinny jeans and, like, a black shirt and all pierced up. And I just remember sitting next to this lady, and she really reminded me of my grandma. She seemed so sweet, and she had a big smile on her face. And then I remember her just looking at me and going, "I just want you to know, we're so happy that you're here." And I just--I smiled and something clicked, and I was just like, "Wow, this is ... this feels right." After going to church, things started getting a lot better. I started having more structure and something, like, to hold on to, but the thoughts of suicide kept getting more and more strong. One night I kind of made a decision for myself that I wanted to end my life. I walked out of my house. I started writing a big group message to all my friends and family that it wasn't their fault and that I loved them and that I just feel that this is for the best. And I'd been walking for probably an hour and a half, and it was snowing, and it was cold. And there was maybe one car that passed the whole time. And then out of nowhere, I just see a truck fly by me. And the truck slams on his brakes, and then the truck backs up. And then looks over at me and says, "Hey, are you doing OK? Do you need a ride anywhere, because there's nothing going that way. Everything's back that way." And I said, "I was just getting ready to turn around." Kind of looking back at it, I'm walking towards darkness; I'm walking towards a decision that ends everything. And for that man to point out nothing's down there because everything's back there. And I know with all my heart that was Heavenly Father's doing. And He probably gave that man a prompting to check on me and to make sure I was OK. And so I started walking back and made it all the way home, and I woke up the next morning, and I got the strongest prompting in the world I needed to fast. I just put down my phone; I didn't want to touch any technology. And so I pulled out my scriptures, and I prayed and prayed. I'd go on a walk, and I'd pray my heart would come back, and I'd read scriptures. I remember getting down on my knees and praying, "Heavenly Father, take this pain away from me, please. Teach me what I need to know. Is the Church true? Was Joseph Smith a prophet? Are You real? Is Christ real? Like, is this the Spirit that I'm feeling?" And I just got the sweetest confirmation in my heart, the most beautiful feeling of peace, and just amazing thought in my head that said, "It is. It all is. This is the right thing I'm doing. This is the Spirit. This is Heavenly Father. This is Christ. And this is Christ's church." Having the restored gospel on this earth has changed everything for me. It has taught me to come to know my Savior, my Redeemer, Christ, and learn more about Heavenly Father. It's taught me how to humble myself, how to be meek, how to care about other people and learn to love. I mean, it's given me everything I feel I need in this life and more. I'd say now when I look in the mirror, like, I'm so happy. I see light in that person's eyes. I see a smile. I see someone who's striving, and I see someone who can still be better. And I want to keep striving to be better.
What a beautiful video. Dominic, we're grateful that you're here with us tonight with your new sweetheart wife, Rebecca. Six feet apart. Social distancing and all. You've thought about this question asked by Harry. How would you respond to him? What would you say to Harry to tell him why he should stay? Harry, I just want to say, man, we're here for you. I wish I could shake your hand and give you a hug right now, but this church has given me everything, Harry. I remember being in a spot where I had nothing, and I have everything now. I have happiness. I have joy. I literally have everything, and I have Christ's name on my back. Harry, if you're really having such a hard time, if you're having these questions, I'd advise you go read James 1:5: "If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God." He will give you every single reason, an answer that you need, Harry. I promise you that. And He's already given you one of the biggest reasons to stay, and that's Christ, His son.
Thank you, Dominic. We're so proud of you and pleased with the decisions you've made in your life. And Dominic and his sweet wife, Rebecca, are going to be sealed in a couple of weeks and add a new important chapter and dimension to their life. They're going to add the sealing power of God in the house of the Lord to bind them together for time and all eternity. And then they will begin an eternal family, and you'll have even more reason to live. You'll have even more reason to persevere because then the decisions that you make--all of you make as you consider a temple sealing, and those of you that are sealed in the temple already--you have begun an eternal family that is to continue for generation after generation after generation. For Sister Rasband and I, that's six generations now. That new great grandchild we talked about earlier is the ninth generation in our family. For some of you, it's one generation. But nonetheless, the sealing power of God found in the house of the Lord binds families together. So you also need to think about what your decision means and impacts future generations. So thank you very much, Dominic, Rebecca. Congratulations. If I can add that this reminds me--this question reminds me--of a time that we were with President Ballard, and he gave a wise counsel in response. If I remember right, he said, "Now look, if you're going to focus on anti-Church literature floating out on the internet, then you're going to stay stuck in rebellion, in confusion, and disharmony. But if you listen and read the scriptures, if you listen to the words of the prophets, and if you pray, then the Holy Ghost has an opportunity to testify to you what is true and help give you peace and understanding." I love that. It's beautiful. I remember that day. I have just one more thought, and I draw upon a comment from one of my brethren of the Quorum of Twelve Apostles. He is my seatmate to my left, Elder Neal L Anderson. And in one of his general conference messages, he said this one simple sentence that has stuck with me ever since. Quote, "Will we understand everything? Of course not. We will need to put some issues on the shelf to be understood at a later time." So brothers and sisters, we're not trying to say that we're not going to have these feelings, but they should never derail you off the covenant path. Put those items that would derail you or take you off the covenant path, put them on the shelf. And in due course, in due time, Heavenly Father and the promptings of the Holy Ghost will give you answers to your questions, along with your loving friends, family members, and leaders. Awesome. Thank you so much, Elder and Sister Rasband for sharing your thoughts. And thank you, Dominic. What a phenomenal story. Very inspiring. All right, that, kind of, sideways perfectly into our next question actually. It, kind of, regards obtaining a testimony, right. So the proclamation testifies that Joseph Smith was instrumental at restoring the Church of Jesus Christ on the earth again and translating the Book of Mormon. So our next question is about how you can do your testimonies of these things, and Ray from Arizona asked us on Facebook how did you come to know that Joseph Smith truly is called of God to be the prophet of the restoration of the gospel of Jesus Christ. And [INAUDIBLE] from Cote d'Ivoire asked, "How did you receive your testimony of the Book of Mormon?" Thank you. I was born into a devout Latter-day Saint family. I think I got my testimony, that it really came to be known as a testimony, when I was 15 at a stake Young Women's camp. We were in a testimony meeting, and the Spirit was so strong, and it just burned in my heart. And I just knew. I knew that Joseph Smith was the prophet of the Restoration. I knew that the Church and the gospel was true. I knew that I would never leave the gospel. And my testimony has grown ever since. It's amazing that we have similar experiences because a lot of you don't. And so we realize that the way you're going to come to a knowledge of your testimony might be different than ours. I, likewise, was born into that devout family, and I remember learning at the knee of my angel mother much of the gospel of Jesus Christ and gained my testimony as a young man that has lasted with me to this very day. Now I'd like to share with you a scripture on this. This is found in the 46th section of the Doctrine and Covenants. And if you remember in the 46th section, it's a section that talks about the gifts of the Spirit that we might be given. Remember that? So, I'd like to go to verse 13 and 14, which are two verses that speak about the gift of testimony. Verse 13: "To some it is given by the Holy Ghost to know that Jesus Christ is the Son of God, and that he was crucified for the sins of the world." Before I read verse 14, I want you to know that's where my sweetheart and I are. We have witnesses of the Lord Jesus Christ that burn within our bosom, and we know that He is our Savior. Verse 14 suggests another gift--and I emphasize, it's also a gift: "To others, it is given to believe on their words, that they also might have eternal life if they continue faithful." So, our young friends, we're all in a different pathway with that testimony. Some of us have those burning testimonies. Others of us are believing on the testimony of others, and that's OK. You can believe on ours, or you can believe on your friends', your parents', your leaders', your teachers'. It's OK to accept the testimony of others. In fact, it's a gift to be able to do that also. So for those of you working on your testimonies, remember that this is a journey. It's a process. And grow for your own testimony, but don't be discouraged if you find yourself having to believe on the testimony of others. That in and of itself is a gift. Thank you so much for sharing that. I really loved that. This next question talks about receiving your own revelation. We kind of combined a couple because this seems to be something a lot of people have questions about. Jamie on Instagram asked, "In the proclamation it says, 'We as his Apostles invite all to know--as we do--that the heavens are open.' What does this invitation mean to you?" And Gregory from Utah asked, "I want nothing more than to have direct communion with God, yet I find it extremely difficult, as most of my friends. If God wishes to speak with us, why is it so hard to hear Him?" That's a good question, isn't it? Well, Sister Rasband, I know you've had some thoughts on this. Would you mind sharing them with us, please? Well, I think most of what is worth obtaining in this life doesn't come easy, and I think that by humbly seeking and praying to learn how we hear the Holy Ghost is a key to learning how to hear Him. Gregory, usually we just have a good feeling. Sometimes we may see something like I did when I suddenly saw our young daughter reaching up onto a counter about to pull down a heavy knife on top of her. Immediately going to the kitchen, I saw that same scene and was able to prevent a tragedy. Sometimes we actually hear words, and we mistakenly think that it's our own thoughts and feelings that we're hearing. I learned this when I was a teenager and had to cross a road during a blizzard snowstorm. I put my backpack up to the side of my face to block the snow. I took a couple steps into the road, and I heard, "Turn around and go back." Well, of course I just thought, "Oh, that's weird." And so a couple more steps, and I heard, "Turn around and go back." But this time I argued. I said, kind of like the chicken having to cross the road, "But I have to cross the road to catch the school bus." There was just another step forward, and I heard an emphatic "Run!" That's when I knew the Holy Ghost was speaking to me. And before I could pick of my feet and run, a car hit me at the side--on my side. I flew up over the hood, hit the windshield, and fell down to the ground. And I knew, and I promised after, that the Lord would never have to have the Holy Ghost tell me something three times before I responded. I think it's an important thing to be able to learn to how to hear the Holy Ghost for yourself. Now, the Nephites, they had a similar experience where they didn't--they heard a voice, and they didn't know where it was coming from or from whom. But listen to what they did to better hear the voice of the Lord. From 3 Nephi 11--oh sorry, 3 Nephi 11, verse 5--we read, "And again the third time they did hear the voice, and did open their ears to hear it; and their eyes were towards the sound thereof; and they did look steadfastly towards heaven, from whence the sound came." I invite each one of you to look steadfastly always towards heaven with a willing heart and ears open to hear Him.
Dear, that's an amazing experience. Our family has loved hearing that over the years, and you build our faith with it.
Aaron, we'd love to hear you respond to this question too. Would you please? I would love to you. Thank you so much for giving me the opportunity to do so. Yeah, the first thing that comes to mind that I'd like say is thank you, Gregory, for sharing your thoughts. That's a question that most--if not all--of us, I think, have asked at some point. The first thing I'd like to share is a quote from President Nelson from his talk "Drawing the Power of Jesus Christ into Our Lives." The quote goes, "When [we] reach up for the Lord's power in our lives with the same intensity that a drowning person has when grasping and gasping for air, the power from Jesus Christ will be yours."
I personally can't say that I've been so desperate to hear the voice of the Lord that it was more overpowering than a drowning person's desire to survive, but things that I've done, Gregory, that have worked for me: One of the things, I dedicate an hour each day for gospel study. That way I can tune my heart to hear the voice of the Lord better. And the last thing I like to do--I like to kneel when I pray. That way I can show my respect for God and be more attentive and purposeful in my prayers. Nice. Aaron, that's a beautiful example. Thank you very much. How does a busy guy like you find an hour a day to read the scriptures? I somehow make it work. It's so busy, but yeah it works. Well, that's a great pattern for the rest of your life. Thank you. For me, my young friends, I've found the word of the Lord by reading the scriptures. If I have issues that I'm troubled about or worried about in our family and my work, in my assignment and calling, I'll topically try and find something that can apply. And then something will jump out at me, and it's as if the Lord is giving me a very specific directive through His holy word in the scriptures. So it can happen in a multitude of different ways. Sister Rasband has a really cool way to receive the Spirit directly and have a voice come to her. That's not the only time in her life that that has happened. And all of you will have your own ways. Heavenly Father knows you. He loves you. You are his children, and he will respond to you in ways that are familiar and correct for you. Now, last general conference President Nelson asked us to hear the voice of the Lord, and many of my brethren of the Twelve, over the last six months, have been posting different ways that they hear Him. I hope you've seen those videos. We're going to try something a little different tonight, and we're going to invite you to tell us how you've learned by what you've followed the prophet's invitation to hear Him. How do you hear Him? We're going to have a musical number next. But while you're listening to this beautiful number, go ahead and share a thought--just a short thought--on social media using #HearHim. And perhaps if we have an opportunity, we'll even read some. If not, we'll certainly read them afterwards. So thank you, and we hope that you're all having wonderful experiences as we hear Him.
Thank you for sharing that. The song you're about to hear is-- The song you're about to hear is "Joseph Smith's First Prayer," and it will be sung by Jonathan Meyers and Savannah Porter and will be accompanied by CJ Madsen, Karen Ferry, and Charles Ferry.
[MUSIC- "JOSEPH SMITH'S FIRST PRAYER"]
(SINGING) Oh, how lovely was the morning! Radiant beamed the sun above.
Bees were humming, sweet birds singing, music ringing through the grove. When within the shady woodland Joseph sought the God of love, when within the shady woodland Joseph sought the God of love.
Humbly kneeling, sweet appealing-- 'twas the boy's first uttered prayer-- When the pow'rs of sin assailing filled his soul with deep despair; but undaunted, still he trusted in his Heav'nly Father's care, but undaunted, still he trusted in his Heav'nly Father's care.
Suddenly a light descended, brighter far than noonday sun, and a shining, glorious pillar o'er him fell, around him shone, while appeared two heav'nly beings, God the Father and the Son, while appeared two heav'nly beings, God the Father and the Son. "Joseph, this is my Beloved; Hear him!"
Oh, how sweet the word!
Joseph's humble prayer was answered, and he listened to the Lord. Oh, what rapture filled his bosom, for he saw the living God, oh, what rapture filled his bossom, for he saw the living-- For he saw the living God. For he saw the living God.
For he saw the living God.
Wow. Yeah, we are so blessed to have so much musical talent here tonight. For sure. Yeah. Thank you so much for that musical number. Yeah, for the next question, we'd actually like to take one from the audience now, if that's OK, Elder Rasband. Please. All right, let's do it. So we're pleased to have Morgan here with us today. So Morgan, you can go ahead and ask your question. Hi, Morgan. Hi, how are you? Good. So, the proclamation talks about the sealing power and how it was restored. So my question is, how does the sealing ordinance and the doctrine of eternal marriage influence your relationship as a couple, and how can it influence our relationships with our families? Thank you. Beautiful. Morgan, just yesterday Sister Rasband and I were in the Mount Timpanogos temple, and I was blessed to perform a sealing. And it reminded me of another proclamation, the last proclamation, the proclamation to the world on the family. And I've thought of three sentences from that proclamation that I would use to answer your question. Would that be OK? All right. Here they are. First of all, from paragraph three of the proclamation to the world on the family: "Sacred ordinances and covenants available in holy temples make it possible for individuals to return to the presence of God and for families to be united eternally." That's what Dominic and Rebecca are looking forward to right there, right? Here's the second sentence. This is from paragraph seven, and which one of you isn't interested in this? Happiness. "Happiness in family life is most likely to be achieved when founded upon the teachings of the Lord Jesus Christ. Successful marriages and families are established and maintained on principles of faith, ... love, compassion, work, and wholesome recreational activities." Do you want to be happy, Morgan? OK, well, there is a great little clue for you there in that proclamation: happiness is founded on the teachings of the Lord Jesus Christ. Not only when you're married but even when you're single, same principle applies. Now also from paragraph seven: "By divine design, fathers are to preside over their families in love and righteousness and are responsible to provide the necessities of life and protection for their families. Mothers are primarily responsible for the nurture of their children." And then this: "In these sacred responsibilities, fathers and mothers are obligated to help one another as equal partners," end quote. I reaffirm that these divine roles are given to us by God, including the importance of being equal partners.
I feel that knowing that we have been sealed for time and all eternity enables us to resolve our differences and sometimes heal disputes. We work better at being equal partners after one day, my husband decided to make a decision without consulting me. OK, this was an important decision, and it surprised me, and took me off guard, and put me in a very difficult position. Afterwards, I put my hand on his shoulder, and I just firmly said, "Never do that to me again."
We've pretty much been on the same page ever since. Does that help you, Morgan? Absolutely. Thank you. Thank you. And I hope you don't have to learn-- I hope you don't have to teach your future spouse the same way my wife had to teach me. But what she just said there about us being on the same page ever since is right where we are to this very day. That's wonderful. Thank you for sharing that. Now if she has to, she knows how. Exactly. Our next question goes hand in hand with that. The proclamation mentions how the keys of the priesthood--of the priesthood authority--have been restored to the earth, and we know that President Nelson has recently emphasized the relevance of the priesthood for women. Sarah from Utah asked on Facebook what does the Restoration teach about accessing priesthood power as a woman? How can I implement it more strongly in my life? Thank you, Sarah. Maybe we could begin by remembering a little bit about what President Nelson actually said. Dear, I think we have it. Would you mind reading it? I will. Thank you. From October 2019, President Nelson said this. I still remember sitting in there and hearing him say this. It was so powerful. "How I yearn for you to understand that the restoration of the priesthood is just as relevant to [women] as it is to any man. Because the Melchizedek Priesthood has been restored, both covenant-keeping women and men have access to 'all the spiritual blessings of this church,' or we might say, to all the spiritual treasures the Lord has for His children. Every woman and every man who makes covenants with God and keeps those covenants, and who participates worthily in priesthood ordinances, has direct access to the power of God. True. Sarah, I personally have never wanted to hold the priesthood. Although, I am fortunate to be able to hold my husband who readily bears the preisthood. God has given us distributions of divine Aarons, and I, for one, love being a woman. I am grateful for the blessing and opportunity to be a wife, to be a mother, a grandmother, and now a great-grandmother. As women, I believe that we can use all of our gifts and our talents to contribute, to serve, and to serve in callings, to teach and testify of the Doctrine. And we can always ask for priesthood blessings. God requires faith of both men and women, and we can study and seek and pray to be able to increase our faith. I am so grateful for a righteous brethren who honor the priesthood, God-given to them, and bear it with honor. I am so grateful for them. When my husband was very ill at one time, I was scared, and yet I feel that my tearful pleading prayer of faith was received as well as the priesthood blessing that had been given him. I hope that helps, Sarah. Arianna, do you have any thoughts on this same question? Yeah, I would love to comment on it, but just adding to what you guys said because I truly do believe in what you were talking about with the proclamation and with President Nelson's talk. I know for me personally as a young woman who's not married, I don't have children, I've learned very young that you have to have a testimony of the priesthood yourself, and you have to keep your covenants in order to call upon those powers from God. And that is something you can do at any age in any environment you're in. As long as you're keeping your covenants and you're serving others, you will be blessed with the gifts and the blessings you need in order to fulfill any errand you have. And that's something I've been very fortunate to learn very young previous to being married or having children. So I only assume that it's going to get stronger as I, you know, keep going down this path. Thank you. Thank you, Arianna, and I hope every man and woman listened carefully to what you said just then. That was beautiful. And that's what President Nelson intended when he said that these were treasures that a woman and a man shared together. Thank you for emphasizing that. For me, I learned in my patriarchal blessing about the importance of the role of a man who holds the priesthood. In my blessing, repeated multiple times, is the phrase, "The priesthood is given unto you to be of service to others." That's how I've always thought about the priesthood. I thought about the priesthood being given to be of service to my fellow man. That starts in my home--certainly with my wife, our children--but it really involves every part of my ministry to be of service to others. I believe the Lord felt so strongly about this that He gave the revelation in the 121st section of the Doctrine and Covenants about what the Lord called "unrighteous dominion" by the priesthood holders. I hope that none of us are guilty of that and that we do remember that we serve together--the priesthood--to bless the lives of all those around us in the gospel of Jesus Christ. Thank you. Awesome. Thank you so much. Yeah, thank you, Arianna. Those are awesome thoughts for sure. All right, so our next question, I think is great. So as young adults, you know, we have big decisions to make our lives, and on top of that, 2020--this year--has had its numerous challenges. 2020. Twenty twenty is something else. Some people, honestly though, are even nervous about bringing children into times like these, you know, that are so troublesome. So that said, Keely from Facebook asked, "How can I better use this proclamation and the restoration to combat the fear and worry with faith and hope?" And Ana from Mexico said, "Twenty twenty has been very difficult. How can we keep firm in the faith in the face of these events?" Boy, these questions just keep getting better and better. Tougher and tougher. So, Keely and Ana, these are very good questions. And they're so relevant to what's happening in the world today. But I would say that people have been asking these questions for decades and decades of time. Believe it or not, I had my, kind of, young adult years in the '60s, and that was a pretty trial-filled era also. You're so old, dear. I know. I know. I am. I am. You weren't far behind me though. I know. And I think of my father who grew up with two world wars and how difficult it was for them, and we can go on and on and on through book of Mormon times and other times. The people of God have always seemed to face trials and have always seemed to face times in their life when they have to rise up from those. And so we are grateful, actually, that we're going through these times together. That's why we started out tonight all--maybe 500,000 of us throughout the world--expressing our unity and our love for one another. We know these are difficult times. We know there are those of you who are mourning, perhaps, the loss of loved ones. We know fires are burning. We know hurricanes are occurring. We know winds are coming. And yet we can take comfort and confidence that the Lord Jesus Christ loves this Church, loves this people, and as He has said in numerous times, if you're going to stand on holy ground, you need not be troubled. That's where we are. Keely and Anna, I totally understand your feelings. I've had similar fears. But I hope we don't just hide out in our bunkers until this is all over with. We need individuals and families who stand fast and faithful for the Lord, maximizing our influence in the world in gathering our brothers and sisters on both sides of the veil. You know, President Nelson lives in this our day, and yet he is optimistic for the future. He said, speaking of Jesus Christ and His church, quote, "His truths covenants, and ordinances enables us to overcome fear and face the future with faith," end quote. Beautiful. I'd like to take you to the Doctrine and Covenants, section 45, verse 34. Listen to what the Lord himself said about these days: "And now, when I the Lord had spoken these words unto my disciples, they were troubled. And I said unto them: Be not troubled, for, when all these things shall come to pass," desolations, earthquakes, on and on and on, "when all these things shall come to pass, ye may know that the promises which have been made unto you, shall be fulfilled." Now, one of my favorite scriptures came at a time of potential fear and a lot of great change, and we didn't know exactly what was going to be going on. And yet it still comforts me today from Doctrine and Covenants 68, verses 5 and 6: "Behold, this is the promise of the Lord unto you, O ye my servants." Behold--oh sorry--"Wherefore, be of good cheer, and do not fear, for I the Lord am with you, and will stand by you; and ye shall bear record of me, even Jesus Christ, that I am the Son of the living God, that I was, that I am, that I am to come. Thank you, dear.
During my years as a Seventy, one of my general authority mentors and leaders was President Boyd K. Packer. I love a quote that President Packer made about this subject that I think applies to every one of you. Here's what he said: Quote, "Sometimes you might be tempted to think as I did from time to time in my youth: 'The way things are going, the world's going to be over with. The end of the world is going to come before I get to go where I should be.' Not so!" said President Packer. "You can look forward to doing it right--getting married, having a family, seeing your children and grandchildren, maybe even great-grandchildren." Back in the '60s when I was seeing the commotion in the world and in our country of the United States, I didn't quite understand then that today Sister Rasband and I would be seeing our grandchildren and our great-grandchildren. So can you. The promises that are made to you in the temple, at baptism, at the sacrament table will be fulfilled. "Be not troubled." Thank so much. Those words were so comforting. I think everyone needs to hear stuff like that. Thank you so much for sharing, Elder and Sister Rasband. Thank you. Yeah, so in response to your question from earlier, Elder Rasband, the internet's been flooded with people responding to the question about hearing the Lord's voice. Funny story: with the internet being down in the city, we actually had some of our staff physically write down some of the responses. Yeah, so there are a couple for each of us to read here, but if that's all right with you-- Why don't you just start. All right, let's do it. All right, so, again, these are in response to Elder Rasband's question from earlier about hearing the voice of the Lord. So Dylan said, "I hear Him by taking time to think and write. When I write, I feel that I think most clearly and listen more intently." And the last one I have on my paper here says, from Matthew, "I hear Him when I do what is right." Awesome. And I have a couple as well. Anna said, "I hear Him as I pray with a sincere heart and willingness to listen." And David said, "I hear Him as I share what I know to be true with others." I'm not sure the name. [INAUDIBLE] said, "I hear him as I question everything I'm engaged in and ask, how does this get me closer to God." Annika said, "I hear him by putting my phone down and blocking distractions." That's a pretty good one, isn't it? Elliot: "I hear him through others' testimonies and kind words." It's kind of what we talked about earlier. Thank you, Elliot. Now keep responding, by the way. Keep adding your thoughts, and we'll look at them after. We'll post some, and let everyone see how we all are experiencing hearing the words of the Lord. Yes, thank you so much. I'm excited to see all those answers, and I plan on contributing myself as well. Well, we're nearing the end of our broadcast. Elder and Sister Rasband, is it OK if we ask one last question? Yes, please. Great. So after our final question, we'll be pleased to hear a closing song, "Come Thou Fount," performed by Ellie Hughes and Yaphet Bustos and accompanied by CJ Madsen and Karen Ferry. And then the closing prayer will then be offered by Addison [? Hollist ?] from Utah. After today, you will find this broadcast in the "Young Adults" section of the Gospel Library app, where you will also find stories written for and by young adults in the "YA Weekly" section. We also encourage you to share your thoughts on social media about this broadcast using #FaceToFace on social media, and then tune into the website afterwards to see if your response gets posted.
All right, well here's last question. We are excited that the missionaries from all around the world have been able to attend this broadcast, and this question is actually from one of them. The new proclamation testifies of many truths that have been restored. Elder Simmons, a full-time missionary serving in Arizona asked, "What is your favorite part of the Restoration or the First Vision? What truths do you hold most dearly that came as a result of that event?" For me, it's simple. When God the Father addressed and called Joseph Smith by name, saying, "Joseph, this is My Beloved Son. Hear Him!" my testimony just grew that God the Father and the Son know each and every one of us. They love us, and if we listen to the Son, we will learn the ways and be taught how to obtain eternal life. I bear my testimony that The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is true. I know it. I love my Savior, Jesus Christ. He died for us--but He lives. And I know that He was, that He is, and that He is to come. In the name of Jesus Christ, amen. Amen. Thank you. I'm so happy you chose to take a question from a missionary. There's more than 50,000 of them watching now or will watch, in another time zone, this broadcast, and I would be remiss if I didn't say to all of you missionaries we love you and we're grateful for your service, even though it's been very difficult during this pandemic. And I'm going to give a shout out to four missionaries from our family. To Haley Chase, to Ammon McPherson, to Keshawn Rasband, and to Lauren Rasband, we love you four especially. Thank you for your service. The aspect of the Restoration that I treasure is that Joseph Smith was a 14-year-old boy when he went to the grove of trees in response to reading the scriptures to ask his Heavenly Father in humble prayer that which he did. That reminds me of what we're doing tonight. Now, as I mentioned earlier, there have been thousands of questions submitted, and we're only getting a fraction of them in this Face to Face broadcast. But your questions are important. Every one of you has questions, and they need to be asked, and they need to be answered. Choose people who are faithful who can answer your questions. Your friends, your parents, leaders, teachers. Ask your questions. They all deserve to be answered, even the many that we couldn't get to tonight. Joseph Smith actually was a model for us in this regard. He had a question that he'd been laboring with for a long time, and he took his question to Heavenly Father, expecting that he would get an answer, and he did. Now not all of our questions are going to be answered like Joseph's was, but like Sister Rasband described, how she received and heard the promptings of the Holy Ghost, mine's been more along the nature of reading the Lord's words in the scriptures, all of you, our young friends, all of you can have responses to your questions. Now it's time for my concluding testimony. I have invited tonight my grandchildren and nieces and nephews to come here and join us.
They're members of our family, so we can get a little closer. But this to me, for all of you to see, is an example of how the leaders of the Church are not foreign to what's going on in your life. These young adults are what I call our Young Adult Advisory Council, and most closely my own grandchildren, of course, but all of them--we are a close family. We love each other. And the leaders of this church are not foreign to that which is going on in your lives because we have children, grandchildren, great-grandchildren that are helping us, telling us what's happening. And we love the young adults of this Church. We want you to know that. In fact, I'd like to conclude with this: On behalf of the First Presidency, President Nelson, and the Quorum of the Twelve, we want all of you to know tonight, wherever you are in the world, we love you, we thank you, and we need you. We need you every one as we go forward into what the world is going to offer to us in the future. We need you to be involved in the gathering of Israel on both sides of the veil. We need you to be involved in getting yourself and your friends on the covenant path. This is what the Lord would have us do. I bear you my testimony tonight with my dear, sweet wife. I love the Lord. We know this is His Church. We know that the Restoration is the truth, that Joseph Smith did see the Father and the Son as we've taught you, prayed with you, and sung with you tonight. And may I say just in conclusion, that all of these questions and all of your questions can be answered by the Lord Jesus Christ. He truly has the great answer for every one of our questions. We leave this love, our appreciation, and our need for you most sincerely with you as we bless you to go forward in this world and make a difference. Be valiant and build up The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints as you build up yourselves. In the name of Jesus Christ, amen. Amen. Thank you. [MUSIC- "COME THOU FOUNT"]
Come Thou fount of every blessing tune my heart to sing Thy praise; streams of mercy, never ceasing, call for songs of loudest praise. Teach me some melodious sonnet, sung by flaming tongues above.
Praise the mount! I'm fixed upon it, mount of Thy redeeming love.
Here I raise my Ebeneezer; hither by Thy help I'm come; And I hope, by thy good pleasure, safely to arrive at home. Jesus sought me when a stranger, wandering from the fold of God.
He, to rescue me from danger, interposed His precious blood.
Oh, to grace how great a debtor daily I'm constrained to be! Let Thy goodness like a fetter bind my wandering heart to Thee. Prone to wander, Lord I feel it, Prone to leave the God I love; here's my heart, oh, take and seal it, seal it for Thy courts above. Seal it for Thy courts above.
Here's my heart, oh, take and seal it, seal it for Thy courts above.
Our dear Heavenly Father, we are so very grateful to have the opportunity to be here today and for the testimonies that have been born both, spoken and through music, and for the Spirit that we have felt here, and for the opportunity to gather as young adults throughout the world. We are so very grateful at this time for the opportunity to listen to one of Thy chosen Apostles, Elder and Sister Rasband, for their testimonies and for their example. We are grateful for President Nelson and the First Presidency and Quorum of the Twelve, who are at the head of leading this work. And we're grateful for Thy Son, Jesus Christ--for His example, for His infinite sacrifice for each of us. We pray that we'll be able to have courage to go on to do the things that we have felt prompted to do tonight. We're grateful again for this opportunity, and we say these things in the name of Jesus Christ, amen. Amen.
Thank you. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you so much. You two were fabulous. Well done. That was fabulous. Thanks. You too. You two were just--