Sustaining Priesthood Leaders
October 2002

“Sustaining Priesthood Leaders,” Ensign, Oct. 2002, 56

Visiting Teaching Message:

Sustaining Priesthood Leaders

Prayerfully select and read from this message the scriptures and teachings that meet the needs of the sisters you visit. Share your experiences and testimony. Invite those you teach to do the same.

How are we blessed because the priesthood is on the earth?

D&C 84:19–21, 36: “And this greater priesthood administereth the gospel and holdeth the key of the mysteries of the kingdom, even the key of the knowledge of God. Therefore, in the ordinances thereof, the power of godliness is manifest. And without the ordinances thereof, and the authority of the priesthood, the power of godliness is not manifest unto men in the flesh. … For he that receiveth my servants receiveth me.”

Elder Robert D. Hales of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles: “If the power of the priesthood were not upon the earth, the adversary would have freedom to roam and reign without restraint. There would be no gift of the Holy Ghost to direct and enlighten us; no prophets to speak in the name of the Lord; no temples where we could make sacred, eternal covenants; no authority to bless or baptize, to heal or comfort. Without the power of the priesthood, ‘the whole earth would be utterly wasted’ (see D&C 2:1–3). There would be no light, no hope—only darkness” (“Blessings of the Priesthood,” Ensign, Nov. 1995, 32).

Mary Ellen W. Smoot, former Relief Society general president: “We see sisters in this great Church who recognize the blessings of the restored priesthood. We rejoice as each baby is blessed, each child is baptized, as we partake of the sacrament and are set apart for Church callings and watch our husbands give fathers’ blessings. We are grateful for priesthood blessings that light our way and give us direction and hope. We rejoice in and support worthy priesthood holders” (“Rejoice, Daughters of Zion,” Ensign, Nov. 1999, 94).

How can our actions sustain our priesthood leaders?

President Gordon B. Hinckley: “I give you my testimony that the happiness of the Latter-day Saints, the peace of the Latter-day Saints, the progress of the Latter-day Saints, the prosperity of the Latter-day Saints, and the eternal salvation and exaltation of this people lie in walking in obedience to the counsels of the priesthood of God” (“‘If Ye Be Willing and Obedient,’” Ensign, Dec. 1971, 125).

President Boyd K. Packer, Acting President of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles: “Do you sustain your bishop? Do you sustain your stake president and the General Authorities of the Church? Or are you among those who are neutral, or critical, who speak evilly, or who refuse calls? Better ask, ‘Lord, is it I?’” (Follow the Brethren, Brigham Young University Speeches of the Year [23 Mar. 1965], 9).

Elder David B. Haight of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles: “When we sustain the President of the Church by our uplifted hand, it not only signifies that we acknowledge before God that he is the rightful possessor of all the priesthood keys; it means that we covenant with God that we will abide by the direction and the counsel that comes through His prophet. It is a solemn covenant” (“Solemn Assemblies,” Ensign, Nov. 1994, 14–15).

D&C 108:7–8: “Therefore, strengthen your brethren in all your conversation, in all your prayers, in all your exhortations, and in all your doings. And behold, and lo, I am with you to bless you and deliver you forever. Amen.”

Illustrated by Julianne Allen