I Defended the Prophet Joseph
December 2010

“I Defended the Prophet Joseph,” Ensign, Dec. 2010, 67

I Defended the Prophet Joseph

Maria Brando, Italy

In 1978 I had a memorable dream in which two people appeared to me. As I spoke with them in this dream, I felt an amazing sense of joy. The happy feeling persisted even after I woke up the next morning.

That very day two Latter-day Saint missionaries knocked on the door of our home and asked if they could share a message. Remembering my dream, I agreed and invited them in. My husband was reluctant, but he consented when I told him that I couldn’t bear to let them go away without talking to them.

Among other things, the missionaries taught me about prophets that day. I was familiar with the prophets of the Bible, such as Abraham and Moses, but the missionaries also taught me about a modern-day prophet, Joseph Smith. At the end of our lesson, the elders asked if they could return for more discussions. I said yes.

After additional discussions the missionaries invited me to be baptized. I liked what I had learned, but before being baptized, I wanted to gain a testimony of Joseph Smith. Of all the things the missionaries had taught me, his story was the most difficult for me to accept. But I knew that if I was sincere in seeking such a testimony, Heavenly Father would confirm the truth to me.

I went to see a member of the clergy in the church I had been raised in. I told him what the missionaries had taught me and expressed a great desire to meet with them again. Before I could say anything else though, he told me that Joseph Smith was crazy, that he was a visionary.

Suddenly, I heard a voice tell me, “Joseph Smith is a true prophet.” My heart started beating strongly within me, and even though I had not yet been baptized into the Church, I found myself defending the Prophet of the Restoration.

The feeling of confirmation grew even stronger as I left the clergyman’s office. I had received my answer and knew in which church I should raise my sons.

I was baptized a short time later, and I felt a great desire to share what I had found. I had received a spiritual confirmation of the Prophet Joseph Smith, and I wanted others to experience the joy I now had in my life as a result. My husband experienced that joy for himself when he joined the Church two years after I did.

I am grateful to live in a time when we again have prophets on the earth. Because of their guidance, I have a sure path that I can follow.