Hosting the Face to Face with President Dallin H. Oaks and President M. Russell Ballard in 2017 was an incredible experience. Being able to play a small part in such an important event was both humbling and nerve-racking. I really hoped that I wouldn’t make any mistakes that would distract people from the important messages that were being shared by two Apostles of God.
To be honest, I was so nervous. I was pretty shaky until President Oaks, President Ballard, some of the staff, and I went into a small room to say a prayer before the event. It was such a powerful spiritual experience that I will never forget. That prayer gave me the confidence that we would have some extra divine help to make sure the event went smoothly for all the young adults who needed to hear the answers these Apostles were going to give. And the whole event definitely worked out that way. Here are three truths I learned through this experience:
What I was impressed with the most was how much preparation, prayer, and planning go into events that the Church creates for young adults. I wish that every young adult and youth could truly know how much work and research go into making an event like Face to Face happen. And it’s all just for them to help them on their path. These events really represent how much the Lord and His prophet and apostles care about the youth and young adults of the Church.
I approached my role as a host and my interview with President Oaks and President Ballard looking more for a reconfirmation of sorts. Periodically, I think it is really a good idea to revisit and strengthen your faith in the basic principles and truths of the gospel like the Book of Mormon, etc. It’s important to keep your testimony of those things strong.
Because I had the unique experience of being able to have a conversation with two Apostles, I wanted to reconfirm that God has truly called prophets and apostles on the earth again. And by the end of the event, in the midst of all the nerves, I was able to get that confirmation from the Holy Ghost that President Oaks and President Ballard really are Apostles of God. Getting that reconfirmation was the most important and most memorable part of my whole experience with Face to Face.
Before the actual broadcast went live, Eliza (my co-host), President Oaks, President Ballard, and I did a quick run-through to practice the order of events. Throughout the whole process I was on cloud nine. I couldn’t stop smiling. However, there was one moment that really stood out to me. During a moment of silence, I was just looking at President Oaks and President Ballard, and they briefly looked back at me. In that moment I felt a peace and love that could only be compared to the most powerful moments I had experienced during my mission. It was so simple, but it just gave me a new understanding of how real our modern apostles and prophets are. There is something powerful about the way you feel when someone close to Christ looks at you and speaks to you. It comes from the Holy Ghost.
In that moment I could really feel that these were men who were instrumental in making sure people like me knew the will of our Father in Heaven. This small instance was one of the most spiritual experiences of my life. To this day, I still look back at that experience whenever life gets confusing or challenging.
Because of that moment (in addition to many other moments in my life), I can say with more conviction than before that The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is true and that it is led by Jesus Christ and a Father in Heaven who loves us. They both hold the answers to all of life’s questions, and They are truly always standing ready to guide us. I’m so grateful that I know these things, and I hope these wonderful Face to Face events can help others know that too!