Harold B. Lee Shares Christmas

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“Harold B. Lee Shares Christmas,” Friend, Dec. 2001, 28–29

From the Lives of the Church Presidents

(Adapted from “Harold B. Lee,” by Leonard J. Arrington, in The Presidents of the Church, pages 348, 351–352, 356–357, and The Lord Needed a Prophet, by Susan Arrington Madsen, pages 180, 183.)

Harold B. Lee Shares Christmas

Harold B. Lee
Harold helped his father care for the poor

Illustrated by Mike Eagle

When Harold B. Lee was a young man, his father was a bishop. Often Harold helped load their pony cart with things for his father to take to poor families.

Harold: Well, Dad, that’s the last sack of grain.

After dark, Harold’s father quietly delivered the food and clothing to needy people in his ward.

Years later, Harold became a father himself.

President Lee: I thought you were going to Donna Mae’s house to show her your new doll.

Helen: Donna’s family didn’t have a Christmas this year! She says they are too poor.

President Lee felt especially sad because he was the stake president and could have helped the family if he’d known. That night he thought of how much his father did to help people, and he promised Heavenly Father that he would try harder to know who in the stake needed his help.

The next Christmas, President Lee worked hard with the members so that every family in their stake could have Christmas presents and a Christmas dinner.

Relief Society sister: Merry Christmas!

President Lee’s stake became so good at providing for each other’s needs that Heber J. Grant, the prophet of the Church then, called President Lee into his office.

Heber J. Grant: President Lee, the Lord would like you to direct the welfare program of the whole Church.

During a time when many people lost their jobs, President Lee set up farms and building projects where members could work, and storehouses where bishops could send them to be given food and clothing as payment.

Later, as a member of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles and as the eleventh President of the Church, Harold B. Lee continued to serve.

If you’d like to learn more about President Lee, do the “President Harold B. Lee Crossword” on page 23.