“Preparing for the Priesthood,” Friend, Jan. 2010, 18–19
Eleven-year-old Hansen P. of the Bangalore Second Branch, Bangalore India District, was excited. After church the older boys in the branch would be teaching him how to prepare, bless, and pass the sacrament.
First, the boys who are teachers in the Aaronic Priesthood showed Hansen how they prepare the trays of bread and fill the cups with water.
Next, the priests read through the sacrament prayers and explained how they fold the tablecloths.
Finally, the deacons showed where they stand, how they pass the sacrament to the congregation, and how they help everyone be reverent.
“The Aaronic Priesthood is important,” Hansen says. “There is much I must do to prepare to receive it.”
Besides learning about the sacrament, Hansen is reading the scriptures and trying to keep the commandments and obey his parents. He’s also learning about the Church in Primary and setting a good example for his nine-year-old brother, Gideon.
Hansen is learning a lot about the priesthood from his father, who holds the Melchizedek Priesthood and serves in the elders quorum presidency. “Daddy baptized me and, later, Gideon,” Hansen says. “When Mommy is sick, he helps give her priesthood blessings so she can become well.”
His father also helps Hansen’s mother with shopping and cooking. “He does everything he can to help us,” Hansen says. And both his parents help many people, especially in the Church.
Hansen’s mother is often busy with her calling as branch Primary president. Hansen lightens her load by going to buy vegetables or by washing the dishes.
“I love my parents,” Hansen says. “We have family home evening each week, we read scriptures as a family, and we have family prayers together.”
When you’re 11 years old, there is much to prepare for. “I must learn to listen even more closely to the Holy Ghost,” Hansen says. “He will guide me as I study the gospel in my priesthood quorum, in Young Men, then later on in seminary. All those things will help me prepare to be a full-time missionary. And I must learn to help the poor and to give better service,” Hansen says. “I must prepare for a lifetime of service, because the priesthood means serving others the way Jesus Christ would if He were here.”
Hansen’s favorite scripture story is about Noah. “I love how the animals obeyed him when it was time to get on the ark.” He knows Noah had to do a lot to prepare for the future, just as Hansen has a lot to do to prepare for the priesthood.
Sports: Hansen’s favorite sport is badminton, but he also enjoys cricket, soccer, or just a footrace with his brother and their friend who lives down the street. “Whether you play badminton, cricket, or soccer, it’s important that you play as a team,” Hansen says. “It’s like the priesthood, because in a priesthood quorum you should also work as a team.”
Raising fish: Hansen hatches guppies in a rainwater bucket he keeps behind the family’s apartment. Then he transfers them to a small aquarium. “I like the many beautiful colors and how the fish play with each other,” he says.
Singing: “Love Is Spoken Here” (Children’s Songbook, 190–91) is Hansen’s favorite Primary song. He and Gideon love to sing songs about Jesus, especially hymns. “Hymns help us keep love in our family,” Hansen says.