How to Treat Others
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“How to Treat Others,” Liahona, Sept. 2009, F14–F15

Friend to Friend

How to Treat Others

From an interview with Elder Francisco J. Viñas of the Seventy, currently serving as President of the Caribbean Area Presidency; by Sarah Cutler

Francisco J. Viñas

“By love serve one another” (Galatians 5:13).

How do you build an eternal family? The first step is to learn from your parents. My parents were baptized in 1951, when I was four years old. We were among the first members of the Church in Uruguay.

From my parents I learned how to treat other people. They taught me to reach out to everyone, even to those who were not from our own country or culture. One time a Norwegian ship captain came to Uruguay. He was alone, without his family. My family invited him to stay in our home. Many people already lived in our little house, but we took in one more.

Seeing my parents take care of others taught me a simple principle of the gospel of Jesus Christ: be friendly to others, treat them well, and do not judge them. Be kind, and help people when they have a need.

I also saw how my parents served in the Church and how they helped the missionaries. Before I was called as a priesthood leader, I had already received great training in my home from my parents.

The sooner in your life you start living the gospel, the better your life will be. Someday you will be able to pass the same gospel message and heritage to your children and then to their children. You can start a new generation of an eternal family if you learn the basic principles of the gospel.

My parents’ example was a great heritage for me and my family. I hope it will continue to be for all the generations to come. My wife and I have a great relationship with our children. We have tried to help them understand what my parents taught me, that if you love others and help them, you are blessed. Our children have had many challenges, but all of them have been sealed in the temple. They are active in the Church, and we hope they will pass on this heritage to the next generation.

My grandchildren are the fourth generation of our family in the Church. We hope that we can share with them the same ability to accept others, to help them, and to lift them up. We are working to establish a family based on faith in Jesus Christ and a strong testimony of His gospel.

Illustrations by Dilleen Marsh