Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Gordon B. Hinckley 1910-2008

I didn't post this sooner because when it happened on Sunday night, I was still a little in shock. And since then, I just didn't know how I could write a proper tribute to such a great man. The president of our church, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, Gordon B. Hinckley, passed away at the age of 97. My shock was not in it being unexpected. After all, he was 97. No, I was shocked because I, like many others have said, have known him as my prophet. He was the president of the church when I became a member in 1999 and I have become so endeared to him.

He was a man that exuded love, acceptance, and genuine concern for those around him as well as those far away. When he gave a talk, you always felt that he was talking only to you and that he had chosen his words with you in mind. Even when you watched him on tv, you could feel his love radiating from him. I remember the first time I saw him speak. I was still learning about the church and deciding if I would like to join. I attended a broadcast at the meetinghouse, arriving late and with a really squirmy 2-year-old. President Hinckley was the last speaker and as soon as I saw him stand and smile and heard his voice, I was overtaken by the Spirit of God. I felt a warmth in my heart and I knew immediately that this was a man of God.

He lived a full and blessed life. He was married to a woman he adored, raised a good family, and worked tirelessly for his family and for God. His wife, Marjorie, passed away in 2004, and he had expressed repeatedly how much he missed her and how he looked forward to the day they would be reunited. When I heard of his passing, I knew right away that his desire had been granted. I know they are together again. President Hinckley did much for the church. He helped plan, build and dedicate more than half the churches temples on the earth today. Church membership increased greatly. Through the media, he also helped the world to better understand the church and our beliefs. Anyone that met him, members to politicians to reporters, immediately respected and loved him. He was a good man. I know his work has been pleasing to the Lord. And I am thankful that we could have him as long as we did.

1 comment:

Ryan and Breelyn Ehin said...

Roberta that was BEAUTIFUL!! I got tears in my eyes reading about the first time you heard him speak. He really was truly amazing!!! It doesn't seem real that he is gone does it? We're going to the viewing Friday afternoon I think and maybe then it will be real.