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In 1855, George Osmond married Mary Georgina Huckvale in St. Louis, Missouri, and they eventually settled in Idaho where they were the parents of ten children. In 1881, George Osmond married his second wife, Christena Amelia Jacobsen, and they eventually settled in Wyoming where they were the parents of seven children.
George Osmond Jr. served two two-year LDS missions in England–from 1834 to 1886 and 1890 to 1892. He was a successful farmer, rancher and businessman, a probate judge in Idaho, a state Senator in Wyoming, and a beloved LDS Stake President of Star Valley, Wyoming from 1892 until his death in 1913.
Today, a friend, Dale Tingey, shared this note with me this morning, it made me think about my Great Grandfather and others who have lived their lives well.
“The purpose of life is not to be happy. It is to be useful, to be honorable, to be compassionate, to have it make some difference that you have lived and lived well.”
-Ralph Waldo Emerson
This is truly how my Great Grandfather was known and loved by all. I share the following to give all hope that there is life after death, and we are being watched over by guardian angels, who are most likely our relatives that have passed on. We each came here as Spirit children with spirit bodies that entered a body of flesh and bones at birth. Because of Jesus Christ and His resurrection, all mankind will live again and the spirit and mortal bodies will be brought together to never again be parted.
“To escort President George Osmond into the spirit world may have been the reason for the return of George’s friend, John D. Wilkes, of Afton, Wyoming, as was seen by his wife, Lucella Child Wilkes. During the years following his death in 1905, Brother Wilkes, or “Johnny” as he was better known, returned to earth on several occasions, according to the account of his niece, Vern R. Morgan:
When the Star Valley Stake in Wyoming was organized in August 18992, Elder George Osmond was chosen as the first Stake President.
Aunt Luella and Uncle Johnny worked together on the Sunday School Stake Board and became very close and friendly with President Osmond. After her husband’s untimely death he often counseled and helped her with many problems. His spiritual and kindly advice gave her much consolation…
About 1907-1908, President Osmond became critically ill and for days it was feared he would die. He finally recovered and afterward he told my aunt that on a certain night Johnny had appeared at his bedside. President Osmond asked Johnny, ‘Am I to go with you?’ Johnny told him that they were ‘not ready for him yet– he was to finish his work here, and he would live to see it finished.’ He was dressed in white and his voice was as natural as ever, President Osmond said. The singular thing about this experience was as natural as ever, President Osmond said. The singular thing about this experience was that on that very same night Johnny had also appeared to my aunt in a dream and told her that ‘everything will be alright, do not worry.’
Aunt Luella also commented on Johnny’s voice. He had always had a beautiful resonant voice and that when he spoke to her this same night he appeared to President Osmond, he sounded so natural.It gave her great peace of mind as she had had many business worries and the visit of her husband gave her confidence that all things would work out alright.
At the age of 77 President Osmond died on the 25th of March, 1913. The night he died, Johnny again appeared to my aunt in a dream. He was walking down the street on which President Osmond lived. She saw him turn in at the gate at his house and go into his home. The next morning she was notified of President Osmond’s death.
I testify that as we live, we will die. And because of Jesus Christ, as we die, we will live again!
May we each live our lives with faith, hope, confidence and purpose; always striving to be the person we were sent to this world to become knowing we will remain here until our work is finished!
We are not alone. Every action and even our thoughts are being recorded for a wise purpose. We were not to remember the spirit world from whence we came while here on earth as we came here to be tested. If that knowledge were remembered, it would nullify the test. Yes, one day, all memory of our pre-existence before and existence now will be unlocked as we will face our maker and ‘return and report’ our mission and our time here on earth; to be judged and assigned a certain glory for our good works or not.
We are never too old or unworthy to change for the better. Yes, it takes work but it is worth it and the blessings ‘are out of this world’!!! Again,
“The purpose of life is not to be happy. It is to be useful, to be honorable, to be compassionate, to have it make some difference that you have lived and lived well.”
Happiness happens, and will follow our rewards in heaven and they will be worthy of our time spent away from our Heavenly Parents while here on earth.
“And he said unto him,
Son, thou art ever with me,
and all that I have is thine.” Luke 15:31
A family begins when a young man and woman are drawn to one another by an irresistible force of nature. They offer to one another that which distinguishes him as male and her as female, and they want, above all else, to find the one with whom they can completely express their love. They want to have children—to be a family.
These compelling forces of nature should not be resisted, only approached cautiously, protecting those life-generating powers until promises have been made to one another, covenants with the Lord, and a legal ceremony performed, witnessed, and recorded.
Then, and only then, as husband and wife, man and woman, may they join together in that expression of love through which life is created.
We, like Jacob, must teach “according to the strict commands of God,” “notwithstanding the greatness of the task.” Like Jacob, we also run the risk of enlarging “the wounds of those who are already wounded, instead of consoling and healing their wounds.”7
When we speak plainly of divorce, abuse, gender identity, contraception, abortion, parental neglect, we are thought by some to be way out of touch or to be uncaring. Some ask if we know how many we hurt when we speak plainly. Do we know of marriages in trouble, of the many who remain single, of single-parent families, of couples unable to have children, of parents with wayward children, or of those confused about gender? Do we know? Do we care?
Those who ask have no idea how much we care; you know little of the sleepless nights, of the endless hours of work, of prayer, of study, of travel—all for the happiness and redemption of mankind.
Because we do know and because we do care, we must teach the rules of happiness without dilution, apology, or avoidance. That is our calling.
I would like to suggest 10 specific things to help you be successful in the plan the Lord would have you follow in your life.
First, establish a set of principles by which you will guide every aspect of your life—in your home, in your Church service, in your profession, in your community. Many people try to compartmentalize their life and have a standard for Church and another standard for what they do in business and in other aspects of their life. I very strongly counsel you not to do that. There really is only one set of standards that makes sense. Those are the teachings of Jesus Christ, which signal to us the importance of faith, service, obedience, and integrity.
Second, don’t make exceptions to your standards. Never compromise them. One of the ways the Lord protects us is to give us guidance in life. One of the ways Satan tries to destroy us is to subtly lead us away from what we know is centrally important in our life. I lived in Washington, D.C., for much of my life, and I recall on occasion men coming to that city who had been elected as representatives of the government and who were members of the Church. Some of them used the teachings of the Savior throughout their careers and became great servants. Others early in their careers began to reason, “If we were better friends with others and were better understood, we would receive positions that would put us in a place where we could serve better.” They began to make small exceptions to the standards by which they knew they should guide their lives. Few even remember them. They lost because they made exceptions to standards. Don’t make that mistake. Be loyal to the teachings you have received from your parents and Church leaders. They are the things of greatest worth. If you integrate your formal education with what you know about the teachings of the Lord and the examples of those worthy people who are role models to you, you will have a solid foundation. You will be productive and do things that are worthwhile for others.
Third, be loyal. Be loyal to your parents and your loved ones. Above all, be loyal to Jesus Christ, the Savior. Success comes when your actions are consistent with the teachings of the Lord. When you seek work, find something that challenges you, that raises you to higher levels of performance. It may be harder, but you will grow, develop better, and contribute more good. You really have no idea yet who you are and what you can accomplish in life. You have great potential far beyond what you can imagine today.
. Fourth, live so that the Lord can guide you to where He wants you to be and to serve. He can do that if you live His commandments worthily and strive in every way to be obedient to His teachings.
Fifth, serve others. Sharing what you know with others will bring you happiness and bless their lives.
Sixth, smile. I don’t mean that you need to be cracking jokes every day, but a good joke now and then is an escape valve. Life is not all that bad. You will soon learn that everybody has problems and nobody wants to hear about yours. Put those things aside and smile. Have a good sense of humor, as the prophets do. I wish I could tell you some of the things that we talk about. Not flippant things, not things that are inappropriate—just a good sense of humor. I will tell you a secret of how to wake up in the morning with a smile on your face no matter how you feel: go to bed with a coat hanger in your mouth. Remember, a good sense of humor helps you greatly.
Seventh, don’t complain. Life isn’t always fair. That’s a fact. But it’s always charged with marvelous opportunities if you know how to find them. I remember once when I was working as hard as I knew how. I happened to be working for a man who took all of the ideas and suggestions and work that I did and passed them on to his superior as though they were his own suggestions. For a while I was really upset about that. As I pondered it, a thought came to me, and I decided from then on I would write reports to him of everything that I was doing or trying to do, and I sent a copy to his boss. He didn’t like that, but it worked beautifully.
Eighth, always have a Church assignment. I don’t mean that you should ask for a particular calling, but wherever you go in the world, wherever the Lord takes you, always offer your service to the presiding authority. Leave it to that authority to decide where and how. Be connected with the things of God and the ways to serve Him. The last two are the most important.
Ninth, go to the temple. Carry a current temple recommend. There may be a few young adults who will want to wait to go to the temple for their endowment when they go with their companion to be sealed. But virtually everyone can obtain and keep a temple recommend. It will keep you spiritually in tune, will allow you to remember the most important things of life, and will encourage you to give great service to others.
Tenth, use the Savior Jesus Christ as your example for life. Use His teachings as your handbook for life. Never make exceptions to them. Will you prayerfully consider the things we have discussed? There are many willing to be led by your righteous example. Because you have been enlightened, you owe to those who follow you the best example you are capable of giving. Not only will they be blessed, but your life will be enriched as well.
Come to know of the great influence for good that flows from individual acts born of conscience and principle rooted in truth. Resolve that each moment of your life will reflect your determination to humbly be an example of righteousness, integrity, and conviction. With such a life you will surely succeed in the purpose for which you came to earth.
Do What Is Right!
I began this message indicating that I have validated in my personal life the truth of the principles shared. There have been times when my choice to stand for principle against strong forces implied that there would be significant personal loss by taking that action. But that did not deter me. I was determined to do what was right. The anticipated loss, however, never came. Somehow, doing what was right in time opened far greater and more meaningful opportunities.
I testify that you will never go wrong when you trust in the Lord and in His promises, no matter how severe the challenge.
A Christmas angel, a grumpy old man, and an unusual Christmas pageant remind us all that amid the shopping and commercialism, there is a way to keep Christ in Christmas; by giving the gifts He wants us to give.
“If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children,
how much more shall your Father which is in heaven give
good things to them that ask him?” Matthew 7:11
“For the word of the Lord is truth, and whatsoever is truth is light, and whatsoever is light is Spirit, even the Spirit of Jesus Christ.” Doctrine and Covenants 84:45
“. . . When the light rested upon me I saw two Personages, whose brightness and glory defy all description, standing above me in the air. One of them spake unto me, calling me by name and said, pointing to the other—This is My Beloved Son. Hear Him!“
“The Father and the Son, Jesus Christ, had appeared to Joseph Smith. The morning of the dispensation of the fulness of times had come, dispelling the darkness of the long generations of spiritual night. As in the creation, light was to replace darkness; day was to follow night.
“From then to now, truth has been and is available to us. Like the children of Israel in former times, endless days of wandering now can end with our entry to a personal promised land.”
New York Times best selling author Stephen Mansfield
There are nearly seven million Mormons in America . This is the number the Mormons themselves use. It’s not huge. Seven million is barely 2 percent of the country’s population. It is the number of people who subscribe to Better Homes and Gardens magazine. London boasts seven million people. So does San Francisco . It’s a million more people than live in the state of Washington ; a million less than in the state of Virginia . It’s so few, it’s the same number as were watching the January 24, 2012, Republican debate.
In fact, worldwide, there are only about fourteen million Mormons. That’s fourteen million among a global population just reaching seven billion. Fourteen million is the population of Cairo or Mali or Guatemala . It’s approximately the number of people who tune in for the latest hit show on network television every week. Fourteen million Americans ate Thanksgiving dinner in a restaurant in 2011. That’s how few fourteen million is.
Yet in the first decade or so of the new millennium, some members of the American media discovered the Mormons and began covering them as though the Latter-day Saints had just landed from Mars. It was as though Utah was about to invade the rest of the country. It was all because of politics and pop culture, of course. Mitt Romney and John Huntsman were in pursuit of the White House. Glenn Beck was among the nation’s most controversial news commentators. Stephenie Meyer had written the astonishingly popular Twilight series about vampires. Matt Stone and Trey Parker had created the edgy South Park cartoon series–which included a much- discussed episode about Mormons–and then went on to create the blatantly blasphemous and Saint-bashing Broadway play The Book of Mormon. It has become one of the most successful productions in American theater history.
Meanwhile, more than a dozen Mormons sat in the US Congress, among them Harry Reid, the Senate Majority Leader. Mormons led JetBlue, American Express, Marriott, Novell, Deloitte and Touche, Diebold, and Eastman Kodak. Management guru Stephen Covey made millions telling them how to lead even better. There were Mormons commanding battalions of US troops and Mormons running major US universities. There were so many famous Mormons, in fact, that huge websites were launched just to keep up with it all. Notables ranged from movie stars like Katherine Heigl to professional athletes to country music stars like Gary Allan to reality television contestants and even to serial killers like Glenn Helzer, whose attorney argued that the Saints made him the monster he was. The media graciously reminded the public that Mormon criminals were nothing new, though: Butch Cassidy of Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid fame was also a Mormon, they reported.
Most media coverage treated this “Mormon Moment” as though it was just that: the surprising and unrelated appearance of dozens of Mormons on the national stage–for a moment. More than a few commentators predicted it would all pass quickly.
What most commentators did not understand was that their “Mormon Moment” was more than a moment, more than an accident, and more than a matter of pop culture and fame alone. The reality was–and is–that the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saintshas reached critical mass. It is not simply that a startling number of Mormons have found their way onto America’s flat-screen TVs and so brought visibility to their religion. It is that the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter- day Saints has reached sufficient numbers–and has so permeated every level of American society on the strength of its religious value–that prominent politicians, authors, athletes, actors, newscasters, and even murderers are the natural result, in some cases even the intended result. Visible, influential Mormons aren’t outliers or exceptions. They are fruit of the organic growth of their religion.
In 1950, there were just over a million Mormons in the world. Most of these were located in the Intermountain West of the United States, a region of almost lunar landscape between the Rocky Mountains to the East and the Cascades and Sierra Nevada Mountains to the West. The religion was still thought of as odd by most Americans. There had been famous Mormons like the occasional US Senator or war hero, but these were few and far between. There had even been a 1940 Hollywood movie entitled Brigham Young that told the story of the Saints’ mid-1800s trek from Illinois to the region of the Great Salt Lake. Its producers worked hard to strain out nearly every possible religious theme, a nod to the increasingly secular American public. Though it starred heavyweights like Vincent Price and Tyrone Power, the movie failed miserably, even in Utah. Especially in Utah.
Then, in 1951, a man named David O. McKay became the “First President” of the Latter-day Saints and inaugurated a new era. He was the Colonel Harlan Sanders of Mormonism. He often wore white suits, had an infectious laugh, and under- stood the need to appeal to the world outside the Church. It was refreshing. Most LDS presidents had either been polygamist oddballs or stodgy old men in the eyes of the American public. McKay was more savvy, more media aware. He became so popular that film legend Cecil B. DeMille asked him to consult on the now classic movie The Ten Commandments.
Empowered by his personal popularity and by his sense that an opportune moment had come, McKay began refashioning the Church’s image. He also began sharpening its focus. His famous challenge to his followers was, “Every Member a Missionary!” And the faithful got busy. It only helped that Ezra Taft Benson, a future Church president, was serving as the nation’s secretary of agriculture under President Eisehower. This brought respectability. It also helped that George Romney was the revered CEO of American Motors Corporation and that he would go on to be the governor of Michigan, a candidate for president of the United States, and finally a member of Richard Nixon’s cabinet. This hinted at increasing power. The 1950s were good for Mormons.
Then came the 1960s. Like most religions, the LDS took a beating from the counterculture movement, but by the 1970s they were again on the rise. There was the Mormon Tabernacle Choir, a symbol of Americana when Americana was under siege. There was Mormon Donny Osmond’s smile and Mormon Marie Osmond’s everything and the three-year run of network television’s Donny and Marie in the late 1970s that made words like family, clean, talented, patriotic, and even cute outshine some of the less-endearing labels laid upon the Saints through the years. New labels joined new symbols. A massive, otherworldly, 160,000-square-foot Temple just north of Washington, DC, was dedicated in the 1970s, a symbol of LDS power and permanence for the nation to behold. Always there was the “Every Member a Missionary!” vision beating in each Saintly heart.
By 1984, the dynamics of LDS growth were so fine-tuned that influential sociologist Rodney Stark made the mind- blowing prediction that the Latter-day Saints would have no fewer than 64 million members and perhaps as many as 267 million by 2080.3 It must have seemed possible in those days. In the following ten years, LDS membership exploded from 4.4 million to 11 million. This may be why in 1998 the Southern Baptist Convention held its annual meeting in Salt Lake City. The Mormons–a misguided cult in the view of most traditional Christians, most Baptists in particular–had to be stopped.
They weren’t. Four years after the Baptists besieged Temple Square, the Winter Olympic Games came to Salt Lake City. This was in 2002 and it is hard to exaggerate what this meant to the Latter-day Saints. A gifted Mormon leader, Mitt Romney, rescued the games after a disastrous bidding scandal. A sparkling Mormon city hosted the games. Happy, handsome all-American Mormons attended each event, waving constantly to the cameras and appearing to be–in the word repeatedly used by the press at the time–“normal.”
The LDS Church capitalized on it all. It sent volunteers, missionaries, and publicists scurrying to every venue. It hosted grand events for the world press. It made sure that every visitor received a brochure offering an LDS guided tour of the city. Visitors from around the world read these words: “No other place in America has a story to tell like that of Salt Lake City–a sanctuary founded by religious refugees from within the United States’ own borders. And none can tell that story better than the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.”
Largely unchallenged, the Mormon narrative prevailed.
What followed was the decade of the new millennium we have already surveyed. Mormons seemed to be everywhere, seemed to be exceptional in nearly every arena, seemed to have moved beyond acceptance by American culture to domination of American culture. At least this was what some feared at the time.
But Mormons did not dominate the country. Far from it. Remember that they were not even 2 percent of the nation’s population as of 2012. True, they were visible and successful, well educated and well spoken, patriotic and ever willing to serve. Yet what they had achieved was not domination. It was not a conspiracy either, as some alleged. It was not anything approaching a takeover or even the hope for a takeover.
Few observers seemed to be able to explain how this new level of LDS prominence in American society came about. They reached for the usual answers trotted out to account for such occurrences: birth rates, Ronald Reagan’s deification of traditional values, the economic boom of the late twentieth century, a more liberal and broadminded society, even the dumbing down of America through television and failing schools. Each of these explanations was found wanting.
The Mormon Machine
The truth lay within Mormonism itself. What the Saints had achieved in the United States was what Mormonism, unfettered and well led, will nearly always produce. This was the real story behind the much-touted “Mormon Moment.” The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints had risen to unexpected heights in American society because the Mormon religion creates what can benevolently be called a Mormon Machine– a system of individual empowerment, family investment, local church (ward and stake level) leadership, priesthood government, prophetic enduement, Temple sacraments, and sacrificial financial endowment of the holy Mormon cause.
Plant Mormonism in any country on earth and pretty much the same results will occur. If successful, it will produce deeply moral individuals who serve a religious vision centered upon achievement in this life. They will aggressively pursue the most advanced education possible, understand their lives in terms of overcoming obstacles, and eagerly serve the surrounding society. The family will be of supernatural importance to them, as will planning and investing for future generations. They will be devoted to community, store and save as a hedge against future hardship, and they will esteem work as a religious calling. They will submit to civil government and hope to take positions within it. They will have advantages in this. Their beliefs and their lives in all-encompassing community will condition them to thrive in administrative systems and hierarchies–a critical key to success in the modern world. Ever oriented to a corporate life and destiny, they will prize belonging and unity over individuality and conflict every time.
These hallmark values and behaviors–the habits that distinguish Mormons in the minds of millions of Americans– grow naturally from Mormon doctrine. They are also the values and behaviors of successful people. Observers who think of the religion as a cult–in the Jim Jones sense that a single, dynamic leader controls a larger body of devotees through fear, lies, and manipulation–usually fail to see this. Mormon doctrine is inviting, the community it produces enveloping and elevating, the lifestyle it encourages empowering in nearly every sense. Success, visibility, prosperity, and influence follow. This is the engine of the Mormon ascent. It is what has attracted so many millions, and it is the mechanism of the Latter-day Saints’ impact upon American society and the world.
Mormons make achievement through organizational management a religious virtue. It leads to prosperity, visibility, and power. It should come as no surprise, then, that an American can turn on the evening news after a day of work and find one report about two Mormon presidential candidates, another story about a Mormon finalist on American Idol, an examination of the controversial views of a leading Mormon news commentator, a sports story about what a Mormon lineman does with his “Temple garments” in the NFL, and a celebration of how Mormons respond to crises like Katrina and the BP oil spill, all by a “Where Are They Now?” segment about Gladys Knight, minus the Pips, who has become–of course–a Mormon.
Mormons rise in this life because it is what their religion calls for. Achieving. Progressing. Learning. Forward, upward motion. This is the lifeblood of earthly Mormonism. Management, leadership, and organizing are the essential skills of the faith. It is no wonder that Mormons have grown so rapidly and reached such stellar heights in American culture. And there is much more to come.
President Thomas S. Monson Prophet, Seer, and Revelator The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints
The Importance Native Americans Played In The Founding Of This Country
The United States of America – The Promised Land
Words of President Harold B. Lee (1974)
“I have faith in America.
You and I must have faith in America if we understand the gospel of Jesus Christ.
This is the cradle of humanity where life on this earth began in the Garden of Eden.
This is the place where the New Jerusalem is. This is the place where the Savior will come to His Temple. We must all sound with one voice. We must tell the world how we feel about this land and this nation.
I plead with you not to preach pessimism. Preach that this is the greatest country in all the world. This is the favored land. This is the land of our forefathers. It is the nation that will stand despite whatever trials or crises it may yet have to pass through.”
Independence Hall in Washington D.C.
From book: “Gods of War, Gods of Peace”
“Many people do not realize the importance the Native Americans played in the founding of this country! Benjamin Franklin had first learned something about the constitution of the Six Nations in delegates accounts of the proceedings at the Treaty of Lancaster, Pennsylvania in 1744.
When the delegates from Maryland, Pennsylvania, and Virginia fell apart in quarrels among themselves about their objectives, this Chief Canasatego, (whose home government had by then been resolving internal dilemmas by means of check-and-balance debates for a century or more) ran out of patience.
Raising his hand and speaking with the eloquence that would have done credit to Chief Hiawatha, he scolded the colonial delegates for their lack of wisdom and ignorance of good procedures.”
Canasatego’s words rang in Benjamin Franklin’s ears. Although he had certainly known about the military might and diplomatic effectiveness of the Six Nations, he onlynow, through Canastego’s words caught an intimation of what its government work – a religious based constitution. Benjamin Franklin held it up in a series of pamphlets as the worlds only available model for a confederation ofthirteen contentious colonies.”
Why has this information been hidden and erased from our American History?
Some of these Native Americans came from Jerusalem and are of Israeli descent. The Native American’s wrote in Ancient Hebrew!
The stick of Ephraim or Joseph: A record of one group from the tribe of Ephraim that was led from Jerusalem toAmerica about 600 B.C. This group’s record is called the stick of Ephraim or Joseph. It and the stick of Judah (the Bible) form a unified testimony of the Lord Jesus Christ, his resurrection, and his divine work among these two segments of the house of Israel.
This record records Jesus’s visit to America and telling the people to “come forth unto me, that ye may thrust your hands into my side, and also that ye may feel the prints of the nails in my hands and in my feet, that ye may know that I am the God of Israel, and the God of the whole earth, and have been slain for the sins of the world.”
These history of these people is recorded in This Book.
There are eighteen (18) Prophecies and Promises regarding this land of America!
Land of Promise.
Land consecrated for an inheritance.
Land choice above all other lands.
Land cursed because of wickedness.
Land Holy to those led to it by the Lord.
Land of prosperity and security.
Land of Liberty.
Land of the New Jerusalem.
Land where all worship God or will be destroyed.
Land prepared for the Lord’s people.
Land never brought into captivity.
Land fortified against all other nations.
Land only for those brought by the Lord.
Land kept from the knowledge of other nations.
Land where none shall molest.
Land not to be governed by a king.
Land to be visited by Christ.
Land were sacred record is to be kept.
“The United States will stand despite whatever trials and crisis it may have to pass through. It is a nation that was founded upon an inspired declaration we call the Constitution of the United States and the Lord said it was written by men whom He raised up for that very purpose.“ Harold B. Lee – 1974
D&C 98: 5 “And that law of the land which is constitutional, supporting that principle of freedom in maintaining rights and privileges, belongs to all mankind, and is justifiable before me.”
(This is the first time the Lord has given His stamp of approval on a government institution.)
2 Ne. 1: 7 “Wherefore, this land is consecrated unto him whom he shall bring. And if it so be that they shall serve him according to the commandments which he hath given, it shall be a land of liberty unto them; wherefore, they shall never be brought down into captivity; if so, it shall be because of iniquity; for if iniquity shall abound cursed shall be the land for their sakes, but unto the righteous it shall be blessed forever.”
(So long as they are righteous.)
The North American Native Americans have been the ones to be scattered and afflicted (“Trails of Tears”), removed from their lands.
Christ’s prophesy that the New Jerusalem would be built in America:
3 Ne. 20: 22 “And behold, this people will I establish in this land, unto the fulfilling of the covenant which I made with your father Jacob; and it shall be a New Jerusalem. And the powers of heaven shall be in the midst of this people; yea, even I will be in the midst of you.”
Ether 13: 2-3 “For behold, they rejected all the words of Ether; for he truly told them of all things, from the beginning of man; and that after the waters had receded from off the face of this land it became a choice land above all other lands, a chosen land of the Lord; wherefore the Lord would have that all men should serve him who dwell upon the face thereof;
And that it was the place ofthe New Jerusalem, which should come down out of heaven, and the holy sanctuary of the Lord.”
Ether 13: 4, 6 “Behold, Ether saw the days of Christ, and he spake concerning a New Jerusalem upon this land.
And that a New Jerusalem should be built up upon this land, unto the remnant of the seed of Joseph, for which things there has been a type.”
3 Ne. 21: 2-4 “And behold, this is the thing which I will give unto you for a sign—for verily I say unto you that when these things which I declare unto you, and which I shall declare unto you hereafter of myself, and by the power of the Holy Ghost which shall be given unto you of the Father, shall be made known unto the Gentiles that they may know concerning this people who are a remnant of the house of Jacob, and concerning this my people who shall be scattered by them;
Verily, verily, I say unto you, when these things shall be made known unto them of the Father, and shall come forth of the Father, from them unto you;
For it is wisdom in the Father that they should be established in this land, and be set up as a free people by the power of the Father, that these things might come forth from them unto a remnant of your seed, that the covenant of the Father may be fulfilled which he hath covenanted with his people, O house of Israel.”
3 Ne. 21: 22-23 “But if they will repent and hearken unto my words, and harden not their hearts, I will establish my church among them, and they shall come in unto the covenant and be numbered among this the remnant of Jacob, unto whom I have given this land for their inheritance;
And they shall assist my people, the remnant of Jacob, and also as many of the house of Israel as shall come, that they may build a city, which shall be called the New Jerusalem.”
D&C 10: 53 “And for this cause have I said: If this generation harden not their hearts, I will establish my church among them.”
If you google Chief Conasatago, you will find this:
“Chief Canasatego,” he said with the warmth of someone remembering a close friend. “He’s a historical figure few people know about, but one who played a vital role in America’s formation. Some consider him a lost Founding Father.”
“Dr. Heisman has done extensive research on the Iroquois chief. One of his dissertations was vital in getting Congress to pass a resolution concerning the role Native Americans played in the country’s founding.” “He’s a fascinating figure. He was the greatest and most influential Native American of his time. If he hadn’t been struck down so young, there is no telling how different this nation might look, especially regarding its relation with Native Americans.” Gray leaned back in his chair. “And he was murdered like the letter said.” Heisman nodded and finally took a seat at the table. “He was poisoned. Historians disagree about who killed him. Some say it was spies of the British government. Others claim it was his own people.”
“Seems like ol’ Ben had his own theory,” Monk added.
Heisman eyed the letter with a hungry look. “It is intriguing.” Gray suspected there would be no further trouble convincing the curator to assist them with their research. The irritated sleepiness in his manner had drained away, leaving behind only avid interest.
“SO WHY WAS THIS IROQUOIS CHIEF SO IMPORTANT?” Monk asked. Heisman reached to the photocopied letter and flipped to the crude representation of the bald eagle with outstretched wings. He tapped the claw that held the bundled arrows. “THATS WHY.” He glanced around the table. “Do any of you know why the Great Seal of the United States has the eagle gripping a sheaf of arrows.” Gray shrugged and shifted the page closer. “The olive branch in one claw represents peace, and the arrows in the other represent war.” A wry-grin-his first of the night- rose on the curator’s face. “That’s a common misconception. But there’s a story behind that bundle of thirteen arrows, one that rises from a story of Chief Canasatego.” Grey let the curator speak, sensing he’d get more by letting the man ramble on. “Canasatego was a leader of the Onondaga nation, one of six Indian nations that eventually joined together to form the Iroquois Confederacy. That union of tribes was already centuries old, formed during the 1500′s–long before the founding of America. After generations of bloody warfare, peace among the tribes was finally achieved when the disparate nations agreed to bang together fr their common good. They formed a uniquely democratic and egalitarian government, with representatives from each tribe having a voice. It was government like no other at the time, with laws and it’s own constitution.” “Sounds darned familiar,” Monk added. “Indeed, Chief Canasatego met with the early colonists in 1744 and presented the Iroquois Confederacy as an example for them to follow, encouraging them to join together for the common good.” Heisman stared around the room. “Benjamin Franklin was in attendance at that meeting and spread the word among those who eventually frame our own Constitution. In fact, one of the delegates to the Constitutional Convention–John Rutledge of South Carolina–even read sections of Iroquoian law to his fellow framers, reading directly from one of their tribal treaties, which started with the words, “we, the people, to form a union, to establish peace, equity and order–” “WAIT,” Monk sat straighter. “That’s almost word for word like the preamble of the U.S constitution. Are you saying we patterned our founding documents upon some old Indian Laws”? “Not just me, but also Congress of the United States, Resolution 331, passed in October of 1988, recognizes the influence that the Iroquois Constitution had upon our own constitution and upon our Bill of Rights. While there is some dispute as to the degree of influence, the facts can;t be denied. Our founding fathers even immortalized that debt in our national seal. “How so?” Gray asked. Heisman again tapped the eagle drawing. “At the gathering in 1744, Chief Canasatego approached Benjamin Franklin and gave him a gift, a single feathered arrow. When Franklin expressed confusion, Canasatego took back the arrow and broke it across his knee and let the pieces drop to the floor. Next he presented Franklin with a sheaf of thirteen arrows tied together in leather. Canasatego attempted to break the bundle across his knee like before, but joined as one, they would not break. He presented that bundle to Franklin, the massage plain to all. To survive and be strong the thirteen colonies; only then would be unbreakable. The eagle in the Great Seal holds that same bundle of thirteen arrows in his claw as a permanent–if somewhat secret–homage to the wise words of Chief Canasatego..
NOTES FROM THE AUTHOR!!!!
– Chief Canasatego is a real Iroquois leader who had a profound impact on the founding of America. Many people do believe him to be a lost Founding Father. The story related about the arrows and Franklin and how it led to the bundle of arrows in our national great seal is true.
– As in Resolution 331, passed in October of 1988, which acknowledged the influence that the Iroquois constitution had upon our own founding documents, including the Declaration of Independence.
– For example, in 1787, John Rutldge of South Carolina read to memeber of the Constitution Convention from Iroquois law, words written 250 years before our constituion. Here are those words he read: “We, the people, to form a union, to establish peace, equity, and order….”Sound Fimiliar?
New Church Website on Same-Sex Attraction Offers Love, Understanding and Hope
New Church Website on Same-Sex Attraction
Offers Love, Understanding and Hope
SALT LAKE CITY —
In an effort to encourage understanding and civil conversation about same-sex attraction, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has launched the website “Love One Another: A Discussion on Same-Sex Attraction” (www.mormonsandgays.org). It features a number of videos from people who share real experiences from their own perspectives on a sensitive and sometimes emotionally charged topic.
Elder Dallin H. Oaks of the Church’s Quorum of the Twelve Apostles says the website is important because it seeks to further understanding.
Elder Oaks said that because we don’t understand everything about this subject it is wise to stick to the revealed word of God as found in the scriptures. “What we do know is that the doctrine of the Church—that sexual activity should only occur between a man and a woman who are married—has not changed and is not changing. But what is changing and what needs to change is to help our own members and families understand how to deal with same-gender attraction,” he said.
Church apostle Elder Quentin L. Cook stresses that Latter-day Saints, who devote their lives to following Jesus Christ’s teachings, should be an example to the world of expressing love and hope for those with same-gender attraction.
“As a church, nobody should be more loving and compassionate,” Elder Cook said. “Let us be at the forefront in terms of expressing love, compassion and outreach. Let’s not have families exclude or be disrespectful of those who choose a different lifestyle as a result of their feelings about their own gender.”
The website is a collection of conversations with Church leaders, Church members who are attracted to people of the same sex, and family members and friends of those who experience same-sex attraction. The website’s various sections discuss important topics such as our common ground as human beings, our family relationships, our identity and potential as children of God, how members of society treat each other, and what it means to be disciples of Christ. While the website does not endeavor to address every issue that could be addressed in relation to same-sex attraction, these candid and sincere expressions show the many human facets of a sensitive matter. Compassion comes from understanding.
One of the participants in the website explains why it’s important to address this topic:
“This is a dialogue that I feel very passionately about and one that I think we’re not used to having in the Church. It’s a dialogue that needs to come from a place of understanding and empathy rather than fear and misunderstanding.”
“I hope we will give ourselves the time and have the patience to listen and understand and not insist on everything being resolved within a certain framework of time,” Church apostle Elder D. Todd Christofferson said.
Regarding the timing of the announcement, Church spokesman Michael Purdy said, “Too often these types of big, important issues are dealt with in sound bites and often by individuals who do not have the complete picture of what the Church is doing. This website was produced over two years and puts the entire issue in context.
“The attention the Church received during the presidential election period highlighted areas of Church belief and practice that are poorly understood by the general public. We think additional context will help people better understand the Church’s position on a number of issues. Over the next few weeks we expect to be publishing more resource materials that will help address other topics.”