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  • Larry Tucker
    During a special Council in Heaven, our Heavenly Father announced His divine plan—the great plan of happiness. The purpose of the plan was to provide an opportunity for His spirit children to “obtain a physical body and gain earthly experience to progress toward perfection.”1 We were so excited to learn about our Father’s plan that we “shouted for joy.”2 Why were we so happy to learn about Heavenly Father’s wonderful plan? It was partly because our heavenly parents have glorified bodies of flesh and bones. For us to become like Them and to receive a fullness of
  • I have titled these remarks “A Sense of the Sacred,” by which I mean an appreciation and reverence for sacred things. Speaking of society in general, I am afraid that many of my generation have been remiss in transmitting to your generation a feeling for sacred things and an understanding of how to respect them. To the extent possible, I hope to counteract some of the bad examples that are much in evidence around you. I hope to help you refine your ability to discern what is sacred and to respond with reverence for all that is holy. The importance of having a sense of the sacr
  • Brothers and sisters, what an incredible opportunity is mine this morning to share with those I love and respect a message that I believe is timely and important. I am aware that George Burns’ secret of a good sermon is to have a good beginning and a good ending and have them as close together as possible. This morning I’m feeling humble, as a child. I hope I can also speak with the simple conviction of a child, like the child I heard about just the other day. A little girl was talking to her elementary school teacher about whales. She had just learned about Jonah and the whale in he
  • I can see in my mind’s eye the students, young adults, gathered in the beautiful new institute building in San Salvador in El Salvador, where I was just seven days ago. I see them in Samoa, Madrid, Pusan, Accra in Ghana, Mendoza, Moscow, Seattle, in Anchorage, in Virginia, and dozens of other places. To them I say, “Welcome! Bienvenidos! Willkommen! Foon ying! Sdrazvoudje! Yoo koso! And welcome!” I am counting on the dedicated interpreters to give that welcome in the other 25 or so languages. I find that, through them, my Spanish is perfect, my Russian is adequate, and I am a man of
  • Sister Bateman and I are particularly pleased to welcome you to the new 2002–2003 school year at Brigham Young University. Normally the two of us share the podium during the devotionals. Because of a health challenge, Sister Bateman has asked that I represent the two of us today. We have been sweethearts for more than 40 years. Her experience during the last month has reinforced in my mind and heart how much she means to me and our family. Our prayers have become prayers of thankfulness. We are grateful that she is on the mend. We extend a special welcome this morning to more than 5,
  • Phyllis C. Jacobson
    Everything I needed to know I have learned in Primary by singing two songs: “I Am a Child of God” and “Jesus Wants Me for a Sunbeam.” Knowing what these songs teach makes all the difference in how I want to live my life. I am a child of God, And he has sent me here, Has given me an earthly home With parents kind and dear. Lead me, guide me, walk beside me . . . [“I Am a Child of God,” Children’s Songbook, p. 2] Learning about Jesus, the Son of God, and knowing that he wants me to be his light on ear
  • Sara Lee Gibb
    This is an inspiring, humbling, awesome moment for me—one that I have been anticipating for some weeks. I want to say that it is a tremendous honor to be here with you in this setting. As I projected myself into this moment and as I prepared, I pondered what I could share with you that might in some way change your lives. What a solemn responsibility! I assume that is why you are here at this university and in this assembly—to be enlightened, enriched, and changed. I reflected on President David O. McKay’s words given in an address here at BYU in 1947 that life is a constant state of
  • This responsibility to speak to you never gets any easier for me. I think it gets more difficult as the years go by. I grow a little older, the world and its litany of problems get a little more complex, and your hopes and dreams become evermore important to me the longer I am at BYU. Indeed, your growth and happiness and development in the life you are now living and in the life you will be living in the days and decades ahead are the central and most compelling motivation in my daily professional life. I care very much about you now and forever. Everything I know to do at BYU i
  • I invite you to ponder things magnificent. To assist, let us define the word magnificent. It is derived from two Latin roots. The prefix magni comes from a term meaning “great.” The suffix comes from the Latin facere, meaning “to make” or “to do.” A simple definition of magnificent then might be “great deed” or “greatly made.” Think, if you will, of the most magnificent sight you have ever seen. It could be a meadow in springtime filled with beautiful wildflowers. Or perhaps you have been awestruck, as I have, at the magnificence of a single rose with its
  • President Oaks, brothers and sisters, fellow students, it is an honor to return again to the campus of Brigham Young University. I am grateful for each opportunity I have to be among you. Every time I am privileged to come to BYU, I leave as a better individual. I am always inspired by the students here and by the great members of the faculty. I want you to know of my love and admiration for all of you. In responding to this request to share my innermost thoughts with you on this occasion, I sense my inadequacies; for I stand before you, not as a speaker or as an entertainer, but sol
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