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For week ended December 12, 1999 Posted 18 Dec 1999

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LDS Leaders Focus on True Gifts of Season

Summarized by Kent Larsen

LDS Leaders Focus on True Gifts of Season
Salt Lake Tribune 6Dec99 N1
By Connie Coyne: Salt Lake Tribune

SALT LAKE CITY, UTAH -- The First Presidency's annual Christmas broadcast last night focused on the precious Christmas gifts of the heart. Speaking first, President James E. Faust told of his experience as a child concentrating on a toy over a more important token of his parents love and of how he wishes he had that token now, while he forgot the toy just weeks after Christmas.

President Monson told of playing a wise man in a Christmas pageant as a child. He said he still keeps the cane he used in the pageant because it reminds him of his feelings in playing that part. He also told of a family sharing their christmas in poverty and how one child in the family learned to give his most longed-for gift.

President Hinckley used Charles Dickens' "Life of Our Lord," which was prized by the Dickens family and kept private until the death of the youngest child in the family in 1933. The story goes beyond the normal recitation of the life of Christ to urge children to be Christian. Hinckley quoted Dickens, "Remember! -- it is Christianity to do good always -- even to those who do evil to us. It is Christianity to love our neighbor as ourself, and to do to all men as we would have them do to us. It is Christianity to be gentle, merciful and forgiving, and to keep those qualities quiet in our own hearts, and never make a boast of them, or of our prayers or of our love of God, but always to [show] that we love him by trying to do right in everything. If we do this, and remember the life and lesson of our lord Jesus Christ, and try to act up to them, we may confidently hope that God will forgive us our sins and mistakes, and enable us to die in peace."

Copyright 1998, 1999, 2000, 2001 Kent Larsen · Privacy Information