Periodicals; Mormons; Religious thought; Philosophy and religion
Independent national quarterly established to express Mormon culture and examine the relevance of religion to secular life. It is edited by Mormons who wish to bring their faith into dialogue with human experience as a whole and to foster artistic and scholarly achievement based on their cultural heritage. The journal encourages a variety of viewpoints; although every effort is made to insure accurate scholarship and responsible judgment, the views expressed are those of the individual authors and are not necessarily those of the Mormon Church or of the editors.
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Rees, Robert A.
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Harold B. Lee, ±8gg-±g7^ I ij but the ideal mood to receive inspiration. My wife and I were late arriving at the meeting, and had to sit in the cultural hall, where it was noisy. And our three children, ages six, five and four, were anything but soothing in their behavior as they squirmed, wiggled, whispered, crawled, and climbed over us. By the time Elder Lee got up to speak, my wife and I were both tired, and we were discussing which of us would attend conference that afternoon while the other took care of the children in the city park. As I remember it, I won. I would get to take care of the children. Then Elder Lee began to speak, and at his first statement my mental reservations about the inspiration of the conference went even deeper. He announced that all the Primary presidents in the stake were to contact all the Primary teachers, who were to call all the parents in the stake between conference meetings (and the stake covered almost half of Los Angeles), and have them bring their Primary children to conference that afternoon—for he wanted the children to sing two certain songs. "Elder Lee," I remember thinking, "what are you trying to do? Not only is this an impossible task for the Primary ladies, who have to feed their own families and get back in less than two hours, but I don't think that many people who aren't here now will even want to come." I was sure (well, at least fearful) that his plan would fail. As my wife and I looked at each other with some dismay at the thought of another session of squirming, crawling children, I was in a frame of mind in which inspiration is not usually said to come. (But we did return that afternoon, and the Primary children did sing, and the whole experience was beautiful—I wouldn't have missed it for the world.) Then Harold B. Lee, in his role as an Apostle of the Lord, began one of the most memorable sermons I have ever heard. As he recounted a recent trip to the Holy Land, he told of his deep and spiritual feelings as he walked where Jesus walked, and renewed again his own communion with the Master. It almost seemed as if the message were just for me, partly because of what I was doing in the Institutes, for seldom before or since have the chills gone up and down my spine, or has the Spirit touched my soul, as on that day. Elder Lee knew—and because Elder Lee knew, I knew, and because I knew, hopefully other people, too, would know. Welfare? Yes. Correlation? Yes. Administrative skill? Yes. But the most valuable contribution of any man is in the uplifting influence he has on the lives of others. If my experience was any example, the influence of Harold B. Lee will be lasting and profound.