Thursday, December 24, 2009

The members of the Church in the Baltics

I've been thinking a great deal about these good people who learn of the Gospel of Jesus Christ, gain a testimony of its truthfulness, commit to baptism, and then remain steadfast and immoveable. We have many young adults who are searching for God and want a better life than they or their parents have. Many of them face strong opposition from their parents, but they persevere, believing firmly that what they have chosen is to follow Jesus Christ.

As I have mentioned, the general citizenship here walks down the street without looking up or from side to side, looking like they are carrying the weight of the world on their shoulders.

On the other hand, as I associate with the members of the Church, they are happy and industrious and have hope.

One thing they do very well is attend the Temple. The closest temples are in Helsinki Finland and Stockholm Sweden. Either one requires a plane flight or a ferry ride, plus bus/train rides. The Saints here are so committed to the Temple that they take a week at a time, 3 or 4 times a year, to go. They take their children and take turns tending each other's children, so everyone has the opportunity to attend the Temple sessions. The youth do baptisms for the dead. And they feel such joy. Given the fact that their standard of living is far below the norm in America, they are making financial sacrifices, as well as the sacrifice of time.

And the Lord does bless them!

It has caused me to understand more fully what the early Saints endured for their faith in the Lord. How grateful I am for them.

No comments: