Joseph F. Smith
Gospel Art Picture Kit
President of the Church, 1901–1918
In 1915, when Joseph F. Smith was President of the Church, the First Presidency wrote a letter encouraging families to hold “home evening” activities. They promised blessings to families who would participate: “If the Saints obey this counsel, we promise that great blessings will result. Love at home and obedience to parents will increase. Faith will be developed in the hearts of the youth of Israel, and they will gain power to combat the evil influence and temptations which beset them” (in James R. Clark, comp., Messages of the First Presidency of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints [1965–75], 4:338–39).
Just six weeks before his death, while reading and pondering the scriptures, Joseph F. Smith received a beautiful and magnificent vision. This vision showed Jesus Christ visiting the spirits of righteous people who had died. The Savior organized the spirits into a missionary force to preach the gospel to those who had died without a knowledge of the gospel or who had rejected the truth. Among the faithful who were teaching others were his father, Hyrum Smith, and the Prophet Joseph Smith. The Church accepted this revelation as scripture, and it was published in 1976 as section 138 of the Doctrine and Covenants.
Joseph F. Smith, sixth President of the Church, was five years old when his father, Hyrum Smith, was killed at Carthage Jail with the Prophet Joseph Smith. Joseph F. Smith was nine years old when he drove an ox team across the plains. As President of the Church, he encouraged families to hold “home evening” activities, promising that “great blessings will result. Love at home and obedience to parents will increase. Faith will be developed in the hearts of the youth of Israel, and they will gain power to combat the evil influence and temptations which beset them.”
Artist, A. Salzbroning
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