Let your minds be filled with the goal of being like the Lord, and you will crowd out depressing thoughts as you anxiously seek to know him and do his will. —President Ezra Taft Benson (1899–1994), “Do Not Despair,” Ensign, Oct. 1986, 5.

To Guide Us Today

Latter-day Saint William Fowler, a convert from England, wrote the lyrics to “We Thank Thee, O God, for a Prophet” (Hymns, no. 19). President Joseph F. Smith (1838–1918) noted that the hymn was first sung in a meeting while he was on his mission in England; he served from 1860 to 1863. Brother Fowler set the words to the tune of Caroline Norton’s “The Officer’s Funeral March.” She might be surprised to find that her music written for a fallen soldier now praises the living prophet of God.

It Happened in August

August 12, 1850: The first 15 converts to the Church in Copenhagen, Denmark, were baptized by Elder Erastus Snow (right) of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles.

August 5, 1861: Latter-day Saint missionaries first arrived in the Netherlands (right).

August 1, 1970: The Ecuador Mission was organized. Now Ecuador has three missions, 31 stakes, and a temple (below).

August 24, 1977: President Spencer W. Kimball (left) dedicated Poland for the preaching of the gospel.

Write Away!

This is to you returned missionaries out there. What do you wish you had known before your mission? Write down your advice to help youth better prepare for their missions and send it to:

New Era, What I Wish I Had Known
50 E. North Temple St. Rm. 2420
Salt Lake City, UT 84150-3220, USA

Or e-mail it to: newera@ldschurch.org

Beyond Your Abilities

When you serve in the Church, you have the blessing and the responsibility to call on Heavenly Father for guidance. Elder Henry B. Eyring of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles said that in your calling “you have access to more than your natural capacities, and you do not work alone. The Lord will magnify what you say and what you do in the eyes of the people you serve. He will send the Holy Ghost to manifest to them that what you spoke was true. What you say and do will carry hope and give direction to people far beyond your natural abilities and your own understanding” (“Rise to Your Call,” Ensign, Nov. 2002, 76–77).

Helping with Hundreds of Hygiene Kits

Last December, youth in the Marston Lake and Littleton Fifth Wards, Littleton Colorado Stake, prepared 200 hygiene kits for the Humanitarian Center in Salt Lake City, to distribute throughout the world. Each hygiene kit serves a family of four for one month and contains four toothbrushes, two combs, two hand towels, two bars of soap, and one tube of toothpaste.

Corey Crellin (right), a teacher in the Littleton Fifth Ward, helped coordinate the project as part of a Duty to God requirement. Corey said that he was “glad to be able to lead a project that can affect people around the world.”

Just five days after the youth project, one of the largest earthquakes in 105 years caused a tsunami that killed more than 150,000 people in Southeast Asia. The youth then realized how inspired the project was. Members of the Littleton Colorado Stake followed the example of the Marston Lake and Littleton Fifth Wards’ youth by making an additional 2,300 kits for the victims of that disaster.

Lauren Crookston, a Beehive in the Marston Lake Ward, said, “We are so lucky to share some of what we have with countries and people in need, especially those who lost everything in the tsunami. It is nice to spread some cheer.”

[photos] Photograph of the Netherlands by Digital Stock; photograph of the Guayaquil Ecuador Temple by Eduardo Ledeno Perez

[illustration] Illustrated by Scott Greer