Wednesday, September 16, 2015


Dear Sisters and Elders,

I hope you are enjoying reading the last part of the Book of Mormon. The Book of Mormon is a remarkable book--prepared specifically for the last days of the world. We are blessed to have it. It is a blessing to us personally and it is a great blessing to those we teach. You can promise everyone you teach that, if they will read even just a few pages every day, they will feel more peace and direction and clarity in their lives.

This morning I was reading in the Pearl of Great Price about the first vision, the visits of the angel Moroni, the translation of the Book of Mormon and the restoration of the priesthood. Moroni's assignment was to teach and tutor the future prophet. He appeared to him three times in one night when Joseph was 17 years old, and twice again the following day. Each time, he taught him from the words of the prophets in the scriptures and then taught him about his role in the kingdom of God. He guided Joseph to the location of the plates and then met him there to teach him every year for four years.

In his teachings to the future prophet, Moroni often quoted the book of Malachi: "Behold, I will reveal unto you the Priesthood, by the hand of Elijah the prophet, before the coming of the great and dreadful day of the Lord. And he shall plant in the hearts of the children the promises made to the fathers, and the hearts of the children shall turn to their fathers. If it were not so, the whole earth would be utterly wasted at his coming." (Malachi 3:5-6, JS History 1:38-39)

This prophecy of Malachi, that he would "plant in the hearts of the children the promises made to the fathers, and the hearts of the children shall turn to their fathers", is the key to missionary work. It is the promise of the Lord that He will prepare people to hear our message. It is the promise of the Lord that people will feel the desire to return to their Father in Heaven. It is the promise that the importance of eternal families will be planted in the hearts of everyone.

Our message is a message of hope and joy. It is a message that brings happiness and peace. It is a message of connection--connection with our Heavenly Father and connection with those we love.

Our message is the message that Christ will "bind up the brokenhearted...comfort all that for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning..." (Isaiah 61:1-3)

As you go out to find and teach and guide the people in your assigned area, remember that you carry with you the greatest message on earth. The message that Christ's atonement provides the forgiveness, the healing and the strength that people need. The message that the priesthood of God has been restored. The message that the love they feel now for their loved ones can be sealed for all eternity.

I invite you to put away all of your personal concerns and focus your minds and hearts on sharing this wonderful message. If there are things you need to cleanse from your life, do it now, so that you will not stand in the way of your message.

Please remember that there are hundreds of thousands of people praying for you. Prayers for you are said in every temple throughout the world, by the prophet and apostles, by your families and friends and by Sister Ostler and me. You are also being prayed for by the ancestors of those you teach, so that perhaps they can receive the ordinances of the gospel in the temple. Draw on the strength of the faith of those who are praying for you.

We love you and rejoice with you in the great success of this mission in bringing people to Christ.

Mahal ko po kayo,

President Creg Ostler