Monday, August 8, 2011

Saints All Over the World

"All over the world at the end of day, 
Heavenly Father's children kneel down to pray
Each saying thank you in his own special way
Saying thank you, thank you in his own special way.

"Gracais." "Malo." "wir danken dir."
All over the world tender voices hear.
Some say "tak," others "merci,"
"Kanshashimasu," We thank thee.

"Our Heavenly Father hears them; 
he understands each tongue.
Our Heavn'ly Father knows them;
He loves them, loves them, ev'ry one."

I thought of this song I learned over 25 years ago several times this weekend.

The first was during a visit with some of my Oxford friends on Saturday when one commented that she noticed, where she hadn't before, an LDS church building in Belgium on holiday this summer.

Then, on Sunday, in "fast and testimony meeting,"* those who shared testimonies came from all over the world: Estonia, England, Africa, Chile, America, and the Philippines.  Each extemporaneously and without coordination testified of the same things--the truthfulness of the Book of Mormon, their gratitude for the Savior's atonement, the love of God, the truthfulness of the Church, the knowledge that Joseph Smith was a prophet, and that our current president, Thomas S. Monson, is a prophet.

Finally, in primary, I substitute-taught a lesson.  I was deeply touched by the opening prayer of the seven year old African-English boy who seemed to have the understanding, faith, and eloquence of a seasoned paster.

As in the prophet Nephi's vision, the congregations of my faith are small, but they are upon "all the face of the earth." God loves his children enough to bless them indiscriminately with the joys that come from a knowledge of the restored gospel such that each of us are moved to say "thank you" in our own special way.

* The first Sunday of the month, members of my faith who can fast for two meals and give the money they would have spent on food to the poor in the Church by way of "fast offering."  Instead of regular talks or a sermon by a leader, after the sacrament is passed, members are able to approach the podium if they wish to "bear testimony," or share those things they know to be spiritually true.  As no testimonies but that opening one by a bishopbric member are planned, these are often the most interesting and spiritual meetings of my faith.


  1. Great post, thanks for sharing! :)

  2. I love that song.
    It took a while, but I have learned to love testimony meetings, too. It's such a comfort to know that the church and the gospel message are the same no matter where in the world we are.

  3. That's a great post! I started writing down where people were from too. It's fascinating!