Monday, January 28, 2008

Goodbye President Hinckley

I'm sure that countless blogs belonging to members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints will be about President Hinckley in the coming days or weeks. As most of the world knows by now (ever heard of a mormon calling tree? lol), he passed away last night.

The news actually came to us from out home teachers. Bro Bolli and Bro Vanderhoef came to visit last night and after coming in and sitting down, Bro Bolli said "I don't know if you heard yet, but President Hinckley passed away about an hour ago." Being the jovial guy that he is, his face still looked happy. Since he still looked happy my first thought was "well that's not very funny. Really, it's kind of a sick joke-what is he doing??" (Sorry Reegan!) I realized within a matter of seconds that he obviously wasn't joking. I think it was just a shock more than anything. President Hinckley has just always been around, and it just kind of felt like he always would be around. I suppose the other side of the shock was that he was kind of "my" prophet. We all have favorites, or those that we feel more connected to for whatever reason. Little things always made me feel just a bit more connected with President Hinckley. I grew up with his grandkids (and President Faust's grandkids as well actually) from Kindergarten all the way through High School. My elementary school and jr high were built on land that was his family's orchard/farm that he told stories about....where he spent his summer's as a child. I grew up attending church in the stake center that he built, where he was the Stake President. When it was remodeled when I was a teenager he came back to rededicate it. He also created and dedicated the Stake in which we now live. He lived in the same building as my grandparents and attended their ward (on the rare occasion that he was in town). I remember as a kid often thinking "wow, when only __ more people die, Jessica's grandpa will be the President of the church!" I remember when President Hunter passed away and I realized that President Hinckley was next in line.....I was excited for their family. In High School we had a big seminary fireside each year and each of the three years I was there we had a member of the first presidency speak. Turns out I also went to High School with one of President Monson's grandsons. How blessed we all were, and I'm sure the majority of us teenagers took that for granted.
I guess I'm mostly rambling here now....

Anyway-last night it didn't really hit me that he was gone I guess. My first thought was that he finally gets to see his sweet wife again. He has missed her so much! He spoke of her very frequently, I can only imagine what a joyful reunion that must have been. He has lived such a wonderful and full life, and it's not like he's dying young-he was 97 1/2! : ) I very much look forward to President Monson leading the church, he is such a wonderful person. I absolutely love listening to him speak, especially listening to him telling stories. I will miss President Hinckley very much. I realized that as I drove into town today and saw the flags flying at half staff. It was then that it really sort of registered that he is gone. What an amazing legacy he has left behind.

So-in memory of dear President Hinckley, my challenge to you who may read this (and to myself of course) is to work even harder at doing the things that he asked us to do. To be better people, better neighbors. To be better examples and more kind to all of those around us. To have family home evening. To attend the temple more often. May we strive to follow his example in working each day to be more like our Savior; to be better people and do as He would have us do.


Kelsey said...

I've been trying to post a pic of him on my blog all day and it won't work!!!! GRRRRRR. I'm so happy that he is with his cute wifey. I bet he was so excited! It def won't be the same without will be heebs!