I am sure I join many, many others in feeling a loss at President Hinckley's death. I know he is happy to be with his wife and with our Savior and I do know he was a Prophet of God, what a great man he was! I copied what my friend Laura quoted in her blog. Thanks Laura!
Here are some excerpts from an article from the Deseret News about our prophet, President Gordon B. Hinckley:
President Gordon B. Hinckley, who led The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints through explosive growth during his more than 12 years as president, died at 7 p.m. today of causes incident to age, surrounded by family. He was 97.
He traveled the world during his tenure, which was marked by a number of significant milestones, including the "Proclamation to the World on the Family," construction of dozens of small temples and the creation of several new quorums of the Seventy. He called for increased fellowshipping of new converts and reaching out to other faiths. Church membership has grown from 9 million to more than 13 million members during his administration.
His ministry was characterized by a strong desire to be out among the people. He traveled more than half a million miles and spoke to hundreds of thousands of members in more than 60 nations, employing his mastery of electronic media to bring unprecedented press attention to the church.
His proposal to build small temples launched what some have termed the most ambitious temple-building program in world history. Some 122 temples are now in use and nine more have been announced, or are under construction. His goal of having at least 100 temples in use, authorized or under construction by Jan. 1, 2000, was accomplished with the dedication of the church's 100th temple in Boston on Oct. 1, 2000.
At the 171st Annual General Conference in the spring of 2001, he announced creation of the Perpetual Education Fund, a loan program to help young Latter-day Saints in Third World countries.
He then set out to visit as many church members as possible in their homelands. He continued an ambitious travel schedule throughout his stewardship, urged the members to get their houses in order and warned against pornography and maltreatment of spouses and children. The "Proclamation to the World on the Family," that he announced in September 1995 gave Latter-day Saints a ready reference for their beliefs on family life, and has been used as a model by international organizations seeking to preserve the traditional family.
Sometime soon, following President Hinckley's funeral, quorum members will sustain a new church president. If historical precedent holds, the quorum's senior apostle and president, President Monson, will succeed President Hinckley.
Standing under a larger-than-life statue of the Prophet Joseph Smith, President Hinckley said he approached the new assignment over the then-9 million-member church with "overwhelming feelings of inadequacy." Despite human concerns about such a calling, he realized "this is the work of God. He is watching over it and will direct our efforts if we are true and faithful."
A reporter asked President Hinckley: "What will be your focus? What will be the theme of your administration?"
Instinctively, he answered, "Carry on. Yes. Our theme will be to carry on the great work which has been furthered by our predecessors.
"We are particularly proud of our youth," he added later on. "I think I have never had a stronger generation of young men and women than we have today. ... They are going forward with constructive lives, nurturing themselves both intellectually and spiritually. We have no fears or doubts concerning the future of this work."
In his first address to the general membership during the 165th Annual General Conference on April 2, 1995, he urged all to move forward and become more Christlike.
"The time has come for us to stand a little taller, to lift our eyes and stretch our minds to a greater comprehension and understanding of the grand millennial mission of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
"This is a time to be strong.
"It is a time to move forward without hesitation, knowing well the meaning, the breadth and the importance of our mission.
"It is a time to do what is right regardless of the consequences that might follow.
"It is a time to be found keeping the commandments.
"It is a season to reach out with kindness and love to those in distress and to those who are wandering in darkness and pain.
"It is a time to be considerate and good, decent and courteous toward one another in all our relationships. In other words, to become more Christlike."
He also expressed gratitude for his wife and family and brought laughter when he said, "Sister Hinckley and I are learning that the so-called golden years are laced with lead."
He continued: "But I still experience a great, almost youthful exuberance in my enthusiasm for this precious work of the Almighty.
"I love the people of the church, of all ages, of all races and of many nations."
In his closing address that afternoon, he admonished the Saints to "go forth with new energy."
Likewise, he noted, missionary service is a personal labor with the missionary teaching and bearing witness to the investigator, who must search and pray alone if he or she is to gain a knowledge of the truth.
To the young men he warned that immoral acts of any kind will introduce an ugly thread into the fabric. "Dishonesty of any kind will create a blemish. Foul and profane language will rob the pattern of beauty."
After his sustaining, President Hinckley embarked on a legendary travel schedule that took him around the globe. He was the most physically vigorous man to take the church's helm in recent history. "I spent one night in the hospital in my life," he said early in his administration. "I was past 75 when that occurred. That doesn't mean I'm ready to run a 100-yard dash."
During General Conference in April 2001, he showed a cane he was using to the congregation, saying he was using it because he had a touch of vertigo. Even so, members often wondered aloud at his stamina, which he attributed to God's blessing. He rose early, exercised daily, read several daily newspapers to stay informed, and was often asked to address various business and professional groups.
He was the first church president ever to provide wide access to the media, garnering unprecedented publicity and goodwill for the church. He met with Presidents Bill Clinton and George W. Bush at the White House and was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom — the nation's highest civilian honor — by President Bush on his 94th birthday in 2004.
A biography, "Gordon B. Hinckley: Go Forward in Faith," was released in November 1996. Another biography, "Gordon B. Hinckley — Shoulder for the Lord," was released three months earlier. "Standing for Something" was released in early 2000. "Stand A Little Taller" was released in October 2001. Another book, "Way to Be," was released in August 2002.
Gina & Bobby
Jared & Lori
Sal & Tom
Nathan & Lori, the Hosts
I have great friends! What a fun night to spend laughing and eating, I think all the laughing burnt off the calories from dinner right? We went to see Juno after Applebees and what a GREAT movie! It was so well done, definite 5 star!
Zack took a photo shoot of me, this is one of the pictures. He is such a cutie, and I love that he's still a mama's boy!
I'd rather be a mother than anyone on earth Bringing up a child or two of unpretentious birth... I'd rather tuck a little child all safe and sound in bed Than twine a chain of diamonds about my carefree head. I'd rather wash a smudgy face with round, bright, baby eyes Than paint the pageantry of fame or walk among the wise. -Meredith Gray, from The Beauty of Motherhood
This was all Tom's idea...
Zack watches over the loot
Atlie(cousin) & Sydney (two peas in a pod!)
Tom and his funny looks & Zack
Macie, Summer, Atlie, & Sydney
Summer, our only child who can't swim on her own yet!
Tom throws Zack
Summer & Savannah
Tom & the kids, I actually did get in the water...but there will be NO pictures of that!!