Early in the week we saw a sister who has been working hard to be completely active and dedicated to the Gospel. She had said earlier that she would really like to go to the Salt Lake Temple. We looked at our schedules and decided that Friday would be a good day to do that. We left first thing in the morning and drove to the temple. The first blessing was the Conference Center parking plaza was open and as we drove in the sign said there would be no charge for the day's parking. Happily we crossed the street and attended a temple session. This temple, dedicated in 1893 is so beautiful and striking when one remembers that it was built so long ago. The stained glass windows and ornate decor is just amazing. Architects at that time of building the temple left spaces vertical and horizontal which now accommodates electrical wiring, heating and air conditioning ducts, as well elevators which means the building utilizes modern conveniences not known at the time it was built.
The temple has been well kept and beautiful, any restoration has been done with the historical significance being maintained. The sessions are done by people, nothing is recorded, which is only done in the Salt Lake and Manti temples. Needless to say, the experience is difficult to duplicate because it is so different from any other temple experience available. Following lunch in the cafeteria we went to the Church Museum to see the new films, interactive displays and art from a recently completed international art competition titled, "Tell Me The Story of Jesus." From there we went to the North visitors center and saw more displays with the crowning experience of sitting looking at the super-life size statue of the Christus.
Last night we went to see a brother who we have been encouraging to return to activity in the Gospel. He's a good man and has two young children that would benefit from Church activity as well. Shortly after arriving at his home his mother brought his daughter home from a birthday party. As this fellow left the room to take care of a matter the mother said she was so happy to meet us, and said, "I'm glad that you visit him and encourage him, I can't say much but he enjoys your visits."
He is a returned missionary and he talks some about his mission, this prompted me read an experience Pres. Monson shared about Bro. Fetzer with whom he served in a stake presidency in Salt Lake area. The stake presidency went to a priesthood meeting at the Tabernacle many years ago. They went quite early to get a good seat and sat behind some brethren who were talking about how one of them had joined the Church in Germany. This man told of his mother rescuing two elders from a group who threatened violence to Elder Fetzer and his companion. After she had fed the elders they thanked her and shared a message with the good lady. Her son was quite shy and listened to the elders from a place of solitude and warmth behind the kitchen stove. Pres. Fetzer said he didn't know if the woman ever joined the Church but he was so grateful for the kindness of that good lady. One brother sitting in front of them told his companions about how on a rainy night in Germany his mother had rescued two Mormon Elders and took them home and fed them. This boy had listened from his hiding place behind the stove which led to his conversion. He said he doubted he would ever meet those two missionaries, but thought one was named Fetzer. Pres. Fetzer tearfully tapped the man on the shoulder and told him his name was Bruder Fetzer and was one of the missionaries who was in the home that night.
This story touched our brothers heart. He felt the spirit of the message and then shared with us an item he had brought home from his mission. Following a prayer we left that home knowing why we had gone there that night.
Today has been a day full of great meetings and inspirational experiences as well. Truly The Sabbath has been a delight!