Members must spiritually nourish new converts

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    By MARIESA WHITAKER

    The members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints have a “sacred responsibility” to spiritually nourish new converts throughout the world, said Elder Henry B. Eyring of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles.

    “The Lord, through his living prophet, has told us that he will preserve the bounteous harvest of new converts entering the waters of baptism across the earth,” he said. “And the Lord will do it through us.”

    Elder Eyring said that church members may gain the power to accomplish this work.

    “This is a time to feel renewed optimism and hope that our power to nourish will be increased,” he said. “I know that God will pour out the powers of heaven upon us as we join in preserving that sacred harvest of souls.”

    Elder Eyring then outlined ways in which members gain this power.

    Members must first cultivate a desire to nourish new converts, he said.

    “What we want with all our hearts will determine in large degree whether we can claim our right to the companionship of the Holy Ghost, without which there can be no spiritual nourishing,” he said.

    Elder Eyring stressed the key role of the spirit in nourishing new members.

    “We need help from the Spirit to speak the words which will nourish and which will strengthen,” he said.

    Elder Eyring reminded members of two keys to invite the Spirit to guide them in nourishing others.

    The first key is daily scripture study, he said.

    “The Holy Ghost will guide what we say if we study and ponder the scriptures every day,” he said. “The words of the scriptures invite the Holy Spirit.”

    Elder Eyring said that this principle applies even in everyday situations.

    “With daily study of the scriptures, we can count on this blessing even in casual conversations or in a class when we may be asked by a teacher to respond to a question,” he said.

    Elder Eyring said that the “prayer of faith” is the second key to inviting the Spirit to help members nourish others.

    “Heartfelt, constant pleading for the companionship of the Holy Ghost, with the pure intent to nourish our Father’s children, will surely bring blessings to us and to those we love and serve,” he said.

    Elder Eyring counseled church members to use simple teachings to nourish new converts.

    “The good word of God with which we must nourish is the simple doctrine of the gospel,” he said. “We must not fear either simplicity or repetition.”

    New converts are in a strong position to grow spiritually if members nourish them properly, Elder Eyring said.

    “If the full requirements of their new membership are explained clearly and with love, if the opportunity to serve in the church is extended wisely, and their performance in that service … nurtured with patient encouragement, they will be strengthened by the companionship of the Holy Ghost, and then they will be nurtured by power beyond our own,” he said.

    Elder Eyring concluded by reminding church members that by small means they could cultivate their desire and ability to nourish others.

    “You and I, we, can and will, by small means be part of a great work,” he said. “We will study and pray and serve to qualify for the companionship of the Holy Ghost. We will then be allowed to see the new members as precious, beloved children of our Heavenly Father and we’ll be led to nourish them with love, with opportunities to serve and with the good word of God.”

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