STIMULATOR message for the week of April 18, 1972
Message from President Eugene C. Ludwig, dated April 18, 1972
“People must be changed — goodness cannot be legislated.”
“We respect our Father’s other children of all sects, parties, and denominations, and have no desire except to see them receive the added light and knowledge that has come to us by revelation, and to become with us inheritors of the great blessings of the restoration of the gospel.” (President Joseph Fielding Smith)
What a joy and a privilege to be engaged in the most important work in the world today, that of bringing souls into the Kingdom of God. May I quote some interesting facts and figures printed in a recent Church News which indicate the importance of this great missionary work. “The milestone of three million members of the Church was passed during 1972, with the year-end record showing a membership of 3,090,953. This is an increase of 160,143 in the past 12 months ending December 31, 1971. The membership of the Church has increased 1,267,292 in the past ten years. The increase in membership was reflected in the organization of 25 new stakes in the past year. Since 1961, 217 new stakes have been formed throughout the world. Convert baptisms increased 4,388 more than the previous year. The number of full-time missions in the church grew by four during the past year, bringing to 98 the total number of missions. Ten years ago, there were 64 missions and at the turn of the century the missions numbered 20.”
There were also five General Authorities called and sustained in the April 1972 General Conference, as follows: 1) Elder John H. Vandenberg, as Assistant to the Twelve (former Presiding Bishop) 2) Elder Robert L. Simpson, as Assistant to the Twelve (former counselor in the Presiding Bishopric) 3) Bishop Victor L. Brown, as Presiding Bishop of the Church (former counselor in the Presiding Bishopric) 4) Bishop H. Burke Peterson, as Counselor in the Presiding Bishopric 5) Bishop Vaughn J. Featherstone, as Counselor in the Presiding Bishopric.
Elder Milton R. Hunter of the First Council of Seventy, had the following to say in his conference address: “In my opinion, one of the great miracles in our generation is the missionary work of the Church.” He pointed out that there are, at the present time, 15,400 missionaries devoting full-time to proselyting activities. In response to the question, “Why this modern miracle of missionary work?” he explained that the missionaries serve because of their strong testimonies that the Church ahs been restored. He pointed out that young missionaries go and serve in order that other people may receive the gospel and share the same joy and blessing that they have in their lives.
May I finally quote an excerpt from our Prophet, Joseph Fielding Smith: “I know and testify that the Lords purpose on earth shall prevail. The Church of Jesus Christ of the Latter-day Saints is here to stay. The Lord’s works will triumph. No power on earth can prevent the spread of truth and the preaching of the Gospel in every nation…”
The Lord truly blessed us her in the New Zealand South Mission last week. May we be diligent and continue to be worthy of His blessings.
President Eugene C. Ludwig
“NOTHING CAN MAKE A MAN TRULY GREAT BUT BEING TRULY GOOD!”