Elder Goaslind: Today's young men are pioneers

Young men in the Church today can do special things just as well as the valiant pioneer youth who walked across the plains to the Salt Lake Valley, Elder Jack H Goaslind told those attending the Aaronic Priesthood Pioneer Sesquicentennial Fireside Sunday, May 18.

Elder Goaslind of the Presidency of the Seventy and Young Men general president, who also conducted the fireside, was the first speaker.He told the youth that they may doubt their ability to accomplish achievements like the early pioneers did. Then he said, "I testify to you that by virtue of the priesthood you hold, you have access to the same blessings that have helped others accomplish mighty feats."

He spoke of a priest in the Aaronic Priesthood in England who turned down the chance to play on a prestigious soccer team because it would require him to play on Sunday. He mentioned another young man who saved a toddler's life by pulling him from the bottom of a swimming pool.

He said: "These are young men just like yourselves. They did not know they were going to be called upon to do special things."

Then he added: "Most of the world will never know who we are or what we have done. But Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ know us. They know each of you. They know your goodness, kindness and generosity. They love us, and they want us to succeed. They want us to be happy and find joy. And they have pointed the way for us to do so."

Just as the early pioneers paved the way for the Church in the West, Aaronic Priesthood holders today have pioneers who continue to pave the path for them, he continued. "Leaders like your own fathers and mothers, your bishops, the Young Men and Young Women leaders in your wards, your older brothers and sisters, and the parents of your friends: they are all pioneers, too. They are pioneers you can touch and talk to, ask for advice or pour your hearts out to."

He told the youth that they, too, are pioneers who will someday pave the way for their own children and grandchildren to follow.

"You do have special things to do, my young brethren," he declared. "Listen to those who have gone before you, and learn from their experiences. Then blaze the trail and remember that others will follow you. Make plans to keep your lives in harmony with gospel teachings so that you may be an example and a blessing to those you will teach and influence."

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