Elder Chi Hong (Sam) Wong: ‘Rescue in unity’

Credit: IRI
Credit: IRI
Credit: IRI
Credit: IRI

In his Saturday morning remarks, Elder Chi Hong (Sam) Wong of the Seventy spoke in his native language of Cantonese and used the account of Christ healing a man stricken with palsy to illustrate how members and missionaries can work together in ward councils to fulfill President Thomas S. Monson’s counsel to “Reach out to rescue.”

“In our day,” Elder Wong said, “it might happen like this.” Four people — each from a different ward auxilary — are assigned by the bishop after counseling together in ward council to help the man suffering with palsy.

“They could not wait for him to come to church by himself,” Elder Wong explained. “They had to seek him out by going to find him, and so they went. The man was being brought to Jesus.”

The four soon found, however, that there were obstacles along their way of “rescue.” “The room was too crowded. They could not get in through the door. … But they did not give up,” Elder Wong said.

After counseling together on how they could bring the man to Christ for healing, they made a plan and acted on it. “And when they could not come nigh unto him for the press, they uncovered the roof where he was: and when they had broken it up, they let down the bed wherein the sick of the palsy lay” (Mark 2:4).

Elder Wong explained the rescue assignment required careful coordination to safely lower the man with palsy from the roof. If one released the rope too quickly, the man would fall from his bed.

Similarly, members must “work together in unity and in harmony” in order to assist the Savior in rescuing others. “Everyone, every position, and every calling is important,” Elder Wong said. “We have to be united in our Lord Jesus Christ.”

Finally, the man was laid before Jesus and healed both physically and spiritually. “When Jesus saw their faith, he said unto the sick of the palsy, Son, thy sins be forgiven thee” (Mark 2:5).

Elder Wong encouraged bishops to invite members of the ward council to come with a list of names of those who might need assistance and then to counsel together how they might help. “Full-time missionaries are great resources to the wards in these rescue efforts,” he said. “They are devoted in establishing the Lord’s kingdom.”

In conclusion, Elder Wong shared an insight from Mark 2:5. It was only after seeing “their” faith that the man was healed. “Our combined faith will also affect the well-being of others. … We can all help one another. We should always be anxiously engaged in seeking to rescue those in need.”

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