Video: President Ballard's invitation to pray for the United States has new relevance

Speaking to a crowd of 12,000 in Worcester, Massachusetts, in October 2019, President M. Russell Ballard encouraged his listeners to pray for the United States, its leaders and families.

The invitation from the Acting President of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles has new relevance one day after the House and Senate certified the electoral vote in the United States on Wednesday, Jan. 6. The U.S. Capitol was locked down as protesters clashed with police. Protesters breached the Capitol in the riot that left one dead, shook lawmakers and damaged government property.

“My dear brothers and sisters, our nation was founded on prayer, it was preserved by prayer, and we need prayer again,” President Ballard said in 2019. “I plead with you this evening to pray for this country, for our leaders, for our people, and for the families that live in this great nation founded by God.”

President M. Russell Ballard, acting president of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, arrives at a devotional in Worcester, Massachusetts, on Sunday, Oct. 20, 2019. | Jeffrey D. Allred, Deseret News

This country was established and preserved by our founding fathers and mothers who repeatedly acknowledged the hand of God through prayer, he continued. “This area was the seedbed of so very much that led to the founding of this nation.”

Read more: President Ballard pleads with Latter-day Saints to ‘pray for this country’ as United States is at ‘another crossroad’

President Ballard asked Latter-day Saints to stand for righteousness. “We must stand boldly for righteousness and truth, and must defend the cause of honor, decency, and personal freedom espoused by Washington, Madison, Adams, Lincoln, and other leaders who acknowledged and loved God. As a country, let us remember our prayers and express our love to God, our Heavenly Father and our Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ. Brothers and sisters, let it begin today.”

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