Elder Ulisses Soares: ‘How Can I Understand?’

Quorum of the Twelve Apostles

Notable quotes:

“Our lives need to be rooted upon the rock of our Redeemer Jesus Christ, which might help us individually and as families to have our own spiritual impressions engraved in our hearts, helping us to endure in our faith.”
“Attuning ourselves to the highest influences of godliness is not a simple matter. It requires calling upon God and learning how to bring the gospel of Jesus Christ to the center of our lives.”
“When we earnestly, heartily, firmly and sincerely teach the gospel of Jesus Christ, with real purpose, and under the influence of the Spirit, these teachings may transform hearts and inspire a desire to live according to the truths of God.”

Summary points:

  1. Understanding Christ's gospel requires efforts to learn and teach of Him.
  2. With Christ at the center of people's lives, His teachings have the power to transform hearts.
  3. Never give up on or reject loved ones who stray from the path. Love them.

Talk summary:

In the book of Acts, Philip, the Evangelist, shares a story of an Ethiopian eunuch who, when taught the word of God, asked, "How can I (understand), except some man should guide me?"

This question is a reminder of "the divine mandate we all have to seek, to learn and to teach one another the gospel of Jesus Christ." We often need the help of faithful and inspired teachers to understand, and sometimes, we too need to teach to understand.

Only by accepting the Savior's invitation to "come and see" and to abide in Him — by "immersing ourselves in the scriptures, rejoicing in them, learning His doctrine, and striving to live the way He lived" — can we come to know Him and discern His truths as His disciples. This requires calling upon God and bringing His gospel to the center of our lives. "Our actions must reflect what we learn and teach."

For those experiencing sadness, agony or regret because of family members or friends who have distanced themselves from the Lord, "please know that they are not totally lost because the Lord knows where they are and is watching over them. Remember, they are His children too!"

It may be hard to understand why some people take different paths, but as the parable of the prodigal son teaches, "We should never give up on them but preserve our relationships. Never reject or misjudge them. Just love them!"

"Remember, brothers and sisters, always, that hope is an important part of the gospel plan," and that the teachings of the gospel of Christ have the power to transform hearts.

In the news:

About the speaker:

  • Elder Ulisses Soares has been a member of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles for one year. He was sustained on March 31, 2018.
  • Born in Sao Paulo, Brazil, he is the first and only apostle from South America serving in the quorum. In August 2018, he went to Brazil onhis first official visit since his call to the Twelve.
  • Both he and Sister Soares served in the Brazil Rio de Janeiro Mission. They began dating after their missions when they ran into each other at a stake dance.

Recently on social:

  • In a video on Instagram, Elder Soares stated that “receiving ordinances and making covenants with God changes lives forever.”
  • In a tweet, Elder Soares promised that as people put their trust in the Savior, He will “be our strength.”