Elder's Encouragement

July – 2018

I hope you don’t mind. This month I borrowed a few words from another kind of Elder. An Elder of our country. This is from a speech John Quincy Adams gave at Newburyport, MA, July 4th1837.   ( https://wallbuilders.com/oration-july-4th-1837/#)

“Why is it, Friends and Fellow Citizens, that you are here assembled? Why is it, that, entering upon the sixty-second year of our national existence, you have honored with an invitation to address you from this place, a fellow citizen of a former age, bearing in the records of his memory, the warm and vivid affections which attached him, at the distance of a full half century, to your town, and to your forefathers, then the cherished associates of his youthful days? Why is it that, next to the birthday of the Savior of the World, your most joyous and most venerated festival returns on this day? – And why is it that, among the swarming myriads of our population, thousands and tens of thousands among us, abstaining, under the dictate of religious principle, from the commemoration of that birth-day of Him, who brought life and immortality to light, yet unite with all their brethren of this community, year after year, in celebrating this, the birth-day of the nation?”

…“Is it not that, in the chain of human events, the birthday of the nation is indissolubly linked with the birthday of the Savior? That it forms a leading event in the progress of the gospel dispensation? Is it not that the Declaration of Independence first organized the social compact on the foundation of the Redeemer’s mission upon earth? That it laid the corner stone of human government upon the first precepts of Christianity, and gave to the world the first irrevocable pledge of the fulfillment of the prophecies, announced directly from Heaven at the birth of the Savior…?”

“War, at once civil and foreign, were waged, testing the firmness and fortitude of the one People, in the inflexible adherence to that separation from the other, which their Representatives in Congress had proclaimed. By the signature of the Preliminary Articles of Peace, on the 30th of November 1782, their warfare was accomplished, and the Spirit of the Lord, with a voice reaching to the latest of future ages, might have exclaimed, like the prophet of Israel, – Comfort ye, comfort ye my people, saith your God [Isaiah 40:1].”

The freedom we have to gather and worship is not one had by most of the world. And that freedom, at least in the opinion of one of the founder’s sons, was based on “the foundation of the Redeemer’s mission upon earth”.    “…in Christ God was reconciling the world to himself…” 2Corinthians 5:19

Jack Meehan


Theresa PeckComment