Friday, June 27, 2008

an afternoon with elder holland

So I was interested in what sorts of questions you all would ask because I wanted to get a feel for where other people view things as being. I know where I am in life and where I stand, but a slightly more generalized overview would be advantageous going in. Last Wednesday Salad and I drove up to Salt Lake to meet with Elder Holland. We had spoken with him for about 15 minutes on the phone before, but he wanted to meet us in person and have time to actually sit down and talk.

We got there about 15 minutes early, and waited about 20 minutes before we were shown in. Elder Holland apologized profusely for running late. Hah, 5 minutes. My family runs about 45 minutes late. :P We were nervous before going in, but as soon as we saw him and shook his hands, all nervousness vanished. He shook my hand, then took Salad by the cheeks and exclaimed "Oh, how wonderfully rosy your cheeks are!"

We talked for about half an hour, then he had to take an international conference call - but he wanted more than just the 25 minutes or so with us, so he asked us to stick around until he was done, and we could continue our conversation. All told, we spent about 45 minutes in his office speaking with him.

I don't want to go into the entire meeting all in one post - having this up here will help me remember that I have to post. :P So I'll continue on later with some of the things we talked about. One question in particular that I raised was posed by a friend. He wanted to know whether supporting gay marriage issues would be grounds for taking away one's temple recommend. Elder Holland was quite clear on this point - that is not grounds for losing a recommend, nor, he hopes, will it ever be. Political opinions of such a nature have no bearing on temple worthiness. If ever it were to be such an issue, a statement would have to be issued directly from the First Presidency, and it would likely become one of the temple recommend questions. He cited the ministry of President Heber J. Grant. He was president of the church when prohibition was first instated, through the entire time it was in effect, and when Utah was the state that cast the deciding vote, ending prohibition in the United States. He was horribly distraught over it, especially after urging the members to work towards it, but it never became a point of temple worthiness.

--drex

12 comments:

Abelard Enigma said...

That's wonderful to hear.

But, I am curious - what brought about such a meeting?

I'm anxiously awaiting to hear more about your visit.

Ty Ray said...

Thanks for sharing, Drex. I'm interested to hear more detail.

drex said...

We had originally contacted his office before we got married, at the urging of Brother and Sister Matis and Salad's dad. Salad's dad offered to set us up with Elder Wickman, but when the opportunity arose to talk with Elder Holland, we went with it. He ended up being too swamped at the time, but we kept in touch with his secretary, on and off, and one day out of the blue, she called Salad and said that Elder Holland wanted to talk to us on the phone sometime. So that's what initiated the phone conversation. He apparently liked talking to us the one time because he invited us to his office, and he said he wants to be friends and hopes that it will have been only the first of many meetings in the future.

pinetree said...

Wow! That's so good to know! Man, I feel like the first presidency is so misrepresented sometimes.

playasinmar said...

details... c'mon DETAILS!

biggins said...

That is good to hear indeed, and I too await more details. Thanks!

Marmoreal said...

like others I'm glad to hear about what you've shared so far and am eager to hear more. don't keep us waiting too long ;)

Sean said...

I can't wait to hear more!

PS It was fun to see you the other day. I think we should have a guys night out again sometime soon! :)

Robert said...

Wow...cool. I know that Elder Holland is very concerned about this issue and how active he is in trying to understand and do right with it. It's quite encouraging to know how much he cares... I can't wait to hear more.

Kengo Biddles said...

If he needs/wants to talk to other MOMs, you may suggest us. And yes, we are eager to hear of the rest of the details.

Rich said...

I'm so behind on this, but I am curious to know why the Matises were encouraging you to contact Elder Holland and/or Elder Wickman before you got married and why, specifically, was Elder Holland so interested in MOMs? (That sounds like a reference to mothers :))

drex said...

We were encouraged to talk with Elder Wickman or Elder Holland because they are specifically interested in SSA/SGA issues, and they might have been able to give input and marital advice that our local church leaders wouldn't have the experience to give.

Elder Holland is interested in MOMs because he wants to know what he can suggest to other people, and wants to see if there's any common denominator that can be suggested to all people seeking such a relationship. He was also quite curious about a gospel perspective from within a MOM rather than from the outside looking in.