It’s early on the morning before Sunday conference, but I wanted to share with you a wonderful experience during Elder Yoon Hwan Choi’s talk during the priesthood session last night.Elder Choi told of a group of young men in Korea who were “rowdy” non-members who liked to hang around the chapel and cause trouble. Elder Choi decided to invite them to his house, despite some reservations from his wife, who worried about their influence on the couples’ younger boys. Elder Choi prayed how to help the young men, and was told he needed to help them by preparing them to become missionaries. He kept on interacting with them and over time the rowdy young men became Church members.
“They changed from rowdy boys to stripling warriors,” Elder Choi said. They went on missions, returned, formed a choral group, married in the temple and had children, all of whom are active in the growing church in South Korea. Elder Choi’s decision to help these young men has led to 45 active church members, if you include the men, their wives and their children. And now the “rowdy boys” are teaching their sons and the other young men how to behave correctly, especially to attend Church meetings.
Elder Choi’s talk caused me to weep, which usually does not happen during conference talks. I had the strong impression that the talk was especially for me. I serve in the young men’s organization in my ward, and we spend a fair amount of time trying to keep “rowdy boys” under control. We also reach out to non-member kids in our town, although of course we could probably do a better job.
I got the strong impression that the Lord is pleased with the work we do trying to help these young men. That made me feel pretty darned good.
I also was impressed that the problems and challenges we have are exactly the same types of problems and challenges faced by leaders in South Korea and elsewhere. And the solution is usually the same: be loving and kind, and reach out to people and offer them the Gospel.
Anyway, the Spirit was overwhelming in our chapel last night as I watched this talk. So far, it is my favorite talk of general conference.