The written or spoken word can not accurately describe the feelings of my heart as I have been able to visit the birthplace of the Prophet Joseph Smith and watch General Conference at the memorial site built to his name this weekend. A sweeter Spirit have I never felt as I have lodged with friends in Camp Joseph and taken in the rich, natural beauty of Sharon, Vermont.
The utterances of prophets and apostles of the Lord as I have sat surrounded by portraits and portrayals of the Prophet's life have burned a testimony deep into my soul that he was the Lord's mouthpiece set to restore the true Church of God again upon the earth.
I had a most wonderful experience as I watched the priesthood session in the building next to the visitor's center where the tours take place. I was able after hearing some truly inspired and dear to my heart messages to talk with and relate my conversion to a grandfather, father, and son from MA. The kindness of their words to me and the warm glow that seemed to beam from their faces as they gave words of encouragement even to this very moment fill my heart with feelings of joy and gratitude for such humble and genuine men of God. The grandfather was enthusiastic about my joining the church and truly came off as delighted to share how he had found the gospel as well. The father was warm and encouraging and made me feel as though I were part of his very family, a son of his own. His young son, who was most likely of deacon age, was a gentle and amiable young man who had a never-ending smile on his face as I talked with him. I later saw this same young man outside the center as he walked, right between two grandparents, hand in hand with them both as he gingerly supported them in their stroll. It was enough to melt the heart of any man.
The incredible Spirit I recieved as I gazed upon and walked around the obelisk was enough to bring me tears of gratitude and a sense of wonderful awe. I went to sleep that night with my heart filled to overflowing for all the tender mercies of the Lord I had experienced and for the two angels He sent me in the form of His duly appointed emissaries.
The only place I could relate to this wonderful heaven-like location is the holy temple of the Lord. Indeed, nature and the sweet influence of the Holy Ghost served as a temple of its own in that hallowed place. I feel like shouting Hosannas to the Lord for ever having been able to experience such a wonderful blessing. I am ever humbled and grateful for a Lord and Father who are mindful of my personal life and spiritual needs. I know They love me. I know it. I have felt it there, and feel it now. I love Them, and it is my sincere prayer that others may feel a bit of what I have felt when they have such an oppurtunity to visit that birthplace of the Lord's annointed.