Howard W. Hunter, 14th President of the Church, 1994–1995
"As we sang 'We Thank Thee, O God, for a Prophet' . . . , I thought of the Prophet Joseph Smith. How grateful we are for his life and his mission. Joseph Smith was a man committed to his Heavenly Father's work. He loved his fellowmen, and he spent his life in serving them. Joseph Smith was the instrument through which the Lord restored the fulness of the everlasting gospel. He was the Prophet of the Restoration.
"Joseph Smith's greatness consists in one thing—the truthfulness of his declaration that he saw the Father and the Son and that he responded to the reality of that divine revelation. He was directed to reestablish the true and living church, restored in these modern times as it existed in the day of the Savior's own mortal ministry. The Prophet Joseph Smith was fearless in pursuing this divine mission. On one occasion he said: 'I understand my mission and business. God Almighty is my shield; and what can man do if God is my friend? I shall not be sacrificed until my time comes; then I shall be offered freely' (
History of the Church, 5:259)."
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