PALMYRA, N.Y. — In a setting where some of the earliest events in LDS Church history occurred nearly two centuries ago, two apostles of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints held an interactive discussion with young church members Saturday.
The goal was to help teenagers better understand how they can find answers to questions in life through prayer.
"I learned that prayer is a really powerful thing, but Heavenly Father answers people in different ways. And it may take time, but as long as we don't give up, and wake up every morning and keep praying (we'll get an answer)," said Emmanuel Kombi, a resident of Buffalo, New York, who attended the broadcast in Palmyra.
Focusing on the church's youth theme for the year, "Ask," the Face to Face discussion with President Henry B. Eyring, First Counselor in the First Presidency, and Elder Jeffrey R. Holland, of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, was available online and held on a Saturday to maximize the reach of young Latter-day Saints around the world.
"We remember being teenagers ... and we leaned on people who were believers, and those that were our heroes and our examples," Elder Holland said. "We wanted to let (the youth) know that President (Thomas S.) Monson and our brethren, and many other leaders, are trying to provide that shoulder to lean on, that faith to depend on, and I hope they felt that today."
The 90-minute discussion took place at the Joseph Smith Sr. family farm in Palmyra, near a place church members call the Sacred Grove. Members believe God and Jesus Christ appeared to LDS Church founder Joseph Smith in the Sacred Grove when he was just 14 years old.
"I kneeled down and asked if I could feel again that this really was the place that the Father and the Son appeared," President Eyring told the teenagers during the event.
In addition to answering questions, Elder Holland had a special message for the young people who participated.
"Be good. Be strong. You are wonderful to us," he said. "We are thrilled with you. We cherish every thought we have of you."
The Sacred Grove and Smith family farm are just two of several significant church historic sites in Palmyra. I'll give you a look at the other locations Sunday night on KSL 5 News at 10.
Contributing: Jordan Ormond