At his final stop in Asia during a worldwide tour, LDS Church President Russell M. Nelson on Saturday spoke to about 4,000 members in Hong Kong about the importance of family and worship in temples.
“Everything we do in the Church is to make life better for other people, to bring them joy,” Nelson said, according to a church news release. “And how do you do that? By building strong families. Those families are made stronger because of covenants made in the holy temples.”
Nelson — who was named the 17th prophet of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in January — also said the work of the church in Asia is just beginning and told the crowd that “in a very real sense, you here today are pioneers.”
Hong Kong was the seventh location on an eight-city tour that began April 10 and concludes Monday. Nelson and his wife, Wendy, and apostle Jeffrey R. Holland and his wife, Patricia, also have been to London, Israel, Kenya, Zimbabwe, India and Thailand. The final stop is Honolulu, Hawaii.
Holland, who also spoke to the crowd, talked about the 1839 jail experience of Joseph Smith, founder of the Mormon church, as a difficult period that produced some of the faith’s most comforting passages of scripture.
“God can turn every disadvantage to your opportunity and your advantage,” Holland said. “Whatever the difficulty, whatever the heartache, whatever the deprivation, if we seek our Father in Heaven, He can turn that setting and that moment into divine instruction.”
Lance Chan, who joined the church in 1972 and serves in its Hong Kong Temple, said he was touched by Nelson’s kindness and love.
“I could just feel it when he was going and saying goodbye to us,” Chan said, according to the release. “You know, I felt that he really liked to shake everybody’s hands. I could feel his love when he was going.”