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Phnom Penh — Elder Jeffrey R. Holland’s Historic Visit to Cambodia
“God is our Father. Without Him we are lost,” said Elder Jeffrey R. Holland, member of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, during a Cambodian Member Meeting on Aug. 23, 2015.
Held in a hall at Diamond Island in Phnom Penh, Cambodia, more than 2,000 members and friends gathered to hear Elder Holland for the first time in their country, and over three years since an apostle of the church had visited Cambodia. This was the largest gathering of saints for Cambodia in its twenty year history in Cambodia.
Elder Holland blew everyone a welcome kiss, as he entered the hall to a reverent, standing, humbled gathering who had earlier arrived, by numerous bicycles, motorbikes, tuk-tuks, buses and vehicles to hear an Apostle at the event.
In his remarks, Elder Holland stated four reasons he would join the church if he were hearing about the gospel for the first time, or was looking for a church or religion in their lives. “The whole world would join if they knew what I know.” “There are many reasons,” he said, “but I’ll focus mainly on four.”
“The first reason. God appeared on earth, in our time. He called prophets again, like in the old times. He gives authoritative Priesthood to the church. Think of a world that does not know that. In Amos of the Old Testament,” Elder Holland reminded the saints, “people would run from the North and South, the East and West to search for the word of the Lord and would not find it. There would be famine and thirst. The condition of the world without God and the Priesthood is hungry, thirsty, and cold. Your country has had difficult times with hunger, thirst and sorrow. I did not live in Cambodia when there were difficult times,” referring to the difficult history of the Cambodian people.
Elder Holland proceeded to tell an experience when he was a young boy, camping with his family, where he became lost. He strayed away from camp, and didn’t realize he was so far away. He became hungry, thirsty, afraid and alone. The longer he looked for his camp, the more frightened he became. Then he said, “my father found me. He brought me safely back to my family.”
“God is our father. Without him we are lost. We can look in any direction; North, South, East or West, and we cannot find peace. But we have a Heavenly Father. He will find us. Joseph Smith was called to be a prophet. Thomas S. Monson is a prophet today. God has provided permanent safety.” Elder Holland continued, “ I don’t want to be lost anymore. I need my father’s arms.”