Sunday, April 17, 2011
Story from Elder Nelson
I’ll never forget an experience that Sister Nelson and I had about three decades ago with President Spencer W. Kimball and his beloved Camilla. We were in Hamilton, New Zealand, for a large conference with the Saints. I was not a General Authority at that time. I had been invited to participate in this and similar meetings in other Pacific Islands while serving as general president of the Sunday School. And as a doctor of medicine, I had attended President and Sister Kimball for many years. I knew each of them very well—inside and out.A Saturday evening cultural program had been prepared for this conference by local youth of the Church. Unfortunately, President and Sister Kimball both became very ill, each with a high fever. After receiving priesthood blessings, they rested at the nearby home of the president of the New Zealand Temple. President Kimball asked his counselor, President N. Eldon Tanner, to preside at the cultural event and to excuse President and Sister Kimball.
Sister Nelson went with President and Sister Tanner and other leaders to the event, while President Kimball’s secretary, Brother D. Arthur Haycock, and I watched over our feverish friends.
While President Kimball was sleeping, I was quietly reading in his room. Suddenly President Kimball was awakened. He asked, “Brother Nelson, what time was this evening’s program to begin?”
“At seven o’clock, President Kimball.”
“What time is it now?”
“It’s almost seven,” I replied.
President Kimball quickly said, “Tell Sister Kimball we are going!”
I checked President Kimball’s temperature. It was normal! I took Sister Kimball’s temperature. It was also normal!
They quickly dressed and got into an automobile. We were driven to the stadium of the Church College of New Zealand. As the car entered the arena, there was a very loud shout that erupted spontaneously. It was most unusual! After we took our seats, I asked Sister Nelson about that sudden sound. She said that when President Tanner began the meeting, he dutifully excused President and Sister Kimball because of illness. Then one of the young New Zealanders was called upon to pray.
With great faith, he gave what Sister Nelson described as a rather lengthy but powerful prayer. He so prayed: “We are 3,000 New Zealand youth. We are assembled here, having prepared for six months to sing and dance for Thy prophet. Wilt Thou heal him and deliver him here!” After the “amen” was pronounced, the car carrying President and Sister Kimball entered the stadium. They were identified immediately, and instantly everyone shouted for joy!
I had witnessed the healing power of the Lord! I had also witnessed revelation as received and responded to by His living prophet!