Cover of The Creed Haymond Story: How He Learned That the Word of Wisdom Is True, by Jay Todd
Since I was young I’ve often held as my claim to fame that I am distantly related to Creed Haymond (1893-1983, first cousin three times removed), the early 20th century track athlete, whose story about the Word of Wisdom has been told several times over the pulpit in General Conference. I thought that was pretty neat, and there was a short children’s book published,The Creed Haymond Story: How He Learned That the Word of Wisdom Is True, by Jay Todd, which I often read as a child.
Over the years, I’ve learned a little more about Creed Haymond. Apparently he was accepted to compete with the U.S. team at the 1920 Summer Olympics, but he was injured before the competition. He eventually became a dentist, and served in many capacities within the Church, including as mission president in the Northern States Mission, general board member of the Young Men’s Mutual Improvement Association, and a patriarch (while President James E. Faust served as president of the Cottonwood Stake). His wife, Elna Parkinson Haymond, served as a member of the Relief Society General Board. [Read more…]
I noted a couple days ago in my discussion about the law of consecration that there was an episode available from the Church’s official Mormon Channel on this topic, as well as on the United Order. I think these are areas where we, as a people, lack significant knowledge and correct understanding, and I would recommend that we all spend some time and learn more about them, so that we might be better educated in these important matters, and not perpetuate some of the myths that we continue to believe.
The episodes are hosted by Dr. Brent Top, chairman of the Department of Church History and Doctrine at Brigham Young University, with Dr. Steven Harper as a guest joining him, Associate Professor of Church History and Doctrine at Brigham Young University, and one of the major participants in the Joseph Smith Papers Project of the Church History department. Brent notes that Harper is one of the Church’s “experts” on the law of consecration, and that early period of Church History when it was introduced. I have read Harper’s work, and heard him speak on the topic before, and believe he has a lot to teach us regarding these subjects, and which are fully relevant to our discipleship today.
You may listen to the episodes below by clicking the “play” buttons.
Some readers have also asked if these fireside discussions are available as transcripts. Unfortunately, because these firesides are live off-the-cuff discussions, we don’t have anything written down, and we don’t have the resources to have someone go back through the recordings and make official professional transcripts. However, YouTube lets us download the machine transcribed captions that we can share. They aren’t perfect transcriptions because they were transcribed by a computer, and you won’t know who is talking, but they are something. I hope this helps.
Here are the transcriptions from the last two fireside discussions. Simply click to view them in your browser, or right-click the links and choose “save as” to save the file on your computer and then open the file in your word processor:
Interpreter: A Journal of Mormon Scripture. (Click on graphic to go to MormonInterpreter.com)
I have been through quite a range of emotions the last few weeks. I’ve felt utter despair, grief, and sorrow, as well as bitterness, confusion, and great disappointment. Through it all I’ve been blessed with comfort from our Heavenly Father beyond measure, and by experiences too sacred to share. It’s been a roller coaster of a time with everything that has happened at the Maxwell Institute. I make no bones about it—FARMS had an immense impact on my life, most particularly as it relates to my testimony and faith in the restored gospel of Jesus Christ.
Recently one of our dear readers asked me what so inspired me about Hugh Nibley, what so captivated me emotionally, spiritually, and intellectually about his scholarship and writings? Here was my response:
Most people in the Church by now are probably familiar with the hymn that Janice Kapp Perry wrote a couple of months ago to accompany a poem written by President Hinckley. President Hinckley published his poem in the May 1988 Ensign article entitled, “The Empty Tomb Bore Testimony,” but he notes that he penned the words many years previous to that at a friend’s funeral.
If you’ve received an email about the hymn you might already know the story behind it. If not, head over to Meridian Magazine which has an article posted detailing the creation of this hymn, including links to the sheet music. The circumstances surrounding the production of the hymn are certainly a “tender mercy” of the Lord, as Janice Kapp Perry describes it. She received official approval of the arranged hymn in the mail from President Hinckley the day after his death.
I think this hymn epitomizes the LDS belief and feelings surrounding mortal death. To members of the LDS Church death is nothing to fear, but a passing into and a beginning of a different stage of our existence. It is progression. Death is not the end, but a beginning of greater things! These doctrines and principles could not be taught more clearly and purely than in the Lord’s temples which dot the earth today. President Hinckley was pivotal in nearly tripling the number of these sacred edifices around the world.
This hymn was sung by the Tabernacle Choir at President Hinckley’s funeral (video link). Since then, Janice Kapp Perry has just recently produced vocal and instrumental recordings of the song with Prime Recordings, Inc. These recordings are very well done. She has made them freely available for all, so I have posted the vocal here for your listening:
What Is This Thing That Men Call Death?
Words by Gordon B. Hinckley, Music by Janice Kapp Perry
What is this thing that men call death,
This quiet passing in the night?
’Tis not the end, but genesis
Of better worlds and greater light.
O God, touch Thou my aching heart,
And calm my troubled, haunting fears.
Let hope and faith, transcendent, pure,
Give strength and peace beyond my tears.
There is no death, but only change
With recompense for victory won;
The gift of Him who loved all men,
The Son of God, the Holy One.