We Seek After
These Things
Recently returned from serving the people of Honduras for 3 years

Saturday, December 21, 2013

We Wish you a Merry Christmas!

As the holiday season approaches, we have pondered on how
best to greet our friends and family members and acknowledge 
this special time of the year.

We do so love to send Christmas cards to all our much loved friends
and family.  (Many I'm sure think we have disappeared these last two years
as we missed sending cards during our remodeling and moving Christmas's!)

But now here we are in Honduras.
And sending Christmas cards from Honduras is not an easy thing to do :)

San Pedro Sula East Mission - serving for three years as 
Mission President and wife to 216 young and amazing missionaries!
It is an amazing blessing and opportunity to share the message of our Savior.

So here is our virtual 
"Christmas Card"
for 2013.
Photo credit
"The Nativity Story"
2006 film

We want to share our testimony and holiday message of our Savior Jesus Christ.

We are so grateful to have this wonderful opportunity in our lives to bear testimony of our Savior, Jesus Christ every day!  We hope to always carry this testimony in our hearts and remember to share it each day as we return home and continue in the

“Work of Salvation”. 

But what a blessing at this marvelous time in our lives to teach of the Savior and His sacrifice, love and atonement on our behalf each day of our lives. 

In Matthew 1:21 we read –
“And she shall bring forth a son, and thou shalt call his name Jesus; for he shall save his people from their sins.”

How grateful we are for his infinite love and atonement, for he has truly saved us from our sins.

To understand this principle more fully we ask two questions . . .

Who is Jesus Christ?
And what is faith in Jesus Christ?

The easier question perhaps refers to our faith in Jesus Christ. 

Faith in Jesus Christ is the firm conviction that He is who He says He is and that He will help us when we seek Him.  Faith in Christ means trusting in Him, remembering Him, and following His teachings.  It is a conviction that He is the Son of God, “The way, the truth and the life.” (John 14:6)

Which leads us to . . . Who is Jesus Christ?

Jesus Christ is the Savior of the world and the Son of God.  He is our Redeemer.  Each title points to the truth that Jesus Christ is the only way by which we can return to live with our Heavenly Father.  He suffered and was crucified for the sins of the world, giving each one of us two gifts -
1) Repentance, and 2) Forgiveness.  

Two remarkable gifts that are two different things and important to each of us as we make our way through our mortal experience here on earth.

Only by His mercy and grace can anyone be saved.  

Then his resurrection prepared the way for each person to overcome physical death as well.  These events are the essence of the atonement.  He therefore saves us from both physical and spiritual death.  He is very literally our Savior and Redeemer.

We love these two very sacred and different principles that describe who is our Savior Jesus Christ. 

It brings us great joy to proclaim to all that he will once again return to earth and reign in peace for a thousand years.  Jesus Christ is the Son of God, and He will be our Lord forever. 

On January 1, 2000 the First Presidency and Quorum of the Twelve Apostles issued the declaration titled
“The Living Christ”.   

It begins –

“As we commemorate the birth of Jesus Christ two millennia ago, we offer our testimony of the reality of His matchless life and the infinite virtue of His great atoning sacrifice.  None other has had so profound an influence upon all who have lived and will yet live upon the earth.”

Of Him the Prophet Joseph Smith also declared: “And now, after the many testimonies which have been given of him, this is the testimony, last of all, which we give of him; that he lives!” 

“For we saw him, even on the right hand of God’ and we heard the voice bearing record that he is the Only Begotten of the Father –

“That by him, and through him, and of him, the worlds are and were created, and the inhabitants thereof are begotten sons and daughters unto God” (D&C 76:22-24).

And we like the apostles and prophets bear testimony that Jesus is the Living Christ, the immortal Son of God.  "He is the great King Immanuel, who stands today on the right hand of His Father.  He is the light, the life and the hope of the world.  His way is the path that leads to happiness in this life and eternal life in the world to come. 

God be thanked for the matchless gift of His divine Son”.

We are grateful to daily share this testimony now and seek to share this gospel message each day throughout our lives.

Much love to all
And best wishes for a wonderful holiday season!

President Norman Klein and Hna. Kristin Klein

Saturday, December 14, 2013

A Full House . . . and a Full Heart

Drumroll please . . . .

Tah dah!

Here Comes the Bride!
(and also the Groom!)

We've been gathering this week at the mission home in San Pedro
Sula, welcoming members of our family who are arriving
to celebrate with us as our youngest daughter will be getting
sealed (LDS terminology for the marriage ceremony that takes
place in the temples of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints)
in the Honduras, Tegucigalpa Temple.

Even grandma and grandpa great were able to come this far
distance to be present at this grand occasion.

They truly are world travelers!

The have spent their time since arriving on Wednesday helping us
organize and prepare a special Christmas treat for all the missionaries.

Cory, brother of the bride,
Kim, Aunt of the bride

and Cheryl and Larry, parents of the groom
are visiting as well for this special occasion.

It's a full house - and it feels so good!

(We love and are missing our many family members who
were unable to travel here to Honduras but will be joining us in 
Utah as we continue the celebration THERE after the Christmas holiday!)

We are so blessed to be able to enjoy the blessings of family, especially
with the Christmas season fast approaching, we feel doubly blessed to focus
on those things that are most important in our lives.

Those things we testify on almost a daily basis that bring
the greatest joy in this life, and provide the blessings of eternal life
in the world to come. 

Forever Families!

But what is a Mormon Celestial Marriage??
Many have questions about it .  . .

Mormon Celestial Marriage

Mormon TempleMormonism offers many great and wonderful promises, such as happiness, peace, and a deeper understanding of God and His works. Perhaps the greatest promise of Mormonism, however, is embodied in the Mormon doctrine of celestial marriage.
Celestial marriage refers to a type of marriage which Mormons believe is intended to last beyond the grave and through eternity. "Celestial" means "heavenly," and indeed, a celestial marriage is a heavenly marriage. This does not indicate a marriage that takes place in heaven, but rather a kind of marriage that is heavenly in nature; it is divine in its origin and potential.
Mormons assert that for a celestial marriage to occur, several key steps must be followed. First, the man and woman must be sealed, or bound, by one holding the authority of God to perform such sealings, which can only take place in Mormon temples. Second, the couple must seek, with all their hearts, to individually and jointly follow Jesus Christ. Third, the sealing must be confirmed by God through His Spirit.
During Christ's life on earth, He passed His authority on to chosen individuals who acted in His name. The Bible records, for example, that He ordained his apostles and gave them the "power to heal sicknesses, and to cast out devils" (Mark 3:14-15). To at least one of His apostles, Peter, he gave an even greater power: "whatsoever thou shalt bind on earth shall be bound in heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven" (Matt 16:19).
This authority to bind both on earth and in heaven is today referred to as the sealing power. It is part of the full authority of God, or the priesthood. Lost to the earth after the death of the early apostles, the priesthood was restored to Joseph Smith, the first Mormon prophet. By heavenly decree the priesthood and constituent sealing power were passed from Joseph to others, including the apostles, in the Mormon Church. The divine power is used to seal marriages in the temples, thus establishing the foundation for eternal families—the type of families that God wants His children to have.
If a man and woman have been married only by a civilly recognized authority (such as a government or religious representative), their marriage will end at death. They can, however, work towards gaining permission to enter a Mormon temple and be sealed together so that their marriage will be "bound" on both earth and in heaven. More frequently, Mormon couples are encouraged to be married and sealed together in the temple at once, contingent on local laws.
A temple sealing is considered one of the very highest ordinances that Mormons can receive, and Mormons believe that an eternal marriage is something highly desirable and extremely sacred.
Eternal marriages do not just happen; faithful Mormons do not consider them a "checklist item" that can be performed at a specific place and time and then be forever done. Rather, eternal marriages are a constant work in progress. Although the start of the eternal marriage may be dated from the point at which the sealing was done with proper authority, the couple must live their lives in a way worthy of the blessing of eternal marriage.
Mormon Temple FamilyA couple shows their continued desire for their marriage to be eternal by following Christ in their daily life. Faithful Mormons who have been sealed together strive to understand and keep God's commandments. They continually try to be like Christ, seeking to be humble, patient, honest, obedient, loving, forgiving, and kind. These are but a few of the godly attributes which they try to instill in their lives and in their relationship.
After a couple has been sealed together by the proper authority, and after they have proven their commitment to an eternal marriage through persistent actions, they have the opportunity to have their sealing confirmed by God's Holy Spirit. This is not an earthly ordinance; it only comes through revelation from God directly to the individuals in the marriage. Such a divine confirmation may occur in this life or in the next.
In many ways, the confirmation of a couple's sealing is a "stamp of approval" given by God, a divine recognition that their union will be eternal. This is the true definition of a celestial marriage—one that has been ratified by God as being in full force for the eternities.
The sealing power that is integral to creating a celestial marriage also has a role in the rest of the family. Children can be sealed to their parents by the same authority, with the expectation that the entire family structure can endure through this life and extend into the hereafter. If a couple was sealed together prior to the birth of their children, then those children are, in Mormon terminology, born in the covenant, and partakers of the divine promise possible through the sealing of their parents. If a couple is sealed after their children are born, then the children can be sealed to the parents in a special ceremony that takes place, again, in a holy temple.
To build an eternal family is not an easy task. It requires faith, commitment, and a lot of hard work. Such a family is viewed by Mormons as the desired ideal for their own family. Not everyone is successful, but thanks to a merciful God we can have confidence that the intentions and honorable desires of our hearts will be given full consideration on Judgment Day. Faithful Mormons have the God-given hope that through the three elements previously discussed they can come as close to the ideal as possible and take part, through God's grace, in the celestial family they desire.
Such an aspiration might not have ever been even conceived of were it not for the revelations granted from God in the form of Mormonism. Truly, the Mormon Church is the very restoration of the full gospel of Jesus Christ in these modern times.

There you have it . . . stay tuned for part II.  This story is definitely to be continued . . .
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