On my way back from an intense trip to California this week, I had the privilege of sitting next to a young man from Boston. After a few brief words, I knew this was somebody unusual, incredibly promising, and wholesome. His father is a doctor and a faithful Catholic who has been very active with missionary work, running mission efforts in a variety of countries and getting his whole family involved. The young man spoke glowingly of his father’s work, and of his own positive experiences helping out. He also spoke lovingly and highly of his mother, who had sacrificed much to raise a family of seven children. The respect this young man had for his parents was inspiring.
He was preparing to start college on the east coast. We talked about some of the moral challenges that college life presents, and I was pleased to see that this young man was prepared and alert. He said he was glad he was living off-campus with family rather than being in the co-ed dorms, and that his parents were very involved in kindly helping the children stay out of trouble even after they had left home.
He is planning to become a foreign ambassador one day and seeks to make a big difference in the world. I bet he will.
There are many fine young people like this one, men and women with great foundations in life, a burning faith, a desire to do great things, and high moral standards. They are there! And some are making changes that will bring them to that path. These noble young people can be found among many faiths. I like to think that there are a lot among the Latter-day Saints, but we have plenty of our own challenges, to be sure. But wherever they are, of whatever faith, it inspires me and gives me hope for the future to meet noble youth and talk with them and realize how much goodness there is out there – tools in the Lord’s hands to do much good.
May we enable the way and help the gems of the rising generation to grow and be strong for the burdens ahead – or at least stay out of their way.