Prayer for Liberty in America: George Albert Smith’s Idaho Falls Temple Prayer   Leave a comment

   In September 1945, George Albert Smith offered the dedicatory prayer for the Idaho Falls, Idaho, LDS temple.  It was a prayer of thankfulness for the end of World War Two, and a prayer for peace to continue and liberty to reign.  I have posted only portions of it here:

O Thou great and eternal God, Father of our spirits, Creator of the heavens, the earth and all things therein; before whom all things are present, whether past or yet to come; full of mercy and love, guided by wisdom, judgment and justice in their perfection; in humility and with thanksgiving and with our hearts filled with gratitude unto Thee, we approach Thee through Thy Beloved Son, Jesus Christ, our elder Brother, who, through the great and exquisite sacrifice wrought out for us magnanimous beyond our comprehension, made it possible that we might approach Thee in humility on this great occasion, with our petitions and supplications, in this House which we have built to Thy most holy name.

We pray Thee that Thou wilt cause our hearts to be purified in Thy sight and our faith in Thee to be multiplied and increased so that our petitions may reach Thy holy habitation and be answered in our behalf in accordance with Thy infinite wisdom and love, and grant that the blessings we here seek may be fully realized to Thy name’s honor and glory…

With deep gratitude in our hearts we thank Thee that the nations have ceased their warfare and the destruction of human life. We thank Thee that peace temporarily is established in the earth. We do pray that all people everywhere will now take cognizance of the horrors of war, and repent of their sins and follies and with contrite spirits turn unto Thee, the God of love and peace; that they may be inclined to follow the admonitions of Thy servants that thereby the peace now enjoyed by them may be made permanent, and the day of the coming of Thy Beloved Son hastened. We do most fervently pray that hate may lose its place in the hearts of men and that Thy peace and love may enter and abide therein. We also pray that Thy sons and daughters who have been required to participate in the great conflict to preserve liberty, may return to their homes and engage in wholesome and useful pursuits, and contribute to the building up of Thy Kingdom in the earth. May they whose release from the armed services, for any reason, may be delayed, be abundantly blessed of Thee and comforted, and be preserved in health and strength and righteousness, and may the day of their union with loved ones at home come as speedily as possible.

… We thank Thee, O God, for the choice land upon which we reside, and for the marvelous promises Thou hast made concerning America, that it should be free from bondage, and from captivity, and from all other nations under Heaven so long as the inhabitants of the land should worship the God of the land who is Jesus Christ. Thou hast revealed unto us that in the great controversy which took place in Heaven that the cornerstone of Thy plan of salvation was the free agency of man, and that Lucifer, who was an angel in authority in Thy Holy presence, proposed a different way; that Lucifer’s plan was rejected because the effect of its application would be to deprive Thy children of their free agency. When Lucifer’s plan was rejected by Thee he rebelled against Thee; there was war in Heaven and he and his followers were cast out. We thank Thee that Thou hast warned us by revelation that Satan would deceive the nations in our time. Thou hast said: “I will give you a pattern in all things, that ye may not be deceived, for Satan is abroad in the land, and he goeth forth deceiving the nations.” As we look about in the world among the various countries we find philosophies and forms of government the effect of which is to deprive men of their free agency, but by reason of Thy timely warning to us, we know that they are not approved of Thee. Since the God of this choice land is Jesus Christ, we know that His philosophy of free agency should prevail here. Thou didst amply demonstrate this great principle to us by raising up wise men for the very purpose of giving us our Constitutional form of government, concerning which Thou hast said: “I have suffered to be established, and should be maintained for the rights and protection of all flesh, according to just and holy principles; that every man may act in doctrine and principle pertaining to futurity, according to the moral agency which I have given unto him, that every man may be accountable for his own sins in the day of judgment. Therefore, it is not right that any man should be in bondage one to another. And for this purpose have I established the Constitution of this land, by the hands of wise men whom I raised up into this very purpose.” There are those, our Heavenly Father, both within and without our borders who would destroy the Constitutional form of government which Thou hast so magnanimously given us, and would replace it with a form that would curtail if not altogether deprive man of his free agency. We pray Thee, therefore, that in all these matters Thou wilt help us to conform our lives to Thy desires, and that Thou wilt sustain us in our resolve so to do. We pray Thee that Thou wilt inspire good and just men everywhere to be willing to sacrifice for, support and uphold the Constitution and the government set up under it and thereby preserve for man his agency.

We thank Thee that Thou hast revealed to us that those who gave us our Constitutional form of government were men wise in Thy sight and that Thou didst raise them up for the very purpose of putting forth that sacred document.

Wilt Thou, O our Father, bless the Chief Executive of this land that his heart and will may be to preserve for us and our posterity the free institutions Thy Constitution has provided. Wilt Thou too bless the Legislative and Judicial branches of our government as well as the Executive, that all may function fully and courageously in their respective branches completely independent of each other to the preservation of our Constitutional form of government forever.

We pray that kings and rulers and the peoples of all nations under heaven may be persuaded of the blessings enjoyed by the people of this land by reason of their freedom under Thy guidance and be constrained to adopt similar governmental systems, thus to fulfill the ancient prophecy of Isaiah that “out of Zion shall go forth the law and the word of the Lord from Jerusalem.”

…Our hearts are filled with gratitude towards Thee, O God our Eternal Father, that Thou didst cause Thy Spirit to move upon our forebears and inspire them to come to this goodly land, declared by Thee to be choice above all other lands, where they might worship Thee untrammeled; that Thou didst promise, “The wilderness and solitary place shall be glad for them; and the desert shall rejoice, and blossom as the rose. It shall blossom abundantly, and rejoice even with joy and singing . . . And the parched ground shall become a pool, and the thirsty land springs of water.” For the fertility of this land which, once most undesirable and forbidding, now produces in rich abundance delicious grain, fruits and vegetables, we are most grateful. We too express to Thee our joy in beholding great mountains towering majestically toward the sky to inspire Thy children to look up as well as around them that they might enjoy Thy handiwork.

…In the authority of Thy Holy Priesthood, we dedicate unto Thee these grounds, this building in all its parts, from foundation to capstone, together with all that appertains thereunto, including furnishings and equipment and all facilities, and we pray that accepting this our offering Thou wilt preserve the same from decay and the ravages of time. We now present this precious Temple unto Thee, Holy Father, with all that pertains to it, inside and out, with our love and gratitude, and pray that Thou wilt accept of our offering, and unto Thee we ascribe all honor, glory and praise forever through Thy Beloved Son, Jesus Christ. Amen.


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