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Dieter F. Uchtdorf
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Dieter F. Uchtdorf

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Harriet and I feel privileged to have visited Paris and Brussels. It feels like coming home for us. The Saints in these great areas are incredible. After some difficult trials in recent months, this is one of those moments when the gospel really counts for them and their testimonies of a living God and our Savior Jesus Christ come into play. The members are great. The missionaries are great. I can tell you that despite recent hardships, they are joyful and they look forward to a bright future.
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Dieter F. Uchtdorf

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At #LDSconf, I shared my childhood experience of witnessing a world war. I spoke of the beautiful Lutheran church Frauenkirche. Originally built in the 1700s, it had been one of the city of Dresden’s shining jewels, but the war reduced it to a pile of rubble. For many years it remained that way, until finally it was rebuilt.

If man can take the ruins, rubble, and remains of a broken city and rebuild an awe-inspiring structure that rises toward the heavens, how much more capable is our Almighty Father to restore His children who have fallen, struggled, or become lost?

It matters not how completely ruined our lives may seem. It matters not how scarlet our sins, how deep our bitterness, how lonely, abandoned, or broken our hearts may be. Even those who are without hope, who live in despair, who have betrayed trust, surrendered their integrity, or turned away from God can be rebuilt.

To all reading this, I testify that our loving Savior knows you. He knows when you are lost, and He knows where you are. He knows your grief. Your silent pleadings. Your fears. Your tears.

All that matters is that you are His child. And He loves you, His children. Because He loves you, He will find you. I testify that if you will only lift up your heart to Him, He will find you.
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Dieter F. Uchtdorf

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The recent dedication of the Provo City Center Temple made me think of the many missionaries who serve worldwide—not only serving as temple missionaries but also by proselyting, doing welfare and humanitarian work, and participating in many other capacities. 

I recently had the privilege to meet again two old friends, Grant and Sharol Wilson. They are excellent examples of what it means to give our lives in service to the Lord. They have served proselyting missions in Zimbabwe, Nigeria, and Germany. They also served three temple missions, in the Bern Switzerland and Washington D.C. Temples.    

How grateful we are to missionaries of all ages who choose to dedicate their lives to serving our Heavenly Father’s children, often under challenging circumstances. How grateful we are during this Easter season for the messages of peace and love our missionaries bring to all the world.

The dedication of the Provo City Center Temple took place on Palm Sunday, the day when Jesus Christ entered Jerusalem amid hosanna shouts of the people. The dedication of our temples include the "Hosanna Anthem," praising our Savior, who is leading our Church today.  

Soon we will gather worldwide in general conference to continue to praise the Lord and testify of Him. May we all look to Him, as have Brother and Sister Wilson. In this way, we can show our thanks and praise to our Savior, who suffered, died, and was resurrected so that we all may live again.
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Dieter F. Uchtdorf

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Recently Living Legends of Aviation honored our dear friend Colonel Gail Halvorsen for his lifelong positive impact on children. It was my honor to present him with the Kitty Hawk Children’s Award. May we each find opportunities to serve and bless the lives of God’s children as Brother Halvorsen has. 

Later that evening, I was privileged to be in a photo with Brother Halvorsen and Harrison Ford. Our 95-year-old Candy Bomber looked almost the youngest between the Millennium Falcon pilot and me—a former airline captain.
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Dieter F. Uchtdorf

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You should know that the Saints in Tijuana, Mexico, had to wait a very long time for a temple to be built in their great city. Those days of waiting are finally over. This weekend, the beautiful Tijuana Mexico Temple was dedicated.

The San Diego Temple stands less than an hour’s drive away, but political and physical boundaries have kept the Saints in Tijuana from participating in regular temple worship. 

Now, a temple stands as a place of beauty and light in their midst. These dear Saints know that their temple is protected not by barbed wire but by each member having a soft heart, living righteously, and spreading goodness where they live. 

This Christmas season and always, let us cherish our ability to worship in temples all around the world—for temples truly bring heaven closer to earth. Let us do everything in our power to be worthy to hold a current temple recommend. I promise that as we worthily attend, we will feel closer to our Father in Heaven and feel His influence in our lives.
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Dieter F. Uchtdorf

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I am blessed to associate with our beloved prophet, President Thomas S. Monson, frequently. His life is an example to all of us of one who has lived the gospel simply and joyfully. 
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Dieter F. Uchtdorf

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During the October 2014 general women’s session, I spoke about living the gospel joyfully. This was—and still is—so important to me because so many of us are living beneath our privileges. If we will just close our umbrellas, our Heavenly Father will shower blessings down upon us. I was pleased to see the creation of this video that supports this message and I wanted to share it with you. I pray we all will receive the blessings our Heavenly Father wants to provide to us.
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Dieter F. Uchtdorf

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At general conference I spoke about saving and enriching our marriages and families. As I spoke, I thought of my beloved wife Harriet.

I think I fell in love with her from the first moment I saw her. Unfortunately, this beautiful young woman didn’t seem to feel the same about me. But time passed, and eventually I was married to the woman I had loved ever since I first saw her. The process hadn’t been easy—there were moments of suffering and despair—but finally my happiness was full, and it still is, even more so.

I have learned that in God’s plan of happiness, we are not so much looking for someone perfect but for a person with whom, throughout a lifetime, we can join efforts to create a loving, lasting and more perfect relationship.

To all, married or single, I say: let the pure love of Christ fill your heart. Whatever problems your family, marriage, or relationships face—and whatever you must do to solve them—the beginning and the end of the solution is charity, the pure love of Christ. “Charity never faileth.” It is true for saving marriages! It is true for saving families! #LDSconf
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Dieter F. Uchtdorf

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Having charity and caring for one another is not simply a good idea. It is not simply one more in a seemingly infinite list of things we ought to consider doing. It is the core of the gospel—an indispensable, essential, foundational element.

Without service we are a mere shadow of who we are meant to be—both as individuals and as a Church. We are endangering our heritage and promise as children of God. We cannot, we will not be saved without blessing and lifting the poor. No matter the outward appearance of our righteousness, if we look the other way when others are suffering, we cannot be justified.
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Dieter F. Uchtdorf

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I recently sat down for an interview to talk about my experiences as a refugee when I was a young boy. Through these experiences I have learned that there is much we can and should do to show our love for God’s children. There are many around us who are struggling with a variety of challenging life situations at this moment. There are many besides refugees who have lost hope and are looking for answers in their lives. I plead with you to never label anyone. We are all children of Heavenly Father and therefore brothers and sisters. Let us look for opportunities to help wherever we can. Let us open our eyes and see the heavy hearts; let us notice the loneliness and despair; let us feel the silent prayers of others around us; let us be an answer to those prayers; let us be instruments in the hands of the Lord.
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I have come to feel and know that temples are literally houses of the Lord. Temples are where heaven meets earth and where we can feel close to our Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ.  

In 1955 the Swiss Temple was dedicated, the first outside of the United States and Canada. My family was sealed in this temple when I was a young teenager. After this wonderful experience I yearned to return to the Swiss Temple to feel that spirit again. A friend and I decided to go to the temple on our own. My friend was old enough to have a motorcycle license, so we borrowed a motor scooter and the two of us headed down to Switzerland. The roads were horrible, and it was a rough six-hour ride. The weather was cold and rainy. I remember it being a much more uncomfortable trip than I had hoped. However, when we finally arrived and walked around the temple, I experienced again the warm and wonderful feeling of goodness and wholeness. It was similar to what I felt when my family was sealed together.

The Swiss Temple was special for me and my family, but it also had a significant impact on the Church in Europe. Among many other great influences, it motivated generations of members to stay in their homelands and build the Church in Europe.

Today we are privileged to live at a time when the light of the temples of the Most High shines brightly in many nations. Let us strive to always be worthy to enter the house of the Lord. Let us help others prepare for the blessings available in our sacred temples.
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I have often felt that a grateful heart is a beginning of greatness. No matter our circumstances, let us start by being grateful for what we have, and out of this gratitude great things will develop. 

Our gratitude is an expression of humility and faith. As we trust God and hope for things we may not see but are true, our hearts will change. We will become teachable. 

When our hearts are full of gratitude, we will feel gladness even in times of challenges or sorrow. Gratitude will lift our hearts and bring happiness to our lives. It will open our eyes to see the beauties of nature and the goodness of God.
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  • The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints
    Second Counselor in the First Presidency
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Second Counselor in the First Presidency
Introduction

President Dieter F. Uchtdorf was called as second counselor in the First Presidency of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints on February 3, 2008. He was sustained as a member of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles of the Church on October 2, 2004. He has served as a General Authority since April 1994.

President Uchtdorf was born on November 6, 1940 in Ostrava, Czechoslovakia, to Karl Albert and Hildegard Opelt Uchtdorf. In 1947 his family became members of the Church in Zwickau, Germany. They fled to Frankfurt/Main in 1952 where he received an education in engineering. In 1959 he joined the German Air Force and served for six years as a fighter pilot.

In 1965 President Uchtdorf began working for Lufthansa German Airlines as a pilot. From 1970 until 1996 he flew as captain of the B737, Airbus, DC10, and B747. While also working as training and check captain, he received several management responsibilities. These positions included Section Chief Pilot B737, head of Lufthansa pilot school in Arizona, head of all cockpit crews, and finally Senior Vice President Flight Operations and Lufthansa Chief Pilot. He was also chairman of the Flight Operations Committee of the International Air Transport Association.

Dieter Uchtdorf and Harriet Reich married in 1962. They have two children and six grandchildren. With his call as an Apostle, the Uchtdorfs left their homeland and now live permanently in the United States.

Dieter and Harriet Uchtdorf enjoy outdoor activities, cherish the arts, and are happiest when spending time with their children and grandchildren.

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