Monday, April 03, 2006
Elder Helvécio Martins
It happens during every General Conference, usually during the Saturday afternoon session. Reports are given about the state of the Church - financial audits are generally reported, membership stats are announced, and then an item I usually gloss over: Prominent members who have passed away since the last General Conference.
This year there were several, but one caught my attention. Elder Helvecio Martins, formerly of the Second Quorum of the Seventy.
I met Elder Martins while I was in the Missionary Training Center in the summer of 1990. Yes, I'm old, I know it. He had just recently been called as a General Authority and would be giving an address at the October session of General Conference. He was working on his English, I was struggling to learn Portuguese. My MTC district and his family became very close as both groups struggled with the curse of Babel.
He went on to deliver his conference address "The Value of a Testimony". His conversion story is truly remarkable.
Our paths crossed several times in the ensuing years. Elder Martins is not a man of great physical stature, but like most Brazilians, his heart is incredibly large - outsized only by that of his devoted wife.
I will always remember his devotion to the Gospel of Jesus Christ. So great was his testimony of the work that he made great monetary sacrifices to help fund the building of the Sao Paulo Temple - an edifice which (at the time of construction) he himself could not enter.
Adeus, Helvécio. Vou sentir sua falta, mas sempre lembrarei de seu conselho e seu testemunho. Espero que possa reunir contigo novamente no outro lado aonde possamos trabalhar juntos mais uma vez.
"Muito bem, servo bom e fiel; sobre o pouco foste fiel, sobre muito te colocarei; entra no gozo do teu senhor." - Evangelho de Matéus 25:21
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well I can't tell you anything in Portuguese, but I work with hispanics (maternity nurse) and they have huge hearts too.. How cool you know him!!Post a Comment