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President Thomas S. Monson points to the congregation after the Sunday morning session of the 178th Semiannual General Conference of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints at the Conference Center in Salt Lake City on Oct. 5, 2008.

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SALT LAKE CITY — In the wake of President Thomas S. Monson’s passing, we asked Deseret News readers to share their thoughts and feelings about and tributes to the prophet.

Below is a sampling of the responses, which have been edited for clarity and length.

A beloved example

“He was our storyteller, our temple builder, our mentor, our prophet.”

“When a good man dies at the age of 90, we should rejoice that we had the chance to learn from him.”

“Of all the things I've learned from President Monson’s example, the one I hold most dear is this: how to serve with love.”

“He showed us by example how to be our brother’s keeper, to love our neighbor, the feeble, the loner, the downtrodden, and put their needs at the forefront of our many priorities; not to let the needs of others fall through the cracks amidst our busy lives. … To honor him, may we all be inspired to step up and strive to live and serve by the mighty example of Thomas S. Monson.”

“President Monson will always stand as a beacon of service in my life. It is through his own experiences in rescuing others that I have come to fully realize the worth of a soul in the sight of our Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ, and that has increased my desire to be an instrument for good in the lives of others. I am so grateful to have lived in his era.”

IRI
People line up for President Thomas S. Monson’s viewing at the Conference Center in Salt Lake City on Thursday, Jan. 11, 2018.

“President Thomas S. Monson was truly a man of God. His life, faith and teachings inspired me to be a better person.”

“My mission call will be one of the last that bears his name. For some reason, I feel as if he will be cheering me on from his place in heaven as I go about my work. If he gave his life to the Lord, so can I.”

“He was a great leader, honorable Scout and beloved prophet. We will miss you so very much.”

Treasured memories

“President Monson has been one of my favorites to listen to. Even as a little girl, I always enjoyed his stories and teachings. You could feel the love and kindness in his voice. ... I loved seeing his love for his wife. I feel very privileged to have grown up with this man leading me through life.”

“I loved and admired President Monson on a personal level before he became the prophet. I read an article in the Ensign he had written, and the Spirit was so strong, I wept and wept. Never had I felt before a surety that God is our loving Father and how he suffered the sacrifice and suffering of his Only Begotten Son, Jesus Christ.”

Jeffrey D. Allred
Wreaths honoring LDS Church President Thomas S. Monson are pictured outside the LDS Church Administration Building in Salt Lake City on Wednesday, Jan. 3, 2018.

“I can never forget the day I came to know for myself that (President) Monson was a true prophet. I was swathing hay on a beautiful summer day, enjoying the solitude and nature around me, when seemingly from out of nowhere, my thoughts turned to the prophet and an overpowering feeling of peace and burning entered my heart. Tears came to my eyes, and I knew the heavens were testifying to me of the magnitude and great calling of President Thomas S. Monson. I knew then, some six years ago, in a very personal way, that he was called of God. It was a tender moment, and I thank my Heavenly Father for such a powerful assurance.”

Inspired counsel

“‘Never let a problem to be solved become more important than a person to be loved.’ This quote by President Monson is one that influenced me greatly. I am grateful for the many wonderful stories and examples he shared with us through the years. His example of service and charity are unsurpassed.”

I love the story of President Monson when he left a priesthood meeting and went to find a teenage boy that he noticed was missing, only to find him working in a grease pit in a local garage. I recently shared this story and noted the eternal effects this had on this young boy. This boy later went on to serve a mission and get married in the temple, blessing others’ lives as a result of President Monson following a prompting. What an example of listening to the Spirit and truly seeking after the one. He was a great example of just that, never thinking about himself but always thinking about serving others. I will miss our prophet dear.”

“There was something special about him that always made me want to follow him. In one of his last general conference messages, he asked us to read the Book of Mormon daily. I have tried to do that with my children and I have tried to do that myself. This challenge has blessed my testimony, my life, my wife, my children and every part of my being.”

Scott G Winterton
President Thomas S. Monson stops and smiles for some photos after the Sunday morning session of the 181st Semiannual General Conference of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints on Sunday, Oct. 2, 2011.

“The year 2015 was the hardest of my life. I graduated law school with a family of three kids but without a job, and without passing the bar exam, and without our own place to live and having to rely on my parents and in-laws. I was the most depressed I had ever been. At general conference in October, I was desperate for some encouragement and inspiration, and this is what I got: Elder Neil L. Andersen quoted President Monson and said, ‘The future is as bright as your faith.’ My future did not seem very bright back then, so I realized I needed more faith. The quote became a mantra for me, and it got me through a second attempt at the bar exam and the constant job search. Now I’m a licensed lawyer doing work that I love and being able to provide for my family. I’m very blessed, and my faith and my future are much brighter now.”

“As a patriarch, I gained strength and assurance from his reminder to doubt not and fear not and to remember that whom the Lord calls, the Lord qualifies.”

Comment on this story

“I loved all the poems he knew by heart and would quote in appropriate places in his conference talks. Such high regard for poetry and its universal applications showed a humble, thoughtful, human heart.”

“One thing I loved about this spiritual giant was that when he spoke or gave a talk, it was as if he was talking to me as an individual. I love and revere him. It’s hard to be sad for his passing when I think about the reunion on the other side.”

“I’m grateful he promised God that he would always heed his promptings. It’s made a difference in me.”