From David A. Hall of Mesa, Arizona

Interview with Elder Packer

Posted by mesasmiles

In April, 1970, Elder Boyd K. Packer toured our mission in Spain. He had just been called as the newest member of the Quorum of the Twelve earlier in the month, though this visit had been scheduled before he was called, in his capacity as an assistant to the Twelve.

I was serving in Barcelona, and each of the missionaries in our zone had the privilege of a private interview with him. During the interview, he asked if I had any questions. I had one ready for him–I asked him about King Benjamin’s address where he talks about humility and retaining a remission of our sins. He told me that to do this, to have this humility, I need to live outside myself, considering the feelings of others important and myself and my own feelings unimportant. He said that as I did this, I would become important.

After the private interviews, he had a meeting with all the missionaries in the zone. There were eight of us. In the meeting he asked each of us to stand and tell a little about ourselves. When it was my turn, I talked about my family, saying that my father wasn’t a member of the Church. He stopped me and said, “I don’t want you to say that.” Instead, he said, I want you to say, “My father isn’t a member of the Church yet.” He asked if I was writing to him. I told him I had tried writing but he didn’t answer. He counseled me to write to him every week whether or not he answered and eventually he would answer. I did that, and in a few weeks Dad did write back. I ended up arranging to stop and see him in New York on my way back from my mission. It was a sweet meeting. He tried very hard to make it a good experience for me and he was very excited to see me.