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Prayer in Dedication of the Memorial Monument

TitlePrayer in Dedication of the Memorial Monument
Publication TypeMagazine Article
Year of Publication1906
AuthorsSmith, Joseph F.
MagazineImprovement Era
Issue Number4
Date PublishedFebruary 1906
KeywordsJoseph Smith Birthplace Memorial; Sharon, VT; Smith, Joseph, Jr.

The prayer offered at the dedication of the monument erected on the birthplace of the Prophet Joseph Smith, at Sharon, Windsor county, Vermont, on the one-hundredth anniversary of the Prophet's birth, follows. It was uttered by President Joseph F. Smith on December 23, 1905.

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Prayer in Dedication of the Memorial Monument.

The prayer offered at the dedication of the monument erected on the birthplace of the Prophet Joseph Smith, at Sharon, Windsor county, Vermont, on the one-hundredth anniversary of the Prophet's birth, follows. It was uttered by President Joseph F. Smith on December 23, 1905:

Our Father, who art in heaven! Hallowed be thy most holy name. We, thy servants and handmaidens representing the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, have gathered here to dedicate this monument to the memory of thy servant, Joseph Smith, the great Prophet and Seer of the nineteenth century, who was born into the world near this spot, on the 23rd day of December, 1805-one hundred years ago.

It was from him that we received the everlasting gospel, revealed to him by the Eternal Father, through Jesus Christ, the Son.

With hearts full of gratitude to thee for the light and truth of thy gospel, the authority of the holy priesthood, and the ordinances of salvation for the living and for the dead, revealed through thy servant Joseph Smith; in loving remembrance of him, and grateful for the privilege of being present on this occasion, we dedicate to thee the ground on which stands this monument, that it may be sacred and most holy. We dedicate the foundation, typical of the foundation thou hast laid, of apostles and prophets, with Jesus Christ, thy Son, as the chief corner stone. We dedicate the base, as typifying the rock of revelation on which thy Church is built. We dedicate the die, with its inscriptions, as appropriate to the whole design. We dedicate the capstone as a sign of the glorious crown that thy servant Joseph has secured unto himself through his integrity to thy cause, and of that similar reward which shall grace the head of each of his faithful followers. We dedicate the spire, as a token of the inspired man of God whom thou didst make indeed a polished shaft in thine hand, reflecting the light of heaven, even thy glorious light, unto the children of men.

We dedicate the whole monument, as signifying the finished work of human redemption. And we now earnestly invoke upon it thy blessing, O Lord, and ask thy divine approval, acceptance and protection, that it may stand as a lasting testimony to the world, of the love and devotion of thy people, of the opening of the last dispensation, and the coming of the Son of man. May it be preserved from the ravages of time, the disintegrating action of the elements, from upheavals of the earth's surface, and from the violence of human malice or caprice. May it be surrounded by the influence of the spirit of peace, and remain a joy to thy people who may behold it, and a silent witness for thee to all who may look upon it.

And may the light of the gospel, restored to the earth through thy servant, the Prophet Joseph Smith, shine forth to every land and nation, until all people shall come to the knowledge of thy truth, and the name of thy chosen minister be known for good, and not for evil, unto the uttermost parts of the earth.

Bless those who have contributed of their means for the erection of this monument. And remember in loving kindness all thy people. Deal out blessing, prosperity, and continued happiness upon our glorious country and all her people. Bless and preserve our nation, and guide those who direct her affairs in all their exexalted stations. Give the judicial, lawmaking and executive branches of our government adequate wisdom, that her integrity may be preserved, and that her glorious institutions, the just liberties of her people, and the rights of all her citizens may be preserved and perpetuated.

And, O God, we ask thee, in the name of thy Son Jesus Christ, that thou wilt bless and sanctify all the land surrounding this spot, sacred to the memory of all thy people, it being the birthplace of thy servant Joseph. May it be hallowed by thy people. May thy blessing abide upon it, that it may be a blessed place, where thy people may visit from time to time and rejoice in contemplating thy goodness in that thou hast restored to the earth the fulness of the gospel of thy Son, with all the power and authority necessary to administer it and all its ordinances unto the inhabitants of the earth, for their salvation and the redemption of their dead.

And inasmuch as this little cottage has been erected, and provision made by which all the expenses thereof may be defrayed, we offer unto thee this building, and ask that thou wilt sanctify it, for we dedicate it unto thee, and consecrate it to the needs of those who shall come to visit here to contemplate, and to receive instruction, light and understanding concerning the great latter-day work. May no harm come to this little dwelling. May those who dwell here possess the spirit of light and truth in their hearts. May their souls burn with love for the salvation of the human family, and may they take great pains in administering unto those that shall come, for their comfort and enlightenment, that they may be assisted in their search for that which will exalt them and bring them back into thy presence.

We ask thee, also, heavenly Father, that thou wilt remember in thy mercy and in thy continued love thy servant, Junius F. Wells, who has borne this great labor and responsibility. May thy blessing and peace abide in him. We thank thee for him, for his integrity, for his persistent and intelligent labor in the accomplishment of this work. We pray for thy blessing to be upon him from this time henceforth and forever. Bless him with those things that are needful for life, and with thy Spirit, that he may continue to live in the light of thy countenance.

Wilt thou bless abundantly also those who have taken part in this labor-the laborers, those who have directed the work, and those who have furnished the material and the skill with which this labor has been accomplished. We ask thy blessing upon them, holy Father, one and all. May they prosper in the land. May they be blessed of the Lord in their basket and in their store, in their outgoing and incoming, when they shall lie down and when they shall rise up. O God, put thy Spirit into their hearts, lead them in the path of righteousness, and prosper them in the labor of their hands.

We ask thee to bless the people of South Royalton, of Tunbridge and Sharon, and of the surrounding country. And this land, being the birthplace and the nursingplace of many of thy most faithful and renowned servants, who have made their mark in the world for the uplifting and benefit of mankind, O God, wilt thou let thy peace and blessing be upon this land. May it be prospered. May those who dwell here multiply and increase and replenish the earth. May all barrenness be removed from the soil, that it may be fruitful and prosperous from this time forward; that good men may gather here, and those born here find place and be happy, and enjoy themselves in the midst of these everlasting hills.

We ask all these blessings, heavenly Father, and we dedicate unto thee ourselves, and our labors, and all that we have, and this gathering, and those who have come here to assist us in the service. Thy servants and handmaidens who have come here to sing for us, we pray thy blessing to be upon them, and upon each and every one. Bless all who seek to do good, to build up, and sustain the righteous, the upright, the honest and the pure in heart in all the land.

These mercies, holy Father, we humbly ask, and we rejoice in thy mercies and kindness unto us. We give honor, and glory, and praise and obedience unto thy most holy name, and ask thee to accept of this monument and of this little cottage, these services and all our efforts.

We rejoice in thy goodness. We praise and adore thee this day. We commend ourselves with this monument unto thee. Glory, and honor, and majesty, and power, and dominion, be ascribed unto God and the Lamb, now and forever. Amen.