Something happened this last Sunday that Britt and I never expected to see in a Mormon sacrament meeting. It was certainly surprising but also incredibly inspiring.
After the second speaker finished her remarks, a sweet young girl made her way to the stand to perform a musical number with her Dad, accompanied by her Mom. As the mother played the introduction, we recognized the familiar and beloved tune of “Love is Spoken Here.”
The young girl braced herself as she prepared to sing the first words. She took a breath and began to sing. But to the dismay of her tender heart, the sound that came out of her mouth was not what she had prepared. Congestion and perhaps a little stage fright had taken her voice.
She was clearly mortified. She looked at her Dad with tears in her eyes, not knowing what to do. He hugged her and encouraged her to try again. Her Mom replayed the introduction, but as she started to sing, she again found herself unable to voice the words she had practiced–all while two hundred people watched.
At this point, she buried her head in her Dad’s chest, feeling embarrassed and disappointed. As the ward watched, there was a silent exchange between the young woman and her parents. It appeared that they were all trying to figure out if she should give it one more go.
Dustin and I felt so bad for this young woman. In our minds we were anxiously hoping and praying that they would let this sweet girl sit down. She had suffered enough.
That’s what they decided, and everyone moved off the stand. Dad rejoined the audience, and Mom and daughter exited the chapel.
After the concluding speaker finished his message, the young woman bravely took to the stand again with her mother and father. She delivered a beautiful and touching performance.
When the song ended, something happened that we have never witnessed in a Mormon meeting: the ward members erupted in applause.
It was a very touching moment. That girl had so much courage to get back on the stand again, and the ward members just couldn’t contain their love and support. Even though we never clap in Sacrament meeting, we all knew that at this moment that sweet girl’s tender feelings mattered more than protocol.
As the mother wiped tears from her eyes and that young girl beamed, we were all overcome with an incredible feeling of tender love. What we experienced in those moments has everything to do with what Church, the Gospel, and life are all about.
In our Sacrament meeting that day, love was spoken, shown, and felt.
*With all the tragic tension and division right now, consider sharing this with your friends to uplift the mood!
By Dustin and Brittney Phelps
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