A member of the Quorum of the Twelve of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints with an abiding interest in preserving the church's historical legacy, Elder Ballard spoke at an evening dinner concluding an afternoon of lectures from LDS history scholars.
Focusing on the theme of the 1997 Mormon Pioneer Sesquicentennial, "Faith in Every Footstep," Elder Ballard said, "Pioneering is a continuing process throughout the world. We must never lose sight of the fact that many pioneers of the gospel have gone before us."
He said he had just returned from a 13,000-mile trip through Europe, holding many meetings with church members and missionaries. "In Rome, we met with two cardinals of the Catholic Church along with other important leaders. In some ways we are pioneering relationships with many other faiths to assist in protecting religious liberty in America and many other countries."
Elder Ballard spoke of many figures in the Bible and Book of Mormon, emphasizing their pioneering work, including Adam and Eve, Noah, Abraham, Moses, Lehi, Nephi, Alma, Moroni, Peter, Philip, Barnabas, Mark, and Paul.