Elder Holland: Rely on 'permanent things'

by | May 03, 2010

What We Believe

Invoking three British "voices from the past" — Cardinal Thomas Wolsey, writer Rudyard Kipling, and poet and cleric John Donne — Elder Jeffrey R. Holland counseled graduates Saturday at the 122nd commencement of Snow College.

Elder Holland of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints' Quorum of the Twelve received an honorary doctorate of humane letters prior to giving the commencement address to 755 graduates at the junior college in central Utah.

In his address, Elder Holland explained that Wolsey rose to political prominence and worldly wealth in the court of King Henry VIII. But when he couldn't overcome church objections and deliver a divorce for his king, he lost everything, ultimately falling ill and dying on his way to execution.

"What a tragic end to such a gifted beginning," Elder Holland said. "What a pathetic farewell to a life that held such promise, as yours does. … And where did it go wrong? It went wrong when ambition became more important that conviction; when corruption transcended fidelity; when power and wealth created a thirst that honest living could not satisfy."

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