What General Authorities Say About Fatherhood

Robert D. Hales

Quorum of the Twelve Apostles

Robert D. Hales, around the age he would have been in the story he tells below. Photo from LDS.org.

Memories of his father, from "How Will Our Children Rememer Us?":

Father was a commercial artist for a large advertising agency in New York City. On one occasion he was under tremendous stress to produce an advertising campaign. He had come home on a Friday evening and worked most of the night. Saturday morning, after a few hours working in the yard, he retired to his studio to create an advertising campaign for a new product. My sister and I found great delight in chasing each other round and round the dining room table, which was situated in a room directly over his head. He had told us to please stop at least twice, but to no avail. This time he came bounding up the steps and collared me. He sat me down and taught a great lesson. He did not yell or strike me even though he was very annoyed.

He explained the creative process, the spiritual process, if you will, and the need for quiet pondering and getting close to the Spirit for his creativity to function. Because he took time to explain and help me understand, I learned a lesson that has been put to use almost daily in my life.

My point in telling these stories is that we, as parents, have the privilege and the responsibility of teaching gospel principles by our example and testimony to our loved ones.

My father has been gone for seven years, but I remember him with love and respect. Examples become memories that guide our lives:

• Memories of Mother and her tiny, slippered feet on top of Father’s feet as they danced around the kitchen and their expressions of love for each other.
• Memories as a young boy sitting on the floor by Mother and Father’s bedside while they took turns reading aloud from the scriptures.
• Memories in later years of going to the Salt Lake Temple and watching Mother and Father participate in the presentation of the endowment ceremony.

May the memories our children have guide their lives.

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