Years ago, before the Church instituted the three-hour block schedule for our Sunday meetings, we used to go to the chapel for meetings three times every Sunday—once in the morning for priesthood meeting, a second time for Sunday School opening exercises and classes, and finally a third time for a ninety-minute sacrament meeting. When I was a very young man, our ward’s Sunday School superintendent, Brother Marchant, came to our class one Sunday to ask for volunteers who would be willing to give the prayer, the 2½-minute talks, and the sacrament gem (a verse of scripture shared before the sacrament was passed) in the following week’s Sunday School opening exercises. My strategy was to quickly volunteer to say either the prayer or the sacrament gem. I was motivated by the desire to avoid having to give a talk at all costs! Unfortunately for me, I wasn’t the only person in the class with that strategy, and I missed out on my first choice, the prayer. I was quick enough, however, to score the sacrament gem assignment. Given the other alternative, I felt lucky.
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