President Larsen speaking to the Priesthood at the Priesthood Assembly in Kirtland, Ohio in 2010.
On April 26, 2019, our Prophet, President, Leader and Brother Frederick Larsen passed through the veil to the heavenly realm. On this day, a year later, we remember Brother Fred’s legacy that he left to the church.
Various groups of saints could be found around the world prior to President Larsen’s ordination in April of 2002. After Brother Fred was set apart, he quickly began the work of revitalizing the missionary arm of the church and started identifying the steps necessary to bring about the Kingdom of God on earth, Zion as referenced in the church’s mission statement, including the principle of Stewardship and the gathering of “my people.” Brother Larsen could often be heard quoting the mission of the church as he felt it was of the utmost importance that we always keep it at the forefront of everything we do.
In one of his last sermons, on June 3, 2018, Brother Fred spoke at the Summer Series on “Preparing the Bride.” He challenged us with “a personal commitment for each of us; being individually prepared to meet and see Him when He returns and…a corporate aspect, as a church” to prepare the bride for the coming of the Lord. All of Brother Fred’s actions as Prophet lived up to the challenge for that cause. Brother Larsen brought the instruction found in Doctrine & Covenants 152:4, “To that end, let the Bishopric with the Temporal Law and the First Presidency with the Spiritual Law come together under the Celestial Law, such consummation making the secular become sacred and culminating in the attainment of the Kingdom of God on earth.” The principle of Stewardship being part of the individual preparation to meet the Lord, and the gathering of “my people” being part of the corporate preparation.
President Larsen and Sister Mary Lou at General Conference.
Always making it a point to greet members by their names, and taking time to spend with the youth, President Larsen set a wonderful example of loving and serving each member regardless of age or office. And his lovely wife, Sister Mary Lou Larsen, was his lifelong companion, help-meet, and elect lady during his ministry, even standing to bear her testimony of Brother Larsen’s successor only a few weeks before her own passing. Truly she was an instrumental part of the ministry we all enjoyed. Brother and Sister Larsen’s presence are greatly missed in our lives and the church activities.
Fred & Mary Lou's grave site. Flowers planted by their daughter.
Many strides have been made to follow the direction that Brother Fred gave the church through divine counsel. The purchase and renovation of the Gathering Place, the purchase and development of the Bountiful property, support of outreach programs such as Lunch Partners, as well as local ministries such as Vacation Church Schools, are all testimonies of the progress the church is making towards being corporately prepared. Additionally, the Storehouse and Consecration programs, weekly church services, home ministry programs, annual retreats, Conference, and through individual preparation, church members continually find opportunities to spiritually prepare as well to work towards the zionic goals that Brother Fred knew we could achieve with the Lord’s spirit dwelling in us.
It is our prayer that the Lord will bless our efforts as we strive to work toward accomplishing God’s Kingdom on earth just as our dear Prophet and friend, Brother Fred always desired for us to achieve.