News Release

President Porter and Asia North Youth Pledge to Follow the Savior 

President Susan H. Porter ministers to children and youth in Asia North Area 

“We love you! We need you! We thank you!”  

This was the message from President Nelson that Primary General President Susan H. Porter shared with the children and youth of Japan and Korea in her recent visit to the Asia North Area from March 11 to March 20, 2023. 

In devotionals for Primary children held in Tokyo, Japan, Daejeon, Korea, and Busan, Korea, President Porter interacted warmly with the children and reassured them that Jesus Christ loves them and needs their help in bringing others to Him.  

The devotionals were conducted in an informal, interactive atmosphere, President Porter leaving the podium to mingle with the children, asking and answering questions and sharing personal experiences.  

In one object lesson, she invited children to come up and play the opening notes to “I Am a Child of God,” on a xylophone without initially telling them the name of the song. Without fail, as the notes were played, children quickly recognized the familiar song and began singing along.  

President Porter then explained, “Just as the musical notes bring the words of the song to our memory, the Holy Ghost can put good thoughts into our minds.” She then shared the verse from D&C 11:12, emphasizing that the Spirit “leadeth to do good,” encouraging the children and youth to act on the thoughts they have to do good and use their talents to bless others.  

She asked the children who had made the covenant of baptism to raise their hands.  She then asked those who were preparing to make the covenant of baptism to raise their hands.  

She taught that President Nelson has counseled that “Every person who has made covenants with God has promised to care about others and serve those in need.” (Russell M. Nelson, Preaching the Gospel of Peace, April 2022.) 

The theme of following the Savior was further emphasized as children sang and listened to the song, “I Will Walk with Jesus.” Primary children of the Busan stake prepared and sang an especially beautiful version of the song to open their devotional meeting. 

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President Porter concluded each devotional by handing out a small copy of the painting, “And a Little Child Shall Lead Them” by Michael Malm (see photo). There was discussion regarding the young girl in the forefront of the painting who is pointing to the Savior. Children attending the meeting were encouraged to lead their families and friends toward Jesus Christ, just like the young girl in the painting.  

On the back of each picture card, the children then wrote down or drew a picture of a specific act that they would do in order to serve others and bring people to Jesus.  Afterward, many shared what they had written or drawn.  

In Tokyo, Grace Romney, who helped lead the music said, “I can invite my friend to come to church with me.” 

Other children expressed the following after the meeting with President Porter: 

“I want to be better like Jesus.” Choi Seo-yeon (Busan) 

  “I should faithfully believe in Jesus Christ.” Namhyun (Busan)  

“I thought about how I can help others and follow Jesus Christ.” Pak Junwook (Busan) 

“While listening to Sister Porter I imagined that I wanted to tell my friend about the church and listen to Jesus and go to the celestial kingdom.” Yoon Seon Woo (Daejeon) 

“When we see someone in need, we give them love and take care of them. I promise you will feel peace and happiness if you do this. I know that God lives.”  Lee Hong Jun (Daejeon) 

In Busan, Korea President Porter wrapped up her trip with a special meeting for young men and women. She gave counsel and encouragement to those students in Korea who are often the only members of the Church attending their schools. 

She told the young men and women that whether they realize it or not, their friends are watching and noticing them. “Heavenly Father loves you and is counting on your light and your example to bless everyone in your school,” she said. As we stay on the covenant path, “He will always send help in our hour of need,” she promised. 

Together, President Porter and the youth reviewed principles in the For the Strength of Youth pamphlet. They discussed the concept of Eternal Truths as described in the section “Walk in God’s Light,” and emphasized that making good choices improves one’s ability to feel the Spirit.  

They discussed the “Invitations” in that section, that included: 1) Make time for the Lord no matter how busy and hectic life becomes. 2) In life, look for that which uplifts, inspires, and invites the Spirit. The youth then divided into groups and brainstormed ways to use social media to uplift.  

Following the meeting Jiang Yanbin commented that during the meeting he developed more of a sense of who God is, and resolved to build his faith a little bit more and think more deeply about it. Jung Namin from the Busan stake stated her feelings and those of others as follows: “I realize that as the only member of the Church in my school, I can be a light in my school and set an example for others.”  

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