The Heber J. Grant building will be a valuable asset towards missionary work and be a symbol of for peace, said Elder Russell M. Nelson, of the Quorum of the Twelve. Students, faculty, and Laie community members gathered on Sept. 8, for the dedication of the new building.
Nelson addressed the audience in the building and on a live stream, which was broadcast to the Cannon Activities Center and online. During his remarks, he addressed missionary work and said the valuable asset the HGB will be towards the spreading of the Gospel. BYU-Hawaii exists to assist in promoting international peace, said Elder Nelson.
Before the dedicatory prayer, Elder Nelson described the confusion that comes from life and answered the question of this uncertainty with, “It’s really quite simple. We have a Father in Heaven who loves us and he wants us to come home.”
During the dedicatory prayer, Elder Nelson expressed gratitude to Heavenly Father and dedicated the building to Jesus Christ. He described the building as a house of learning and blessed it that it would stand against weather and vandals. Towards the end of the prayer, he prayed to “dedicate [Heber J. Grant Building] as a symbol of our united testimony, that thou art our God…”
Elder Paul P. Johnson, from the Quorum of the Seventy and the commissioner of CES, addressed the audience and discussed the development of the HGB as a multipurpose building. He explained how the budget for the new building was established. He said, “In fact, part of the budget was approved by CES and another part was a approved by the Presiding Bishopric.” Like the building, “we were not designed for one thing. We have the ability for multiple things,” remarked Johnson.
Before Elder Nelson and Johnson’s addresses, President of the Laie YSA 2 Stake Phillip McArthur, Academics Vice President Max Checketts, and BYUH President Steven Wheelwright, shared their messages and focused on Heber J. Grant and the meaning behind the building’s name.
In Oct. 1919, Heber J. Grant dedicated the Laie Hawaii Temple. President McArthur encouraged students to remember the “broad and sweeping view of Grant.” Vice President Checketts shared stories of Heber J. Grant. The foundation of buildings was the focal point of Wheelwright’s remarks. He encouraged the audience to “build upon the Savior.”
McArthur’s wife, Elaine, who is also an adjunct professor at BYUH, said, “I love the gathering of the Saints. This is a gathering place.” She paused and looked around the building and remarked, “These are physical blessings for a spiritual purpose.”