After President Thomas S. Monson passed on Tuesday, Jan. 2, 2018, BYUH students said they will miss him but know he lived a good life and is now reunited with his wife on the other side of the veil. They also shared their favorite quotes from President Monson that have inspired and strengthened them.
Teikauea Teikauea, freshman studying business management freshman from Tuvalu, said, “I got really sad because ever since I got baptized, President Monson was the first prophet for me as a member.”
Teikauea shared two quotes from Monson that impacted his life. “The first thing was when he said, ‘The choices we make determine our destiny.’ Every time that I make a decision, I always think about what President Monson said.” The second quote he shared was, “Never let a problem to be solved become more important than a person to be loved. As a Polynesian, when something goes wrong you get angry easily. Every time I get angry, I always remember that quote from him.
“It’s really sad for me to hear that he has passed away, but I’m pretty sure that he went to the other side of the veil with happiness he had left a great legacy for the people in the church. I am really grateful that i got to learn from that man.”
Shan Arumugan, a freshman from India studying business management, said, “I was shocked. Losing a prophet of the Lord is very painful. I really miss him.” Arumugan shared while talking with friends about President Monson, they all agree “it should be really exciting for him to meet his wife again on the other side of the veil.”
Arumugan shared a Monson quote that stood out to him.“‘May we ever choose the harder right instead of the easier wrong.’ This quote has changed the mindset of a young generation to choose the right. President Monson knew our days. [As members] we know that it’s all worth it. It is a huge loss for the church, but as members, we believe that the priesthood authority still exists. So we know who’s going to be our next prophet and we pray for him.”
Katelyn Klecker, an undecided freshman from California, said, “It’s kind of bittersweet. He was a really good prophet, but we know where he is going. His wife already died so he gets to be with her.” Klecker shared a quote she likes from Monson. “‘Be of good cheer. The future is as bright as your faith.’ He was very inspirational and he was always funny too.”
Ana Carone, an applied mathematics graduate from Brazil, said, “I was very sad although I expected him to pass away sometime soon since he didn’t attend last General Conference.”
She said she admires Monson because he was full of love for everyone and he was caring. She said her favorite quote is, “‘Never, never, never postpone following a prompting.’ If you have a prompting from the Spirit, never let it go. Follow it. Just do it.”
She added, “I am happy he is now with his wife because when she passed away, he looked very down. In a way, I feel now he is rejoicing....They’re together now.”
Joseph Loi-on a junior from Hawaii majoring in history education, shared his reaction when he heard President Monson had passed.
“I was surprised, not that I didn’t see it coming,” he said, “but I guess I hadn’t been thinking about it for a while since General Conference and how he didn’t show up there. It’s sad when anyone dies, but it’s kind of bittersweet, in a sense that he had a good life. He did a really great ministry by serving for over 50 years as an apostle. He did so many great things and now he gets to reunite with his wife, which is great.” He added, “Although it is sad, it’s also a rejoiceful moment, in a sense that he fought the good fight, and now he is doing other things.”
Loi-on shared one of his favorite quotes by President Monson: “Choose your love, love your choice.’ He said, “It really helped me in my dating life. Now that I am married it also helps me in my marriage a lot by understanding what I chose and how I need to choose to love and to do things to nurture that love. It has helped my marriage to grow.”
He continued, “I also think about the time the announcement came out for male missionaries to be able to serve at 18 years old because at that time I was 17 and a half. I was very close to turn 18. I was a senior in high school so I was really close, and when he said that, I felt it very personally. I was deciding if I wanted to go on a mission, go to school, work or do something. But through that revelation and a lot of things that followed, I was able to serve a mission.” He said when he thinks about his mission and the revelation for him to be able to serve at 18, it has become part of his own testimony.
NOTE: This article's online publication was delayed because it was featured in the Jan. 2018 print issue.