News Release

‘Never Give Up on Yourselves’

The theme for a Latter-day Saint youth conference in New Zealand this year encourages youth to trust in the Lord

Young people from New Zealand assembled in Auckland this month for a program called “For the Strength of Youth” (FSY). This year's program included young people ages 14-17 from the Hamilton and Wellington regions as well as the South Island of Aotearoa-New Zealand. FSY programs happen in many other places in the world allowing Latter-day Saint youth—and their friends—to learn valuable principles and skills, and to connect with each other.

During the week, more than a dozen speakers spoke and worked with attendees around the theme: “Trust in the Lord.”

Allistair and Noeline Odgers were among the presenters. Elder Odgers, Area Seventy, is the senior Church leader for the Hamilton and Wellington regions and the South Island. He and Noeline live in Christchurch where he is a counselor by profession, and she is a farmer.

Together they offered beautiful messages to the FSY group and encouraged them to listen for God’s messages to them.

“The first secret to receiving personal revelation is to ask God for help,” said Sister Odgers. “Once we ask, then we need to know how to hear God’s voice which comes in many ways. We hear it in our heart, through peaceful feelings and for some people it comes to them in dreams.”

Sister Odgers said that the journey is to figure out how God speaks to us. “Look for answers in blessings you receive.”

Elder Odgers talked about choices. “We can’t control the choices that others make. What matters is who you choose to be.”

“Ask God questions—things like should I serve a mission, what should I do about school, how can I love my parents more?”

He said it’s essential to move on from the past and to live in the present and prepare for the future. “God wants to speak to you today and you need to be in the present to hear him.”

Alistair & Noeline Odgers at Kings College in Õtāhuhu, Auckland, New Zealand where they taught their workshop 'One with God is a Majority' as part of FSY New Zealand. July 20222022 by Intellectual Reserve, Inc. All rights reserved.

They cited the example of the stonecutter. It takes many blows of the hammer to make a huge rock split. “We need to be patient with ourselves but not forget that with God, all things are possible” (New Testament - Luke 18:27).

Sister Odgers told a story about serving a mission in the Philippines. She said she was having a lot of difficulty learning the language. “I learned to teach by the spirit. The Lord gave me what I needed in the moment.”

They closed their presentation by recounting the story of Elijah and seeing heavenly helpers ready to protect the faithful. “Fear not: for they that be with us are more than they that be with them” (Old Testament - 2Kings 6:16).

The Odgers left the youth with this powerful message: “Never give up on yourselves or others. One with God is a majority.”

For more information about FSY programs, click here.

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