April 6, 1916

Iowa Elder Speaks to Latter Day Saints in Independence.


New Bishop From New York Named.

Elder J. W. Wight of Lamoni, Ia., spoke in tongues yesterday morning at the Reorganized Latter Day Saints conference prayer meeting in Independence. Three years ago Elder Wight had the same gift bestowed upon him, while conducting a prayer meeting. The gift of tongues is not unusual among the Saints, but it generally startles those not used to this manifestation of the spirit.

The manifestation was made early in the prayer service. The elder arose near the rostrum, and with closed eyes and blanched face, began to utter unintelligible words. Some thought the elder had suddenly been taken ill and wished to make his hearers understand, but it was all over in a minute and the babble which the speaker uttered stopped. The audience listened intently, for the greater portion knew that the elder had spoken in tongues, and that an interpretation would soon be forthcoming.

Elder Wight intercepted the meaning of his words as soon as he recovered. "The Spirit demands your sacred pledges to the covenant, and out of the great turmoil and war a path will be made by which the remnant of Israel will go back to their home long since promised to Abraham."

Many of the Latter Day Saints claim that they can trace their ancestry back to the children of Israel, and this accounts for the Aaronic priesthood and various orders in the church of Israelitish origin. The Book of Mormon was founded on the finding of the Golden plates on the hill of Cummorah, in New York state, supposed to be an account of extinct races, sprung from the children of Israel. When Elder Wight gave this encouraging prophecy of the spirit there was joy among the congregation and there quickly followed other manifestations of the spirit equally as vigorous as the one uttered by Elder Wight, but they were not in unknown tongues.

Elder D. Flanders of Stewartsville told of a vision he had about his departed wife. Mrs. Flanders died, he said, about two years ago, and one night recently he was wafted by the spirit up into heaven where his wife was staying in a beautiful home. He saw his deceased daughter there and two children who had passed on about forty years ago. He talked with his wife and found she had been rejuvenated. She was young again and the roseblooms were in her cheeks. At the time of her death she was as old as he was, but up there age made no difference, and she was young again and more beautiful than ever he had seen her in life on this mundane sphere. The vision was listened to with great attention. Many of the older women wept as the narrative was told, for it appealed to them strongly.


Sister Ell Hayer of Lamoni, Ia., said she had a vision fifteen years ago that Frederick M. Smith would be appointed to succeed his father. She remembered the present head of the church when he called at her home and ate cherry pie. Frederick, she said, was attending Graceland college at that time. Some smiled and others wept as they remembered the now vigorous head head of the church, in his boyhood days.

President Fred M. Smith is the official revelelator of the church. His first revelation was given to the church at the opening session Thursday, when it was given out by the spirit that it was the will of the Lord that a new bishop be appointed for the church, naming R. F. McGuire of Brooklyn, N.Y.

The only vision of revelation which is binding on the church is given by the president and this is not accepted as direct from God until the various quorums have passed upon it as to its validity and genuineness. It is not often, however, that a revelation from the presidency is turned down, and if it is the church seldom knows of it.