The following is excerpted from the Church News. To read the full article, CLICK HERE

With the chapel filled and people standing in the foyers to hear, Elder Jeffrey R. Holland of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles told Spanish-speaking members in eight stakes around Ventura, California, “Les amamos, les amamos, les amamos” (“We love you, we love you, we love you”).

Elder Holland brought the love and greetings of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles and the First Presidency with him to the devotional on Friday, Dec. 9.

At times speaking in Spanish and at times using a translator, Elder Holland testified of the truthfulness of the gospel and the great love the leaders have for the youth of the Church.

“I want the young people of these stakes and this fireside and this devotional to understand why parents care and pay attention and ask you to do certain things — that it matters who your friends are, and it matters what kind of friend you are. It matters who you spend your time with,” he said in the Ventura California Stake center.

He counseled parents to give increased attention to the children and youth, and he told the youth that the decade between 12 and 22 is a crucial time for them, full of making decisions that will impact the rest of their lives.

“I want every young man within the sound of my voice to commit to a mission, if you are healthy enough and well enough to go,” he said. “I’ve gone around this Church declaring what I declare to you tonight and that is no young man is more affected by a mission than I was. No one was more blessed by a mission than I.”

Elder Holland also asked the youth and leaders in the audience to be missionaries right now — especially among the Latino community around them — because “Dios vive, hermanos y hermanas, Dios vive. La iglesia es verdadera” (“God lives, brothers and sisters, God lives. The Church is true.”)

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