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

The night before more than 500 youth would travel to a For the Strength of Youth conference in South Africa in December 2022, there was an intense rain storm.

Lightning, thunder and a tumultuous downpour went through the night and continued into the morning.

To reach Konka — the venue of the Johannesburg FSY conference — buses needed to travel some distance on dirt roads and cross a river using a low-water bridge to enter the facility. However, due to the storm, the river had risen so high that it was not possible to use the bridge.

“We began praying that the rains would subside soon or there would be no accessing the facility when the youth were to begin arriving at 11 a.m.,” wrote Lee Wright, Johannesburg FSY session director, in an article on the Church’s Africa Newsroom.

“As we prayed to know what to do, the words of President [Russell M.] Nelson kept coming to mind — ‘Seek and expect miracles.’ Yet as we prayed it seemed the rain was simply becoming more intense.”

The year prior, on the day FSY was to begin, the conference had to be canceled because the omicron variant of COVID-19 was quickly spreading. Session leaders did not want to have to cancel FSY again at the last minute.

With the help of young single adult counselors who had arrived the day before, Wright and others inspected the bridge to see if it would be possible for youth to cross by foot.

“We observed that most of the bridge straddled the river, but if we were to use it, the youth would still have to cross a portion of the river in at least knee-deep water that was running swiftly for the last 30 meters,” Wright wrote.

“We asked the Konka staff to begin setting up ropes across the bridge, emphasizing that we would not take any risks with the youth, many of whom do not swim at all. If it was clear we could cross the river safely, we would go forward with this plan.”

To read the full article, CLICK HERE