My name is Joshua Kioko. My wife is Penina Mueni. We are the parents of 3 children: Joseph (16), Angel (7), and Mercy (5). My family and I had a wonderful experience which I will share with you.
First when the Prophet stood to speak, he was speaking in a small voice – like a whisper – yet it was clear in my ears and I could easily understand his words. I felt like the Nephites when Heavenly Father was introducing his Beloved Son to them in a small voice, which pierced into their bodies (3 Nephi 11:3). Brothers and sisters, I don't need more witness to know that President Russell M. Nelson is the Lord's prophet on earth and his spokesman – for he spoke like Him. In Doctrine and Covenants 1:38 we learn that whether it is Heavenly Father’s voice or the voice of His servants it is the same.
The Prophet talked about problems facing Kenya – and Africa as whole – and gave us solutions to solve them. I will share a few:
1. We will get out of poverty if we pay tithing.
2. Paying dowry or labolo is not the Lord's way.
3. The Lord’s way is to get married in the temple.
4. We should not be beating our children or giving corporal punishment to them.
Since then my lovely wife Penina and I vowed never to beat our children and to look for other means of disciplining our children – and to afterwards show love toward them.
We also vowed that when our two daughters grow up, we will not ask for dowry from those blessed young men. We will give our daughters freely. The only sacrifice they have to pay in order to earn that blessing is to be Temple worthy in order to marry our daughters in the Lord’s Temple.
After we left the venue, I could see the love and joy my daughter, Angel, had towards President Nelson – and she asked me what the Prophet had said to me. I told her, 'The Prophet loves you children. He said we, your parents, should love you and not give corporal punishment. But you also need to be obedient so we, your parents, will be able to obey the prophet!'
Joshua Kioko is Elders Quorum President in the Athi River Ward, Nairobi Kenya West Stake
In the Church we sure do get more than we bargain for. (We heard Elder Jeffrey R. Holland tell us that.) I got way more this past conference with President Nelson. For a month my husband, Alex, and I had questions weighing that we had no answers to. We even asked our Home Teachers, but they, too, had no specific answers. You have no idea how I felt – and worse, when I saw Alex with tears in his eyes as well.
... YES, big men cry too when they feel the spirit. OUR QUESTIONS were answered.
The prophet, President Russell M. Nelson, spoke and told us that with God, nothing is impossible. He loves making the IMPOSSIBLE, POSSIBLE. He went on to talk about the Jaredites and so did Elder Holland. And guess what, as if they both knew that every day for a month, Alex and I had been going on and on – questioning about the Jaredites and the Brother of Jared.
Right there we knew Heavenly Father hears and answers prayers. These powerful men of God answered our QUESTIONS.
Sister Holland, thank you for your wise words when you said, 'Those who see angels do because they want to'. Thank you for blessing my life with a portion of your spirit and inspiration. Someday I'll thank you all personally for strengthening our testimonies in such a miraculous way. We still are all smiles and await your next visit for more questions to be answered.
St Naomi Chabikwa is Young Women President in the Harare Branch, Harare Zimbabwe Stake
As soon as we sang, “We thank Thee O God for a Prophet” with the rest of the congregation, I was filled with the Holy Spirit – and at that moment, I knew a true man called of God was in our presence.
When the Prophet was giving his talk, I felt happy and excited to be very close to him – as I was seated in the choir. He then asked all primary children to rise and sing, “I Am a Child of God”. I stood up and hoped he would notice the little girl in the choir! To my surprise, he turned back, and called to me, and asked me to lead the other children. I have never felt the way I did in all my life, it was such a special moment for me and one that I am sure will remain in my heart forever.
As he placed his hand on my shoulder, I was filled with such warmth in my heart, I will forever cherish that moment.
I know without a doubt that President Russell M. Nelson is called of God and that if I continue to search the scriptures as he instructed, I will be blessed.
Kimberly Latoya Manyowa is a member of the Harare Branch, Harare Zimbabwe Stake
The coming of the Prophet to Africa was one of the most historic events, to ever happen in my life and to ever happen to the people of Zimbabwe. (The last time the Prophet visited here was in the 1990’s.) I was so delighted with his visit, and this was one of the best and most inspiring events that I have experienced after my mission. As President Nelson entered in the conference hall, I felt through my heart that the Servant of the Lord had just arrived.
Being accompanied by Elder Jeffrey R. Holland, of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, was just another added blessing. The two spoke as one – having authority – and the whole conference was filled with the richness of the Holy Ghost. At the end of his comments, when he blessed the children, President Nelson made me remember the Savior when He said, “Suffer little children, and forbid them not, to come unto me: for of such is the kingdom of heaven” (Matthew 19:14). And I thought of the Prophet Amos, who recorded, “Surely the Lord God will do nothing, but he revealeth his secret unto his servants the prophets” (Amos 3:7). As he concluded and blessed the nation of Zimbabwe and its Church members, I felt my burdens being lifted and my soul was comforted.
I know that President Russell M. Nelson is the Lord’s prophet, seer and revelator. I know Joseph Smith was a true prophet of this last dispensation. I know that this Church has the same blueprint as it had in the time of Jesus Christ.
Trymore Chimbunde is a member of the Domboshawa 1st Branch, Harare Zimbabwe Stake
When I think of the Prophet’s visit, I still remember the excitement of wanting to see him in person, which I did. As he was walking through those doors, I could feel warmth, joy, and peace – as if there was a mild wind in the conference center. I knew right there, without a shadow of doubt, that he was indeed a man of God. A Prophet in our day. Our very own Moses. Sent to deliver us a message.
I know that the Church of Jesus Christ Of Latter-day Saints is true – and is led by a true and living prophet. I testify I saw with my own eyes, and I felt of the power he carries as he was waving to us when he was leaving. Tears of joy slipped down my cheeks in gratitude of this chosen man of God.
My branch president always advised us to pray for the Holy Spirit such that when the Prophet came, we would have spiritual ears to hear and that we would act upon his words. I followed his advice and I prayed about this. When the prophet came, I surely heard the voice of God. My soul and my testimony were strengthened. Today, I can strongly say that I know that the prophets we have in this Church are called of God. What I felt as President Russell M. Nelson entered the auditorium is unexplainable. Not only was I impressed by the authority of God that was clothing him, but I was mesmerized and eventually became speechless. That man is truly a servant of our Heavenly Father.
I am also grateful for Elder Holland who had accompanied our dear prophet. He was like John the Baptist when he spoke, paving the way for our prophet to speak to every heart, mind, and soul. The prophet encouraged people to become educated, and that parents should strive to help their children attain a better education. He summed up by giving the people a blessing of which I was very delighted to receive.
I know that the Book of Mormon is indeed another Testament of Jesus Christ. I know that this church is true and indeed Joseph Smith was a true prophet of restoration.
Vimbai Zuze is a member of the Domboshawa 1st Branch, Harare Zimbabwe Stake
The Prophet's visit made me feel that I am loved by our Heavenly Father and made me remember my divine heritage. When the children sang 'I am a Child of God' I felt a closer connection with our Heavenly Father.
Syed T. Mutubuki is Elders Quorum President in the Mabelreign Ward, Harare Zimbabwe Stake