I was surprised to hear of the news that our prophet, Gordon B. Hinckley, had passed away. What surprised me even more was the peace that I felt for him and his family. Though it is sad to see someone leave this earth, I know that President Hinckley lived a life of overflowing service. His tender spirit and subtle humor has enabled him to enter the hearts of millions of people. He was a wonderful prophet and leader. I know that there is a celebration going on in Heaven right now as he is being reunited with his wife, his parents, and many other friends and relatives.
One thing that some people might not know about our church (the Mormons or Latter Day Saints) is that we believe that our prophets are called of God. They are not elected or voted on by the members. In the history of our church, it has always been this way. It is comforting to know that we already have a successor in place. One who is equally qualified and able. It is also comforting to know that just because a prophet of our church has passed away, the gospel is still here on the earth. The body of our religion will continue to function normally and wholly. This is very reassuring.
I just wanted to share my feelings about this news. President Hinckley was the prophet for 12 years, almost half (okay, wait, who am I kidding . . . closer to a third) of my life. Well, I am a bit older but he has been a leader for the bulk of my "adult" and even married life. He was a tender and gentle leader. He will be missed. I am so grateful for the time that we were allowed to have him.