Israel A. Smith’s 1950 Message to the Saints in Tahiti (July 29, 1950)

To the Saints assembled at Taravao, Greetings:

I, as your servant, have earnestly sought the will of the Lord regarding you, and I am permitted to say unto you by the Spirit of Inspiration:

Thus saith the Lord unto my people of these islands: I am mindful of your situation so far and separated by the ocean from the appointed place for the New Jerusalem, and as I before have said I will at the last day stand upon these islands with you who are faithful and endure to the end.

It would be wisdom for my people to withdraw from those places that are farthest removed and gather in larger numbers in those islands nearer the centers of trade and business when such changes can be done without material loss. This should not be done in haste and always under the direction of those now in charge of the mission, or those who may be sent to minister to you and those among you who are being prepared to serve and who will in due time be called to occupy in higher offices.

There are among you men of ability in business who can assist in organizing my people, so there may be unity of purpose, and the least or most needy may receive of the strength of the whole. Thus a great work may be done by them for you and great will be their reward and great will be the benefit to you and the work in which you are engaged. Such organizations or associations should be perfected in harmony with the law already given and consistent with the laws of your country and the feelings of your governing officials.

If all shall honor my temporal law, all shall be blessed beyond their expectation, your numbers greatly increased, and the gospel will go to many who have not heard it and need salvation.

I await your consecration to provide even among your own numbers, those who can look after your every spiritual need, which is more essential now than material prosperity. In my way and time, however, shall men be called as seventies, yea, and as bishops for the work of the temporalities of the church.

I am pleased with the works of many, yet many of you can do even more than you have to advance the work.

Be not discouraged. You are not great in numbers, and you are in a scattered condition, but if united, in spirit, and prayerful, and faithful, with my strength you can be a mighty people among the peoples of these islands.

I. A. Smith
Taravao, Tahiti
July 29, 1950