Dedicatory Prayer (Hinckley)
Gordon B. Hinckley, “Dedicatory Prayer,” in Joseph Smith: The Prophet, The Man, ed. Susan Easton Black and Charles D. Tate Jr. (Provo, UT: Religious Studies Center, Brigham Young University, 1993), xxxvii–xxxix
President Gordon B. Hinckley was First Counselor in the First Presidency of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, Salt Lake City, Utah, when this was published
O God, our Eternal Father, in the name of thy Beloved Son, we bow before thee in reverence as we dedicate this beautiful and imposing new building. It carries the name of thy prophet of this dispensation, even the name of Joseph Smith to whom thou didst appear with thy Son, our Redeemer, to open this, the dispensation of the fulness of times.
We are grateful for thy mighty work established through him. We thank thee for his life and mission, for the divine authority bestowed upon him and under which he acted, for thy revealed word which came through him, which has become as a lamp unto thy people and which has motivated them to seek learning, even by study and by faith. We know it is appropriate, Father, that there should be on this campus a beautiful edifice which carries his name and which is dedicated to the acquisition of knowledge, and particularly to that branch of knowledge which is concerned with thine eternal verities.
How thankful we are that, because of the faith of the people of thy Church, the means have been available to construct this edifice and to carry on the work of this great university with its many programs.
May there ever be in the consciousness of the officers of this institution—the faculty, the staff, and the students—awareness that all of this is possible only because of the sacrifice of thy faithful Saints. May they recognize always that it is a privilege, a great and precious preivilege, to be a part of the society of this campus and a beneficiary of that which is here offered.
Now, acting in behalf of all those who are present, and in the authority of the holy priesthood, which is the priesthood after the order of thy divine Son, I dedicate this, the Joseph Smith Building of the Brigham Young University, for the purposes for which it has been constructed and is designed to be used.
Wilt thou accept it as the gift of thy people, given to serve the needs of generations of young men and women who will come from many parts of the earth to drink from the fountain of both secular knowledge and divine truth.
We pray that it may be preserved against the ravages of nature and any defiling hand. We pray that it may stand through the years for so long as it is needed. We pray for those who will walk its halls and sit in its classrooms, that their minds may be enlightened, that their understanding may be quickened, that they may learn those thongs which will bless their lives in the world of which they will become a part, and, in a more particular way, that they will become familiar with that truth which is eternal in its nature and everlasting in its consequences.
Bless the faculty who will teach here that they may be qualified through scholarship to do so effectively, but, more important, that they may teach by the power of the Holy Spirit, that their faith may be strengthened, that truth shall be established, and that thy divine will may be done.
May the name of Joseph Smith ever be held in gratitude, respect, and love by all whose lives will be blessed by this facility. May he be kept in remembrance as the great prophet of this dispensation. May the authority and the revelations which came through him become as a foundation from which will spring instruction that will not only enlighten the mind, but touch the hearts of all who shall receive.
Let they Holy Spirit abide constantly within these walls and be felt by all who teach and learn. May there be an absence of intellectual arrogance; rather, may there be that humility which comes of recognition that man, with all of his knowledge and understanding, shares only a feeble light when compared with the wisdom of the Almighty.
Our great God, thou who are the Creator and the Ruler of the Universe, we bow before thee as thy thankful children, acknowledging thee as our Eternal and all-wise Father. Hear our prayer and smile with favor upon us, we humbly ask.
Accept of our thanks and bless now and through all the years to come those who in this Joseph Smith Building will drink of the waters of everlasting truth, we humbly pray in the name of thy beloved Son, even Jesus Christ, our Redeemer. Amen.