President Hinckley was really the first Prophet I have ever known in my lifetime. He became prophet in 1995 - I was 10 and had just finished elementary school. I have many memories of him and I have felt the spirit witness to me many many many times that he is a true prophet of God and that he was prepared for this role by our Heavenly Father.
I'm going to copy of Sara again, and list my memories of President Hinckley. I know that we have all gained our personal testimonies of the gospel and the role of a prophet in different ways and we must remember those ways if we are to "keep the faith" -- even after President Hinckley is no longer with us.
- President Hinckley came to St. Louis for regional conference shortly after he became prophet. Thousands of Church members came to downtown St. Louis to see a prophet. There were license plates from surrounding states in the parking lot. Many of us had never seen a prophet in person, and I think many in attendance never had the opportunity again.
- When I was still in our Church's Young Women's program, President Hinckley hosted a fireside for young single adults and teenagers in the Church. I can remember the 6 Be's that he gave us - but more importantly I remember the tears streaming down my face as a Prophet of God prayed for me. He prayed to his Heavenly Father on the behalf of the young people of the Church. I can distinctly remember that sacred experience that I had that night sitting in the Stake Center watching President Hinckley via Satellite.
- Attending BYU spoiled me! President Hinckley came to BYU my freshman AND sophomore year because BYU announced a new University President. Each time he waved his cane at the students, gave us encouragement and reminded us how loved we really are. His wit, humor, wisdom and love will forever remain with me.
- A couple of years ago President Hinckely issued the challenge to the members of the church to finish the Book of Mormon by Dec. 23 (that gave us approximately 4 months to complete the BOM in time for Joseph Smith's 200th birthday). The response of the Church was quite amazing to such a simple challenge. Even though I often struggle to read my scriptures every day, I was able to complete the challenge, and I remember the great spirit I felt as I watched President Hinckley speak about the power of the Book of Mormon from Joseph's boyhood home in New York.
- When President Hinckley walks into the room, everyone stands up and becomes quiet. Sometimes you can feel his presence before that happens - the spirit of God was definitely with him. I was so fortunate to be able to see and hear a prophet in person several times during my lifetime. Even though I was not able to see my Savior in person, I know that President Hinckley was one of the most Christ-like people the world has ever seen.
We will miss President Hinckley more than anything. However, we are so happy that he is reunited with his beloved wife, Marjorie. President Hinckley was a true prophet. I know that our next Prophet will also be a true prophet and he will lead the Church in this amazing era. I know that I will have just as many amazing memories of President Monson and I have full faith in him - and that my Heavenly Father will guide him.