“Their circumstances are different, but their faith and testimonies are in many ways the same,” he said. 19.9k Likes, 125 Comments - Gerrit W. Gong (@gerritwgong) on Instagram: “I experienced true “southern hospitality” recently as I visited Louisville, Kentucky; the Fort Knox…” Eternal covenants can bring the power of God’s love — to give hope and increase love; to lift and transform; to edify and sanctify; to redeem and exalt.”. First, Jesus knows the heart of every daughter or son of God. “Such offers an escape from the otherwise always-anxious treadmill of perfectionism,” he said. Photo courtesy of the Gong family. “I spent part of the weekend looking for synonyms for ‘overwhelming’ because ‘overwhelming’ doesn’t seem to cover it,” said Sister Gong. Elder and Sister Gong said they have also felt the outpouring of support from members throughout the world. Elder Gerrit W. Gong and his wife, Sister Susan L. Gong, speak at the closing session of BYU’s Women’s Conference on May 4, 2018. Credit: Savanna Richardson, BYU Photo, BYU Photo. Women listen during a session of BYU Women’s Conference held on the BYU campus in Provo, Utah, on May 3-4, 2018. “The restored gospel is for every nation, kindred, and tongue.” From left, Sister Michelle D. Craig, Sister Bonnie H. Cordon, and Sister Becky Craven of the Young Women general presidency at the Marriott Center at BYU Women’s Conference on May 3, 2018. The mural they created, which added light to the once colorless space, wasn’t theirs. Attendees walk across BYU campus in Provo, Utah, during the annual BYU Women’s Conference held May 3-4, 2018. “Two, he is interested in everything, which makes him a fascinating person to live with. Reflecting the increasing diversity of the Church, Elder Gong became the first Asian-American Apostle, Elder Soares the first Apostle from South America. He and his lovely wife, Susan spent 3 days teaching, lifting and inspiring us. SALT LAKE CITY, Utah (KIFI/KIDK) – The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints announced Tuesday Elder Gerrit W.Gong and his wife have tested positive with COVID-19. Members of Elder Gerrit W. Gong’s family stand in front of a mural project with the children who assisted them in Vietnam. Although the family had provided the sketch, paint, and brushes, something had shifted. Sister Gong said there are three characteristics that are quintessential Gerrit Gong. From left, Sister Michelle D. Craig, Sister Becky Craven, and Sister Bonnie H. Cordon of the Young Women general presidency sit on the stand prior to speaking in the Marriott Center during BYU Women’s Conference on May 3, 2018. Credit: Aislynn Edwards, BYU Photo, BYU Photo. The restored gospel is for every nation, kindred, and tongue.” —Elder Gerrit W. Gong of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles. “I don’t know how it came to us; it just did,” said Sister Susan Gong. “We’ve always been struck by the enthusiasm and skill of children who come together to beautify their environment,” Elder Gong said. Speaking in the Marriott Center on the Brigham Young University campus, Elder Gong spoke with his wife, Sister Susan Gong. Elder Gerrit W. Gong, of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles of the LDS Church, greets Ann Madsen, of Provo, after Gong spoke at the BYU Women’s Conference at the Marriott Center in Provo on Friday, May 4, 2018. There is comfort, peace, and hope in the Lord’s assurance that worthy individuals will receive all promised blessings.”, “Covenant belonging” fits well with the call to minster announced by President Russell M. Nelson in the last general conference, as “covenant belonging” means to help others by “strengthening one another in His love.”. He had a close almost familial relationship with de Jong and would refer to him as "Grandpa de Jong". (Rick Egan | Tribune file photo) Gerrit W. Gong and his wife, Susan Gong, leave the stand after the Saturday morning session of the 188th Annual … Gerrit was named after Gerrit de Jongbecause his mother had lived with de Jong and his family while she was a student at BYU. Jointly published by the Deseret News and The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, its content supports the doctrines, principles and practices of the Church. “Susan is other-oriented and down-to-earth wherever she is,” said Elder Gong. Officials said their condition is mild and is being closely monitored by doctors. The church reported Oct. 8 that the 66-year-old Gong and his wife, Susan, had been experiencing “very mild symptoms” and were recovering at home. Sister Gong realized she needed to learn to listen — to put down her electronic devices, shut out distractions, turn off the little voice in her head constantly reminding her of all of the things she has left to do on her “to do” list. Elder Gerrit W. Gong, a member of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, has tested positive for COVID-19. Assigned to organize the second stake in Bangkok, Thailand, Elder Gong participated in the calling of priesthood leaders. “Our covenants connect us to God and to each other,” he said. Elder Gong will share three invitations that will help you become more valiant in the testimony of Christ. Among his achievements in life, Elder Gerrit W. Gong was a Rhodes Scholar, worked in high-level positions at the U.S. State Department and for the Center for Strategic and International Studies in Washington, D.C., and, for the past nine years, has been assistant to the president for planning and assessment at Brigham Young University. As a person strives to feel how it might feel to be in another person’s circumstance they are more able to minister. Elder Gerrit W. Gong, along with his wife Susan Gong, invited 100 young adults from two countries and 14 states to participate in a virtual discussion prior to his January 2021 Worldwide Devotional. In covenant belonging, “we strengthen each other in His love, thereby coming more to love God and each other,” he said. “Meant to be eternal, our covenants include God our eternal Father and His Son Jesus Christ. From left, Sister Lisa L. Harkness, Sister Joy D. Jones, and Sister Cristina B. Franco of the Primary general presidency speak in the Marriott Center at BYU during Women’s Conference on May 4. Credit: Jaren Wilkey, BYU Photo, BYU Photo. You feel the love and prayers of those sitting in front of you — and the love and prayers of those sitting behind you.”. Recognizing the large congregation in front of him — in addition to those tuning in via broadcast on LDS.org — Elder Gong said, “This feels a little like speaking at general conference. Elder Gerrit W. Gong and his wife, Sister Susan Gong, have been diagnosed with COVID-19, according to a statement from The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Elder Gerrit W. Gong, of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles of the LDS Church, greets Mariama Olayemi, of Sierra Leone and now living in Salt Lake City, after Gong spoke at the BYU Women’s Conference at the Marriott Center in Provo on Friday, May 4, 2018. Credit: Spenser Heaps, Deseret News, Deseret News. “One, he is unfailingly kind,” she said. Elder Gong’s grandparents immigrated to the United States from China. “This deepening love and knowledge invites, empowers, and sanctifies us to know and, in our own way, to become more like Him.”. Both Elder and Sister Gong served as full-time missionaries in Taiwan; the couple married in January 1980 in the Salt Lake Temple. Elder and Sister Gong said it was wonderful to join members from across the world for general conference, to sustain President Russell M. Nelson and the First Presidency, and “to witness continuing revelation bless the members of the Church in all their many circumstances.” The apostle said “covenant belonging” creates a connection to others and to God and Jesus Christ. But if you would indulge me for a moment, I want to focus on one area of very specific, personal appreciation: the marriage of Elder Gerrit Gong, as an Asian-American man, to his wife Susan Gong, a white woman. Contributed By Sarah Jane Weaver, Church News editor. Born in Redwood City, California, to Walter A. and Jean C. Gong, Elder Gong comes to the apostleship with a background rich in education and experience. At the time of his call, he had been serving as a member of the Fifth Quorum of the Seventy in the Utah South Area. Elder Gerrit W. Gong and his wife, Sister Susan Lindsay Gong. Just a month after his call to the Quorum of the Twelve, Elder Gong spoke of the motivations of “covenant belonging” as he addressed thousands of women during the concluding keynote address of the annual BYU Women’s Conference. Sister Sharon Eubank, first counselor in the Relief Society general presidency, speaks in the Marriott Center at BYU during Women’s Conference on May 3, 2018. It belonged to the children. “One day in frustration Gerrit said, ‘Sweetheart, when we’re next in Salt Lake City will you please have your hearing checked?’ ”. Elder Gerrit W. Gong and his wife, Sister Susan L. Gong, speak at the closing session of BYU’s Women’s Conference. “I am just grateful to know that this comes one day at a time and that when you are on the Lord’s errand, you receive the Lord’s help.” Elder Gerrit W. Gong, along with his wife Susan Gong, invited 100 young adults from two countries and 14 states to participate in a virtual discussion prior ... English (US) Español SALT LAKE CITY, Utah (KIFI/KIDK) - The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints announced Tuesday Elder Gerrit W.Gong and his wife have tested positive with COVID-19. Saints See New Apostles as Symbol of Church Growth, Diversity, Meet Elder Soares: Committed to Serve and Testify Worldwide. Updated: October 16, 2020. Instead, she needed to listen with her heart, understanding “not just what someone is saying but who it is that I’m talking to: a child of God.”, “I’m discovering this means not just listening to the person but listening to the Holy Ghost as well.”. Elder Gerrit W. Gong, newly sustained as a member of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, and his wife, Sister Susan Gong, in Salt Lake City. Photo by Jeffrey D. Allred, Deseret News. He witnessed how “the Lord touched many different people in Vietnam.” (See related story.) A Rhodes Scholar who worked for the U.S. State Department and for the Center for Strategic and International Studies in Washington, D.C., Elder Gong’s travels have taken him to all seven continents, including living in Asia for more than a decade. The Holy Ghost will help us know how.”. Elder Gerrit W. Gong was sustained a member of the First Quorum of the Seventy of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints on April 3, 2010, at the age of 56. “There may be some truth in the children’s song ‘Let It Go’ — if ‘let it go’ means ‘let go’ of self-imposed worldly expectations that can never satisfy, and if it also means ‘hold on’ to the God-given heavenly hopes and promises the Lord offers.”. “Each day, in myriad ways, we each need and can offer ministering love and support in small, simple, powerful, life-changing ways,” he said. Elder Gerrit W. Gong, of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles of the LDS Church, and his wife, Sister Susan Gong, speak at the BYU Women’s Conference at the Marriott Center in Provo on Friday, May 4, 2018. SALT LAKE CITY, Utah (KIFI/KIDK) - The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints announced Tuesday Elder Gerrit W.Gong and his wife have tested positive with COVID-19. Members of Elder Gerrit W. Gong’s family and the army of street children they enlisted to help them paint the scene stood back and examined the work. Elder Gerrit W. Gong is a member of the Presidency of the Seventy. Photo courtesy of the Gong family. The Church News is an official publication of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Gerrit W. Gong was born in Redwood City, California, in 1953. He said they have had an opportunity to “weep together and pray together.” In a message shared on his social media accounts, Elder Gerrit W. Gong of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles and his wife, Susan, shared that they have successfully completed quarantine and expressed their appreciation for the outpouring of love and support from people around the world after the couple was diagnosed with COVID-19 in early October. Because of what we’ve learned here we will be different, better.”, In light of the changes from “visiting teaching” to “ministering in a higher and holier way,” Sister Gong shared three observations about “what it might mean to love as Jesus loves.”. That is something the Gongs also learned from the children involved in their mural projects, undertaken during the Christmas season. Elder Gerrit W. Gong, a member of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, and his wife, Sister Susan Gong, have tested positive for COVID-19. “Once ordained they joined the growing circle of priesthood power.”. “Ours is a worldwide Church,” said Elder Gong. Second, compassion always accompanies Christ’s understanding of hearts. Elder Gerrit W. Gong, the first Asian-American Apostle, is a faithful lifelong Church member. “We were grateful others were excited for children to have creative opportunities.” I know several members of Elder Gong’s extended family, and they couldn’t be a more dynamic, talented, kind family. Gong was born in 1953 in Redwood City, California, to Walter Gong and his wife, the former Jean Char, and raised in Palo Alto, California. Susan shared “three observations about what it might mean to love as Jesus loves.” The first one was to understand. Elder Gerrit W. Gong, of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles of the LDS Church, greets attendees after speaking at the BYU Women’s Conference at the Marriott Center in Provo on Friday, May 4, 2018. Learn more about guidelines and necessary forms. Attendees listen as Elder Gerrit W. Gong, of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles of the LDS Church, and his wife, Sister Susan Gong, speak at the BYU Women’s Conference at the Marriott Center in Provo on Friday, May 4, 2018. At that moment “you feel very humble, but you are certain in your confidence and love for President Nelson as the Lord’s prophet and Church President.” Elder Gong, a newly called member of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, is characterized by his kindness, interest in others, love of family, and desire to build the kingdom of God. Sister Susan Gong, wife of Elder Gerrit W. Gong, speaks during a worldwide devotional for young adults on Sunday, Jan. 10, 2021. Credit: Screenshot YouTube “It’s hard to see how these bits of color will resolve into a coherent pattern. Elder Gong, the oldest of three children, inherited his parents’ love for learning. Helping Hand volunteers ages 18-30 years old in … Elder Gong, whose ancestors left southern China in the late 19th century for work in the United States, was born into the Church. Elder Gerrit W. Gong, of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles of the LDS Church, and his wife, Sister Susan Gong, speak at the BYU Women’s Conference at the Marriott Center in Provo on Friday, May 4, 2018. Copyright © 2021 Deseret News Publishing Company. Elder Gerrit W. Gong and his wife, Susan Gong, speak to LDS Young Adults ages 18 to 30 on Sunday and give them three goals for 2021. Elder Gerrit W. Gong and his wife, Sister Susan Lindsay Gong. Photo by Jeffrey D. Allred, Deseret News. The Primary general presidency lead the audience in singing “Do As I’m Doing” in the Marriott Center at BYU during Women’s Conference on May 4. When she was living in Hong Kong with Elder Gong, the couple’s apartment was located on one of the busiest streets in one of the world’s busiest cities. Three, he loves the Lord. Sister Sharon Eubank and Sister Reyna Aburto of the Relief Society general presidency speak in the Marriott Center during BYU Women’s Conference on May 3, 2018. The bad news: He said, “You may have a listening problem, and there’s not much I can do about that.”. Elder Gong’s parents, both professional teachers, collectively spent more than 70 years in the classroom. The couple hosts “grandkids camp” every summer, which includes crafts and adventures, and loves to travel with their sons. PROVO, Utah — The Church’s new focus on ministering is enhanced through “covenant belonging” — never giving up on oneself, on others or on God, Elder Gerrit W. Gong of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles taught in his first public address — outside of general conference — as an apostle. Sister Susan Gong, wife of Elder Gerrit W. Gong, of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles of the LDS Church, greets attendees after she and her husband spoke at the BYU Women’s Conference at the Marriott Center in Provo on Friday, May 4, 2018. Elder Gerrit W. Gong of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles and his wife, Sister Susan Gong, have tested positive for the COVID-19 virus, according to a spokesman from The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Elder Gong, a newly called member of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, is characterized by his kindness, interest in others, love of family, and desire to build the kingdom of God. “After the meeting we entered a large room, where on chairs on three sides of the room priesthood leaders were ordained one by one,” recalled Sister Gong. The Spirit was present in abundance. Elder Gong spoke of the importance of being still and deepening our relationship with God. His mother's family are ethnic Chinese in Hawaii, and his father's family lived in California and other parts of the United States after his ancestor… Attendees take a break on the BYU campus in Provo, Utah, during the annual BYU Women’s Conference held May 3-4, 2018. Elder Gong was with Elder Quentin L. Cook and Elder Gary E. Stevenson in Vietnam when the Church received official recognition. With his wife, Susan, Elder Gong helps build God’s kingdom by serving all of His children. Some places wanted to send only the best and most artistic children to participate. Now as a newly sustained member of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles he will share a different kind of light with God’s children throughout the world. “Ours is a worldwide Church. Elder Gong said everywhere they go, people relate to Sister Gong. “In the revelation of our true, divine selves through our covenants with God, we learn to recognize and love our brothers and sisters as He does,” he said. The good news was that her hearing was perfect. They are the parents of four children and three grandchildren. We love Elder and Sister Gong. Officials said their condition is mild and is being closely monitored by doctors. He and his wife, Susan Lindsay Gong, are the parents of four children and have three grandchildren. But where does a person get the patience, insight, imagination, courage and strength to love like this? Unless the couple stood face to face, it was hard for Sister Gong to hear her husband talk. A former bishop and stake president, Elder Gong has served as a General Authority since 2010 and in that capacity has seen the Church grow and develop across the world. He is currently serving in the Asia Area Presidency. He married Susan Lindsay in January 1980. On November 17, 2019, Elder Gerrit W. Gong and three general officers answered questions about the Children and Youth program. In her address, Sister Gong said, “Wonderful things happen when righteous, faithful, open-to-the-Spirit women gather. But the Gongs explained their project was an opportunity for all the children. Sister Gong is a “compulsive gardener” who loves to cook and “bring people together.” She has authored Chinese language children’s readers and was the first coordinator for Utah’s Chinese language dual-immersion program. He has traced … Elder Gong loves learning and spending time with family. He really desires with all his heart to build the kingdom and bless Heavenly Father’s children.” It was a sacred time we will all cherish. Elder Gerrit W. Gong, newly sustained as a member of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, and his wife, Sister Susan Gong, in Salt Lake City on Friday, April 6, 2018. Elder Gerrit W. Gong and his wife, Susan, participate in a Christmas mural project in Vietnam. Elder Gerrit W. 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