What the Spirit Told Me as I Stood by President Monson’s Casket

You know a great place for the Spirit to talk to you?

By a casket.

My wife and I took our six children up to the Conference Center in Salt Lake City, Utah for the viewing of President Thomas S. Monson. We had the same opportunity 10 years ago to stand by the casket of Gordon B. Hinckley.

monson viewing

We wanted to make sure we went again because our two oldest children still remember seeing President Hinckley.

Do you want to know what I felt when I was standing by President Hinckley’s casket ten years ago?

“Surely this is a prophet of God.” 

Those were the words that were ringing through my mind then, and I had a similar experience as I stood by President Monson.

As we walked through the Hall of Prophets and approached the casket of President Monson, there was no glow about him. His face and hands were thin, and the light in him was gone. He had no large smile on his face as I was accustomed to seeing.

I was sad.

That is when the following words came to my mind.

“He is not here, for he is risen.”

And it’s true. “President Monson” the soul wasn’t there. While his body lay on earth for us to pay our final respects, his spirit was separated to rise to a greater place filled with greater responsibilities and greater joys.

As I mulled over the thought of going to the viewing, I almost decided to pass it up. Then I remembered that precious experience of having the Spirit confirm to me that President Hinckley was a prophet of God.

I knew if I skipped the viewing this time, I would miss out on a wonderful opportunity to have the Spirit teach me a valuable lesson about President Monson.

As we drove up to the Conference Center, my oldest daughter prayed in the car that we would have an experience that would strengthen our testimonies. I’m glad we decided to go because we got what we came for.

I didn’t just go to pay respects to President Monson – I went to visit the Spirit. And they were both there.

“My brothers and sisters, death eventually comes to all mankind. It comes to the aged as they walk on faltering feet. Its summons is heard by those who have scarcely reached midway in life’s journey, and often it hushes the laughter of little children. Death is one fact that no one can escape or deny.

The darkness of death can ever be dispelled by the light of revealed truth. “I am the resurrection, and the life,” spoke the Master. “He that believeth in me, though he were dead, yet shall he live: And whosoever liveth and believeth in me shall never die.”

This reassurance—yes, even holy confirmation—of life beyond the grave could well provide the peace promised by the Savior when He assured His disciples: “Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.”

Thomas S. Monson, “Now Is the Time,” Ensign, Nov 2001, 59

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  • I had a similar experience. We had a chaotic morning trying to get there and at one point I almost turned around and drove home. There was a calmness about my children the moment we entered the conference center but I will never forget the overwhelming feeling I had as we entered the room where President Monson lay. My eyes welled with tears as I watched each of my children look at him and tell me, “we have never seen a prophet in real life!” I had the most distinct feeling that although his spirit was no longer in his body, he was definitely in that room. My chest felt like it was on fire. When we got back to the car I asked my children if any of them felt what I felt while we were in that room and they all said they did! I am so glad we went to pay our repects to a prophet I love and sustain but my testimony was strengthened today and I hope my four boys will never forget the special spirit they felt today.

  • I am a Ghanaian, in Ghana Africa
    I did not get the opportunity to attend the funeral, but l watch the pictures on my smart phone.
    I felt him, and l know he is risen with the ancient prophets to continue the work there.
    The church is true and Our prophets are Called of God.

  • I am a Zimbabwean now living in South Africa, also watching pictures. I try to look as closely as possible into the coffin, although l can’t see the face, l can feel the spirit and confirmation that indeed he is the Lord’s mouth piece. I also shared my farewell message on Facebook and l know that he is alive in the spirit body. That he may continue his mission as God has designed for all His faithful servants in the Spirit World. RIP my prophet, seer and revelator.

  • I have never had the opportunity to view the body of a prophet. However on Monday 8 Jan 2018 I lost my beloved mother. She was 96 and would have been 97 in March. I was with her as she drew her final breath on this Earth. She fought so bravely and courageously to stay but it was time for her to go home. She had such pain her poor body, her hearing was all but gone, her mind had faded, she could stand nor turn herself over anymore. As I looked at this amazing woman’s frail thin body I knew her spirit had gone. She had gone to be with Heavenly Father and our beloved Savior Jesus. I was looking at her and I was reminded of the Butterfly and how it must suffer and struggle to free itself from the cocoon it was in for so long to emerge as this beautiful bejeweled winged creature that would soar above the housetops and dance ever so lightly on the petals of flowers. I could scarcely dare imagine the magnificent beautiful angelic spirit that burst out of that tattered, torn and painful cocoon that was my Mother’s body.

  • President Tomas S. Monson, what can I say. A big man, a beautiful smile, a kind heart. You are loved. Thank you for being who you are

  • I found myself rather nervous as I went to the Viewing. The sacredness of the moment was palpatable and my heart could feel the magnitue of his passing. As I said my final farewell, tears welled up inside me. As I looked at him for a brief glorious moment it felt as though we were standing in the Temple. It was then that I noticed for the first time, the frailness of the mortal man and became keenly aware of the spiritual presence of our Prophet forever more a spiritual giant. As I quietly walked on, peace settled in my heart and I knew all would be well.



  • I remember when I was working at the hospital and President Monson came in. He smiled and said why does everyone get so excited when a General Authority comes around? I said because you are Special men of God. He said, Little Sister we are just common ordinary men like anyone else.
    He never acted like he was above anyone, but gave the feeling that we were equal to anyone. Such a wonderful man that I adored and raised my hand to the square to support him in his calling. We will miss President Monson. We love you and honor you…..til we meet again.

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You know a great place for the Spirit to talk to you? By a casket. My wife and I took our six children up...
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