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Dr. Daniel M. Scott


Distinguished guests, President and Sister Tanner. Aloha.

At times, with the best of intentions, some propose that BYU–Hawaii is nearing the end of its journey. Thoughts like this generally cause contemplation because, of course, no one wants to overzealously impose our will on the Lord’s or use too many fish to feed the multitude. Such resources could be given to the poor. Besides, there is no doubt that the number of great miracles that have occurred in the lives of those who have crossed this campus would already fill a fishing net to the breaking point.

However, this type of thinking reminds us of President Hinckley’s experience when, as a young returned missionary, he felt he had fulfilled his patriarchal blessing’s promise, that nations would hear his testimony, by its bearing at a few comparatively trivial lay overs on his return home from his mission in England. (Seek Ye the Kingdom of God, April 2006, Gordon B. Hinckley)

Actually, In terms of administrations, it was only one full season ago, under President Shumway, that this university emerged from under the wing of BYU (Provo). With this perspective, it should not have been surprising that the revealed, necessary corrections from such a transition would have resulted in adolescent-like growing pains. Many of these were dutifully addressed by the last administration.

After all, the Lord does not store new wine in old bottles. But nor does He ask his servants to fetch new water pots just to leave them empty. Indeed, we now have a new rock through which our university will receive revelation. President John S. Tanner, like the apostle Peter, will be asked to be a rock of stability, whilst seeking for the rock of revelation, from the rock of ages.

In fact, one could easily claim that…in the life of BYU–Hawaii …now is when, using scientific verbiage, T or time=0. In other words... at such a time as this…we are at the beginning. But not the beginning of a scientific or even religious experiment. We are at the beginning of a work whose path is prophesied.

Similar to our university and our new president, Peter was already an accomplished fisherman in his own right when the Lord asked him to step up. He had fished all the night before the morning that the Lord asked him to “thrust out a little” more. And what was Peter’s reward? The great Jehovah himself rested his mortal body on, and taught the people from Peter’s ship. Only after, did they, at the Lord’s request, push off for another draught. And it was only through the abundance of this catch that Peter realized, this is not about fish.

We as saints know that the realization of the greatest of miracles depends upon our greatest faithfulness. With such a desire of humble consecration the Faculty cannot think of a better way to use our spiritual, emotional and effectual fish than in pledging our support to our Peter, President John S. Tanner. We welcome you and look forward to the future. In the name of Jesus Christ, amen.

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