Brian Nicholson, Deseret News
President Boyd K. Packer of the LDS Church's Quorum of the Twelve speaks during a fireside at the Ogden LDS institute Sunday.

OGDEN — It was a homecoming of sorts when President Boyd K. Packer of the Quorum of the Twelve of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints spoke during a fireside at the Ogden Institute of Religion on Sunday evening.

Speaking in the chapel of the institute adjacent to the campus of Weber State University, President Packer told the congregation that he met and courted his wife, Donna, while they were attending Weber State.

"Soon after I registered I went to the library and she was at the desk," he said. "I suddenly developed a profound interest in books."

He then offered counsel to the some 2,000 people — mostly institute-age young adults — seated in the chapel and overflow, as well as in classrooms throughout the institute where the fireside was broadcast on closed-circuit television.

Though living in an unsettled world, Latter-day Saints need not live in fear, President Packer said. "Develop now an inner courage. It will serve you all of your life."

He told the young adults that rather than wandering through life lost and uncertain, they should study and follow the Lord's plan of happiness as spoken of by the prophet Alma in the book of Mormon. He also said that Satan's purpose is to destroy that plan.

The first commandment given to Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden to multiply and replenish the earth began the pattern of marriage and parenthood, President Packer said.

Eve was given to Adam as a helpmeet, meaning an equal partner, he said.

"Man and woman, together, were not to be alone," he added. "Any man who thinks he's going to the highest degree of glory without a woman at his side does not understand the gospel. Together, they control the fountain of life. While neither can generate life without the other, the mystery of life unfolds when these two become one."

He continued, "From the very beginning, the power to beget life was unlawful to express except there be a marriage between a man and a woman."

He cautioned the young adults to be wary of the word "tolerance." He said, "We are not required to tolerate anything that leads to unhappiness ... Tolerance is often demanded but is seldom returned."

President Packer also encouraged the young adults, even during times of financial difficulty, to pay their tithing. "In all your struggles, pay your tithing first, and then you'll be entitled to the blessings of the Lord," he said.

He told them to always strive to live according to the Lord's plan of happiness.