Miracles are brought about through fasting and sincere prayer. In 1850 Lorenzo Snow, who later became president of the Church, labored in Italy as a missionary, trying to open that country to the gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ. He was somewhat shy and self-conscious, but spiritually, he was a giant. One family who had befriended him had a critically ill child. In fact, Elder Snow realized that only through sincere fasting, mighty prayer, unswerving faith, and through the power of the priesthood could that three-year-old child be saved. He knew how much the healing of this boy would mean to the people in this small Italian village.
Climbing with his companion to a place of seclusion on the foothills of the Alps just above the village, in the spirit of fasting and prayer, he earnestly petitioned and pleaded with the Lord for six long, anxious hours for the privilege of using divine power to heal that little boy. Finally, the answer came; the reply was yes, he would be granted the privilege.
As a humble servant of the Lord, he walked down the mountainside with perfect faith that the dying child’s life would be spared. The boy was then given a blessing and a promise that he would live. A few hours later when Elder Snow and his companion returned to the home, they found that the child was greatly improved and was well on the way to recovery. Elder Snow realized that his fasting and prayer had reached the throne of a benevolent Heavenly Father. He remarked to the grateful parents: “The God of heaven has done this for you.” (See Eliza R. Snow, Biography of Lorenzo Snow, pp. 128–29.)