Category Archives: General Religion and Spirituality

183rd Annual General Conference – Post-conference notes

183rd_annual_general_conference_screenshot

Well, 10 hours are done (10 3/4 hours if you count The World Report). Usually there is a session that I love, and maybe a session that I find kind of dull. For this conference, there wasn’t one particular session that was my favourite. Each session had a speaker or two that I really enjoyed. This probably made it easier for me to stay away; I didn’t fall asleep during any of the sessions :-)

Online there has been all sorts of buzz about having women pray at General Conference. It wasn’t really something that was on the radar for me, but if it helps some people then it’s all good. I certainly see no reason why women can’t pray or speak in General Conference or any other meeting.

Ultimately probably the most interesting thing for me was that our Stake President was called to be an Area Authority. President David P Homer is a good man. He was serving as a bishop at the same time that I was when Elder Russell M Nelson came to our Stake Conference. I didn’t really know Bishop Homer very well, but my brief interactions with him were positive. Elder Nelson was inspired to call him to be the Stake President, and he has served faithfully for 5 1/2 years. I emailed him yesterday and told him that I was sure he’d inspire many people.

So that’s it. Conference is done. Hopefully we’ve all heard something that is making us think more deeply about our faith and our commitment. I definitely have some things I need to review.


Read the recaps and other notes from the 183rd Annual General Conference of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints:

183rd Annual General Conference – Sunday Afternoon General Session

183rd_annual_general_conference_screenshot

After the morning session of General Conference I watched The World Report (I like their new logo and theme). I then had a nap for about an hour. I awoke to some of the Bible videos being played. I haven`t seen them before, and they looked pretty good.

Well, here we go with the final session…


President Dieter F Uchtdorf conducted

The Mormon Tabernacle Choir sang  Come, Ye Children of the Lord

Sister Carol M Stephens offered the invocation

The choir sang Tell Me the Stories of Jesus

Elder Jeffrey R Holland

  • All things are possible to him that believeth
  • When facing the challenge of faith, the father in the scripture exerts his faith first, then acknowledges his weakness
  • The size of your faith is not the issue; it is the integrity you show when your faith is tested
  • When questions arise, don’t start your quest by saying you don’t have faith
  • Be as candid as you need to be, but if you need to be healed, don’t let your questions stay in the way of faith and its miracles
  • Imperfect people are all God has to work with (other than Jesus)
  • When doubt comes, do not be afraid to ask for help

Elder Dallin H Oakes

  • Come, Follow Me
  • All of the messages in conference help us to follow Christ
  • He compared many things that Christians do and how we fit that description

Elder Christoffel Golden Jr

  • We are to inherit all that the Father has

The choir and congregation sang Now Let Us Rejoice

Elder Enrique R Falabella

  • There is no special school for parenting, but we have our homes
  • Marriage in the temple is for time and all eternity
  • “In order to contend, you always need two people, and I will never be one of them”
  • “I need you to hug me”
  • A child who sings is a happy child
  • I love the Book of Mormon and my Savior Jesus Christ
  • It is not enough to know the scriptures; we have to live them

Elder Erich W Kopischke

  • We all want acceptance
  • Unfortunately we sometimes try to get acceptance from the wrong sources

Elder Bruce D Porter

  • The apostles didn’t know that the Passover meal was the Last Supper
  • We need not fear the future
  • God is with us

Elder D Todd Christofferson

  • Spoke about how Jesus Christ is our Redeemer

President Thomas S Monson

  • Study the messages given at conference
  • We are a world-wide church
  • Be tolerant and kind
  • May we ever follow his example
  • Be aware of the needs of those aware us

The choir sang Lord, Dismiss Us with Thy Blessing

Elder Larry Y Wilson offered the benediction


Read the recaps and other notes from the 183rd Annual General Conference of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints:

183rd Annual General Conference – Sunday Morning General Session

183rd_annual_general_conference_screenshot

The two General Conference Sundays have to be the best Sundays of the year! We can sleep in a bit, spent time together as a family, go for a walk, and listen to the beautiful music of Music and the Spoken Word together. This morning was particularly great as the weather was beautiful. Spring is truly here!

We don’t usually hear or watch Music and the Spoken Word (unless it is before General Conference). Their performance of Praise to the Lord, the Almighty was fantastic. They also sang I Feel My Savior’s Love and my kids sang along. That was pretty nice to hear my kids singing with the Mormon Tabernacle Choir :-)

We’re hoping for a great session of conference to top it all off.


The Mormon Tabernacle Choir saing Go Forth With Faith to open the session

President Henry B Eyring conducted

The choir sang Let Zion in Her Beauty Rise

Elder Steven E Snow offered the invocation

President Dieter F Uchtdorf

  • We sometimes feel as if we are surrounded by darkness
  • Darkness exists, but we don’t want to dwell there
  • Light also exists, and we should dwell there
  • God’s light is real
  • The darkness may not dissipate at once but it will eventually
  • With Christ darkness cannot success
  • Darkness cannot gain victory over the Light of Christ

The choir sang Come, Follow Me

Elder Neil L Andersen

  • The mortal life of Jesus Christ was full of miracles
  • We are few in number, but we are still filling the whole earth
  • Our day is a remarkable time of miracles

Sister Rosemary M Wixom

  • Everyone can increase a child’s confidence and faith
  • Don’t let technology get in the way of talking to your children
  • Disconnect each day

The choir and congregation sang Guide Us, O Thou Great Jehovah

Elder L Whitney Clayton

  • We can learn a lot from watching and learning from others
  • He has seen the following common characteristices of successful marriages
    1. Both husband and wife hold their marriage is a priceless treasures
    2. Faith
    3. Repentance and humility
    4. Respect
  • Marriage is a gift from God
  • The quality of our marriage is a gift to God

Elder L Tom Perry

  • Secularism is beginning to be the norm
  • Next to life itself, free agency is God’s greatest gift to mankind
  • Men are free according to the flesh
  • Obedience to law is liberty

The choir sang Where Love Is

President Thomas S Monson

  • Truth is knowledge of things as they were, are, and are to come
  • Answers come as we are obedient to the commandments of God
  • Told a good story about he and a friend trying to clear a field by burning it
  • Be obedient

The choir sang Come, Come Ye Saints

Elder O Vincent Haleck offered the benediction


Read the recaps and other notes from the 183rd Annual General Conference of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints:

183rd Annual General Conference – Priesthood Session

183rd_annual_general_conference_screenshot

My father and I went to the Church for about 6:45 pm so we could setup for the traditional sub-sational. We had about 22 people there and had lots of subs, chips, and pop. It was nice.

We watched the broadcast at the church and then my father and I still went out for another snack. We’ve done it for many years, and we want to keep the tradition alive. In another year and a half my oldest son will be able to join us.


President Dieter F Uchtdorf conducted

A priesthood choir made up of YSA from the Salt Lake City area sang Arise, O God, and Shine

Elder Ronald A Rasband offered the invocation

The choir sang Nearer, My God, to Thee

Elder Robert D Hales (he sounded good, but did not look good)

  • His father taught him about wearing the armor of God
  • If your father wanted to get into trouble, he had to go looking for it; today temptation finds you
  • The Church will remain constants
  • The gap between the world and the Church is getting wide
  • A true friend doesn’t ask us to choose between the gospel and their friendship
  • We are not authorized to negotiate the conditions of God eternal plan
  • Glorify God’s name by standing strong

Elder Tad R Callister

  • The priesthood of the boy is just as powerful as the priesthood of the man when exercised righteously
  • When on missions, people haev strong spiritual growth during those mission years
  • We should exercise these principles to help growth happen earlier
  • Trust our youth
  • Have high expectations of them
  • Provide training
  • Teach the YM how to lead
  • Leaders need to step back

Brother David L Beck

  • What does it mean to minister?
  • We need to help others feel loved
  • There are people around us who need to feel Heavenly Father’s love
  • We are always priesthood men, not just on Sunday’s

The choir and congregation sang Hope of Israel

President Dieter F Uchtdorf

  • We identify ourselves by titles
  • 4 titles that apply to all priesthood holders
    1. Son of Heavenly Father
      • No matter what we do, we are God’s literal spirit children
    2. Disciple of Christ
      • We are all different, but we have our discipleship in common
    3. Healer of Souls
      • We are to practice the Healer’s art
      • We need to build up, repair, uplift
      • We shoudl reach out to those in need
    4. Heirs to all that He has
      • We are joint-heirs with Christ
      • Does it make sense that so many of us spend time on wealth, prestige, or what is cool?
  • Live what you learn

President Henry B Eyring

  • The gospel is to go into all the world
  • Every member is to be a missionary
  • The members need to find people to teach

President Thomas S Monson

  • Missionary work is an identifying feature of the Church
  • Joseph Smith said that the greatest and most important duty is to preach this gospel
    1. Search the scriptures with diligence
    2. Plan your life with purpose
    3. Teach the truth with testimony
    4. Serve the Lord with love

The choir sang Ye Elders of Israel

Brother Larry M Gibson offered the benediction


Read the recaps and other notes from the 183rd Annual General Conference of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints:

183rd Annual General Conference – Saturday Afternoon General Session

183rd_annual_general_conference_screenshot

I got home just as the choir was singing to open this session of conference. It was a hectic day at work, but it’s nice to be home now.


President Henry B Eyring conducted

A choir made up of students from Brigham Young University sang Jesus, the Very Thought of Thee

Brother Russell T Osguthorpe offered the invocation

The choir sang Did You Think to Pray?

President Dieter F Uchtdorf presented officers for sustaining. There were lots of changes with Area Authorities. The only part that stood out to be with those names was that W T David Murray was released. He was the Area Authority in Southern Ontario. Then our own Stake President (David P Homer) was called to be an Area Authority. We have Stake Conference coming up in a few weeks, so I guess we’re getting a new Stake President!
There was also a new YW Presidency called. Bonnie Lee Green Oscarson, Carol Louise Foley McConkie, and Evelyn Neill Foote Marriott were called

Brother Robert W Cantwell, Managing Director of the Church Audit Report read the audit report for 2012

  • Based upon audits performed, the Church Auditing Department is of the opinion that, in all material respects, contributions received, expenditures made, and assets of the Church have been recorded and administered in accordance with appropriate accounting practices, approved budgets, and Church policies and procedures.

Brother Brook P Hales, Secretary to the First Presidency presented the Statistical Report for 2012

  • 3,005 stakes
  • 347 missions
  • 591 districts
  • 29,014 wards and branches
  • 14,782,473 members
  • 122,273 children of record were baptized
  • 272,330 convert baptisms
  • 58,990 full-time missionaries
  • 22,961 church service missionaries
  • 4 temples dedicated
  • 2 rededicated
  • 140 temples in operation

Elder Richard G Scott

  • The world seems to want us to live a hectic life
  • We need a place of peace, ideally in our own home
  • The Savior is the true source of peace
  • Technology can be a protection if we use it right
  • Having the scriptures in your pocket (on a phone or tablet) won’t protect you, but studying them will
  • A Christ-centerd home will be where covenants are kept and love abounds
  • A good friendship is like asphalt that smooths over the holes and bumps
  • Recognize the good in others

Elder Quentin L Cook

  • He has been reflecting on the doctrine of peace
  • There is a difference between world peace and gospel peace
  • God is not the author of confusion
  • For those who reject God there is no peace
  • The Church is a refuge

The choir and congregation sang Rejoice, The Lord Is King!

Elder Stanley G Ellis

  • We are not spiritual orphans
  • With parents we do not need to be confused
  • One of the problems today is that every man walks in his own way
  • How we raise our children is more important than where we raise our children

Elder John B Dickson

  • Spoke quite a bit about the Church in Africa

Elder David A Bednar

  • Why is the law of chastity so important?
  • Every impulse of the natural man can be overcome through the Atonement of Jesus Christ
  • Love increases through righteous restraint and decreases in unrighteous indulgence
  • Let virtue garnish they thoughts unceasingly

Elder Russell M Nelson

  • There is great enthusiasm for sharing the gospel
  • The youth need to share it with their friends
  • Apply to the school of your choice before you serve a mission
  • We all need to “catch the wave”
  • Our Living God is a Loving God

The choir sang More Holiness Give Me

Elder J Devn Cornish offered the benediction


Read the recaps and other notes from the 183rd Annual General Conference of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints:

183rd Annual General Conference – Saturday Morning General Session

183rd_annual_general_conference_screenshot

As mentioned in my Pre-conference notes, I had to watch this session at work. I got called out of my office at about 11:45, and didn’t get back to my desk until almost 12:30. I was surprised to note how anxious I was to get to my computer and watch conference. I felt like I was missing something. Then throughout the session, I kept getting calls. Usually I can just sit there and watch, but not today. There must have been something that the Adversary didn’t want me to hear!

I thought it was interesting that the Church is promoting the #ldsconf hashtag


The Mormon Tabernacle Choir sang Redeemer of Israel

President Dieter F Uchtdorf conducted

The choir sang In Hymns of Praise

Elder Randall K Bennett offered the invocation

President Thomas S Monson

  • Traveled to Germany, Alberta, Idaho in the last 6 months (the last two to dedicate temples)
  • Didn’t attend cultural celebration in Calgary as it was Sister Monson’s birthday
  • President Uchtdorf dedicated to Honduras to dedicated a temple
  • Announced new temples in Cedar City Utah and Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
  • In October changes to missionary age announced
  • As of April 4, 65634 full-time missionaries
  • More than 20,000 more have received their call
  • 6,000 are in process
  • 58 new missions
  • We were invited to donate to the general missionary fund of the church

The choir sang Hark, All Ye Nations!

President Boyd K Packer (he looked good, but spoke from his chair and had oxygen tubes in his nose)

  • In 1992 he turned 68
  • He shared a short poem he wrote at that time (he updated it at 78 and again at 88)
  • He is getting older. Although he loses physical ability, there are “great spiritual gains” that come with age
  • We need to protect our homes
  • The priesthood has been given to protect the home
  • There are few things more powerful than the prayers of a righteous mother

Bishop Dean M Davies

  • Talked about earthquakes in California
  • We must build on sure foundations in order to be safe
  • Just as buildings use the right material, we need to be built properly spiritually
  • We wouldn’t knowingly build our homes on sand

Sister Elaine S Dalton

  • spoke about the first line in the YW theme… we are daughters of our Heavenly Father who loves us and we love him
  • we need to understand who we are and whose we are
  • we must never lose sight of the strength of the women
  • we need virtue to be a vital value in society

The choir and congregation sang Let Us All Press On

Elder Craig A Cardon

  • The Savior forgives sin on earth, not just in the eternities
  • In this forgiveness the enabling power of the Atonement helps us
  • False faith does not justify sin
  • “I will be merciful unto your weakness”
  • He knows our weakness
  • “Notwithstanding your sins, my bowels are filled with compassion towards you”
  • The Savior wants to forgive

Elder M Russell Ballard

  • “And worlds without number have I created”
  • The Milky Way is just one of 200+ billion galaxies
  • It is impossible to fathom
  • The power by which these were created is the priesthood
  • The source of this power is God Almighty and His Son Jesus Christ
  • Men administer the priesthood but they are NOT the priesthood
  • Just as a woman cannot have a child without a man, a man can’t properly use his priesthood without a woman
  • Shared an analogy of growing a tomato plant, it’s potential, and what happens when it is neglected
  • Those who hold the priesthood but don’t honour it will wilt spiritually
  • Spoke of the recent Worldwide Leadership Training videos about the role of priesthood and strengthening the family

The choir sang Faith

President Henry B Eyring

  • This is His church and we take His name upon us as we enter the Church
  • “I will encircle thee in the arms of my love”
  • Recounted much of the life of Christ
  • Great blessings come from faithful service
  • Christ has shown us how to hear our Heavenly Father
  • He bore powerful witness that he knows Christ lives as surely as if he were there

The choir sang My Redeemer Lives

Sister Jean A Stevens offered the benediction


Read the recaps and other notes from the 183rd Annual General Conference of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints:

183rd Annual General Conference – Pre-conference notes

183rd_general_conference_header

Here we are at another April, and General Conference is here. I’m not sure how this happened again, but I’m working today, so I’ll have to watch the first session while at work. I think I’ve worked 5 out of the last 6 conferences (or something like that). Otherwise, the plan is the same as last time. We’ll watch the other general sessions at home, and I’ll go with my father to the Priesthood session broadcast at Church. Since I’m now the YM President, I’m also in charge of our “sub-sational” that we have beforehand. Even though we are eating, I’m sure my father and I will find some excuse to still go out together afterward.

I have no predictions about anything. The stats will be interesting. This is the first General Conference since the big “Mormon Moment” (Mitt Romney’s bid for the White House, the Book of Mormon musical, etc). That moment seems to be passing, so it will be interesting to see if it led to increased baptisms. It will also be interesting to hear how many missionaries are currently serving.

Enjoy the conference!


Read the recaps and other notes from the 183rd Annual General Conference of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints: