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181st Annual General Conference – Sunday Morning General Session

One of the best things about conference Sunday is having all that time in the morning! Where we are, the first session starts at noon. So this morning we got up and had a nice breakfast of bacon, eggs, and pancakes. After cleaning up the kitchen we went out for a walk. It is another beautiful spring day.

We watched a bit of Music and the Spoken Word, and are now settled down to watch today’s first session of conference. The kids will be watchings the entire session with us.


The Mormon Tabernacle Choir sang O Thou Rock of Our Salvation

President Henry B Eyring conducted. It was noted again the anniversary of the Church Security Plan (the Church Welfare Program). It was announced 75 years ago by President Heber J Grant

The choir sang Sabbath Day (there was a guy who kind of looked like Conan O’Brien in the choir)

Elder Gary E Stevenson offered the invocation

The choir sang Hark, All Ye Nations!

President Dieter F Uchtdorf

  • the story of Saul
  • there are those who feel that unless they have an experience like Saul or Joseph Smith, they cannot believe
  • instead of taking small steps on the path of discipleship, they want something that will compel them
  • those who diligently try to find the Master will come to know Him
  • to better hear the Spirit, we need to turn down the volume control of the noise of the world
  • some of the most powerful promptings we receive are not just for our benefit, but also for the benefit of others
  • the answer to our prayers often comes when we are on our feet, serving others

Elder Paul V Johnson

  • affliction is part of our mortal experience
  • a trial of our faith is necessary
  • it is through sorrow that we obtain the education we came here to acquire
  • personal growth is an intended outcome of our trials
  • often the darkest times are immediately followed by the brightest
  • after much tribulation, come the blessings

Bishop H David Burton

  • gave history of welfare work in the church (hard to write notes for, but very touching)
  • shared several touching stories
  • learn to distinguish between needs and wants, and live accordingly
  • “be kind to the poor”
  • “go and do thou likewise”

The choir and congregation sang Let Us All Press On

Sister Silvia H Allred

  • The Relief Society has always been at the heart of welfare
  • our combined efforts bring relief, thereby saving souls
  • as we achieve more self-reliance ourselves, we are more able to help others

Elder David A Bednar

  • compared how we deal with different types of light and the spirit of revelation
  • most revelation is like a sunrise; the light gradually increases

The choir sang Have I Done Any Good

President Thomas S Monson

  • the welfare program of the Church is inspired of Almighty God
  • this conference marks 3 years that he has been the President of the Church
  • 1821-1980 21 temples were built
  • 1980-2010 115 were built and dedicated
  • with yesterday ann 26 under construction or in pre-construction stages
  • these numbers will continue to grow
  • they want to make the temple as accessible as possible
  • temples bring joy wherever they are built
  • temples are more than stone and morter; they are built of trials and testimonies; they are sanctified by sacrifice and service
  • 85% of the membership live within 200 miles of a temple
  • have a picture of the temple in every bedroom
  • we will find peace in the temple

The choir sang The Spirit of God

Elder Tad R Callister offered the benediction


Read the recaps and other notes from the 181st Annual General Conference of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints:

179th Semiannual General Conference – Sunday Morning Session

179th_semiannual_general_conference

It was so nice to sleep in this morning and then actually be able to help my wife with the kids. As we were driving to church today she said it was weird to be going together as a family. We also brought a YSA who lives with us (I saw her taking notes during the session) and an investigator.

We got to church for the last part of the Tabernacle Choir broadcast, just in time for Come, Thou Fount of Every Blessing. A truly beautiful hymn!

The choir sang sing “Praise to Him Who Reigns Above”

President Thomas S Monson conducted

The choir sang “I Need Thee Every Hour”

The invocation was offered by Elder Glen L Pace

The choir sang “Beautiful Zion, Built Above”

President Henry B Eyring ** might use this as a 4th Sunday lesson **

  • We have a desire to be better than we are
  • By living the gospel we can become like the Saviour
  • “I’m trying to be like Jesus”
  • The greatest joys and sorrows come in the family
  • Pray for the love that let’s you see the good in your companion
  • Persist in love
  • Pray for your children. Love them and reach out to them
  • Honour thy father and thy mother
  • The only one of the 10 commandments with a promise
  • Look for opportunities to do what He did

Elder L Tom Perry

  • The pioneers left us a great heritage
  • Reviewing the lessons of the past help us face the challenges of the future
  • The missionaries teach about the Restoration, the Plan of Salvation, the Gospel of Jesus Christ

Bishop H David Burton

  • Let virtue garnish thy thoughts unceasingly, then shall thy confidence wax strong in the Lord
  • Virtue traits form the foundation of a Christ-like life
  • “Ity” virtues (charity, chastity, morality, etc)
  • We need not be part of the virtue malaise
  • Integrity is more important than revenge

The choir and congregation sang “How Firm a Foundation”

Sister Ann M Dibb

  • Shared a story about St Catharines, Ontario, Canada and the Garden City Skyway… I live in St Catharines! I’m the bishop of the St Catharines ward. There was quite a buzz in the chapel when she mentioned our city.
  • Workers fell because they didn’t have safety equipment
  • The iron rod brings us safety
  • If we are on strange roads, it is always possible for us to find our way back

Elder Russell M Nelson

  • Even more amazing than modern technology is the ability to get information directly from heaven without any special hardware or monthly service plan
  • Personal revelation can be honed
  • Develop faith, hope, charity, and love

The choir sang “Love is Spoken Here”

President Thomas S Monson

  • What did you do for someone today?
  • When you are in the service of your fellow being, you are serving God
  • Members responded to his request to serve others as a gift for his birthday last year

The choir sang “Have I Done Any Good?”

The benediction was offered by Enrique R Falabella

Read the recaps and other notes from the 179th Semiannual General Conference of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints:

“Use it up, wear it out, make it do, or do without”

We received a memo from the First Presidency in January saying that there was going to be some new welfare training material arriving soon. The memo instructed stake presidents to gather applicable leaders in the stake and to review the material. Well, the materials arrived, and on Sunday afternoon I headed to the stake centre for some training.

Leading up the meeting, I wondered what could possibly be different. Now I know… not much. The principles of self-reliance are consistent, and the training was actually a DVD with talks by Elder Robert D. Hales, Sister Julie B. Beck, Bishop H. David Burton, and President Thomas S. Monson. They didn’t really go into any detail of how to handle situations. They just emphasized those time-tested principles. Without going into it too much, here are a few thoughts that I had:

  • Elder Hales said that it takes great faith to say “I can’t afford that”.
  • A couple of speakers talked about downsizing your life to fit within your budget restraints. This includes moving if necessary.
  • Sister Beck brought up the phrase “Use it up, wear it out, make it do, or do without” and how we would all be better off if we followed it.
  • A couple of speakers talked about the importance of using a budget
  • Bishop Burton mentioned that there is no requirement for wards or stakes to have their expenses and contributions remain in balance. Note: Perhaps it is just wording, but this seems to be different that it used to be (our stake president agrees that it is different). Before, if a ward or stake were to go “into the red” in their fast offering funds, then it needed approval. The implication was that this should not be. At the very least, it appears that the Brethren understand that in this economic time, more units will be using more fast offering funds than they collect.
  • President Monson emphasized that no member of the church who has served in a welfare project ever forgets or regrets the experience of helping provide for those in need. This is very true!

Note: I left the house at 6:20 am Sunday morning to go to my administration meetings, attended Church, had meetings after Church, drove to the stake centre for the training, and ended up getting home at 6:30 pm. What a long day!