Tag Archives: Quentin L. Cook

186th Semiannual General Conference – Saturday Afternoon General Session

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I almost didn’t make it home from work on time. I have to cross a canal on the way home, and there is a website where you can check when the bridge will be up. I left work and it was supposed to be up in about an hour. Then 30 minutes later when I got there the bridge was up. Frustrating!

Regardless, as a family we are gathered in our family room watching the broadcast.


President Dieter F Uchtdorf conducted

A choir made up of missionaries from the Provo Missionary Training Center sang Joseph Smith’s First Prayer (it was beautiful!)

The invocation was offered by Elder Daniel L Johnson

President Henry B Eyring did the sustaining of Church officers. As is usual now, there were those who opposed during the sustaining of the First Presidency and Quorum of the Twelve. There were a few General Authority Seventies released (Daniel L. Johnson, Jairo Mazzagardi, Kent F. Richards and Francisco J. Viñas) but no new ones called. There was also one Area Seventy released and two sustained. There were no other changes.

The choir sang Baptism

Elder Quentin L Cook

  • Eternal life is the greatest gift from God
  • There are obstacles that can stop of us from receiving that gift
  • The philosophies of men can lead people astray
  • We have to beware of gospel extremism, where we raise one gospel principle above another

Elder Gary E Stevenson

  • Told story of Mary Rollins
  • No one is ever too young to gain a testimony of the Book of Mormon
  • He read recently that teenagers spend 7 hours a day looking at screens
  • He asked that they reduce some of that time and spend it reading the Book of Mormon

The choir and congregation sang Called to Serve

Elder D Todd Christofferson

  • The bible tells us that God is love
  • The scriptures use terms other than “unconditional” to describe love
  • What matters is how we respond to His love
  • God will always love us, but He cannot save us in our sins
  • As we trust, not resist, our divine Teacher, we will learn from Him

Elder W Mark Bassett

  • He and his brother had replica gold plates when they were kids
  • They tried really hard to get at the “sealed” portion
  • They spent all their time trying to read something hidden when they
  • We need to focus on the things that matter
  • Keeping our life in harmony with God will allow Him to guide us in our spiritual development

Elder Kazuhiko Yamashita

  • We need to be ambitious for Christ
  • Missionaries are a great example of focus and faith
  • He told a story about a missionary who served in his mission (when he was president) and his challenges with a prosthetic leg

The choir sang I’ll Go Where You Want Me to Go

Elder Dallin H Oaks

  • We need to share the gospel with everyone
  • We have a lot of modern technology that helps us
  • Are we using them to maximum effect?
  • Ideas that will work everywhere
  • We can all pray for desire to help in this work
  • We can keep the commandments ourselves
  • Faithful members are the most persuasive and they always have His spirit with them
  • We can pray for inspiration on what we can do in our individual circumstances to share the gospel with others
  • Invite people to learn about the gospel and about Jesus Christ, not just to learn about our Church

The choir sang Hope of Israel

The benediction was offered by Elder Allen D Haynie




Read the recaps and other notes from the 186th Semiannual General Conference of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints:

185th Annual General Conference – Saturday Morning General Session

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We had a nice morning. We slept in a bit and after breakfast spent a couple of hours cleaning the house, and then the kids


The Mormon Tabernacle Choir sang Press Forward, Saints

President Henry B Eyring conducted. He opened by noting the passing of Boyd K Packer, L Tom Perry and Richard G Scott.

The choir sang Guide Us, O Thou Great Jehovah

Sister Mary R Durham offered the invocation

The choir sang I Know that My Savior Loves Me

President Dieter F Uchtdorf

  • Tell a man there are trillion of stars in the universe and he’ll believe you. Tell him there is wet paint on the wall, and he’ll touch it just to be sure
  • Sometimes the truth is too straightforward and plain to appreciate
  • We put away what we know in search of mysterious information
  • When we chase after shadows, we are going after things of little substance
  • Are my efforts leading to my highest spiritual goals
  • Is my experience in the Church working for me? Is it bringing me closer to Christ? Is it blessing me and my family with peace and joy?
  • Some feel the Church experience is not what they had hoped for
  • Why does it work for some, and not for others?
    1. Are we making our discipleship too complicated?
      1. We need to simplify
    2. Start where you are
      1. God will take you as you are at this very moment as you start
      2. You just need a willing heart, a desire to believe, and trust in the Lord
  • Discipleship is our journey

Elder M Russell Ballard

  • Too many people think Church leaders need to be perfect
  • Our leaders have the best intentions, but sometimes we make mistakes
  • Looking for weakness in others is rather easy
  • We make a mistake if we see human nature and fail to see God working through those people
  • We need to keep the Sabbath holy
  • Sacrament Meeting is the Lord’s and should be rooted and grounded in his teachings
  • Stay on the old ship Zion
  • It is a vehicle to take us to a destination.. the full blessings of the gospel

Elder Richard J Maynes

  • We need to live a Christ-centred life
  • Shared story about making pottery, and the problem when the clay is not in the centre of the wheel
  • Elder Maynes shared several stories to illustrate this point
  • We need to be centred with exactness

The choir and congregation snag We Thank Thee, O God, for a Prophet

Sister Neill F Marriott

  • We need to reform our lives
  • How can we continue to believe when things don’t always work out?
  • We need to yield to the Lord’s will

Elder Larry R Lawrence

  • He investigated the Church and was baptized as a convert
  • The journey of discipleship is not easy
  • We must be willing to act when we receive answers
  • The Holy Ghost really does give customized counsel
  • The Holy Ghost doesn’t tell us to improve everything at once
  • We need to ask what is stopping us from progressing

Elder Francisco J. Viñas

  • Some suffering and affliction will enter our lives
  • This can be caused by a lack of repentance
  • With the influence of the Holy Ghost we will not be offended or offend others

The choir sang Precious Savior, Dear Redeemer (a gorgeous arrangement!)

Elder Quentin L Cook

  • Ship-shape and Bristol fashion
  • The storms and temptations in life are unpredictable, but we know they will come
  • The following will help us survive the storms
    1. Righteous self-control and control and conduct
    2. Honor the sabbath
    3. Divine protection is provided when we are righteous

The choir sang Come, Come, Ye Saints (another gorgeous performance!)

Elder Adrian Ochoa offered the benediction


Read the recaps and other notes from the 185th Semiannual General Conference of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints:

184th Semiannual General Conference – Post-conference notes

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Well, it’s over. I think my favourite session was the Saturday Afternoon General Session.

I mentioned that I had some things that I was hoping to get some inspiration for. I can’t say that I received any particular answers, but I have definitely felt the Spirit, which helps me to have some clarity. I appreciate that.

There were several talks that I quite liked. Here are a few of them:

  • Lynn G Robbins from Saturday Morning General Session
  • Cheryl A Esplin from Saturday Morning General Session
  • Dieter F Uchtdorf from Saturday Morning General Session
  • Dallin H Oaks from Saturday Afternoon General Session
  • Tad R Callister from Saturday Afternoon General Session
  • Jörg Klebingat from Saturday Afternoon General Session
  • Jeffrey R Holland from Saturday Afternoon General Session
  • Quentin L Cook from Priesthood Session
  • Henry B Eyring from Priesthood Session
  • Henry B Eyring from Sunday Morning General Session
  • M Russell Ballard from Sunday Afternoon General Session

Read the recaps and other notes from the 184th Semiannual General Conference of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints:

184th Semiannual General Conference – Priesthood Session

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My son and I were picked up by my father to go to the Church for the semiannual sub-sational. We enjoyed the food, and it was great seeing my son enjoying himself with the other YM. We then watched the session at the Church.

Following the session, we headed to Boston Pizza for some more food. I’m stuffed!


President Henry B Eyring conducted

A choir made up of missionaries from the Missionary Training Center in Provo, Utah sang Rise Up, O Men of God

The invocation was offered by Elder Bruce A Carlson

The choir sang a medley of missionary songs from The Children’s Songbook.

Elder Quentin L Cook

  • Decisions and choices
  • Told a brief Charlie Brown story. Lucy always had an excuse for when she dropped the baseball
  • Rise above any rationalizations that prevent us from making righteous decisions
  • Social media can be very distracting
  • Many activities are good, but require moderation

Elder Craig C Christensen

  • Do you know for yourself that the gospel of Jesus Christ is true?
  • There is nothing more important than receiving and maintaining a testimony
  • A testimony isn’t like a light switch. It is more like a tree. It starts with a tiny seed, they grow and develop

Bishop Dean M Davies

  • We need to care for the needy
  • The law of the fast should be followed. It applies to all members
  • Get the Aaronic Priesthood involved

The choir and congregation sang We Thank Thee, O God, for a Prophet

President Dieter F Uchtdorf

  • The business of beams and motes seems to be tied to the fact that we don’t see ourselves clearly
  • When we think we are better than we are, we are blinded, and miss opportunities
  • We may appear to be disciples, but on the inside we can be separated from the Savior
  • Look inside your heart and ask yourself if you are one who would betray the Savior
  • We need teachable hearts

President Henry B Eyring

  • The Lord’s plan is full of preparation
  • The Aaronic Priesthood is a preparatory priesthood
  • Leaders and companions can help prepare the young men
  • We need to live by example to show the young men how to live
  • We need to trust the young men

President Thomas S Monson

  • Told story if the Bismark ship
  • Each of us is a miracle of engineering
  • God bestows us with special gifts
  • We need to street an undeviating course forward
  • Wherever we go, our priesthood goes with us
  • Are we standing in holy places?

The choir sang Ye Elders of Israel

The benediction was offered by Elder James B Martino


Read the recaps and other notes from the 184th Semiannual General Conference of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints:

184th Annual General Conference – Saturday Afternoon General Session

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So, I’m at home now with my family. The kids went out to the backyard to shot a few baskets (I think it’s too cold for basketball, but I’m glad they got some fresh air) in between sessions.

I’m interested to see/hear the statistical report this afternoon


President Henry B Eyring conduct

A combined choir from the Orem Utah Institute sang Glory to God on High

The invocation was offered by Elder Ian S Ardern

The choir sang I Lived in Heaven

President Dieter F Ucthdorf did the sustainings

  • Tad R Callister was released as a general authority and from the Presidency of the Seventy, and then was called to be the General Sunday School President
  • Lynn G Robbins was called to the Presidency of the Seventy
  • Our former stake president who became an Area Seventy last year is moving out of the area. He wasn’t released, so I guess he’ll be an area authority where he is moving to. I didn’t recognize any of the new names sustained, so I guess I don’t know (of) the Area Seventy who will replace him

Kevin R Jergensen, Managing Director, Church Auditing Department Annual Report

  • Every has been record/administrated according to policies/procedures

Brook P Hales, Secretary to the First Presidency, shared the statistical report for the year 2013.

  • CHURCH UNITS
    • Stakes 3,050 (In 2012 it was 3,005)
    • Missions 405 (In 2012 it was 347)
    • Districts 571 (In 2012 it was 591)
    • Wards and branches 29,253 (In 2012 it was 29,014)
  • CHURCH MEMBERSHIP
    • Total membership 15.082,028 (In 2012 it was 14,782,473)
    • New children of record 115,486 (In 2012 it was 122,273)
    • Converts baptized 282,945 (In 2012 it was 272,330)
  • MISSIONARIES
    • Full-time missionaries 83,035 (In 2012 it was 58,990)
    • Church-service missionaries 24032 (In 2012 it was 22,961)
  • TEMPLES
    • Temples dedicated 1 (In 2012 it was 4)
    • Temples rededicated 0 (In 2012 it was 2)
    • Temples in operation 141 (In 2012 it was 140)

Elder Russell M Nelson ** one of my favourites

  • Our faith will be tested and challenged
  • Celebrity can fade
  • Let your faith show
  • Truth is truth; it is not divisible
  • Even if everyone is doing it, wrong is never right
  • Let your faith show

Elder Richard G Scott

  • We can help others in righteousness
  • Our influence can help bring to pass God’s purposes
  • Sometimes our mundane responsibilities consume us, and we miss the God’s greater purpose

The choir and congregation sang We Thank Thee, O God, for a Prophet

Elder Robert D Hales – NOTE: Elder Hales is very thin, but ultimately seems to have much more strength in his voice than the last couple of years

  • No lesson is as clear from the Savior as is obedience
  • Be careful who you follow
  • The natural man only wants their own “wisdom”

Elder Claudio D Zivik

  • It would be great to keep the commandments without having to be asked to
  • We need to follow the right path

Elder W Craig Zwick ** one of my favourites

  • Told a story about his wife jumping out of a moving truck out of fear that the engine was on fire
  • They gave each other the silent treatment, and then talked
  • It could have been a disaster for their marriage
  • Destructive words can take a situation of dangerous to fatal
  • A soft answer is a reasoned response
  • Words can be firm in information but soft in spirit
  • We need to cultivate respect

Elder Quentin L Cook

  • When we die, we will live again
  • The doctrine of uniting families came forth line upon line
  • Baptism for your dead (D&C 127:5); our responsibility is to our own family
  • The Family History Centre is in your home
  • The youth are being called upon to help with this work

The choir sang High on the Mountain Top

The benediction was offered by Sister Linda K Burton


Read the recaps and other notes from the 184th Semiannual General Conference of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints:

183rd Semiannual General Conference – Sunday Afternoon General Session

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After the last session, we watched some YouTube videos about Stephanie Nielson. What a story… what an example of perseverance!

Afterwards my kids played the game of Life and I had a bit of a nap.

We’re settled in now to watch the last session…


President Henry B Eyring conducted

The Mormon Tabernacle Choir sang They, the Builders of the Nation

Brother David L Beck offered the invocation

The choir sang When He Comes Again

Elder Quentin L Cook

  • Spoke about bondage in scriptures
  • Bondage in our time include addictions, using our time ineffectively, ideology that is inconsistent with the gospel of Jesus Chris, and forces that violate strongly held religious views

Elder Neil L Andersen

  • We can live every hour blessed by the help of priesthood power
  • A man may open the curtains, but doesn’t own the light and warmth
  • Why is the priesthood only administered by men? We do not know all things

Brother David M McConkie

  • God speaks
  • Live so we can have the Holy Ghost as our guide and companion
  • We must become men and women of sound understanding by studying the scriptures
  • Learn to listen
  • Stand as an independent witness of what you teach, not just an echo of what is in the manual

The choir and congregation sang Called to Serve

Elder Kevin S Hamilton

  • The Sacrament helps us to pledge to follow Christ
  • Sacrament Meeting helps us renew our covenants
  • Sunday School allows us to teach one another the doctrine of the kingdom
  • Priesthood meeting helps men and boys learn their duties
  • RS/YW help women and girls learn their responsibilities
  • In all of these meetings, we learn, serve and feel the Spirit
  • We should strive to attend all of our Sunday meetings

Elder Adrián Ochoa

  • We need to be spiritually prepared
  • We need to be aware of the signs of the times
  • Be careful with what you see and do online
  • There is safety in a strong testimony

Elder Terence M Vinson

  • God should be the centre of our universe
  • How do our behaviour and actions show the integrity of our intent?
  • Rather than solves problems Himself, God wants us to work to solve the problems and rely on him
  • Come and see!
  • It is personal, inviting, and embracing

Elder Russell M Nelson

  • You are never to young to learn and never to old to change
  • The physical body can break and heal, but some physical conditions require special care
  • We may need special care for spiritual problems as well
  • True change can only come through the healing power of the Atonement of Jesus Christ
  • Sin, even if legalized by man, is still sin to God

President Thomas S Monson

  • May heaven’s blessing be with you
  • May your homes be filled with love and courtesy
  • May the Spirit we felt here be and abide with us as we go about our things that occupy us each day
  • May we show increased kindness to one another

The choir sang Abide with Me; ‘Tis Eventide

Elder Claudio Costa offered the benediction


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

183rd Annual General Conference – Saturday Afternoon General Session

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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:

181st Semiannual General Conference – Sunday Afternoon General Session

Well, here we go into the last session of conference. It has been good so far. I haven’t started to fall asleep even once 🙂

Between these two sessions on Sunday, we watched several of the Mormon Messages that the Church has put out. I highly recommend The Sting of the Scorpion and Watch Your Step. Both are very powerful!


President Henry B Eyring conducted

The Mormon Tabernacle Choir sang Arise, O God, and Shine

Elder F Michael Watson offered the invocation

The choir sang I Feel My Savior’s Love

Elder Russell M Nelson

  • spoke about his recent trip to Russia
  • temple covenants are sacred and powerful
  • we are children of the covenant
  • He is our God, we are His people

Elder Dallin H Oaks

  • What think ye of Christ?
  • When you consider all of the things the Saviour has done for us, don’t you have many reasons to come back to church?

Brother Matthew O Richardson

  • when I left my mission, my mission didn’t leave me
  • we need to be “real” in every area of our life
  • real life requires real learning which requires real teaching

The choir and congregation sang Now Let Us Rejoice

Elder Kazuhiko Yamashita

  • spoke about missionary work and the missionaries who serve around the world
  • missionaries are a treasure to this great church

Elder Randall K Bennett

  • he shared a story about how he almost drowned as a child
  • that day he made a poor choice that almost permanently separate him from his family
  • you can’t make eternal decisions without eternal consequences
  • in our choices we make every day, are we choosing eternal life
  • we essentially only have two choices
  • are you choosing to be busy and apathetic that you don’t take time to study the words of Christ?
  • are you choosing to follow the prophets or the world?
  • your eternal destiny will not be an accident. It will be a choice

Elder J Devn Cornish (President Eyring had a hard time pronouncing his name)

  • in His mercy, the God of heaven hears our prayers
  • Why would God concern himself with small things?
  • He loves us so much, what is important to us becomes important to him
  • it is contrary to the economy of heaven for God to do something for us we can do for ourselves
  • do not forget to ask the Lord to protect you and be with you
  • when we think we are too sinful to pray, that is like someone saying they are too sick to go to the doctor

Elder Quentin L Cook

  • something stirs within us when tragedy strikes innocent people.
  • why are righteous people not immune
  • we can exercise our faith
    1. God loves and understands us perfectly
    2. The atonement compensates
    3. The plan of salvation provides for eternal life
  • Cool story of missionaries cancelling trip on Titanic
  • have  a spirit of gratitude in our hearts
  • we prosper when we have the spirit in our lives
  • some challenges give us experience and purify us and prepare us to meet God
  • God has enough lifeboats for everyone

President Thomas S Monson

  • expressed gratitude and appreciation for a variety of things
  • Heavenly Father is mindful of the challenges we face

The choir sang Lord, We Ask Thee Ere We Part

Elder Gregory A Schwitzer offered the benediction


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