Tag Archives: temple

“Things overheard at Jesus’ wedding” Top 10 List from the Late Show with David Letterman

Our local newspaper prints the Top Ten from the Late Show with David Letterman in the paper. I don’t often read them, but did the other day. The list from Tuesday, April 22, 2014 was the “Top 10 things overheard at Jesus’ wedding“. Apparently they had been talking about this with an audience member earlier before the show had started recording. #6 on the list was:

Should’ve  used the Temple in Salt Lake City

It probably got the biggest laugh/cheer in the place, and they put the camera on a man in the audience. I have no idea if that was his joke, or if he’s a Mormon, but I think it was kind of neat that the temple was mentioned.

You can see the video here:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lQCtKuCC75g

184th Annual General Conference – Saturday Morning General Session

184th_annual_gc_header

It’s a cold, rainy day where I live, so it’s a great day to be inside. Here we go… the first session out of five (six if you could the women’s meeting last weekend). I’m sitting at work with two laptops in front of me. One is the full-screen video of the session, and the other is where I’m typing this. I’ll probably also follow some of the #ldsconf hashtag on Twitter.


The Mormon Tabernacle Choir sang How Firm a Foundation

President Dieter F Uchtdorf conducted

The choir sang Press Forward, Saints

The invocation was offered by Elder Carl B Cook

The choir sang Lead, Kindly Light

President Thomas S Monson

  • We’re united as a big family
  • The work of the Church moves forward unhindered
  • He recently dedicated the Gilbert AZ temple, the 142nd temple
  • There are no new temple announcements, but when all of the previously announced temples are completed, there will be 170 in operation

Elder Jeffrey R Holland ** one of my favourites

  • Someday you will be called on to defend your faith
  • There is a long history of rejection
  • You may ask if it is worth it to take a courageous moral stand… Yes it is!
  • The bumper sticker “What would Jesus do?” will not always bring a popular response
  • Defend your belief with courtesy and compassion

Elder Ronald A Rasband

  • Currently 317 Seventies
  • Lots of us are also helping in this work
  • Take up the joyful burden of discipleship
  • Spoke of a tornado in Oklahoma, and how our worldly treasures can be taken in an instant

Elder Carlos H Amado

  • Christ was born in unusual circumstances
  • Elder Amado went on to describe various events in Christ’s life

The choir and congregation sang Choose the Right

Sister Linda S Reeves

  • Has 13 grandchildren in the congregation
  • We are concerned about pornography
  • Satan is attaching with unprecedented fury
  • We are here to manage the passions of the human body
  • Pornography overtakes lives, damages relationships, and consumes time, thought, and energy

Elder Neil L Andersen

  • Told a story about the power of a tornado, and compared it to the power of sin
  • Challenges will come, but as you trust in God, it will strengthen your faith
  • Our foundation must be on the Savior

The choir sang A New Commandment I Give Unto You

President Henry B Eyring

  • When you choose to keep a covenant you choose to leave an inheritance of hope
  • We have a universal inheritance because of Jesus Christ and His atonement
  • There is a heritage of hope left for those who come after us

The choir sang Come, O Thou King of Kings

The benediction was offered by Elder W Christopher Waddell


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

Some brief thoughts on the new temple video

Last night my wife and I went to the Toronto Ontario Temple and saw the new temple video. Overall we were very impressed. Here are a few random thoughts/observations:

  • The creation scenes are beautiful
  • Most of the additional length is in the video presentation, so it doesn’t really feel like the session is 15 minutes longer
  • One of the actors/characters sounded like (and even kind of looked like) Elder Hales
  • There is a lot more emotion shown in the Garden of Eden scenes. I have no problem with this, but it is different from the way it used to be. I need to ponder about what this means
  • There are a couple of scenes where it is obvious that a character is in front of a “green screen”. If I thought it was that noticeable now, what will we think in 5-10 years when the video is still being used…
  • I thought the way Satan was portrayed was very effective. He seems particularly manipulative
  • As others have commented, it doesn’t seem like there are any wording changes

I’ve read all sorts of comments online on other sites… some are complaining about the acting, some are complaining about the music, and some are complaining about the cinematography. I have to admit that I probably didn’t get as much out of the session last night as I would have normally, as I was absorbing all of the new changes. But overall I quite liked it and I’m looking forward to going back again so I can focus on the spiritual side of things.

182nd Semiannual General Conference – Sunday Afternoon General Session

Well, here we are ready for the last session. In between these Sunday sessions, I lay down with the kids to watch Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs, but I fell asleep almost right away. It was a nice nap 🙂

While the countdown was up on the screen for this session of conference, I saw Elder Hales. He stood up when President Monson walked in, and seems to be doing a bit better.


President Henry B Eyring conducted

The choir sang The Day Dawn Is Breaking

Elder Octaviano Tenorio offered the invocation

The choir sang Did You Think to Pray

Elder Robert D Hales

  • the word Christian denotes taking upon us the name of Christ
  • as Christians we have a change to act decisively
  • we are called upon to leave our nets, leave worldly habits and customs
  • to be who Heavenly Father wants us to be, we follow Jesus Christ
  • Consider these Christian attributes
    • Christian love – kind and compassionate to all
    • Christian faith – despite temptations we can be faithful and obedience
    • Christian sacrifice – give of our time and energy
    • Christian caring – continually reach out to rescue, love and nurture
    • Christian service – spend your days serving others
    • Christian patience – we need to wait upon our God
    • Christian peace – be understanding and promote peace
    • Christian forgiveness – bless those that curse us
    • Christian conversion – continue to be converted
    • Christian endurance – continue all of your days
  • we need these characteristics to heed the voice of Christ

Elder Richard G Scott

  • Jesus made salvation available to every repentant soul
  • deceased people can receive all the ordinances of the gospel
  • we need to provide all ordinances for ourselves and our deceased ancestors
  • temple work is two parts – family history research, performing ordinances
  • those who engage in the research and do the ordinances will know the additional joy of receiving both halves of the blessings
  • any work you do in the temple is time well spent

Brother Russell T Osguthorpe

  • there are new resources for the youth classes
  • as teachers, we need to meet the needs of our learners
  • we need to teach His word in His way
  • conversion is knowing, doing and becoming
  • we want every young person to understand
  • we want them to live the gospel every day

The choir and congregation sang Rejoice, the Lord is King!

Elder Marcus B Nash

  • all things are fulfilled by faith
  • faith brings us the power of the Lord
  • told story of Ann Rowley, a member of the Willie Handcart Company
  • unbelief in the Lord will cause us to resist the Spirit of God
  • fear undermines faith in the Savior
  • sin diminished the effect of the Spirit in our lives
  • the future is as bright as your faith

Elder Daniel L Johnson

  • spoke of problems in Mexico where members lost their crops
  • we can prove ourselves not by what we are tested with, but how we handle them
  • affirm our commitment to God and to others

Elder Don R Clarke

  • as a young man, they filled out a card with what they thought about
  • the Sacrament needs to be important to us
  • if we properly prepare for the sacrament we will change our lives
  • we are renewing our baptism covenants
  • memorize the sacramental prayers
  • we can feel forgiven for our sins during Sacrament Meeting
  • we can receive inspiration during Sacrament Meeting
  • partaking of the Sacrament worthily will help us be filled with the Holy Ghost
  • it will always be a great Sacrament Meeting if the sacrament is the centre of our worship

Elder David A Bednar

  • there is a relationship between receiving a testimony of Christ and becoming converted
  • we need to ask, seek and knock
  • we need a permanent change in our very nature
  • conversion requires all of our heart, all of our might, all of our mind and strength
  • conversion is an ongoing process, not a one-time experience
  • strong testimony is the foundation upon which conversion is built

President Thomas S Monson

  • the conference has been wonderful
  • read the talks and ponder them
  • be of good cheer
  • the Lord loves us and is mindful of us

The choir sang God Be with You Till We Meet Again

Elder Larry W Gibbons offered the invocation


Read the recaps and other notes from the 182nd Semiannual General Conference of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints:

182nd Semiannual General Conference – Saturday Afternoon General Session

I’m at home for the afternoon session. My kids are bundled up in their blankets (as is my wife) and we will watch at least the first half hour or hour together. The kids will probably then go off and play while my wife and I watch the rest. We also have a friend from Church (one of my institute students) who came to see it with us.


President Dieter F Uchtdorf conducted

The choir sang Arise, O Glorious Zion

Elder Gerrit W. Gong offered the invocation

The choir sang I Am a Child of God

President Henry B Eyring did the sustainings

Elder L Tom Perry

  • turned 90-years-old this summer
  • some values today are slipping and need to be defended
  • read a letter he wrote to his mother when he was in WWII
  • lessons taught at home are increasingly important
  • the adversary is attacking commitments to family life
  • parents must resolve that teaching in the home is the most sacred responsibility
  • strengthen our family cultures in these ways:
    1. parents can pray in earnest that love, understand guide their children
    2. hold Family Home Evening, scripture study, and eat together
    3. fully avail themselves of the Church support network  (talk to teachers, leaders, presidencies) to provide essential understanding
    4. share testimonies with their children and commit them to keep the commandments of God
    5. organize our families based on clear simple family rules and expectations, traditions, rituals, and economics
  • teach at the cradle-side

Elder M Russell Ballard

  • said that Elder Perry must be the youngest 90-year-old in the Church
  • spoke about how his father had bees to help pollinate peach trees
  • to produce 1 lb of honey, the average hive of 20,000-60,000 bees must collectively visit millions of flowers and travel the equivalent of 2x around the world
  • a single bees contribution is a mere 1/12 of 1 teaspoon
  • although seemingly insignificant, each bees contribution is vital to the life of a hive
  • they depend on each other
  • the beehive has long been a symbol in our Church
  • great things are brought about and burdens are lightened by the action of many hands
  • our troubled world needs the love of Christ
  • our minds and our hearts need to be anxiously engaged throughout the week
  • we don’t need religious fanaticism; we need to assimilate the doctrines deep within our hearts
  • in your morning prayer each new day ask Heavenly Father to recognize opportunities to serve

Elder Larry Echo Hawk

  • told a story about his marine sergeant; the sergeant was ridiculing everyone, but when he saw his Book of Mormon, he left him alone
  • shared his feelings about the  Book of Mormon; he felt it was a history of his people
  • the Book of Mormon is sacred scripture

The choir and congregation sang Let Us All Press On

Elder Robert C Gay

  • would you sell your soul for a nickel?
  • does one drink really matter?
  • Satan tries to get us to justify what we’ve done
  • we are to give up all of our sins, big or small
  • we must always hearken to the voice of the Spirit within us, wherever it takes us

Elder Scott D Whiting

  • told a story about the work on the Hawaii temple
  • the contractor had to fix some things that were very minor because they were not up to temple standards
  • the temples are built for our use, but there should be no doubt as to whose house it is
  • we are each made of the finest materials, however our own temple can come in need of renovation and repair

Elder Neil L Andersen

  • told story about the Marriott family losing their daughter
  • the gift of faith is a priceless spiritual endowment
  • our faith is protected in the Church (as we participate in the various programs/ordinances/meetings)
  • when you tested, stay within the security of the household of God
  • no trial is so large we can’t overcome it together
  • God’s ways are higher than our ways

Elder Dallin H Oaks

  • all children are children of God
  • worldwide there are millions of children victimized by adults
  • one of the most serious abuses of children is to deny them of birth
  • low birthrates is not just a religious issue; cultures and nations will be hollowed out and disappear
  • worldwide there are 40 million abortions per year
  • making a child feel worthless or unloved can hurt them for life
  • marriage isn’t just about the adults; the children are impacted for good or bad
  • divorcing parents teach a negative lesson
  • the family structure that produces the best outcome is two biological parents who remain married
  • 41% of all births in the US were to unwed mothers
  • for children, the stability of marriage matters

The choir sang On This Day of Joy and Gladness

Elder José L Alonso offered the benediction


Read the recaps and other notes from the 182nd Semiannual General Conference of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints:

The bald-headed guy

A couple of weeks ago in High Priests Group we had a lesson about making the temple a priority in our lives. We were discussing why it isn’t always a priority. One of the members tried to mention a talk he remembered and said:

You know… what’s his name? The bald-headed guy…

Of course he meant Elder Dallin H Oaks, and he was referring to the Good, Better, Best talk he gave in the October 2007 General Conference. Gotta love those forgetful High Priests 🙂

(Note: the brother who said this is a super nice guy, and is always really “with it”, so this must just have been one of those forgetful moments, but it was still funny)

The power of temple worship

A great quote by Elder John A Widstoe:

Men grow mighty under the results of temple service; women grow strong under it; the community increases in power; until the devil has less influence than he ever had before. The opposition to truth is relatively smaller if the people are engaged actively in the ordinances of the temple.

Widstoe, John A. “Temple Worship.” Genealogical Society of Utah. Assembly Hall, Salt Lake City. 12 Oct. 1920.

The brouhaha over baptisms for the dead

Sometimes I think I’m pretty with it, and other times I just don’t get it. I don’t get all the commotion recently about the practice of baptisms for the dead in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. I don’t understand why some outside the church are so against it, and I don’t understand why some inside the church seem to intentionally break the “rules”.

If you haven’t been following it, for the last couple of decades the Church has had an agreement with Jewish groups that we will not baptize people who are proxy for holocaust victims. Unfortunately, there are members who keep submitting these names, along with the names of celebrities. Recently the First Presidency stated again these rules (the letter was read in our Sacrament Meeting this past Sunday).

Like I said, I just don’t get it. Why would anyone care what we do with a name? If someone came up to me and said that they had baptized my grandfather (who is deceased) as a Lutheran, it wouldn’t bother me in the least. If they don’t believe in what we teach, then I just don’t get why it matters what we do when they don’t believe it has any effect. On the other hand, if we have this agreement with these Jewish groups, then we need to keep our agreement. I don’t mean to downplay anyone’s concerns. The brouhaha is on both sides.

I think one of the problems that we have is trying to help non-members understand why we do these baptisms for the dead. Terryl Givens, professor of literature and religion at the University of Richmond (and one of my favourite writers/authors) posted an article on the First Things web site called The Heavenly Logic of Proxy Baptism

181st Annual General Conference – Saturday Morning General Session

The first session of conference had the traditional announcement of new temples. One of them is in Canada, so we were excited. We also pointed out the kids that President Monson thanked them for paying their tithing.

We enjoyed our lunch during the first part, and then we let the kids go and play. We’re going to have them watch some of each session, and all of the Sunday Morning General Session.


The Mormon Tabernacle Choir sang Rejoice, the Lord is King!

President Dieter F Uchtdorf conducted. He noted that this conference marks the 75th anniversary of the welfare program of the Church.

The choir sang Glory to God on High

Elder Allan F Packer offered the invocation

President Thomas S. Monson

The choir sang We Listen to a Prophet’s Voice

Elder L Tom Perry

  • Christ had dual citizenship, in heaven and on earth
  • the world is saturated with the doctrines of men
  • keep the sabbath holy
  • it is a glorious thing to be a Christian
  • now is the time to teach your children to be examples of the believers

Sister Jean A Stevens

  • children are the first to love, and the first to forgive
  • the Savior has a special appreciate for little children
  • “behold” the little ones, don’t just glance at them. Embrace them, see and appreciate them

Elder Walter F Gonzalez

  • anyone from any background can learn that Joseph Smith saw God
  • followers of Christ are loving people
  • followers of Christ make and keep covenants
  • following Christ might mean forsaking certain things
  • the power of our covenants is greater than an trial we may face

The choir and congregation sang I Know That My Redeemer Lives

Elder Kent F Richards

  • thought abut the purpose of pain
  • people cope differently
  • pain is a gauge of the healing process
  • sometimes a healing lifts our burdens; other times we are healed by being able to cope
  • all souls can be healed by His power; all pain can be soothed

Elder Quentin L Cook

  • LDS women are incredible
  • spoke a lot about how female members of the church are
  • they succor the weak, lift up the hands that hang down, strengthen the feeble knees
  • no woman should apologize because she is devoting her time to raising her children
  • we should all be careful not be judgmental if a woman chooses to work out side the home (we don’t know people’s circumstances)
  • the errand of angels is given to women

The choir sang I Know That My Savior Loves Me

President Henry B Eyring

  • consecrate your time and means to join with God in serving others
  • gave examples of people helping others
  • everyone is happier when they can provide for themselves
  • when we join hands to serve people in need, the Lord unites our hearts

The choir sang High on the Mountain Top

Elder Dale G Renlund 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: