April 2014 184th General Conference Sunday morning session notes

President Eyring conducts

Choir sings “On This Day of Joy and Gladness”

Opening prayer L. Whitney Clayton

Choir sings “Let Us All Press On”

(Very powerful rendition of “Let Us All Press On”)

President Uchtdorf

How to comfort people in their trials?

They seeming to be concentrating on an ending. The end of hope, the end of hope of a relationship. We sometimes feel alone, frustrated or adrift. It can happen to everyone.

There is one thing we can do to make life sweeter, joyful and glorious. We can be grateful.

Some might say, “what do I have to be grateful for when my world is falling apart?”

Instead of being thankful for things, we need to be thankful in our circumstances no matter what they may be.

The choice is ours: we can limit our gratitude based on blessings we feel we lack, or we can be like Nephi on the ship to the Americas. Nephi looked to God and praised Him all day long. He did not murmur. We can be like Job, who had gratitude. The Mormon pioneers had a spirit of gratitude. Joseph Smith in Liberty jail: “stand still to see the salvation of God.”

Be grateful no matter what!

When we are grateful to God in our circumstances, we can experience gentle peace in the midst of tribulation. We can glory in Christ’s atonement.

Endings are not our destiny. We are eternal beings. Endings are not endings but interruptions that one day will seem small compared to the eternal joy awaiting the faithful. There are no true endings, only everlasting beginnings.

We have reason to be filled with gratitude regardless of the circumstances.

May we live in thanksgiving daily.
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April 2014 184th General Conference, notes from Priesthood Session

President Uchtdorf conducts.

Choir sings, “Saints, Behold How Great Jehovah”

Choir sings, “Secret Prayer.”

Elder Oaks

THIS IS A MUST-READ TALK IF YOU CARE ABOUT THE PRIESTHOOD AND THE RECENT CONTROVERSY REGARDING WOMEN AND THE PRIESTHOOD. THESE NOTES ARE NOT COMPLETE. PLEASE READ THE ENTIRE TALK CAREFULLY ON-LINE.

We do not step down when we are released from a calling, we do not step up when we are called. Our attitude toward the calling is the issue. Nursery is equally honorable.

Keys and authority of the priesthood. Broadcast so all members can see this talk. Priesthood power blesses all of us. Priesthood keys direct women and men. Priesthood authority pertain to women as well as men.

Priesthood is the power of God delegated to man so man can act on the Earth for the salvation of the human family. It is the power by which the Earth was created. The priesthood is the power by which we will be resurrected and proceed to eternal life.

Priesthood keys are the authority to direct, control and govern the use of the priesthood on the Earth. Every act is done under the authorization of the person holding the keys.

Keys both enlarge and limit. Certain people are given the authority of the priesthood. A person who holds the priesthood cannot give authority to another unless authorized by the person who holds the keys. A priesthood holder cannot administer the Sacrament in his own home without authorization from the one who holds the keys.

Keys held by the temple president allow sisters in the temple to perform priesthood acts. Jesus Christ determines what keys are given to mortals. We think that all were given to Joseph Smith. The keys of this dispensation were given to Joseph Smith. There are other priesthood keys not given to man on the Earth, including the keys of creation and resurrection.

The first presidency has the power to make many decisions. These authorities exercise all of the keys given to men in this dispensation, but they are not free to change the divine pattern that only men will hold the priesthood.

How does this apply to women? Joseph Fielding Smith said, “while the sisters have not been given the priesthood…this does not mean the Lord has not given them authority…they have authority (in the temple) to do great and wonderful things.”

Women have been given authority. The RS has been given power and authority to do a great many things. Church work done in the temple and wards and branches is done under those who hold priesthood keys. RS is not just a class, but something they belong to, a divinely established appendage.

When a woman is set apart to preach the Gospel, she is given priesthood authority to preach the Gospel. Same with women who receive a calling.

A person who has authority or calling should forget about their “rights” and concentrate on their “responsibilities.”

The Lord has directed that only men will only be ordained to the priesthood. The power cannot be exercised without the companionship of one of God’s daughters. Marriage is a partnership. A full partnership. Women and men are equal with different responsibilities.

Blessings of the priesthood. These are available to men and women on the same terms. The gift of the Holy Ghost and the blessings of the temples are examples. Women are equal to and different than men. Men and women are both endowed with the same power, which is priesthood power.

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April 2014 184th General Conference notes: Saturday afternoon session

Pres. Eyring conducts.

(My wife says she really likes the flowers in the background).

Choir sings: “Glory to God on High.”

Ian S. Ardern of the Seventy gives the opening prayer.

Choir sings: “I Lived in Heaven.”

Elder Uchtdorf presents general officers and authorities for sustaining vote. (He has the coolest accent of any of the GAs).

Audit report: Kevin Jergensen. Passed the audit (phew!).

Statistical report: Brook P. Hales. Couldn’t catch all the numbers. Over 15 million members. 282,945 converts. 83,000 missionaries. Once new temple in Honduras. 141 temples in operation.

Elder Nelson:

Turbulence on plane. Woman is upset. Husband tells Elder Nelson: “the only way I could comfort my wife was to tell her that Elder Nelson was on the plane.”

Faith in the Lord Jesus Christ. Can be bolstered as we learn about him and live our religion.

Are we tied to God so our faith shows or are we actually tied to something else? Avid fans of Sunday sports. Would their religion only tie them back to some kind of a bouncing ball? Where is our faith: in a team, in a brand, in a celebrity? There is only one in whom your faith is always safe: in the Lord Jesus Christ.

So many people look only to their bank balance for peace.

In his medical practice, Elder Nelson was asked not to mix science and faith. Truth is truth. It is not divisible. All truth emanates from God. Elder Nelson was being asked to hide my faith. He let his faith show.

Some challenge the relevance of religion in modern life. Mock or decry free exercise of religion. Some even blame religion for the world’s ills.

Are we ever learning but never able to come to the knowledge of the truth? Scripture study.

Political campaigns look to polls. But the polls cannot be used to justify disobedience to God’s commandments. Even if everyone is doing it, wrong is never right. Woe unto them who call evil good and good evil.

Immorality is still immorality in the eyes of God.

Uses the example of his daughter who died young, but with faith.

Monson: “Let us have the courage to defy the consensus. Courage, not compromise, brings the smile of God’s approval.”

Increase your faith. Proclaim your faith. Let your faith show.
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April 2014 (184th) General Conference — Saturday morning session summary

It’s General Conference time again, and we’re going to be posting summaries and our thoughs here on The Millennial Star blog. Thanks for stopping by!

I’ll preface my summary by saying that I tried to get as much down as I could, but is as usually the case with young children in the room, everyone needed everything, all at the same time.

President Uchtdorf conducted the session.

Prelude hymn: How Firm A Foundation

Opening hymn: Press Forward Saints

Elder Carl B. Cook offered the opening prayer.

The Mormon Tabernacle choir sang, Lead Kindly Light … all of the music was beautiful. I love the choir!

President Monson spoke first. He told us we were gathered as a great family of saints. He then spoke about his experience dedicating the Gilbert, Arizona temple in March. Here is where I will put in a little personal note. The Gilbert Temple is just down the street from where I grew up. Many family members and the children of my friends were able to participate in the cultural celebration, Live True to the Faith. Hearing their experiences, along with Pres. Monson’s experiences was very sweet for me. It truly was a blessing, even with all of the rain, and cold to watch the program and know that it did in fact make lasting memories for the people and the home I love so dearly.

Pres. Monson continued …

In May the Ft. Lauderdale temple will be dedicated, and will be the 143rd temple of the church. When all of the temples which are currently under construction and those that have been announced have been built, there will be 170 temples world wide. It was mentioned later on in another talk that right now, 85% of the members of the church live within 200 miles of a temple. Temples truly dot the earth!

We will continue to build temples and to look for places where there is a need for temples. We are a temple building and a temple attending people. May we be filled with the spirit, uplifted and inspired as we listen and learn.

Elder Holland

I’m calling his talk “Defending the Faith”. We will be called to defend our faith and will be attacked personally. We have to have courage and courtesy on our part as we endure these attacks. He shared a story of some sister missionaries who were attacked by a man weidling mashed potatoes. I appreacited this story, as a returned missionary myself. In one of my areas, we had a neighbor who would wait every day to throw her garbage on us. I actually am thankful to her. She taught me how to love my enemeies as a missionary! Continue reading