Notes from General Conference Saturday morning session

President Eyring conducting.

Choir sings: “Now Let Us Rejoice.”

Invocation: Kent F. Richards of the Seventy

President Monson

Church now has 15 million members. The Church is spreading across the Earth. Just one years since I announced the lowering of the missionary age. Now 80,333 missionaries, compared to 58,000 a year ago.

Now is the time for members and missionaries to come together, to work together. The Lord has prepared the means for us to share the Gospel in a multitude of ways. Please contribute to the ward missionary fund and general missionary fund of the Church. Thankful for contributions. The need for help is ongoing to help those who do not have the means.

Listen and learn from the talks.

Choir sings: “Israel, Israel, God is Calling.”

Elder Robert D. Hales

We are gathered in the Savior’s General Conference. We hear Jesus’ voice by the voice of his servants.

Adam gathered his posterity. Moses gathered the people of Israel, the Savior taught multitudes, Peter gathered believers in Jerusalem. The first GC took place two months after the Church was organized.

We are not assigned specific topics for conference. For months, we wait upon the Lord. We learn the message He wants us to give. Conference messages come after prayerful contemplation through the Holy Ghost. The same thing applies to ward, stake and general conferences. We study it in our minds and then pray to understand.

Make sure the children are included in Conference.

The world is moving away from the Lord faster than ever before. For example, the Proclamation on the Family was given before it was needed. We may not know why certain topics are discussed in Conference, but the Lord does. President Lee: “You may not like what comes from the Church. It may contradict your personal, social views. But if you listen to these things as if from the mouth of the Lord himself, the promise is that the Lord will protect you.”

If you listen to the prophets, you will be blessed and protected. The greatest blessings come after Conference. We gather to hear the words of the Lord, and we return to our homes to live them. Example of King Benjamin.

Read the talks and ponder the message. President Monson says he gains more when he studies the Conference talks. 97 percent of members can hear the Conference in their own language. 95 languages. Within one week, the conference will be available in 52 languages on

Ulisses Soares, presidency of the Seventy

Meekness in the Spirit. Try to emulate Christ’s attributes. The Savior said: “be ye therefore perfect.”

Meekness is vital to becoming more Christ-like. Show self-control. Meekness was important to the Savior’s life.

Must learn how to control our temper. Overcome the natural man. If somebody disagrees with your ideas, what is your response? We must have patience and gentle persuasion. Paul said in Timothy: “the servant of the Lord must not strive, must be gentle to all men…”

Avoid contention. We will begin to qualify for the gift of meekness. Only those who are humble can understand the Lord’s answer to their prayers. The humble are teachable and meek.

Beautiful modern-day example of meekness. Moses Maflango (sp?). Had a Book of Mormon. Could not be baptized because of apartheid. Would listen to the services from outside. Could not enter. In 1980, they were told they could attend church and be baptized. He was grateful to have the Gospel in his life.

Christ is the supreme example of meekness. He was nailed on the cross, but after suffering he said: “Father, forgive them for they know not what they do.”

Carole M Stephones, first counsel in the Relief Society Presidency

Quote from the Proclamation on the Family. We all need priesthood ordinances. Baptism. We take covenants. We need the Gift of the Holy Ghost. The Holy Ghost belongs to every faithful man and woman and every child.

In temple, men and women are endowed with priesthood power. This priesthood ordinance of sealing. During the Sacrament, we renew all covenants.

Woman without a priesthood holder in the home in Honduras. Taught about priesthood ordinances in the temple. Each sister had needs that had not been met. Each sister asked for and received a priesthood blessing that day.

Sisters who don’t have priesthood holders in the home should not feel alone. They are strengthened through the ordinances they receive and through priesthood holders who can come into her home to assist her. Our Heavenly Father is generous with His power.

Thomas Monson holds all the keys of the priesthood on the Earth.

Choir sings: “There is Sunshine in My Soul Today.”

Edward Dube of the Seventy

Never look back. Baptism is a life-long commitment. Accept a calling knowing it is not where you serve but how. We should all be anxiously engaged in a good cause.

Look ahead and remember that faith is always pointing toward to the future. Early Saints. More than 10,000 people left Nauvoo with faith in prophetic leaders. They did not know exactly where they were going or what the future held for them. They knew they were led by the Lord.

We can look ahead and believe. We can embrace the invitation of the Lord, who invites us: come unto me.

Prophet wants us all to participate in the work of salvation. We need teamwork in hastening the work of salvation. Members need to work together.

No man having put his hand to the plough and looking back is worthy of the Kingdom of God.

Elder Bednar

Two lessons about tithing. Faith and growth of the Church.

1)Significant but subtle blessings. Sister’s Bednar’s mother. Uses ledgers to keep track of expenses. Principles of prudent home management and provident living. The costs for doctor visits were lower than others. As we live the law of tithing, we often receive significant but subtle blessings. The family did not receive sudden addition to household income. Help comes through the windows of heaven.

We often emphasize the immediate and dramatic blessings. But many blessings are significant but subtle. The windows of heaven. Natural light can enter through a window. Spiritual illumination comes to us as we honor the law of tithing. Appreciate what you have — can constrain desires for things you don’t need.

Enhanced discernment helps us find jobs that others may overlook. We may have more determination. Heavenly windows may give us greater capacity to act. We may learn how to do more with less. Take proper care of possessions we already have. Heavenly windows may help us change our own circumstances.

Assurance, peace, faith and hope helped the strippling warriors. We may ask God for success, and He gives us mental stamina. We may get more resolve and resilience.

“My thoughts are not your thoughts.” The heavens are higher than the Earth.

We can see more clearly the significance and subtlety of His way.

2)The simplicity of the Lord’s way. Greater appreciation of the Lord’s laws of finance. Section 119 and 120 of D&C. Two statements: “All members shall pay one-tenth of their interest annually.” Disbursement: “Council of First Presidency and by the Bishop, High Council and voice of the Lord.” The first Presidency, Presiding Bishopric and the Quorum of 12.

Very simple compared to guidelines of other organizations. The Savior inspires and directs his servants. Two basic and fixed principles: 1)The church lives within its means. 2)A portion is set aside for contingencies.

His participates in the disposition of the tithes. The leaders are aware of the sacred nature of the widow’s mite. The honest payment of tithing is much more than a duty. It is a step in sanctification.

Choir sings: “Keep the Commandments.”

President Uchtdorf

Story: the Lord asks that we consecrate all. Callings, all of the meetings, etc.

Lists all of the things that people do in the Church.

Man says: why would anyone want to join such a Church.

Why? The Church is one of the fastest-growing in the world. More than 15 million now.

1)This Church was restored in our day by Jesus himself. Authority to act in his name. Baptism, gift of the Holy Ghost. Most people want to do more than listen to sermons. They want to become engaged in this great cause.

2)They have many opportunities in the Church to minister themselves. They are called by inspiration. Sometimes we volunteer, sometimes we are volunteered. Assignments are not burdens but opportunities.

3)Walk with Jesus Christ — walk with peace and purpose. People avoid many of the pitfalls and sorrows of life.

When people leave: why would anyone leave? Not just one reason. Some struggle with church history. We recognize that there have been some things said and done that could cause people to question. When the entire truth is know, things that didn’t make sense before will be resolved to our satisfaction. There are times when leaders have made mistakes.

The church can only be perfect if it is run by perfect beings. God is perfect, but he works through imperfect children, and imperfect people make mistakes. BoM: faults are the mistakes of men.

No decision of significance is ever made without seeking guidance from Heavenly Father. God will not allow His church to drift from its appointed course. To those who have separated from the Church, he says: there is still a place in the church. Please, first doubt your doubts before you doubt your faith. Do not allow doubt to hold us prisoner.

Some might say: “I just don’t fit in.” If you could see into our hearts, you would find we are more similar than you think. Your background may seem different, but that could be a blessing. We need diversity in the Church. This is a strength of the Church.

Can’t live up to the standards? All the more reason to come. Church is filled with imperfect people, people trying to keep the commandments.

Hypocrite in the Church? Person fails to live perfectly, then we are all hypocrites. We all try to overcome our faults.

The Church seems to attract the kind, the caring, the industrious. Perfection? No. But the pure doctrine of Christ will be found in the church. In this age of waning faith, here you will find a people who yearn to know and draw closer to the Savior. Come, join with us.

Come back again. Join with us. If you are tempted to give up, stay a little longer. Come, join with us, heed the call of Christ. Here you will find what is precious beyond price. The pathway to peace and happiness.

(Wow, really great talk).

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About Geoff B.

Geoff B graduated from Stanford University (class of 1985) and worked in journalism for several years until about 1992, when he took up his second career in telecommunications sales. He has held many callings in the Church, but his favorite calling is father and husband. Geoff is active in martial arts and loves hiking and skiing. Geoff has five children and lives in Colorado.

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