Notes from General Conference Sunday morning session

President Uchtdorf conducts

Choir: “Rejoice, the Lord is King.”

Invocation: Sister Cheryl A. Esplin of the Primary presidency

Choir: “Master, the Tempest is Raging”

President Eyring

First two grandchildren will be married. Advice. What choices could I make that will lead to happiness and what choices to unhappiness?

The same path to happiness for all people: one plan of happiness: follow all of the commandments of God. Jesus said the great commandment is to love God and love your neighbor.

What choices help you love the Lord with all your heart, soul and mind? Baptism: “I’m clean, I’m clean.”

By the power of the atonement, the effects of sin are wiped away. Accept callings. This is a key to family happiness. Rejecting callings can put you in spiritual peril. While serving others, we are more likely to be in touch with the Holy Ghost.

Marriage: the miracle of becoming one takes time. Gives an example of his parents. Mother and father became united.

Life and families will test us. Family life: we will find great joy and great sorrow and challenges.

God has devised means to save each of his children. Grandmother who loved her grandchild even though he chose a life of crime. She wondered why she had to suffer this. The answer was: “I gave him to you because I knew you would love him.”

Elder Oaks

The 10 commandments. The first two direct our worship and priorities.

Don’t bow down to graven images. This is not about physical idols. This is a fundamental priority for all time. Jehovah is a jealous God. We offend God when we serve other gods, when we have other first priorities.

What are the other gods?

–Cultural and family traditions, Political Correctness, material possessions, power, recreational pursuits, desire for prestige.

The principle is: what is our ultimate priority? Are we serving other priorities ahead of God?

The Plan of Salvation explains the purpose of creation and the conditions of mortality. Have to establish our priorities in accordance with this plan. We should center on marriage and family. Marriage of a man and a woman is necessary for God’s plan.

We grieve at the declining number of births and marriages. The US has the lowest birth rate in its history and in Europe and Japan the birth rate is below the replacement rate.

In America, only 20 percent of young people are married. The median age is highest in history. The traditional family is becoming the exception rather than the rule. The role of fathers is diminishing.

We believe in free will and that other people will not agree with us on religion. But we want respect for our beliefs.

God has established a standard that sexual relations should take place only between a man and a woman who are married. All uses of procreative powers are sinful outside of marriage. The pattern of marriage originated with Adam and Eve.

We are distressed that more and more children are born outside of marriage. 41 percent born outside marriage in the U.S. Co-habitation precedes 60 percent of marriage. Half of teenagers say having children outside of marriage is a worthy lifestyle.

Same-gender marriages. Differences between men and women are essential to God’s plan. We cannot justify laws that permit same-gender marriages. Our policies are determined by the truths God has identified as unchangeable.

Man’s laws cannot make moral what God has declared immoral. Look to His law.

Examples: laws legalizing same-gender marriage do not change God’s laws. We remain under covenant to love God and to refrain from serving other gods and priorities.

We may be called bigots or suffer discrimination. If so, our first priority is to serve God. Push our personal handcarts forward. Pres. Monson: “let us have the courage to defy the consensus. Courage, not compromise. A moral coward is one is afraid to do what he thinks is right because others will disapprove or laugh.”

No other gods ahead of God the Father and the Savior.

Bonnie Oscarson, YW President

h/t to Jeff Thayne for this talk:

We can have a testimony without being converted to the Gospel of Jesus Christ. We can know truth without living it. Christ invites us to become converted. True conversion occurs when we act on the doctrines we know are true. Conversion takes places as we diligent pray, study the scriptures, attend church, test out the principles of the Gospel in our lives.

Conversion comes as we acknowledge Christ as our Savior and Redeemer and allowing Him to transform us as people. God’s purpose is our immortality and eternal life. As we put the doctrines of the Gospel into daily practice, we will become means of doing good in our families and communities.

Choir sings: “Put Your Shoulder to the Wheel”

Richard J. Maynes, President of the Seventy

Journey through life is a test of our character. We are exposed to good and evil and then allowed to choose which we will take. We are free.

Because we make mistakes, we need help. The help is through the example of Jesus Christ.

We must endure to the end in righteousness. Physical endurance vs. spiritual endurance.

Getting in shape for basketball. Had to run a cross-country course in a certain time. Weeks of serious training to beat the time. Physical condition comes from discipline and hard work. Spiritual endurance also involves getting in spiritual shape. We need to study and learn the fundamental principles of the Gospel. This helps us get an enduring testimony.

We are here on Earth to run the race, choose the right. We must pay the price of dedication and self-discipline. We need spiritual stamina.

Elder Scott

What should people do in their lives right now? Recognize the power of the Atonement. The personal strength we can receive through the Atonement.

Ammon teaching the Gospel. Many people converted. They buried their weapons. They were slain. They allowed themselves to be killed rather than take up arms. Weapons of rebellion.

The Nephites protected the people of Ammon. The sons were fortified by the faith of their mothers. They took their fathers’ place. The Atonement bring personal strength to the lives of the children of God. The fathers could not protect their wives and children. But their humble lifelong commitment to their covenants strengthened them and blessed them.

The sons fought in fierce battles, but not one life was lost.

We can build spiritual fortifications between ourselves and sin, just as the Ammonites built fortifications for protection.


1)Sincere repentance.
2)Share the Gospel with less-active family members or friends.
3)Serve faithfully in all church callings.
4)Be a good home teacher.
5)Most importantly, serve the members of your own family. Give of your time and attention.

Fill your life with service to others.

President Monson

One of the best conferences ever.

To say that I miss my wife (Frances) does not begin to convey the depth of my feelings.

For all of these years, I have felt nothing but complete support of my sweet companion. Never did I heard a word of complaint. Days and sometimes weeks away from her and our children. She was an angel indeed.

Gratitude for support during this difficult time.

I am grateful for the knowledge that I have that my dear Frances lives still. Our separation is temporary. We were sealed in the house of God. I know that we will be reunited one day and will never again be separated. This is knowledge that sustains me.

No person has ever lived free of suffering and sorrow. When the pathway of life takes a cruel term, you may ask, “why me?” This is the real test of our ability to endure. Will you falter or will you finish?

Job: man is born unto trouble. Job was good but was afflicted. He was urged to curse God and die. But he kept the faith.

Make the Gospel the center of your life. This is what will pull you through whatever comes. You can meet the problems and emerge victorious.

Former teach of Pres. Monson’s lost his wife and two children. He was 105 years old. He meets with his family each Sunday, where he delivers a Gospel lesson. One Sunday he said, “I am going to die this week. Will you please call Tommy Monson. He will know what to do.” The man was blind and deaf. He could only communicate by touching him and spelling out his name. Pres. Monson came to see him. The man became excited. He wanted a priesthood blessing. Afterward, tears streamed from his eyes. He grasped our hands in gratitude. Within a week, he passed away.

(Editor: very touching story by Pres. Monson. Would melt the heart of the biggest cynic).

This should be our purpose, to persevere and endure. Become more spiritually refined. Were it not for challenges to overcome and problems to solve, we would remain much as we are, with little or not progress.

Poem “Good Timber.”

“Good timber does not grow with ease:
The stronger wind, the stronger trees;
The further sky, the greater length;
The more the storm, the more the strength.
By sun and cold, by rain and snow,
In trees and men good timbers grow.”

Choir: “We Thank Thee Oh God for a Prophet”

Benediction: Elder Francisco J. Vinas of the Seventy

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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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