Unite in Love for the Future

President Oaks gave a powerful address at BYU today.

I don’t go out of my way to watch BYU devotionals. But when my daughter and her husband both texted me about the power of President Oaks’s comments today, I took the time to watch.

President Oaks’s BYU devotional address can be streamed by clicking here. His remarks begin at the 9:50 mark and conclude at the 39:50 mark.

As my daughter said, “Today’s devotional [President Oaks talking on racism] is amazing… He had something for everyone. Something you’re glad to hear finally said and so clearly, but also something you can work on.”

My son-in-law said, “I want to second that, it was incredibly bold and blunt in a way only President Oaks can be.”

God loves all His children. This is unquestionably true. Yet we can appreciate the past despite practices and compromises that horrify us today.

Watch and take from President Oaks’s remarks the lessons that will be of greatest import to your own life as you strive to become like Our Lord, Jesus Christ.

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About Meg Stout

Meg Stout has been an active member of the Church of Jesus Christ (of Latter-day Saints) for decades. She lives in the DC area with her husband, Bryan, and several daughters. She is an engineer by vocation and a writer by avocation. Meg is the author of Reluctant Polygamist, laying out the possibility that Joseph taught the acceptability of plural marriage but that Emma was right to assert she had been Joseph's only true wife.

4 thoughts on “Unite in Love for the Future

  1. I completely trust the spirit that testified to you and your family that this talk is a “must-watch”, “must listen”, “must read”. Different speeches touch us differently, and sometimes there are memorable devotionals for everyone. I did not attend BYU, but once in a while I check in at BYU speeches or BYUI devotionals. Of course we have the scriptures and General Conference, but we should not take these devotionals for granted and never check them out. Elder Cook’s talk lon August 24 was excellent and inspired as well.



  2. It was interesting to listen to the comments in priesthood meeting last Sunday when Elder Oaks’ conference talk was the topic. Many of the conservative men over age 65 really have an huge issue with racism. They don’t think it exists. They believe anyone protesting racism, or even discussing it are Leftists. Quite a bit of cognitive dissonance going on in my ward right now with this talk in addition to what was said at Gen. Conference. We should be discussing racism seriously in this Church.

  3. I’ve written here at MStar before on Black Lives Matter, and had many eviscerate me and the concept of racism. I feel vindicated.

    Deseret News noted:
    “The shocking police-produced death of George Floyd in Minnesota last May was surely the trigger for these nationwide protests, whose momentum was carried forward under the message of ‘Black Lives Matter,’” President Oaks added. “Of course, Black lives matter. That is an eternal truth all reasonable people should support. Unfortunately, that persuasive banner was sometimes used or understood to stand for other things that do not command universal support. Examples include abolishing the police or seriously reducing their effectiveness or changing our constitutional government. All these are appropriate subjects for advocacy, but not under what we hope to be the universally accepted message: Black lives matter.”
    When we attack BLM because Marxists are involved, or because of the rioting, we are missing the key point. Yes, these are issues that need addressing, but we need to do so separate from the real message of BLM. This is an eternal truth. Pres Oaks didn’t respond by saying “all lives matter” or “police lives matter”. Those also are truths. But they shouldn’t be used to douse the cries of people in serious need.

  4. I liked this summary of Elder Oaks’ talk, which was posted on his Facebook page:

    “President Oaks repeated several recent teachings of Church President Russell M. Nelson on racism:

    “God does not love one race more than another.”
    “Favor or disfavor with God is dependent upon your devotion to God and His commandments, and not the color of your skin.”
    We should “build bridges of cooperation instead of walls of segregation.”
    “Any of us who has prejudice toward another race needs to repent!”
    Latter-day Saints should “lead out in abandoning attitudes and actions of prejudice toward any group of God’s children.”
    These prophetic clarifications can, President Oaks said, help us repent, change and improve.

    “Only the gospel of Jesus Christ can unite and bring peace to people of all races and nationalities,” he said. “We who believe in that gospel — whatever our origins — must unite in love of each other and of our Savior Jesus Christ.”

    These are all good reminders.


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