GenCon: Priesthood Session

LDS Conference CenterWelcome to T&S’ coverage of the Priesthood Session of General Conference. We welcome your comments.

Chorus: Rise Up O Men of God

President Henry B Eyring is conducting this session.

Chorus: Medley of Primary Songs

Elder Quentin L. Cook — Choose Wisely

  • “How do you expect me to catch the ball when I am worried about our country’s foreign policy?”
  • We need unequivocal commitment to the commandments and strict adherence to sacred covenants.
  • My concern is not only about the big tipping point decisions, but also the middle ground – the workaday world and seemingly ordinary decisions where we spend most of our time. In these areas, we need to emphasize moderation, balance, and especially wisdom. It is important to rise above rationalizations and make the best choices.
  • One father wisely responds to his children with their numerous requests to participate in these distractions. He simply asks them, “Will this make you a better person?”
  • In the Church we encourage and celebrate truth and knowledge of every kind. But when culture, knowledge, and social mores are separated from God’s plan of happiness and the essential role of Jesus Christ, there is an inevitable disintegration of society.
  • Many choices are not inherently evil, but if they absorb all of our time and keep us from the best choices, then they become insidious.
  • Our daily conduct and choices should be consistent with our goals. We need to rise above rationalizations and distractions. It is especially important to make choices consistent with our covenants to serve Jesus Christ in righteousness.21 We must not take our eyes off, or drop that ball for any reason.
  • Distractions and rationalizations that limit progress are harmful enough, but when they diminish faith in Jesus Christ and His Church, they are tragic.

Elder Craig C. Christensen — I Know These Things of Myself

  • Learning for ourselves that the restored gospel of Jesus Christ is true can be one of the greatest and most joyful experiences in life.
  • Do you see, in Joseph’s experience, a pattern you could apply in gaining or strengthening your own testimony? Joseph allowed the scriptures to penetrate his heart. He pondered them deeply and applied them to his own situation. He then acted on what he had learned. The result was the glorious First Vision—and everything that came after it.
  • Some people speak of a testimony as if it were a light switch—it’s either on or off; you either have a testimony, or you do not. In reality, a testimony is more like a tree that passes through various stages of growth and development.
  • In most cases, our testimonies will grow the same way a tree grows: gradually, almost imperceptibly, as a result of our constant care and diligent efforts.

Bishop Dean M. Davies — The Law of the Fast

  • In our day, caring for the poor and needy is one of four divinely appointed Church responsibilities that help individuals and families qualify for exaltation.
  • Caring for the poor and needy is a fundamental gospel doctrine and an essential element in the eternal plan of salvation.
  • In our day, caring for the poor and needy is one of four divinely appointed Church responsibilities that help individuals and families qualify for exaltation.
  • Brethren, members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints are a covenant- making, commandment-keeping people. I cannot think of any law, any commandment, which, if kept faithfully, is easier to keep and which provides greater blessings than the law of the fast.

Choir and Congregation: We Thank Thee O God for a Prophet

Elder Dieter F. Uchtdorf —Lord, Is It I?

  • Would we, like those disciples of old, look inward and ask that penetrating question: “Is it I?” In these simple words, “Lord, is it I?” lies the beginning of wisdom and the pathway to personal conversion and lasting change.
  • Terrible and often unnecessary things happen when members of the Church become disengaged from gospel principles. They may appear on the outside to be disciples of Jesus Christ, but on the inside their hearts have separated from their Savior and His teachings. They have gradually turned away from the things of the Spirit and moved toward the things of the World.
  • In this age of self-justification and narcissism, it is easy to become quite creative at coming up with excuses for not regularly approaching God in prayer, procrastinating the study of the scriptures, avoiding church meetings and family home evenings, or paying an honest tithe and offerings. Brethren, will you please look inside your hearts and ask the simple question: “Lord, is it I?”
  • Being able to see ourselves clearly is essential to our spiritual growth and wellbeing. If our weaknesses and shortcomings remain obscured in the shadows, then the redeeming power of the Savior cannot heal them and make them strengths.
  • Those who do not wish to learn and change probably will not, and most likely will begin to wonder whether the Church has anything to offer them. But those who want to improve and progress, those who learn of the Savior and desire to be like Him, those who humble themselves as a little child and seek to bring their thoughts and actions into harmony with our Father in Heaven—they will experience the miracle of the Savior’s Atonement. They will surely feel God’s resplendent Spirit. They will taste the indescribable joy that is the fruit of a meek and humble heart. They will be blessed with the desire and discipline to become true disciples of Jesus Christ.
  • Brethren, we must put aside our pride, see beyond our vanity, and in humility ask, “Lord, is it I?” And if the answer happens to be “Yes, my son, there are things you must improve, things I can help you to overcome,” I pray that we will accept this answer, humbly acknowledge our sins and shortcomings, and change our ways.

Elder Henry B. Eyring —The Preparatory Priesthood

  • As I look back now, I feel gratitude for a branch president who called a new convert to help the Lord prepare two boys who would in turn someday be bishops charged to care for the poor and the needy, and also to preside over the preparatory priesthood.
  • Two of the blessings that a senior priesthood companion can give are trust and an example of caring.
  • All of us in the priesthood have an obligation to help the Lord prepare others.
  • In priesthood preparation, “show me” counts more than “tell me.”
  • I still am strengthened by that trust from a great father and priesthood man. I knew that his trust was not in me but that God could and would tell me what was true. You seasoned companions can bless a young priesthood holder in preparation whenever you can show him that kind of trust.
  • Our success in preparing others in the priesthood will come in proportion to how much we love them. That will be especially true when we must correct them.
  • The word “increase” has special meaning in preparing priesthood holders when they need correction. The word suggests an increase of a love that was already there. The “showing forth” is about the increase. Those of us who are preparing priesthood holders will certainly see them make mistakes. Before they receive your correction, they must have felt of your love early, and steadily. They must have felt your genuine praise before they will accept your correction.

President Thomas S. Monson — Guided Safely Home

  • As with the mighty Bismarck, so it is with man. The thrust of the turbines and the power of the propellers are useless without that sense of direction, that harnessing of the energy, that directing of the power provided by the rudder, hidden from view, relatively small in size, but absolutely essential in function.
  • We who have been ordained to the priesthood of God can make a difference. When we maintain our personal purity and honor our priesthood, we become righteous examples for others to follow.
  • We are strengthened by the truth that the greatest force in the world today is the power of God as it works through man.

Chorus: Ye Elders of Israel

1 comment for “GenCon: Priesthood Session

  1. Thanks for the summaries, Kent. I thought Elder Cook’s talk was excellent — sort of a Spiritual Crocodiles talk for post-Millennials. Did anyone else notice his alliterations? And Elder Uchtdorf hit it out of the park again.

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