What do history's most notorious despots have in common with many of the flag-waving, patriotic politicians of our day? Both groups rise to power through the exploitation of fear, which has become a societal plague. There have been widespread casualties. We need an antidote. Feardom offers its readers a much-needed immunization.
photo credit: cuibel
As this past weekend drew near, I grew excited with anticipation for the opportunity to hear a Prophet’s voice. Sometimes I feel I take for granted how miraculous it is, and how fortunate I am, to live in such a time when Prophets and Apostles walk the earth (and live so close!).
This conference was definitely a good one. I felt the Spirit testify on numerous occasions of the truthfulness of the things being said, and laughed along with millions of other Saints when our leaders would crack a good joke (e.g. Pres. Hinckley saying “some of you may go [die] before I do!”).
I loved Elder Holland’s talk (as always) on “our words”. It is so applicable to all of us, and needed to be said. We need to cease to find fault, to argue, to berate, to criticize. We need to eliminate gossip and hearsay. We need to use our language to buoy up one another.
I enjoyed President Faust’s talk on forgiveness, especially using the example of the Amish tragedy of a few months ago. How poignant it was, and what a great example, to see a group of people being quick to forgive. We can learn much from them.
I was excited to hear Bishop McMullin’s talk in the Priesthood Session on preparedness. Being in the Presiding Bishopbric, it makes sense that it would be his topic and duty to report on the Church’s latest pamphlets and remind the Saints of our duty to “lay up in store”, while also being faithful and unencumbering our lives. I got a kick out of the (spot on) quote he shared from President Monson:
Many more people could ride out the storm-tossed waves in their economic lives if they had their year’s supply of food and clothing and were debt free.
Many today have followed this counsel in reverse. They have at least a year’s supply of debt and are food free. (Thomas S. Monson, via Quoty)
I loved the closing hymn in the Priesthood Session, “I Love the Lord”, performed by the BYU Men’s Chorus. It was so powerful, and so moving! The same song, performed by the BYU Singers, can be purchased here (it’s the fifth track).
I was moved by Elder Perry’s bold testimony towards the end of his talk. After discussing the restoration, his voice grew louder as he testified “We declare…” numerous times, one time saying that “We invite all to listen to the message of the restoration—from us!” It is certainly wise counsel, as far too many trust questionable sources (anti-mormon websites, friends of friends, and disgruntled former members) for their knowledge on what we as Latter-day Saints truly believe. Elder Perry did a great job and delivering a bold, solemn proclamation of what we as Latter-day Saints declare to be true.
I look forward to getting my May Ensign and underlining it like crazy.
My favorite part of this weekend, however, was watching the programs played between sessions, both on BYUTV and KSL. There were numerous programs highlighting the humanitarian aid efforts and volunteer work performed by Latter-day Saints the world over. Coupled with these programs were the always enjoyable “World Report” programs that the Church puts together to keep us up to date. I cried numerous times as I witnessed the progress and impact of the kingdom that was cut out of stone without hands and rolls onward to fill the entire earth. This is Christ’s church, and it becomes ever more evident as you view the sacrifices of so many to spread the gospel, save lives, give to the poor, and bless all of God’s children.
The Church is true!
What was your favorite part of conference?