Sunday PM General Conference: The Languatron Memorial Session

And we are finally here–the final session of the 181st Semi-Annual General Conference. We are still giving constant coverage on Twitter as well as here on the blog. We also encourage you to (if you’re not already doing so) watch Conference live, streaming from

Lunch for me today was just nuts. Brazil nuts, pecan nuts, walnuts, hazelnuts, etc… Salty!

Okay, John C. on the live-blogging this session, Scott B. on Teh Tweets.

Our Savior’s Love

Elder Eyring conducting

Arise, O God, and Shine by MoTab, rocking the pink

I feel my Savior’s love, mo MoTab

Elder Russell M. Nelson speaking

Here is an article on the Efimovs.

One of the most important concepts of revealed religion is that of a sacred covenant.
In a religious context, a covenant is…more significant. It is a sacred promise with God. He fixes the terms…If one accepts the terms of the covenant and obeys God’s law, he or she receives the blessings associated with the covenant.

His covenants occur throughout the entire plan of salvation and are therefore part of the fulness of His gospel.

His covenants occur throughout the entire plan of salvation and are therefore part of the fulness of His gospel.
The covenant God made with Abraham and later reaffirmed with Isaac and Jacob is of transcendent significance. It contained several promises, including:
1. Jesus the Christ would be born through Abraham’s lineage
2. Abraham’s posterity would be numerous, entitled to eternal increase and entitled to bear the priesthood
3. Abraham would become the father of many nations
4. Certain lands would be inherited by his posterity
5. All nations of the earth would be blessed by his seed
6. The covenant would be everlasting

The covenant will be fulfilled in the latter days “Isn’t that amazing?”

The Lord appeared in these latter days to renew that Abrahamic covenant…With this renewal, we have received, as did they of old, the holy priesthood and the everlasting gospel. We have the right to receive the fulness of the gospel, enjoy the blessings of the priesthood, and qualify for God’s greatest blessing – that of eternal life.

Some of us are the literal seed of Abraham; others are gathered into his family by adoption. The Lord makes no distinction. [so, why do we?]

Brethren of the covenant have the right to qualify for the oath and covenant of the priesthood…Men who worthily receive the priesthood receive the Lord Jesus Christ and those who receive the Lord receive God the Father. And those who receive the Father receive all that He has. Incredible blessings flow from this oath and covenant to worthy men, women, and children in all the world.

Ours is the responsibility to help fulfill the Abrahamic Covenant. Ours is the seed foreordained and prepared to bless all people of the world.

After some 4,000 years of anticipation and preparation, this is the appointed day when the gospel is to be taken to the kindreds of the earth. This is the time of the promised gathering of Israel. And we get to participate! Isn’t that exciting?

The Book of Mormon is a tangible sign that the Lord has commenced to gather His children of covenant Israel.

[The Book of Mormon] helps us to make covenants with God. It invites us to remember Him and to know His Beloved Son. It is another testament of Jesus Christ.

Children of the covenant have the right to receive His doctrine and to know the plan of salvation. They claim it by making covenants of sacred significance.

When we realize that we are children of the covenant, we know who we are and what God expects of us. His law is written in our hearts. He is our God and we are His people. Committed children of the covenant remain steadfast, even in the midst of adversity.

The greatest compliment that can be earned here in this life is to be known as a “covenant keeper” The rewards for a covenant keeper will be realized both here and hereafter.

Elder Dallin H. Oaks

“I ask my fellow Latter-day Saints and other Christians what you really believe about Jesus Christ and what you are doing because of that belief?”

Some who call themselves Christians praise Jesus as a great teacher, but refrain from affirming His divinity. To address them, I have used the words of Jesus himself. We should all consider what He himself taught about who He was and what He was sent to earth to do.

Jesus taught that He was the only begotten Son.

Jesus also taught that His appearance was the same as His Father’s.

During His ministry to His people in Palestine Jesus declared that He was Jehovah, the Lord God of Israel.

When you consider all of the things the Savior has done for us, don’t you have many reasons to come back to Church to worship and serve him?

He is the life of the world because He is our Creator and because through His resurrection we are all assured that we will live again. And the life He gives us is not merely mortal life.

Jesus also taught, I am the light of the world: he that followeth me shall not walk in darkness…He is the way and He is the light because Hs teachings light our path in moral life and show us the way back to the Father.

Always Jesus honored the Father and followed Him…We return to the Father by doing His will.

He also challenges us to focus on Him, not on the things of the world…The Savior taught that he was the bread of life, the source of eternal nourishment.

Some who profess Christianity are more attracted to the things of the world – the thingsthat sustain life on earth but give no nourishment toward eternal life. For some, His “hard saying” is still a reason not to follow Christ.

The culmination of our Savior’s ministry was His resurrection and His atonement for the sins of the world.

We understand that the atonement of Jesus Christ gives us the opportunity to overcome spiritual death that results from sin, and, through making and keeping sacred covenants, to have the blessings of eternal life.

Jesus issued the challenge, “What think ye of Christ?” The Apostle Paul challenged the Corinthians to “examine yourselves, whether ye be in the faith.” All of us should answer these challenges for ourselves. Where is our ultimate loyalty?

There is no middle ground. We are followers of Jesus Christ. Our citizenship is in His Church and His gospel, and we should not use a visa to visit Babylon or act like one of its citizens.

This is the most important knowledge on earth and you can know this for yourself, as I know it for myself…The way is desire and obedience.

Matthew O. Richardson – Second Counselor in the Sunday School Presidency

I wanted to be the type of missionary that the Savior, my family, and this young girl expected me to be. For the next 2 years, I worked hard to look like, think like, act like, and especially to teach like a _real_ missionary.

I have learned that a key to becoming _real_ in every aspect of our lives is our ability to teach in a way that does not restrict learning.

a _real life_ requires _real learning_ which depends on _real teaching_.

Those who do not fully understand [that the Holy Ghost is THE teacher] either try to take over for the Holy Ghost and do everything themselves, politely invite the Spirit to be with them but only in a supporting role, or believe they are turning all their teaching over to the Spirit, when, in truth, they are actually just ‘winging it.

We’ve talking about Sunday School Teaching here before. See this series and this post.

2 Fundamental ‘workings of the Spirit’ worthy of our emulation:
First, the Holy Ghost teaches individuals in a very personal way.

Those who teacher after the manner of the Spirit understand they teach people, not lessons. As such, they overcome the urge to ‘cover’ everything in a manual or teach all they have learned on the subject and focus instead on those things that [people] need to know.

_Real_ teaching involves much more than just talking and telling.

Second, the Holy Ghost teaches by inviting, prompting, encouraging, and inspiring us to act.

The Holy Ghost cannot learn for us, feel for us, or act for us.

Parents, leaders, and teachers realize they cannot feel for, learn for, or even repent for their family, congregation, or class members.

With the current conditions of the world, we desperately need real learning and teaching in our homes, meetings, and gospel classes…I know you can do this and lives will change.

Elder Kazuhiko Yamashita

One coat, two Swans.

A number of missionaries serving in Japan have told me that their fathers, their mothers, their grandfathers, or their uncles have also served missions in Japan.

I have never forgotten [the missionary that converted me]

He was so happy when he learned I was doing well.

I wanted to become like [the missionaries]. And I felt their deep and abiding love.

On the day of his baptism and confirmation he first experience being enveloped by the Holy Spirit.

Your attitudes and the love that you show towards others are very significant messages. Even though I didn’t immediately grasp all the doctrines that the missionaries taught me, I felt of their great love and their many acts of kindness taught me important lessons. Your message is a message of love, a message of hope, and a message of faith…What I want to convey to you is that through your love, you are imparting the love of God. You are a treasure of this Church.

It is necessary to bring three things with you on your mission:
1. A desire to preach the gospel
2. Develop your testimony
3. Love others

Elder Randall K. Bennett

Quoting Monson: “I can’t stress too strongly that decisions determine destiny. You can’t make eternal decisions without eternal consequences.”

In what we choose to think about, feel, and do, are you and I _choosing eternal life_?

Do we wish we could play, eat only ice cream, never go to bed and somehow avoid consequences like malnutrition and exhaustion? YES!!!!!!!!!!

We cannot successfully choose both the safety of righteousness and the dangers of worldliness

our safety depends on choosing to follow 1) the insights we gain during daily scripture study and prayer, 2) the guidance of the Holy Ghost, and 3) [prophetic counsel]

Evaluating our choices:
1. seeking divine direction through prayer/scriptures vs. being busy/apathetic & refusing to converse with God
2. Following counsel of prophets vs. following worldly ways and opposing opinions
3. Seeking guidance from Holy Ghost to guide thoughts, feelings, & actions
4. consistently reaching out to assist, serve, & rescue others

Elder J. Dven Cornish

God our Father is not a feeling or an idea or a force. He is a holy person who, as the scriptures teach, has a face and hands and a glorious, resurrected body. He is real; He knows each of us individually; and He loves us, every one. He wants to bless us.

Our Father in Heaven delivers chickens to the humble petitioner. “In His mercy, the God of Heaven, the Creator and Ruler of all things everywhere, had heard a prayer about a very minor thing.”

How much more would He want to help us with the big things that we ask, which are right.

Little children, young people, and adults alike, please believe how very much your loving Heavenly Father wants to bless you. But because He will not infringe upon our agency, we must ask for His help. This is generally done through prayer. Prayer is one of the most precious gifts of God to man.

Wait? Is he allowed to use the Lord’s prayer this way?

It is our privilege to approach our Father directly

Jesus addressed his Father in an attitude or worship, recognizing Hs greatness and giving Him praise and thanks.

The object of prayer is not to change the will of God, but to secure for ourselves and for others blessing that God is already willing to grant but that are made conditional on our asking for them (BD)

An essential and sometimes forgotten part of personal prayer is repentance.

I am so grateful for the comfort and healing I have found int he Lord’s invitation to let go of our hurts and turn them over to Him.

When we truly believe that God rules his kingdom and that He has all power and all glory, we are recognizing that He really is in charge, that He loves us with a perfect, and that He wants us to be happy. I have found that one of the secrets to a joyful life is to recognize that doing things the Lord’s way will make me happier than doing things my way.

Elder Quentin L. Cook

We do know important principles that allow us to face tragedies with faith and confidence that there is a bright future planned for each of us. Some of the most important principles are:
First, we have a Father in Heaven who knows and loves us personally and understands our suffering perfectly
Second, His son, Jesus Christ, is our Savior and Redeemer, whose atonement not only provides for salvation and exaltation, but will compensate for all the unfairness of life.
Third, the Father’s plan of happiness for His children includes not only a premortal and moral life, but also an eternal life as well, including a great and glorious reunion with those we have lost. All wrongs will be righted, and we will see with perfect clarity and faultless perspective and understanding.

Many do not appreciate that under His loving and comprehensive plan those who appear to be disadvantaged, through no fault of their own, are not ultimately penalized.

There are at least two latter-day Saint connections to the Titanic…The first is an example of being appreciative for the blessings we receive and the challenges we avoid.

Elder Sonne and his companions had to cancel bookings on the Titanic. His companions were disappointed…AT FIRST!!!!!!!

We should be grateful for the all the tender mercies that come into our lives. We are unaware of a host of blessings that we receive from day to day.

Righteousness, prayer, and faithfulness will not always result in happy endings in mortality. Many will experience severe trials.

Irene Corbett did not get on a lifeboat, possibly because she was using her training as a nurse and midwife, she was attending to her fellow passengers.

Adverse results in this mortal life are not evidence of lack of faith or of an imperfection in our Father in Heaven’s overall plan.

Did ya’ll hear that a zone conference was scheduled to take place on the Titanic, but that it was cancelled at the last minute?

In the case of Sister Corbett, there were songs she did not sing and potential she did not fulfill in this mortal life. But viewed through the wide and clear lens of the gospel instead of the limited lens of mere mortal existence, we know of the great eternal reward promised by a loving Father in His plan.

President Monson

We are all here because we love the Lord and want to serve Him. I testify to you that our Heavenly Father is mindful of us.


  1. The supernal and historic Languatron Memorial Session…

  2. Brunch was Strawberry Belgian Waffles. YUMMY!!! With Canned Whipped Light Cream.

    Debating whether to pop up some corn for the final session snack.

  3. I’m a little disappointed that Wilford Brimley wasn’t memorialized on one of these threads.

  4. Joe, unlike T&S, Edgar Guest, Gordon Jump, and Languatron, Wilford Brimley is not dead!

  5. Point taken.

  6. I actually had a couple handfuls of cashews between sessions—synchronicity!

  7. One of my personal favorites!!!!

  8. No snacks… We spent the time between sessions driving to the Conference Center. But precious peach pie sits in the car awaiting the post-GC family gathering.

    I think the pink looks worse in person…

  9. If Pres. Uchtdorf can change his tie for every session, why can’t they change the drapes on the Choir ladies?

  10. Mommie Dearest says:

    Just sayin–never in a million years would I ever have drapes that color

  11. What’s this about Sis. Monson?

  12. She is ill.

  13. Uchtdorf did not change ties between sessions today – and my husband and I do not see Ballard or Scott present this PM.

  14. My wife, a very snobbish artist, loves the colour of the choir dresses. “Those are breast cancer awareness pink!” However, she doesn’t care for the cut that, in her words, “makes all the women look saggy.”

  15. Opening hymn “I feel my savior’s love” sadly is track one on the CD my two year old listens to at least once a day. I’m kind of twitching

  16. Ballard and Scott are probably in the Tabernacle. I liked it back in the day when they would announce that certain GAs were excused from the Tabernacle as they were seated on the stand in the Assembly Hall or the Marriott Center.

  17. I love when the choir sings the children’s songs, and I am still planning on getting the album they released with several of them.

  18. Breast Cancer awareness Pink. I see. And today is the day they wear pink shoes and towels, and wristbands in the NFL.

  19. Presently Present.

  20. Woot, Russia.

  21. See, the church does coordinate events with the NFL!

  22. “We shall now be pleased to hear….”

    Is that a prediction, a description, or a commandment?

  23. Oooh, Matthew Richardson, I am hoping for things from him,

  24. coachodeeps says:

    #16, Joe, I miss those days, too. I wish they still would do that. I wonder if one is in the Tabernacle and one in the Assembly Hall?

  25. whoops! Good word things

  26. brainbreak says:

    Who chose covenant as the word for their candy bowl? We’re regretting the choice of atonement and repentance over here…

  27. Serious thought: If someone can’t (by canon, even!) be punished because of the actions of their ancestors, why can status with regard to covenants with God be inherited?

  28. Double hand pointing. About abrahamic covenant. I guess some people are more excited about that than others.

  29. God specifically stated that the covenant blessings would be passed on. There have been other covenants that were not.

  30. We also chose REPENT/REPENTANCE for the word of our session here.

  31. We just finished discussing the Abrahamic Covenant in Seminary last week.

  32. coachodeeps says:

    I am the last survivor of my family as everyone else is sleeping. I have always found that the Sunday afternoon session is always the best or at least one of the best. I can really listen when it is quiet and hear the whispering of the spirit between the lines speaking directly to me. I pray it will be the same for me as well as others who are watching or taking part in this conference.

  33. Thank you choir for supporting breast cancer awareness.

  34. #29: I know, i know—but then again, God makes no distinction between literal and non-literal seed of Abraham, so there’s something else going on, too.

  35. 27 – Lots of covenants have been given specifially to bless posterity – it’s one of the best parts of the temple! Sealings create bonds between old and young through covenant. Disobedience breaks covenant but punishment is not given through broken covenant. I hope that makes sense…

  36. Did anyone enjoy conference more when it _wasn’t_ in HD? Lots of wrinkles and beady eyes.

  37. Observer fka eric s says:

    If a child is born in the covenant (to sealed parents) and becomes “wayward” during life, is that child nonetheless qualified for exaltation?

  38. Ooooh—is this gonna be a slam-the-mainstream-Xians speech? Time to break out the popcorn!

  39. DAVID–I decided not to pop any corn prior to this situation. Bummer.

  40. meant prior to this session in 39

  41. This is an interesting rhetorical method—he’s framing it as directed in part (largely, even) to those who don’t agree with him, but the claims he’s making assume more shared assumptions than you’d expect from such disagreement. I’m not sure yet if it’s working for me.

  42. 37 – There is a promise somewhere given by Joseph Smith (I’m pretty sure it was him)(anyone know it?) that if the parents are faithful in life then their BIC wayward children will still have a chance at exhaltation through the good works of the parents. I don’t remember all of it or umderstand it by any means, but I’ve heard of it a couple of times.

  43. If you don’t know, asking what Jesus did for you is actually quite a good question.

  44. Not knowing is bad, bad, Jacob.

  45. Our word this session is ‘follow’ and tootsie rolls is the prize. Elder Oaks is giving us all a sugar overload.

  46. @36 watch the low-bandwidth stream linked on the lower right. Nary a wrinkle in sight.

  47. coachodeeps says:
  48. Thanks Brad. I was wondering what was bothering me about that, and your statement clarifies it. That said, I like the overview of Christs message and ministry.

  49. Elder oaks just butchered Elder Maxwell’s Joke, but the point is still good.

  50. Absolutely true story: My four-year-old goes up close to the computer screen, stares at Elder Oaks, and asks, “Daddy, is he mad?” I had to answer, “No, he just usually has that expression.”

  51. “We should not use a visa to visit Babylon.”

    That’s because they only take American Express.


  52. So, don’t visit Babylon, but live in the world, but not be of the world? Im confused!

  53. Sikus Grok says:

    Oh my gosh. Elder Richardson is setting off my gaydar.

  54. @47 coachodeeps – yes! Thank you, that is exactly what I was talking about. Great link.

  55. Jacob, the quote is from Elder Maxwell who said that sometimes when members of the church decide to live on the lord’s side of the line, they build their house in Zion but try to keep a summer home in Babylon.

  56. Silus: ROFL.

  57. 53 – Ha!

  58. LOL, Silus.

  59. On my ipad says:
  60. Aaaaaaaaaand that picture didn’t help re: 53

  61. oh goodness, why must everything be a boring analogy?

  62. 51 and 53 – HA!

  63. Not every language uses the same preposition for “by” in “teach by means of the Spirit” and “teach with the Spirit next to you as an equal.” In German it would be “durch” and “neben.” How in the world do such expressions get translated? Do they just add an aside explaining both of those phrases?

  64. He’s not gay, he’s Bob Sagat!

  65. #53: My 10-year-old said he moves around a lot more than any of the other speakers—so whatever’s going on, there’s something different about him.

    Google tells me he’s a BYU religion professor, so he’s used to having to keep a roomful of bored kids from falling asleep, rather than expecting people to pay attention. That may feed into things.

  66. Teach PEOPLE not lessons. I hope my SS teacher is listening…

  67. On my iPad,

    I grew up in Provo, and I think he’s making the NuSkin building about two thirds larger than it really is.

  68. I am really enjoying a talk from a SS General Presidency member explaining that teaching is not just reading a manual, talking, or telling. The question, though, is this: Will church teachers pay attention and start really preparing and teaching?

  69. 63 – the translators don’t have time for side explanations, but occasionally I’ve seen parantheticals in the Spanish Liahona to explain language differences.

  70. I think i’m starting to get what he meant (and i think i like it), but it’s going by so fast that i don’t have time to really figure it out. Part of me feels like he figures this is his one general conference speaking chance, so he’s going to pack as much as possible on his topic into the address and let people digest it from the written report.

  71. Silus, mine too! Wow.

  72. coachodeeps says:

    I am a GD teacher, I hope those in my class feel that I teach them, not just teach the lesson. I have always tried to teach with the spirit and to remember that those in the class are people with unique lives, thoughts and perspectives. I will be listening to this again and reading it Tuesday/Wednesday once it is published.

  73. Sharee Hughes says:

    Is having a member of the Sunday School Presidency speak normal? I didn’t think the Sunday School Presidency were considered GAs.

  74. #63 His “after the manner of the Holy Ghost” would work well in German (‘nach…’), though—but certainly not in a bunch of other languages. I shudder to think of what translators into, say, Hungarian were having to do with that one.

  75. Sharee, I don’t know what’s more General than the Sunday School General Presidency.

  76. mrsbrittdaniel says:

    I love “Now Let Us Rejoice!”

  77. #73: The past few conferences they’ve had one member of one of the male general presidencies (to go along with the two members of the female general presidencies) speak.

  78. @67: And, unless I’m much mistaken, he put it on the wrong side of the street.

  79. coachodeeps says:

    @69, Brooke-The translators get the talks early and go through them to make sure the language is clear and insert certain things to explain the English idioms to help those that speak another language understand the context a little better. I believe it is called “language coaching.”

  80. The General Authorities are officially the First Presidency, Quorum of the Twelve, First and Second Quorums of the Seventy, and the Presiding Bishopric. But the Auxiliary Presidencies and Area Presidencies are part of the General Leaders.See here.

  81. Well said, Alex. Thanks.

  82. Oh, my gosh! I finally noticed the Ron Paul look alike!

  83. 79 – I forgot I had heard that before. Still a rough job, I’ll bet…

  84. Duke of Earl Grey says:

    #73 Shane, I think the Sunday School Presidency and the other auxiliary leaders would be considered General Officers, not General Authorities.

  85. I love talks about personal conversions! Excellent!

  86. Observer fka eric s says:

    this ga is from san pete county I heard

  87. Proud parenting moment: He says he wants to speak to all of the future missionaries, and my daughters all shush each other and start listening.

  88. Cynthia L. says:

    I really, really liked that Sunday School guy’s talk. Nothing earth-shatteringly new I suppose, but I will be a better teacher thinking about those things. I also like his presentation style. A different cadence than a lot of conference talks.

  89. Really enjoyed that message from Elder Yamashita.

  90. The lifeguard wasn’t just letting him tire out to make a point.

    In lifeguard training they taught us that people are easier to manhandle and pull to safety when they are worn out. It was probably a prudent safety move.

  91. Swim with the current is actually the take away lesson from the beach story. The current is too powerful to swim against, so the only way to get out is to go with it. I doubt that lesson will ever be taught over the pulpit, though.

  92. Cynthia L. says:

    Aw, David B, that is a proud moment.

    Why don’t we have a convert speak every single time? What is more powerful than, “I am one” of those found by the missionaries? Love it.

  93. The 3-year-old granddaughter is a prime example of why you should not try to use logic and reasoning with small children.

  94. Seth – I doubt the lifeguard was trying to teach a lesson at all; we often pull life lessons from the most innocuous events.

  95. Romney / Huntsman 2012 says:

    We need to streamline conference. Instead of 10 hours of talks, maybe 5.5. 1.5 hours for Saturday night priesthood, then keep Sunday as it is with the two sessions. Have 6 apostles speak in April, then 6 in October.

    10 hours in one weekend is too much in this day and age.

  96. 93, Alex – would the lack of logic be one of the ways we should try to be like little children? ;)

  97. I’m saying it right now–Randall K. Bennett will be an apostle. Then again, i’m biased–he was my branch president in the MTC.

  98. 87 David B – what a great moment! I wish my sisters would get excited about missions, mine changed my life!

  99. coachodeeps says:

    Elder Bennett: Elder Randall K. Bennett: Lifeguards and the warning of the Deceptive Currents. Awesome! I was a lifeguard for most of my life…rip currents are very deceptive.

  100. Anatoly Reshetnikov is a good friend of mine. Maybe the most supernally cool little old man in the history of history.

  101. Romney / Huntsman 2012 says:

    @ Brett H

    You actually remember your branch president from the MTC?

  102. “My beloved sisters and brothers,…” The order stuck out to me.

  103. Observer fka eric s says:

    Jacob m – Thats incorrect. When you get caught in a rip, you are to swim parrallel to the beach (perpenducular to the rip). That is neither with, nor against the current.

  104. Unrelated data point:

    Beach lifeguards on Oahu (one of the most demanding lifeguarding posts in the US) for personal training will sometimes swim out, dive 30 feet down, pick up a large rock, and run as far as they can along the sandy ocean floor before coming up for air.

  105. 95 Romney – I respectfully disagree. I love taking up an entire weekend every six months just taking in the messages.

    Brett – I second the motion, I don’t know him but I like him.

  106. Okay, this guy gets my vote for best GA middle name.

  107. Duke of Earl Grey says:

    Fried chicken “shop”?

  108. And now we shall hear from Elder Rick Moranis, also known as Dark Helmet or Seymour. Who Needs To Feed The Plant.

  109. Romney–What makes hearing all 12 every conference too much just because it is “this day and age”?

  110. If he hadn’t prayed, would the coin still have been there?

  111. Sometimes prayers are seemingly unanswered, though.

  112. Romney / Huntsman 2012 says:

    @ Brooke

    The messages are all so similar that we wouldn’t lose anything by cutting them in half.

  113. Liking this guy. Good session overall I think.

  114. Casey,

    If a quarter falls in a forest, and no one is around to hear it, does it make a sound?

  115. and sometimes they are seemingly answered

  116. If he hadn’t prayed, would the coin still have been there?

    How Zen.

  117. R/H – I’m with Brooke. It is wonderful to spend a weekend every six months to listen to members of the General Leadership of the church.

  118. “we’ve been counseled to avoid repetitions”

    Are repetitions and “vain repetitions” the same thing?
    “But when ye pray, use not vain repetitions, as the heathen do: for they think that they shall be heard for their much speaking.” Matthew 6:7

  119. Romney / Huntsman 2012 says:

    @ Joe

    I think once a year is just as good as once every 6 months for each apostle. The talks would be twice as good.

  120. Praying for something small and having it answered is evidence God loves us—so if someone prays to God not to be crushed to death in an avalanche, and they die anyway, that must mean God doesn’t love them.

    I know it’s not like that, but the deity-as-vending-machine approach to prayer and love bugs me.

  121. coachodeeps says:

    #91 and 103-Yes, best thing to do if caught in the rip current is to swim parallel to the shore and then once out of the current, swim to shore.

  122. Yes Ben.

    We must avoid repetitions – “even” vain repetitions.

    Especially in prayers.

  123. @Seth: Did said quarter fall from heaven as result of a prayer?

  124. But you are still not swimming directly against the current! Still won’t be taught, either. Also, you don’t want to take the current too far, but it is easier to get out of by slightly going with it while going off to the side.

  125. @102, sisters before brothers and a reference to heavenly parents. Not only highlights of his talk, but highlights of the conference too.

  126. Never get involved in a land war in Asia!

  127. @123, no but its guardian spirit released it.

  128. Yet Another John says:

    Huntsman/Romney, good suggestion. It would free up more time for football.

  129. coachodeeps says:

    @120-“Deity-as-Vending-Machine”, I have heard it as “Deity-as-a-Butler” or giving Butler prayers. Always asking for what you want and not praying to be willing to endure what may come.

  130. My work schedule means I can’t get to Saturday sessions. So Sunday is all I get. Oh sure I could listen to them online afterwards, but let’s be honest how often do I actually do it?

  131. Romney – then just watch on Sunday, I’d like to hear it all though. Similar messages aside, I think we could all use a little more repetition and reminding to do what’s right.

  132. Observer fka eric s says:

    Cornish Game Hens. whoa! Did you hear someone hawk up a loogie when he said amen?

  133. Tragedies, like needing a quarter for fried chicken.

  134. Casey,

    “There was a young man who said God,
    must find it exceedingly odd,
    to see that a tree, continues to be, when there’s no one around in the Quad.”

    “Dear Sir: Your astonishment’s odd:
    I am always about in the Quad.
    And that’s why the tree
    Will continue to be
    Since observed by
    -Yours faithfully

  135. If a hundred equally faithful and equally needy people prayed for a quarter in the same parking lot, how many quarters are in the lot?

  136. Romney / Huntsman 2012 says:

    Before 1979 every Sunday was like conference weekend. Then, to accommodate the modern age, they introduced the 3-hour block.

    I’m saying they should do the same thing for conference weekend. We aren’t pioneers making a wagon trek to Salt Lake City for conference anymore.

  137. If a hundred equally faithful and equally needy people pray for a quarter in the same parking lot, how many quarters are in the lot?

  138. i am glad he is addressing this, after the last talk. They go together well.

  139. Romney – then just watch on Sunday, I’d like to hear it all though. Similar messages aside, I think we could all use a little more repetition and reminding to do what’s right.

    NO! Don’t be ridiculous!!! What is right for Romney should be right for all!
    How dare you suggest a reasonable option that doesn’t require everyone else to change.

  140. Yeah I remember that seminary video about coming in on the second act of the 3- act play. Pretty stupid way to run a theater if you ask me. Obviously some other purpose in mind than putting on a smooth play, so I think it’s a bad metaphor.

  141. Del Moody was my branch president in the Mtc. Why is that abweird thing to remember? I was there 2 months.

  142. Romney, regardless, I’ll leave it at respectfully disagree. Not everything needs to be changed for your personal convenience.

  143. johnloveland says:

    #87: David, you must be doing something right!

  144. The purpose of human beings is not to ask a question, but to answer one.

    It is not our prime purpose to ask why suffering is allowed – our purpose is to provide the meaning behind it ourselves.

  145. Now I have Celine Dion stuck in my head.

  146. Great—now i have Celine Dion earwormed into my brain.


  148. Titanic as tragedy? Well, the movie was, so I guess it works.

  149. [/rage stroke][/sarcasm]

  150. @82 – Thank you for confirming I’m not nuts.

  151. Makes me wonder when GAs stopped interviewing for full-time missionaries.

  152. “It is not our prime purpose to ask why suffering is allowed – our purpose is to provide the meaning behind it ourselves”

    I like that. Wonderfully Nietzschean!

  153. Several talks seem to be contrary to the Harper’s article claiming the Mormonism is a prosperity-gospel faith. I’ve heard a lot of stories of bad things happening to good people.

  154. Queno- not about that, no.

  155. @153 – and there you go, Elder Cook just said it flat out.

  156. I’ve always liked Nietzsche.

    “Companions the creator seeks, and not herds and believers. Companions the creator seeks, and fellow harvesters – for everything about him is ripe for the harvest.”

    Almost like he was channeling Joseph Smith…

  157. Yes! Crap happening to you is not a reflection of righteousness. Can I wear that on a placard around my neck?

  158. This seriously is one of the best problem of evil general conference addresses i’ve ever heard. (And i’ve listened to a number of them from archival recordings, going back as far as 1936.)

  159. I’m greatly liking this talk. I believe that what we think is protection from providence is mostly just the cosmic roll of the dice.

  160. This is a very good talk.

  161. amen to that

  162. Elder Cook’s talk is over, but my heart will go on.

  163. Meant to say “protection by providence.”

  164. Does anyone know the original source of the quote Elder Cook learned on his mission?

  165. Romney / Huntsman 2012 says:

    @ David B

    You’ve listened to conference talks dating back to 1936?

  166. Lovvvvved Elder Cook’s talk.

  167. Cook just told me to go buy that expensive wide-angle lens I’ve been dreaming about.

  168. All right, Pres. Monson, please quash the rumours and just tell us what happened yesterday!

  169. Bonjo: I LOLed.

  170. Didn’t Elder Cook already speak during the Saturday Morning session?

  171. What are the rumors?

  172. #165: I use general conference recordings as data sources for some of my research on language changes with age—it provides a really, really good source of longitudinal data for individual speakers.

  173. 151–I wondered the same thing.

  174. The atonement makes it so that you were never raped or had cancer. It eliminated child poverty and hunger. The atonement makes it so that the Holocaust never happened.

    What Holocaust? That’s right.

  175. @174 “the narrator” – Cool story, bro.

  176. Cynthia L. says:

    Narrator, I’m not sure the atonement is the best subject matter for your jokes. Please knock it off.

  177. #176 I’m not using it for jokes. I’m pointing out the absurdity that one can solve the problem of evil by simply saying that the atonement takes care of it.

  178. #177: That’s not even close to what Elder Cook said, though—that was a part of it, but certainly not everything.

  179. I’m not sure that’s what was being said.

  180. Did Elder Holland ever speak?

  181. #178 I wasn’t summing up Cook, just remarking on this particular aspect. It’s a pet peeve of mine, and aggravated more after an hour discussion with Louis Midgely last week, who kept making this point as if it actually said anything.

  182. 180-He spoke in Priesthood last night. And ripped everyone a new one.

  183. Alright, everyone. Thanks for playin’. See you in 6!

  184. Easily my favorite session of the five, and not just because it had the usual Saturday afternoon closing-time-approacheth vibe to it.

    Thanks for the conversation, all. I’m off to figure out if my kids’ll let me take a nap.

  185. LANGUATRON DIED!?!?!?

  186. The atonement makes it so that you were never raped or had cancer. It eliminated child poverty and hunger. The atonement makes it so that the Holocaust never happened.

    Death is overcome, families are brought back together and through the atonement we can overcome the psychological effects past trauma has had on us. It doesn’t make the evil never happen. It does overcome the long term effects of that evil.

  187. #186 ” through the atonement we can overcome the psychological effects past trauma has had on us”

    Please explain.

  188. Not sure what to explain. That’s a standard view of what the atonement can do – that as we give our burdens to Christ it can have an effect on our minds. However if one wants to go the materialist route one can say that trauma is manifest as particular arrangements of ones neurons that will be transfigured in the resurrection.

    Of course I should add that none of this really addresses the problem of evil proper since that argument is simply that the universe as a whole could be made less evil by God, not that God can limit the temporal extent of particular evils.

  189. Stephanie says:

    Casey, the coin may have been there regardless, but perhaps the act of praying and having faith in the prayer opened his eye to see the coin. I think sometimes prayers are for our own benefit because they change us.

  190. Stephanie says:

    narrator, the Atonement can heal us and make us whole.

  191. FYI, my mom’s in the motab choir and they all hate those “pepto poncho” dresses–she suggested if enough people contact them, perhaps they’ll hire a designer/consultant or at least retire those dresses (which were unfortunately just made for the DC tour in June).

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