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The 179th Semiannual General Conference: Priesthood Session Notes

Saturday Session 3 (Priesthood), Talk 1 – M. Russell Ballard, Quorum of the Twelve Apostles

  • Priesthood is the divine power that seals
  • How to Talk between Father and Son:
  • Most Nurturing
  • Who Sons and Fathers Become
  • Applies to All Mentors
  • 3 Suggestions for the Son:
    • 1. Trust Your Father:
      • Not Perfect, but loves you and is looking out for your best interests.
      • Your Father will feel responsibility and will make him work harder.
    • 2. Take an interest in your father’s life.
      • Interests
      • Goals
      • Job
      • How he met your mother?
      • Watch your father, you’ll understand your father better.
    • 3. Ask for your father’s advice:
      • Ask on Church, Classes, School, Assignments, Missions, Callings.
      • Asking says to him: “I appreciate your knowledge and experience.”
  • 3 Suggestions for the Father:
    • 1. Listen to your sons. Ask the right questions and what to know.
      • Connect with your son: Driving, Fishing, Conversations before bed, working in the yard.
      • Have one deep conversation with your son at least once a month.
      • Where and when is not important. Just that it happens.
      • Ask how they “feel”
      • Just listen. You don’t have to fix everything.
    • 2. Pray with and for your sons.
      • Important events: New School Year, Birthday, One and One Prayer, Testimony Sharing.
      • Never give up. Even when you can’t do anything.
    • 3. Talk about and warn about bad things: Drugs, Pornography. Discuss the priesthood and moral cleanliness.
  • Trust will flourish. Be open about Sexual Behavior with open and frequent discussions. Be positive about sexual relations in the bounds of marriage.
  • Return Missionaries – All this advice applies to them as well.
  • Pray to Heavenly Father. Honor your Earthy Father.
  • Most important decision is to marry the right girl in the temple.
  • Fathers of return missionaries, this applies to them too.

Saturday Session 3 (Priesthood), Talk 2 – Walter F. Gonzalez, of the Seventy

  • USE the Book of Mormon
  • Take the Book of Mormon Test: Is it of man or of God?
  • 3 Activities to best read and apply:
    1. Feast Upon the Words of Christ. READ IT.
    2. Implement the Teachings
    3. Teach From the Book of Mormon

Saturday Session 3 (Priesthood), Talk 3 – Yoon Hwan Choi, of the Seventy

  • Story of 9 Rowdy Boys, Baptized and went on missions.
  • They went from 9 Boys to a family of 45 members.
  • The boys sang in a group.
  • Choi prayed about them and was inspired to teach them to be missionaries.
  • “Attend all church meetings” – Taft
  • Teach them to change their lives
  • Adam did not always have to know why, he just obeyed.

Saturday Session 3 (Priesthood), Talk 4 – President Deter F. Uchtdorf, Second Counselor, First Presidency

  • Must remain steadfast in faith.
  • Work Hard.
  • Trust in God.
  • Uchtdorf was teased as a young child. When he looks back, he sees that being teased gave him personal growth.
  • Adversity, when faced with faith, can be overcome.
  • Prinicples:
    • 1. WORK.
      • If you keep at it, steady and constant, things will improve.
      • In the sweat of thy face, thou shalt eat bread.
      • Lord doesn’t expect us to work harder than we are able. Don’t compare your performance to others, he does not.
      • When your wagon is stuck in the mude, God is more likely to help one who gets out to push, than those who pray.
      • Righteous work in the home is sacred and has eternal results. It cannot be delegated.
      • Spend your days growing.
      • Spiritual Wings – as sons of God, we should grow to the horizons.
      • Retirement is not part of God’s plan. You should always be doing something.
      • Excuses with age: Skateboarding, biking, spicy food at the buffet… should not keep you from working.
      • No retirement from priesthood.
      • Wanting to retire from work is not a thought of a disciple.
    • 2. LEARN.
      • Old saying: “Education is not so much a filling of a bucket as a lighting of a fire.”
      • Learning is a commandment.
      • Joseph Smith said as a mortal part of our journey that knowledge in this life crosses into the resurrection.
      • Knowledge takes away anxiety, doubt and darkness.

Saturday Session 3 (Priesthood), Talk 5 – President Henry B. Eyring, Second Counselor, First Presidency

  • Keeps olive oil on him at all times.
  • Keeps it in his desk (He has a desk!)
  • Keeps it on his nightstand.
  • The olive oil has a date on it: The day it has been concecrated.
  • Always ready.
  • Story: A father called him about his three year old daughter. She had been hit by a car. He plead for a priesthood blessing. He had to fight the doctors to place a drop of oil on her head amidst bandages. Doctors said she was dying. They were wrong. She lived and also learned to walk again.
  • Those prepared are ready to answer.
  • Preparation begins at home, quorums, etc.
  • Steady Obedient Service.
  • Need:
    • To have faith, authority to act in the name of God.
    • Nephi – Given the authority to do miracles. He brought drought/rain, god gave him power and trust.
    • D&C 121 – Moves are pure, Gentleness, Love, Not Selfish. D&C 121 contains a promise in there.
    • Prepare for days when heaven needs you. Service & Opportunity.

Saturday Session 3 (Priesthood), Talk 6 – President Thomas S. Monson, President and Prophet

  • Anger
  • Story of a couple fighting and a child who got hurt as a direct result.
  • Anger doesn’t solve anything.
  • Destroys everything.
  • Heber grant story about work.
  • “Man is a fool who takes insult that is not intended”
  • Anger is Satans tool.
  • Story about Brother Marsh, how a result of a quarrel over milk and cream lead to the extermination order.
  • Story about two brothers who shared a 1 room cabin in New York. They got into a fight and drew a line down the center of the room. They did not speak or cross the line for 62 years. This story was told at a funeral.
  • Reads “School Thy Feelings Poem”


The 179th Semiannual General Conference: D. Todd Christofferson Talk

Sunday Session 5, Talk 7 – D. Todd Christofferson, Quorum of the Twelve Apostles

My Notes:

  • Moral Agency, the right to make choices and account for those choices.
  • WW II – James E. Faust was in enlisted in the US Army.
    • Asked the question “In times of war, should not the morale code be relaxed? Does not the stress of battle justify men in doing things they would not do while at home under normal situations?”
    • Answered “I do not believe there is a double standard of morality.”
  • Moral Discipline is the practice of exercising agency to choose the right, just be cause it is right.
  • Discipline’s root word is Disciple.
  • The more of God’s laws we obey, the fewer laws we need on earth.
  • Morale Discipline is learned at home.
  • Teach your children while you have them and convert them while they are with you.
  • Book of Mormon quote: “Wickedness never was happiness”
  • His mother’s quick correction put an abrupt end to his life of crime! :)
  • Discipline needs to be founded on faith in Heavenly Father and the son and what we can achieve with atonement of Jesus Christ.
  • God is our Father, his son Jesus is our redeemer. Their law is immutable, truth everlasting and love is infinite.


The 179th Semiannual General Conference: Michael T. Ringwood Talk

Sunday Session 5, Talk 5 – Michael T. Ringwood, of the Seventy

My Notes:

  • What causes mighty change? As in the Laminites?
  • Easiness and willingness to believe in god comes from the softness of heart that is: Sensitive to the Holy Ghost, can love, will make and keep sacred covenants, feel the power of the atonement of Christ.
  • The daily living of the gospel brings about a soft heart that brings an easiness and willingness to believe.
  • Periods with a soft heart: marriage, birth a child, intense service from a calling or mission, in our youth with leaders and bishop, trials, growth from learning for the first time of the Gospel.
  • Most significant period is childhood, easy to receive the world of god taught by parents and grand parents.
  • Obedience will bring soft hearts, scripture study and prayer will bring soft hearts.


The 179th Semiannual General Conference: Jeffery R. Holland Talk

Sunday Session 5, Talk 1 – Jeffery R. Holland, Quorum of the Twelve Apostles

My Notes:

  • There is one kind of latter day destruction that has sounded more personal … spiritual destruction
  • Held in his hand the very Book of Mormon that Hyrum had read.
  • Direct Testimony and Quote:

    “One cannot come into full faith in this latter day work and thereby find the fullness measure of peace of comfort of these are times until he or she embraces the divinity of the book of Mormon and the Lord Jesus Christ of whom it testifies. If anyone is foolish enough or misled enough to reject 531 pages of a here before unknown text, teaming with literary and symbolic complexity without honestly attempting to account for the origin of those pages somehow. Especially, without accounting for their powerful witness of Jesus Christ and their profound spiritual impact, that witness has had on what is now tens of millions of readers…if that’s the case, then such persons, elect or otherwise have been deceived. And if they leave this church, they must do so by crawling over or under or around the book of Mormon to make their exit. In that sense, the book is what Christ himself was said to be a stone of stumbling and a rock of offensive, a barrier in a path of one who wishes not to believe in this work. Witnesses, even witnesses who for a time hostile to Joseph, testified to their death that they had seen an angel and had handled the plates…”



The 179th Semiannual General Conference: Thomas S. Monson Talk

Sunday Session 4, Talk 6 – Thomas S. Monson, President of the Church, Prophet

My Notes:

  • Service
  • “Often we live side by side, but do not communicate heart to heart.”
  • Story of Father who asked “What did you do for someone today?” at the dinner table each night.
  • King Benjamen “When you are in the service of your fellow beings, you are only int he service of your God.”
  • Savior taught us “For whosoever will save his life shall lose it. But whosoever will lose his life for my sake, the same shall save it.”
  • He is telling us that unless we lose ourselves for service to others, there’s little purpose to our own lives.
  • “Man’s greatest happiness comes from losing himself for the good of others.” – President David O. McKay
  • At Baptism – covenanted to bear one another’s burden that they may be light.
  • Warm Fuzzies! Embodied by little things in a jar! :)
  • Notes from children who helped others:
    • “My grandpa had a stroke and i held his hand”
    • “My sister and I served my family by organizing and cleaning the toy closet. It took us a few hours and we had fun. The best part was that we surprised my mom and made her happy because she didn’t ask us to do it!”
    • “There was a family in my ward that did not have a lot of money. They have 3 little girls and mom and dad had to go somewhere, so I offered to watch the three girls. The dad was just about to hand me a 5 dollar bill. I said “I can’t take it”. My service was that I watched the girls for free.”
    • Mongolia – “Brought water from a well so his mother would not have to do so”
    • “My dad has gone for army training for a few weeks. My special job is to give my mom hugs and kisses”
    • “I picked strawberries for my great grandma. I felt good inside.”
    • “I played with a lonely kid.”
    • “I went to a ladies house and asked her questions. And sang her a song. It felt good to visit her. She was happy because she never gets visitors.”
  • Elder Richard L. Evens of the Quorum of the Twelve:”It isn’t easy for those who are young to understand the loneliness that comes when life changes from a time of preparation and performance to a time of putting things away. To be so long the center of a home, so much sought after, then almost suddenly to be on the sidelines watching the precession pass by, this is living into loneliness. We have to live a long time to learn how empty a room can be that is filled only with furniture. It takes someone beyond hired service, beyond institutional care, or professional duties to thaw out the memories of the past and keep them warmly living in the present. We cannot bring them back, the morning hours of youth. But we can help them live in a warm glow of a sunset made more beautiful by our thoughtfulness and unfeigned love.”
  • Matthew Chapter 25 quoted.


The 179th Semiannual General Conference: Russell M. Nelson Talk

Sunday Session 4, Talk 5 – Russell M. Nelson, Quorum of the Twelve Apostles

My Notes:

  • Technology allows us to communicate rapidly.
  • Even more amazing than modern technology is our opportunity to access information directly from heaven. Without: hardware, software or monthly service fees.
  • It’s one of the most marvelous gifts the Lord has offered to mortals.
  • Wrote down an idea for General Conference and arose from sleep and wrote down his impressions. The next morning he looked at the paper and his writing was illegible. He writes more carefully now.
  • To access information from Heaven you need:
  1. have a firm faith and deep desire.
  2. Ask with a sincere heart and real intent having faith in Jesus Christ. Real intent means that one really intends to follow divine direction given.
  3. Study the matter diligently. Study it out in your mind. The ask God if it is right. If it is right, he will cause a burning in your bosom, therefore you shall FEEL that it is right.
  4. Know and obey the teachings of the Lord.
  • The natural man knows very little of God and even less of his prophet.
  • Paul wrote: “The natural man receives not the things of the spirit of God for they are foolishness unto him, neither can they know them because they are spiritually discerned.”
  • Another Prophet said: “The natural man is an enemy to God and has been from the fall of Adam and will be forever and ever unless he yields to the enticings of the holy spirit and puteth off the natural man and becometh a saint through the atonement of Christ the Lord. And becometh as a Child: Submissive, Meek, Humble, Patient, Full of Love, Willing to submit of all things with the Lord see fit to inflict upon him, even as a child doths submit to his father.”
  • Gives the Definition of Discernment:
  • Gift of Discernment is a Spiritual is a supernal gift: it allows members of the Church to see things not visible and to feel things not tangible. Bishops are entitled to this gift to seek out the poor and care for the needy.
  • Sisters may view trends in the world and detect those, however popular, are shallow or even dangerous.
  • Members can discern between schemes that are flashy and fleeting – and those refinements which are uplifting and enduring.
  • Discernment was implicit, in important instructions President John Taylor gave long ago, taught stake presidents, bishops and others :

    “It is the right of those holding these positions to obtain the word of God with regard to the duties of their presidencies , that they more effectually carry out his holy purposes. None of the callings or positions int he priesthood are intended for the personal benefits, monuments and fame of those who hold them. But are expressly given to fulfill our purposes of our heavenly father and build up the kingdom of god upon the earth. We seek to understand the will of God and then carry it out and then see that it is carried by those over whom we have the charge.”

  • To receiving revaluation unique to our needs and responsibilities, Certain Guidelines prevail:
    • Develop faith, hope, charity and love with an eye single to the glory of god. then with your firm faith, virtue, knowledge, temperance, patience, brotherly kindness, godliness, charity, humility and diligence you may ask and you will receive, knock and it will be upon unto you.
    • Revelation from god is always compatible with his eternal law, never contradicts his doctrine. facilitated by proper reverence for Deity. “I the Lord am merciful and gracious to those who fear me and delight to honor those who serve me in righteousness and in truth unto the end. Great shall be their reward, and eternal shall be their glory. to them i will reveal all mysteries. and my will concerning all things pertaining to my kingdom.
    • Revelation need not come all at once, may be incremental:

      “I will give unto the children of men, line upon line, precept upon precept, here a little there a little and blessed are those who hearken unto my precepts and lend an ear unto my counsel, for they shall learn wisdom, for unto him who receiveth, i will give more.”

  • Patience, perseverance are part of our eternal progression
  • Prophets describe what it feels like when receiving revelation:
    • Joseph Smith and Oliver Cowdery: “The veil was taken from our minds and the eyes of our understanding were opened”
    • Joseph F Smith: “As I pondered over these things which were written, the eyes of my understanding were opened and the spirit of the lord rested upon me”


The 179th Semiannual General Conference: Ann M. Dibb Talk

Sunday Session 4, Talk 4 – Ann M. Dibb, Second Counselor, Young Woman General Presidency

My Notes:

  • Using your Safety Equipment
  • Workers two weeks away (year task) from painting a bridge when a scaffolding collapsed.
  • Held on for hours. Thought of their family.
  • Could have been avoided with safety equipment.
  • They chose not to use the safety equipment.
  • The rod of iron is our safety equipment.
  • Invited to reread Lehi’s vision of the iron rod.
  • “Get a Grip” on the iron rod. “Repent, hold on and don’t let go.”
  • Daughter of President Monson!


The 179th Semiannual General Conference: Boyd K. Packer Talk

Saturday Session 2, Talk 7 – President Boyd K. Packer, President of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles

My Notes:

  • Pray even if you are you and wayward like the prophet Alma.
  • Pray often.
  • Pray in your mind.
  • Pray in your heart.
  • Pray on your knees.
  • Prayer is your personal key in Heaven.
  • Learned to close all prayers with “thy will be done.”


The 179th Semiannual General Conference: Neil L. Anderson Talk

Saturday Session 2, Talk 6- Neil L. Anderson, Quorum of the Twelve Apostles

My Notes:

  • Repentance and the invitation is not chastisement, it is a loving appeal to turn around and return to God.
  • It is a beckoning of a Loving Father and Son to be more than we are.
  • Repentance is for all of us, no matter how righteous we are.
  • The Savior is able and eager to forgive our sins.
  • Except for those few who choose perdition after having known a fullness, there is no sin that cannot be forgiven.
  • To Change, petition the Father for what to do. He tells us in our mind and in our heart. Then we can choose to repent or we can pull the shades down over our open window into heaven.
  • Alma warned “Do not endeavour to excuse yourself in the least part.”
  • Realize where you need to change. Have sincere and heartfelt confession to the lord and when needed, to others. When possible, restore what was wrongfully harmed or partaken.
  • Weekly taken of Sacrament is so important. To come humbly, meekly before the lord, acknowledging our dependence on him, asking him to forgive and to renew us. And promising to always remember him.
  • The scriptures do not say that we will forget our forsaken sins in mortality, rather they declare that the lord will forget. The forsaking means “never returning.” This requires time.
  • Bishop has the power of discernment to help us repent.
  • Do not procrastinate the date of your repentance, but in this life, it is never too late to repent.
  • Story of a married couple who left the church 50 years ago, comes back and was sorry their children do not have the gospel.
  • Repentance always mean that there is greater happiness ahead.


The 179th Semiannual General Conference: L. Whitney Clayton

Saturday Session 1, Talk 3 – L. Whitney Clayton, Presidency of the Seventy
-How long can we carry burdens?
-Burdens form three sources:
– Natural product of the world we live in (illness, earthquakes, etc.) that we cannot control.
– Imposed upon us by the misconduct of others.  Abuse, additions, sin, incorrect traditions, repression, crime.  Gossip, unkindness can cause others genuine suffering.
– Our own mistakes and shortcomings produce many of problems and the most burden is sin.  Pain from keeping commandments.
-No matter our burdens, we are children of god who sent us to earth for growth and progress. our experiences prepare us to return him.
-Diversity and afflictions last (from heavens perspective) for a small moment, if we do bear it well, we will be exalted.
-Burdens provide opportunities to practice virtues of perfection, invite us to yield to the Holy Spirit and put of the natural man and become a saint through atonement of  Christ.  Become a child, submissive, meek, humble, patient, full of love, willing to submit to all things that the lord see fit to afflict to us, even as a child to the father.
-Burdens become blessings.  Need time, effort and faith to understand.
Adam told:
-Cursed by be the ground for thy sake.
-By the sweat of thy face thou shall eat bread.
-Work is a continual burden, but a blessing for our sake.  It teaches us lessons we can only learn by the sweat of our face.
Alma observed poverty and afflictions of the Zoromites humbled them to prepare them to hear the word.
-“because ye are compelled to be humbled, blessed are ye.”
-economic challenges can bless us to hear the word.
Because of the length of the way between Laminites and Nephites, were softened because of their inflictions, insomuch that they did humble themselves before god.
– political unrest, social disorder and modern Gadianton Robbers may humble us and motivate us to seek shelter from societal storms.
Joseph Smith was told that the terrible things he suffered for years from his enemies would give him experience and be for his good.
– the suffering we experience from the offences of others is a valuable and painful school to improving our own behavior.
– Bearing our burdens will develop a reservoir of empathy for the problems of others.
– Bear one an other’s burdens that they me light.
– Keeping baptismal covenants help us with our burdens and others.
– Matthew Quote (When did we clothe thee, etc…) ye have done it on my brethren, you have done it unto me.

Saturday Session 1, Talk 3 – L. Whitney Clayton, Presidency of the Seventy

My Notes:

  • How long can we carry burdens?
  • Burdens form three sources:
  1. Natural product of the world we live in (illness, earthquakes, etc.) that we cannot control.
  2. Imposed upon us by the misconduct of others.  Abuse, additions, sin, incorrect traditions, repression, crime.  Gossip, unkindness can cause others genuine suffering.
  3. Our own mistakes and shortcomings produce many of problems and the most burden is sin.  Pain from keeping commandments.
  • No matter our burdens, we are children of god who sent us to earth for growth and progress. our experiences prepare us to return him.
  • Diversity and afflictions last (from heavens perspective) for a small moment, if we do bear it well, we will be exalted.
  • Burdens provide opportunities to practice virtues of perfection, invite us to yield to the Holy Spirit and put of the natural man and become a saint through atonement of  Christ.  Become a child, submissive, meek, humble, patient, full of love, willing to submit to all things that the lord see fit to afflict to us, even as a child to the father.
  • Burdens become blessings.  Need time, effort and faith to understand.

Adam told:

  • Cursed by be the ground for thy sake.
  • By the sweat of thy face thou shall eat bread.
  • Work is a continual burden, but a blessing for our sake.  It teaches us lessons we can only learn by the sweat of our face.

Alma observed poverty and afflictions of the Zoromites humbled them to prepare them to hear the word.

  • “Because ye are compelled to be humbled, blessed are ye.”
  • Economic challenges can bless us to hear the word.

Because of the length of the way between Laminites and Nephites, were softened because of their inflictions, insomuch that they did humble themselves before god.

  • Political unrest, social disorder and modern Gadianton Robbers may humble us and motivate us to seek shelter from societal storms.

Joseph Smith was told that the terrible things he suffered for years from his enemies would give him experience and be for his good.

  • The suffering we experience from the offences of others is a valuable and painful school to improving our own behavior.
  • Bearing our burdens will develop a reservoir of empathy for the problems of others.
  • Bear one an other’s burdens that they me light.
  • Keeping baptismal covenants help us with our burdens and others.
  • Matthew Quote (When did we clothe thee, etc…) ye have done it on my brethren, you have done it unto me.



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