President Eyring conducted the Sunday morning session, featuring talks by President Dieter F. Uchtdorf, Elder Russell M. Nelson, Elder Ronald A. Rasband, Sister Julie B. Beck, Elder D. Todd Christofferson and President Thomas S. Monson.
Direct quotations (based on my notes) are given in quotes; all other text represents my summary of the remarks given. Parenthetical comments and discussion notes at the end of the post in italics are my own editorial comments.
Mormon Tabernacle Choir: Teach me to Walk in the Light of His Love
President Dieter F. Uchtdorf, second counselor in the First Presidency, on broken relationships and obtaining mercy:
- “We can so clearly and easily see the harmful results that come when others judge and hold grudges. But when it comes to our own prejudices and grievances, we too often justify our anger as righteous, and our judgment as reliable and only appropriate. We make exceptions when it comes to our own bitterness because we feel that we have all the information we need to hold someone else in contempt.”
- Cites bumper sticker: “Don’t judge me because I sin differently from you.”
- “Stop it.”
- “We must let go of our grievances. Part of our mortality is to learn to let go of [them.]”
Elder Russell M. Nelson, of the Quorum of the Twelve, on the gifts of God:
- “I thought of some people I know who are just as oblivious to their Creator and their true ‘bread of life’ [as the fish are unaware of where there food comes from]. They live from day to day without an awareness of God and His goodness unto them.”
- “A perfect body is not required to achieve one’s divine destiny. In fact, some of the sweetest spirits are housed in frail or imperfect bodies.”
Elder Ronald A. Rasband, of the Seventy, on the lessons learned through those with unusual difficulties:
- Framed his remarks with the story of his grandson, Paxton, who was born with birth defects.
- “I wept as pondered the limitless love our Heavenly Father and HIs Beloved Son, Jesus Christ, have for each one of us, while learning in a powerful way, what the worth of a soul is both physically and spiritually to God.”
- “‘Let me know if I can help,’ is really no help at all.”
Congregational Hymn: Rejoice the Lord is King
Sister Julie B. Beck, recently released president of the Relief Society, on the vision of the Relief Society:
- “Since the days of Joseph Smith, who the Lord used to restore His Church, prophets have spoken of the essential need for sisters to be full participants in the Lord’s work. They have shared their vision of strong, faithful, purposeful women who understand their eternal value and purpose.”
- “Relief Society is not a program. It is an official part of the Lord’s Church that is ‘divinely ordained of God’ to teach, strengthen, and inspire sisters in their purpose regarding faith, family, and relief.”
- “The sociality, friendship, and unity we desire are not the purposes of our association; rather, they are the sweet results of serving together with the Lord in his work.”
Elder D. Todd Christofferson, of the Quorum of the Twelve, on our doctrine and how it is established:
- Provides an overview of how Church doctrine is arrived at and promulgated.
- “In some faith traditions, theologians claim equal teaching authority with the ecclesiastical hierarchy, and doctrinal matters may become a contest of opinions between them. Some rely on the ecumenical councils of the Middle Ages and their creeds. Others place primary emphasis on the reasoning of post-apostolic theologians or on Biblical hermeneutics and exegesis. We value scholarship that enhances understanding, but in the Church today, just as anciently, establishing the doctrine of Christ or correcting doctrinal deviations is a matter of divine revelation to those the Lord endows with apostolic authority.”
- “These same patterns are followed today in the restored Church of Jesus Christ. The president of the Church may announce or interpret doctrines based on revelation to him. Doctrinal exposition may also come through the combined council of the First Presidency and Quorum of the Twelve Apostles. Council deliberations will often include a weighing of canonized scriptures, the teachings of Church leaders, and past practice. But in the end, just as in the New Testament church, the objective is not simply consensus among council members, but revelation from God. It is a process involving both reason and faith for obtaining the mind and will of the Lord.”
- Told an anecdote about Brigham Young preaching against the Federal troops coming to Utah in the morning, and then in the afternoon saying that those words were his opinion, not that of the Lord. Brigham Young then preached a different message in the afternoon.
Mormon Tabernacle Choir: Let us Oft Speak Kind Words
President Thomas S. Monson, on eternal truths and the everyday concerns of life:
- This discourse uses the golden questions as a template for contrasting eternal truths with the everyday concerns of life.
- Told the story of a grandmother faced with a life-threatening disease who now realizes that her concern over housecleaning and personal possessions were ephemeral.
- “In our times of deepest reflection or greatest need, the soul of man reaches heavenward, seeking a divine response to life’s greatest questions: Where did we come from? Why are we here? Where do we go after we leave this life? Answers to these questions are not discovered within the covers of academia’s textbooks or by checking the internet. These questions transcend mortality. They embrace eternity.”
- “Unlike toy boats, we have been provided divine attributes to guide our journey. We enter mortality not to float with the moving currents of life, but with the power to think, to reason, and to achieve.”
Mormon Tabernacle Choir: Come Thou Font of Every Blessing
[Updated at 1 pm, MST]