Monday, October 6, 2008

You Didn't Hear the Best Conference 'Talk'

On October 4-5 my family attended the fall General Conference of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Salt Lake City, Utah. During the conference church members were able to listen to talks by various church leaders. Most of my family and I attended two sessions of the conference in person and watched the other two on television.

The final two talks of the conference ended up being memorable for me, but not exactly because of what was said. Elder Quentin L. Cook of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles spoke about the difficulties and trials that we all face in life and how the Savior is always there for us with open arms. He told a story of two women who met as a result of a tragic traffic accident. One was the mother of a 20 year old young man who was involved in a head-on traffic collision with the husband of the other woman. Both men were killed instantly.

Through the years the two women became friends to the point that they attend the temple together each year. Elder Cook noted that the two women were attending that particular session of conference together.

At the end of his remarks he told of how President Thomas S. Monson was asked on his birthday this past August what would be the ideal gift that members worldwide could give him, he said without a moment’s hesitation, “Find someone who is having a hard time, . . . and do something for them.” (Read the entire talk here.)

Elder Cook was followed by President Monson, who was the concluding speaker of the conference. Following the closing prayer it is tradition for the congregation to stand and wait for President Monson to leave the Conference Center. As we stood waiting, President Monson went to his right to speak with Elder Cook, instead of exiting to his left. They spoke for a few seconds and Elder Cook pointed towards the first couple of rows to the left of the podium. I watched as President Monson went down the steps off of the rostrum and onto the plaza level. He stood there for a few minutes and appeared to speak with two women in the front row.

I don't know exactly who he was speaking with, but think it was probable that it was the two women whom Elder Cook had referred to in his talk. I remembered President Monson's words, 'Find someone who is having a hard time and do something for them'. I also remembered the counsel the Savior gave to the multitude gathered to hear him speak two millenia ago regarding identifying a true prophet. "Ye shall know them by their fruits" (Matthew 7:16)

President Monson's actions were evidence to me of the fruits of a prophet of God - those same actions were also the best 'talk' I heard at the October 2008 General Conference.

Links in this post:,5232,23-1-947-32,00.html


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Queers United said...

Marriage equality is a family values issue! Why shouldn't same-sex couples and their children have access to the 1,049 rights and benefits that come with marriage? Like the right to visit a loved one in a hospital, or to file joint tax returns. Marriage as a term has evolved, it used to mean a man with many wives, than it was a woman being the property of her man, now it is about love and financial planning. Gay & lesbian couples should have the same access to this beautiful institution and would only serve to strengthen it. Don't hurt our families, vote NO on prop h8!

emily said...

thanks for this post.

Marriage is our culture’s ultimate expression of equality–it takes one man and one woman to create children. Even if a marriage can’t have children or choose not to have children the definition of their relationship expresses this equality.

One could see a lesbian union as a marginalization of men, or a homosexual union as a marginalization of women.

I don't believe government should sanction the marginalization of any gender (or more importantly, parent). And even though some families can't have children, or choose not to have children, you can't separate the child-issue from the marriage issue.

there is a great discussion here:

yes on prop 8!

emily said...

p.s. your blog is on a black list. awesome right?
go here:

Troy said...

Last week it was first graders at a lesbian wedding fieldtrip, now this week a secret kindergarten "gay day."

Kids are being taught about gay marriage in our schools. This story is from today, kindergartners held a secret GAY DAY today.... WITHOUT PARENTAL CONSENT! It is exactly what the opposition told us would never happen, they are spending millions this week telling us it STILL won't happen. This is the fight of our lives.'s bank account is empty, we need to make donations to respond to the lies the opposition is telling us.

see the story here: