I ended up taking quite a few notes ... which I might as well share with you, right? ^_^
Remember, every other year, we'll be having three Stake Conferences (being 1 Broadcast for the region as well as our two typical Stake Conferences).
From President Carlile's address before the broadcast:
- The story of Christ at the pool of Bethesda; he healed a man on the Sabbath.
Observing the Sabbath - we should avoid having a set list (like in the Old Testament and, instead, concentrate on doing what helps our hearts and souls
The man at the pool was looking for healing in troubled waters. We often do the same.
We must look for the healing and peace available from Christ.
- President Carlile quoted a poem Sharon Price Anderson wrote inspired by Carl Bloch's painting of Christ Healing the Sick at the Pool of Bethesda.
- We need to avoid distractions from Christ
- We have three reasons for observing the Sabbath (from Russell M. Nelson):
1. Strengthen our testimonies
2. Strengthen our love of God
3. Strengthen our affection for and desire to serve Christ
- Isaiah 58:13-14
- One way to improve Sabbath Day Observance: MUSIC
In our meetings, in our classes, in our homes.
This is the best way to invite the Spirit into our lives.
- Ward Music Chair, Organist, and Choister should ALL communicate with their Bishopric member and each other.
- Sacrament Meeting begins with PRELUDE MUSIC - It should be the best 10 minutes of your week, sitting and pondering while listening to hymns
The Opening Hymn should be familiar and full of life.
We should not play hymns too slowly or too quickly.
Special musical numbers are for worship, not to showcase performance skills.
WE SHOULD ALL PARTICIPATE IN THE SINGING OF THE HYMNS.
- Change the way you look at the Sabbath. Change the way you observe the Sabbath.
Conducting: James J Hamula
(Others there: Dale G. Renlund, Bonnie L. Oscarson, C. Scott Grow)
C. Scott Grow - "How to Remain True to the Faith"
- Patterns of Faith
Read - Feast upon the words of Christ - They show all things and will tell you all things
Scripture study by topic in the Index -- The restored gospel is found in the Triple Combination
This will bless you with greater understanding.
- Elder Bruce R. McConkie's last conference talk ( https://www.lds.org/general-conference/1985/04/the-purifying-power-of-gethsemane?lang=eng )
"In speaking of these wondrous things I shall use my own words, though you may think they are the words of scripture, words spoken by other Apostles and prophets. "True it is they were first proclaimed by others, but they are now mine, for the Holy Spirit of God has borne witness to me that they are true, and it is now as though the Lord had revealed them to me in the first instance. I have thereby heard his voice and know his word."
- Scripture study will bless you with power to the convincing of others. This will help parents. Family Scripture Study is a priority.
Joseph Smith's first prayer is an example of how scripture study is a catalyst for more meaningful prayers.
ALSO, as Sister Berg pointed out in Relief Society yesterday, the Epistle of James was written to go forth to ALL TWELVE TRIBES of Israel, so it's very fitting for Joseph Smith to be inspired by it, since, as the prophet of the Restoration, one of his duties was to initiate the gathering of the twelve tribes.
- Attend Church
We attend church to worship, not as a social responsibility.
Our sacrifice is a broken heart and a contrite spirit.
We need to examine our lives and repent of our sins.
You take the name of Christ upon you. Serve in the Church. Become like Him.
ALWAYS remember Him so that you can have His Spirit to be with you.
Bonnie L. Oscarson - Discipleship
- "What is discipleship? It is primarily obedience to the Savior." - James E Faust ( https://www.lds.org/general-conference/2006/10/discipleship?lang=eng )
- “We teach that the moment they step out of the water, they step out of the world and into the kingdom of God. By covenant, they agree to obey His commandments.Covenants place us under a strong obligation to honor our commitments to God. To keep our covenants, we must give up activities or interests that prevent us from honoring those covenants.” - Elder Robert D Hales (Return: Four Phases of Our Mortal Journey Home (2010), 60.)
- Elder Jeffrey R. Holland - "You NEVER check your religion at the door." ( https://www.lds.org/ensign/2014/06/the-call-to-be-christlike?lang=eng )
- Alma to Corianton - "Wickedness never was happiness." (Alma 41:10)
- Deliberate choice of wrong offends the Spirit. He will leave us.
- Repentance is still possible through the Atonement of Jesus Christ.
- Obedience (discipleship) brings blessings.
James J. Hamula - The Last Days
- The advice that Christ gave his disciples applies to us today: "Fear not." "Be not afraid, only believe."
- Keep your eyes fixed upon the Lord - Don't allow the world or its troubles to distract you from your faith.
- Trust in the Lord and in the power of His deliverance
- Testimony of the Atonement
- Isaiah 61:3 - "To appoint unto them that mourn in Zion, to give unto them beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning, the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness; that they might be called trees of righteousness, the planting of the Lord, that he might be glorified."
- Follow your leaders
- God's kingdom in the last days, foreseen by the prophet Daniel, is The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
- There will be no institutional apostasy from the time of the time of the Restoration through the Second Coming.
- Fear not.
- His Church shall be a defense and refuge against the storms and trials of the last days.
- We need to build our lives upon the gospel of Jesus Christ and its doctrines.
- Hearken to the voice of Church leaders
- - Perfection is not a prerequisite for a prophet. “I never told you I was perfect—but there is no error in the revelations which I have taught” (The Words of Joseph Smith, ed. Andrew F. Ehat and Lyndon W. Cook , 369).
- By their fruits ye shall know them.
- Stand with the Church and its leaders
Dale G. Renlund
- Story of explaining Adam-ondi-aman to some strangers. He didn't know how to start in explaining WHY this site had such a special spirit present ... but his wife said ~The simple start to that question is that, in 1820, a young boy named Joseph Smith knelt to pray. God the Father and Jesus Christ appeared to him and revealed the fulness of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. ... My husband will now relate to you how that relates to this issue.~ (very poorly paraphrased. Sorry. I really wish I could recall EXACTLY the phrasing that Sister Renlund employs ... but you get the idea.) And, another time, when they were asked why they don't drink alcohol/coffee/smoke, she started with EXACTLY the same answer and passed the rest on to Elder Renlund. He took it in stride with a good sense of humor.
- ADDRESSING QUESTIONS ABOUT THE CHURCH
1. Restoration through Joseph Smith -- The Plan of Salvation
2. How the Restoration brought about the issue/revelation at hand
- Commandments have divine origins
- ACT ON FAITH
2. Live it
3. Receive revelation/blessings
- Plan of Salvation
- Gender is an eternal characteristic
- The Council in Heaven
- The importance of agency
- The necessity of the Atonement of Jesus Christ
1. Allows us to overcome physical and spiritual death
2. Allows mercy to fulfill the demands of justice (mediator)
3. Allows the possibility to make temple covenants
- Mortal life/Post-mortal life
-- We don't have the dichotomy of Heaven vs Hell. We understand about differing degrees of Glory.
---- Satan's approach (in the pre-existence/council in Heaven) wouldn't allow God's children to attain ANY degree of glory.
---- Satan can cause us to stop our progression through tempting us to sin. We stop our own progress by choosing evil.
----- Our degree of glory that we will attain in our post-mortal/post-judgement state is our own choice.
- Celestial marriage is a covenant, eternal marriage. Nothing else will endure. We must comply with God's law to attain all that He has promised.
11th ARTICLE OF FAITH - Dealing with differences in opinion/beliefs
- Treat all with love and tolerance. Show respect to each other.
- Our doctrine is NOT nefarious (God loves everyone).
- Do NOT act in a bigoted way. That is not following Christ's example or obeying His laws.
- Love and live the doctrine. Love all people. We CAN do BOTH.
- Disagree without being disagreeable. Aim for understanding, respect, and (most of all) love.
He also had some great examples of how to treat others of differing beliefs/lifestyles.
1. His family is friends with those of other religions with different practices (Word of Wisdom)
They choose to go out to dinner together. The other family can order alcohol. They don't preach at this other family. They show love.
2. They could be friends with a couple in a same-sex relationship. They don't have to approve of that lifestyle. They also don't need to chastise the couple/family.
Show love, tolerance, and respect. They are Heavenly Father's children, too. They should be treated like it.
I hope that you all received some answers and learned some wonderful truths to help you become closer to Christ,
I'll work on typing up what went on in class yesterday. Hopefully, it'll be up soon!
I'll work on typing up what went on in class yesterday. Hopefully, it'll be up soon!