“Love and Embrace Them”: Message of Love From Church Leaders During 189th General Conference
SALT LAKE CITY, Utah – Latter-day Saints from around the world gathered in Salt Lake City for the 189th Annual General Conference of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
10 new General Authority Seventies were called this afternoon, along with a new Sunday School General Presidency.
As far as the messages from church leaders, there has been a theme Saturday of showing love to everyone, which follows the updated policy change involving children of same sex couples, announced on Thursday.
Opening the conference, the youngest apostle, Elder Ulisses Soares, spoke of preserving relationships with others, especially those who may turn away from their beliefs.
“It is hard to understand all the reasons why some people take another path. The best we can do in these circumstances is to just love and embrace them; pray for their well-being and seek for the Lord’s help to know what to do and say.”
Elder Dieter F. Uchtdorf spoke of showing a greater measure of compassion to others.
“Laugh with them, rejoice with them, weep with them, respect them. Heal, lift and strengthen them, have compassion for others, even those who are unkind to you.”
President Henry B. Eyring offered instruction on how to make the home a place of learning and faith.
”You will find some of your greatest joys in your efforts to make your home a place of faith in the Lord Jesus Christ and a place that is permeated with love.”
In the afternoon session, Elder Jeffrey R. Holland focused helping Latter-day Saints to make their Sundays more fulfilling.
“There is no shortage of suffering in this world, inside the Church and out, so look in any direction and you will find someone whose pain seems too heavy to bear and whose heartache seems never to end. One way to ‘always remember Him’ would be to join the great Physician in his never-ending task of lifting the load from those who are burdened and relieving the pain of those who are distraught.”
And with it being April Conference, it means that the Saturday evening session is for the boys and men of the church and it is also when we also expect to hear for the first time from President Russell M. Nelson.
Latter-day Saints also heard from one of their women leaders.
Sister Becky Craven, second counselor in the Young Women General Presidency, spoke of choices in life that can come between Church members and their faith.
This morning, Latter-day Saints enjoyed and sounds of the Tabernacle Choir on Temple Square and were counseled that there is a careful way and a casual way to live the Gospel of Jesus Christ.
“Anytime we say, ‘however’, ‘except’ or ‘but’ when it applies to following the counsel of our prophet leaders or living the gospel carefully, we are in fact saying, ‘that counsel does not apply to me.’ We can rationalize all we want, but the fact is, there is not a right way to do the wrong thing!”
She said to both adults and young people, distractions take us into the gray areas of life.
“Are we careful or casual in what we read and what we watch on TV and our mobile devices? Are we careful in our language? Or, do we casually embrace the crude and vulgar? We do not lower our standards to fit in or to make someone else feel comfortable. We are disciples of Jesus Christ and as such we are about elevating others, lifting them to a higher, holier place where they, too, can reap greater blessings.”
Following the morning session, we spoke with those leaving the Conference Center. Sister Craven’s word resonated with Church members.
Paige Simpson said, “I loved Sister Craven’s talk, being careful instead of casual in our covenant keeping and in our beliefs in the Savior.”
Many Latter-day Saints come to General Conference praying for answers.
9-year-old Claire Elliott has been battling pediatric cancer and is now in hospice care. Her mother told us that chemotherapy no longer helps. Through her tears, Annie Elliott told us that she found hope today. “I’m feeling more like whatever happens, God has a plan. God knows why, why this is happening. He knows why, what’s in store for me after she’s gone.”
Some come to General Conference to find peace.
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