General Conference Open Thread

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cwald
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Re: General Conference Open Thread

Post by cwald » 03 Apr 2011, 15:12

I personally, think that this conference was decent, and I'm left with good feeling that the church local leadership will spend the next six months preaching the gospel rather than preaching "the church." I have a more positive outlook than I did in October. (of course, I don't know if we will ever have that kind of horrid message in GC again in my lifetime like what happened in October. At least I can hope that we don't have to go through that again.)

Way different feeling than what I had in October. I have little bit more faith in the leadership. I found almost all the messages were centered around the savior - with bits an pieces of "guilt and shame" thrown in. Yes, there are things about some of the talks that bothered me - but it was different than October which truly was a "pray, pay and obey" message. I didn't like some of the hooky "pandering" to the females and singles in an attempt to make them feel validated, and the shaming approach to parents who don't believe. I think a lot of it was benign comparatively though. BKP was tame, even though he got his digs into the homosexual arena and the WoW, but what else can you expect. And besides the talk yesterday where the bishop used shame to get the folks to pay tithing by going into the primary, and perhaps Christoffersons talk - pretty benign really. I really didn't get that same feeling like I had in October.

I think the message is to find the gospel, the savior, and become better followers of Jesus. yes, it has it's mormon flavor biasness, but I can live with that --- if the local membership will only listen and follow it as well. Hopefully, this conference doesn't turn into a "anti cafeteria, anti middle way crusade" because of Nelson's comments, the same way that they did the last six months with the whole 14 Fs and the two lines of communications.

All in all, I appreciated the amount of time devoted to the savior, rather than the church. That is breath of fresh air for me, and is something quite different than what we got six months ago.
  Jesus gave us the gospel, but Satan invented church. It takes serious evil to formalize faith into something tedious and then pile guilt on anyone who doesn't participate enthusiastically. - Robert Kirby

Curt Sunshine
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Re: General Conference Open Thread

Post by Curt Sunshine » 03 Apr 2011, 15:32

cwald, I hope you liked my shout out to you in the notes. ;)
I see through my glass, darkly - as I play my saxophone in harmony with the other instruments in God's orchestra. (h/t Elder Joseph Wirthlin)

Even if people view many things differently, the core Gospel principles (LOVE; belief in the unseen but hoped; self-reflective change; symbolic cleansing; striving to recognize the will of the divine; never giving up) are universal.

"For every complex problem there is an answer that is clear, simple, and wrong." H. L. Mencken

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flower
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Re: General Conference Open Thread

Post by flower » 03 Apr 2011, 15:51

Overall... not a bad conference. Lots of talks about serving others. Yeah! I liked that. Ballard's talk was excellent and I look forward to re-reading it. Simplifying the gospel to the basic principles of love of God and neighbor. Exactly the kind of talk I was hoping to hear.

I also loved Lynn G Robbins. I loved his comments on the greater importance of "being", not just "doing". I am also impressed he was able to pull off giving some really great parenting advice without sounding condescending or offending parents.

There was still quite a list of things that bothered me a bit, but I am trying not too focus on and over-think those comments. I am happy with where I am heading and I refuse to let a bunch of old men guilt me into thinking I am on the wrong path. Different roads can still take me in the right direction, for me!
"The individual has always had to struggle to keep from being overwhelmed by the tribe. If you try it, you will be lonely often, and sometimes frightened. But no price is too high to pay for the privilege of owning yourself." ~Rudyard Kipling

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bridget_night
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Re: General Conference Open Thread

Post by bridget_night » 03 Apr 2011, 16:16

I got permission to use someone elses notes on all the talks. So here is their take:

Saturday Morning Session

Thomas S Monson
We're doing a lot in Japan. Give to the missionary fund

L Tom Perry
Go to church every Sunday and dress nice

Jean A. Stevens
Children should pay tithing too and we need to be an example for them.

Walter F. González
We need to convert the people in Ghana and keep our covenants

Kent F. Richards
Your pain is caused by your lack of repentance and children have amazing spiritual experiences, so we need to be more like them.

Quentin L. Cook
LDS women are incredible and more religious because they can suffer through more. You can measure a woman’s faith and sincerity by rifling through her purse. Women are happy with their role in the church.

Henry B. Eyring
The Church is doing a lot to serve the poor in the world. The Church Welfare Program is the United Order and Law of Consecration for our day. Give a more generous Fast Offering and participate in a service project.

Saturday Afternoon Session

Boyd K Packer
We are the Church of Jesus Christ and we shouldn't call ourselves "Mormons" but rather "Latter-Day Saints." We have the Priesthood, follow the Word of Wisdom, and people leave because they have been offended.

Russel M Nelson
If our children go astray, it's because we lost faith and Satan lead us astray. Their faith is our responsibility. Don't let them associate with Cafeteria Mormons.

Richard J. Maynes
Satan is to blame for the attack on marriage and for pornography. Gay marriage is against God's plan. Hold Family Home Evening and daily scripture studies. If you lead your children astray, you will be judged by God.

Cecil O. Samuelson
If those who doubt keep the commandments, then the problems we have with the church will disappear.

Dallin H Oaks
The desires we act on shape who we become. Repent and live the commandments to overcome wicked desires or you will be eternally judged. Everyone should be married in the Temple.

M. Russell Ballard
The world is uncertain, complex & confusing. We overcomplicate the Gospel of Jesus Christ. The basic principle is to love God with all our heart and to love our neighbor as ourselves. Inactives will return and we'll gain more investigators through service projects and being friends with our neighbors.

Priesthood Session

Neil L Anderson
Speaking to the 12 to 25 year olds: Choose the right, serve a mission, live worthily.

Steven E. Snow
Be a good example of hope to your children. Hope is intertwined with faith and charity.

Larry M. Gibson
Speaking about Deacon's Quorum Presidents: respect their right to hold the keys of Presidency for their quorum. Discover your priesthood duties by reading scriptures, praying, and using the Duty to God booklet.

Deiter F. Uchtdorf
Priesthood holders are living below their privileges and potential as the "elect" of God. Read the Scriptures and Church Handbooks. Seek personal revelation and recognize the still small voice. Find joy in Priesthood service, don't just go through the motions.

Henry B. Eyring
Learn our duties and become more united as quorums. Every Quorum member's opinion is important. Have love for each other. Have a conviction to labor for the salvation of men.

Thomas S. Monson
Don't exercise unrighteous dominion of the Priesthood. Don't watch profane movies, listen to profane music, or use profanity. Stay away from pornography, alcohol, tobacco, or other drugs. Read the Book of Mormon and go to church. Don't procrastinate marriage even if you aren't financially ready. Get married in the Temple. Work through problems with your marriage with faith and love.

Sunday Morning Session

Deiter F Uctdorf
People delay becoming engaged as disciples because they are waiting for a miracle to prove it is true. Don’t block out the promptings we get from the Spirit, the scriptures, or while serving those around us. Share the Gospel message. Blessed are they who have not seen, yet have believed.

Paul V. Johnson
Trials and afflictions purify and refine us. Blessings come after tribulations.

H. David Burton
Establishment of the Church Welfare Program during the Great Depression. Emphasis of Welfare Program is personal responsibility and self-reliance. If we don’t aid those in need, then we will be under condemnation. This is the work the Savior would be doing if He were here.

Sylvia H Allred
The essence of discipleship is to love one another and serve one another. Relief Society has always been at the center of church welfare. Become self-reliant so you can help others.

David A. Bednar
Revelation is available to every person who has been baptized by authority, confirmed, received the Holy Ghost, and is acting in faith and worthiness. Shun innapropriate media and harmful substances because they impair and destroy our capacity to recognize the Spirit. Some revelations are immediate and intense, others are subtle and gradual. The Restoration was not revealed to Joseph Smith all at once. Don’t doubt your testimony if you don’t receive immediate revelation, keep pressing forward in obedience. Oliver Cowdery was called to the translation work by revelation.

Thomas S. Monson
The Church Welfare Program is inspired of God. There were 84 widows in the Ward he was Bishop over. Many people have made difficult journeys to travel to Temples, but many are now getting their own Temples. Early Saints built Temples everywhere they settled despite persecutions. The eternal blessings we receive in the Temples are worth every sacrifice. Qualify for a recommend and visit the Temple regularly. Do nothing which will keep you from entering its doors. Put pictures of the Temple up in your home so your children can see them. We are building a Temple in Rome where Peter and Paul preached and were martyred.

Sunday Afternoon Session

Richard G Scott
Two of the vital pillars of God’s Plan: Marriage and Family. Satan is striving to tear apart the family and undermine the sacred ordinances of the Temple. Young men need to stop wasting time and get married when they return from their mission. Stay loyal to your marriage covenants and express your love for each other. Husbands need to lead scripture study, family prayers, and FHE’s. He lost one of his children at young age, but his being BIC made the loss a little more bearable. He looks forward to the day of being reconciled to his wife beyond the vale.

D Todd Christofferson
The covenants and commandments make us holy and “perfect.” It’s not enough for anyone to just go through the motions. Much of modern Christianity doesn’t see that God makes any demands on His believers. The God of the Bible traffics in life and death, not niceness. He calls for our sacrificial love. We need to be willing to accept and seek correction. “For whom the Lord loveth, He chasteneth.” Sometimes God redirects our course to serve His purposes. Correction can come through church leaders. Correction can come from one’s spouse. Parents must correct and chasten their children. We should also become self-correcting and become submissive to God.

Carl B Pratt
Pay your tithing faithfully and have faith that God will provide the means necessary. When we obey commandments we are blessed. Let us not be accused of robbing God. All he asks is 10%. The Lord expects us to obey the Law and to pay our “first fruits.” You should pay as soon as you receive money. Teach your children to pay tithing and take them to tithing settlement. Don’t expect the blessings to come in the form of money or wealth. We are blessed with wisdom and understanding of provident living and self-reliance. Paying tithing helps us foster a submissive, forgiving, generous, charitable and submissive heart.

Lynn G. Robbins
Faith without works is dead. You must “do” and “be” or you are a hypocrite. People create “to-do” lists, but why don’t people create “to-be” lists? When we discipline our children, we need to focus on what the symptom is (the “be”) rather than just the misdeed (the “do”). Having a child who tests your patience to the “nth” degree is being enrolled in “parenting 505” and is an opportunity to develop more Christ-like attributes. Don’t use labels like “stupid,” “lazy,” or “clumsy.” Disappointing behavior is temporary. Focus on their character and give them praise for their accomplishments.

Benjamin De Hoyos
The name of the church was not chosen by man, but given by the Lord. The early Christians called each other Saints. Saints are those who conduct family prayer, scripture study, family history work, attend the temple regularly, and do missionary work among inactives. Saints are those who have charity and endure trials and tribulations. An understanding of the Atonement of Christ will be our strength and peace. Even if we don’t have a deep understanding of the Gospel, we can place our confidence in the Lord to sustain us.

C. Scott Grow
His brother died in his sleep at 51 years of age while Elder Grow was preparing for this talk. He was BIC, RM, MIT, etc. He strayed for 12 years and lived a hedonistic lifestyle which resulted in lifelong health problems. Later he became a prodigal son, rejoined the church and was re-baptized. He served in a Bishopric and was married again in the Temple. He died last month and will be resurrected with the just. Those who have wandered or waivered can take still part in the miracle of the Atonement. Jesus took upon Himself our sins and infirmities and has born our griefs and sorrows. With the exception of the sins of perdition, the Atonement is available to everyone all the time based on conditions of repentance. Go to your Bishop if necessary, and immerse yourself in prayer and scripture study.

Jeffrey R. Holland
As we close conference, focus on the unique phenomenon that General Conference is. We testify to every nation, kindred, tongue and people that God not only lives but speaks in our time and our day. No one who speaks at General Conference is assigned a topic. They seek the Lord’s will and are men and women with as many physical, financial, and family difficulties as anyone else, but who rise up to their calling. We are commanded to teach of repentance and good tidings. As the path of discipleship ascends, the trail becomes ever more narrow. What was gentle in the lowlands of loyalty becomes deeply demanding in discipleship. Each speaker at conference in his or her own way is an angelic messenger sounding the trump. We love, honor, and sustain President Monson who has served as an Apostle for over 50 years.

Thomas S. Monson
Love and appreciation for those he serves with. We are a global church, may we be good citizens wherever we live and reach out to those of other faiths. Be examples of honesty in all your doings. Testimony of Christ’s resurrection.
_________________
"I may not walk the straight and the narrow, but I sure as hell try to cross it as often as I can." - J. Golden Kimball

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SilentDawning
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Re: General Conference Open Thread

Post by SilentDawning » 03 Apr 2011, 17:44

Ray Degraw wrote:Elder Nelson:

He's not a fan of Cafeteria Mormonism when it comes to following commandments - but that leaves different doctrinal interpretations untouched and unaddressed.
I was at first a bit put off by his statement, but then I realized that in his position, he MUST advocate total adherence to commandments. How would it affect the membership if he said "it's OK to pick and choose commandments"? He can't say that.

However, in the StayLDS article, where it mentions cafetria/buffet mormonism, it's an attempt to help people who are ready to leave the Church, and I feel it's safe for someone in a non-Church position, without formal authority, to save a few people from leaving entirely by suggesting a "stay of obedience" on certain commandments so they can continue to feel the influence of the good parts of the Church.

So, I don't condemn him for that statement.
"It doesn't have to be about the Church (church) all the time!" -- SD

"The individual has always had to struggle to keep from being overwhelmed by the tribe. No price is too high to pay for the privilege of owning yourself."

A man asked Jesus "do all roads lead to you?" Jesus responds,”most roads don’t lead anywhere, but I will travel any road to find you.” Adapted from The Shack, William Young

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Tom Haws
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Re: General Conference Open Thread

Post by Tom Haws » 03 Apr 2011, 17:52

I appreciated the implications of the assertion first thing this morning that Saint Francis Assisi made a pronouncement among the greatest when he said, "Preach the gospel always. If necessary, use words."

1. The implication here is that good old Catholic Saint Francis had the gospel (without the LDS baptism and without Joseph Smith).
2. This elevates a non-member very high as a teacher of holiness.
3. This is nigh unto a denial of the idea of a Great Apostasy.
4. He couldn't have chosen a better person to quote.
Tom (aka Justin Martyr/Justin Morning/Jacob Marley/Kupord Maizzed)
Higley and Guadalupe
Gilbert, Arizona
----
Sure, any religion would do. But I'm LDS.
"There are no academic issues. Everything is emotional to somebody." Ray Degraw at www.StayLDS.com

Curt Sunshine
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Re: General Conference Open Thread

Post by Curt Sunshine » 03 Apr 2011, 18:28

I agree, Tom. I also like that William Tindell's statement was called "prophecy" for the same reason.
I see through my glass, darkly - as I play my saxophone in harmony with the other instruments in God's orchestra. (h/t Elder Joseph Wirthlin)

Even if people view many things differently, the core Gospel principles (LOVE; belief in the unseen but hoped; self-reflective change; symbolic cleansing; striving to recognize the will of the divine; never giving up) are universal.

"For every complex problem there is an answer that is clear, simple, and wrong." H. L. Mencken

behappy
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Re: General Conference Open Thread

Post by behappy » 03 Apr 2011, 20:28

Nelson's hijacking of the phrase Cafeteria Mormon was brilliant. By taking credit for the phrase and redefining it he now owns the phrase and everyone in the church knows it is a bad thing to be a Cafeteria Mormon. It pissed me off to the point I turned conference off and enjoy the rest of the day with my family. He took a phrase that described members who struggle with historical evidence and changed it to someone who can't hack it and wants to break the commandments. I saw this as a power play and a way of saying there is only one way to be and if you don't follow the rules you are not welcome.

Nelson knew exactly what he was doing. TBMs got a good laugh and think he coined a cute phrase and the doubters got minimized and painted as only wanting to sin. I feel like everything I have been trying to do as of late is for not. I want to look for the good in Mormonism, I want to stay involved but it has been increasingly more difficult as of late and this was just another do what you are told or you are not committed and less of a Mormon. Am I reading too much into the comment?

Brown
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Re: General Conference Open Thread

Post by Brown » 03 Apr 2011, 21:26

behappy wrote:
Nelson knew exactly what he was doing. TBMs got a good laugh and think he coined a cute phrase and the doubters got minimized and painted as only wanting to sin. I feel like everything I have been trying to do as of late is for not. I want to look for the good in Mormonism, I want to stay involved but it has been increasingly more difficult as of late and this was just another do what you are told or you are not committed and less of a Mormon. Am I reading too much into the comment?
I wish I didn't feel the same, but I am right there with you. It's the same thing with every speaker having to remind us how inspired the church leadership is, and how great the church welfare program is, and how great our temples are. It honestly seemed like a big commercial to me, so much so that I could hardly concentrate on picking out the good stuff that was there. I grow tired of hearing, "Just trust us, we know what we are doing and we are the ONLY ones that know what we are doing. You have to do it exactly our way or you are hosed for eternity and won't get to live with your family."

As I mentioned above, Holland made a fast food reference, too, so maybe a Burger King Mormon is the next keyword... :crazy:

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cwald
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Re: General Conference Open Thread

Post by cwald » 03 Apr 2011, 21:58

yes, thanks Ray for the mention. :smile:

behappy wrote:Nelson's hijacking of the phrase Cafeteria Mormon was brilliant. By taking credit for the phrase and redefining it he now owns the phrase and everyone in the church knows it is a bad thing to be a Cafeteria Mormon. It pissed me off to the point I turned conference off and enjoy the rest of the day with my family. He took a phrase that described members who struggle with historical evidence and changed it to someone who can't hack it and wants to break the commandments. I saw this as a power play and a way of saying there is only one way to be and if you don't follow the rules you are not welcome.

Nelson knew exactly what he was doing. TBMs got a good laugh and think he coined a cute phrase and the doubters got minimized and painted as only wanting to sin. I feel like everything I have been trying to do as of late is for not. I want to look for the good in Mormonism, I want to stay involved but it has been increasingly more difficult as of late and this was just another do what you are told or you are not committed and less of a Mormon. Am I reading too much into the comment?
Yeah. I actually called my parents, whom I don't talk with much, just to tell them how much I enjoyed conference today and thought it was gospel centered --- and somehow they worked this talk into the conversation. I have used the terms "cafeteria' and "middle way" before when talking to them. Anyway, in there own loving way, they told me that I need to repent, accept the prophet and agree with everything he says, or get out. They told me flat out, that "there is no room in our family for 'middle way Mormons' who lack faith in the one and only true church."

It was horrible. At one point in the conversation, my good father said, that if Irefuse to accept everything the prophet says as "truth coming from god," that I am following Satan. They also used the whole, you only disagree with the prophet because you want to live a riotous life and go out and just sin indiscriminately. And that if I supported the homosexual movement, that god would never allow us to be a family together in the CK. This was after i tried to explain my concerns about the LDS church stance on gays choosing to be gay, which, I admit, I was in tears trying to express how I felt it was just a matter of love and compassion, rather than an argument with the churches rules about TRs.

yeah, anyway, it hurt. I know that my parents, and my culture is crazy, even for Mormons, but I haven't heard this kind of harsh rhetoric in a long long time. Hopefully this is the exception, and not the message that our membership heard today.
  Jesus gave us the gospel, but Satan invented church. It takes serious evil to formalize faith into something tedious and then pile guilt on anyone who doesn't participate enthusiastically. - Robert Kirby

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