20 March 2011 Sunday Session of Stake Conference
Today Presidents Poulsen, Avarell, and Ewell released.
New Stake Presidency: Presidents Garvin, Kinser, and Andrews
Expressions of love and appreciation for us as his brothers and sisters. Testimony of the restored church of Jesus Christ. It is true, brothers and sisters. If we follow the brethren and the Spirit, we will find peace and joy. Expressions of love and appreciation for his counselors and others he has worked with and for the Bishops. How I love my Savior. I know that He lives. I know that He is my Redeemer.
Be more loving to each other and to our children. If we truly love one another and care for each other, the blessings will flow.
Every morning, on bended knee, petitioning our Father to help us and our families. Morning Devotionals. We will know what we are to do, what we will say, who we are to serve.
Thomas S. Monson is a prophet of God, and I love him with all my heart. Joseph Smith is a prophet of God.
Expressions of love and appreciation for his mother.
Gratitude for members of the stake, for the stake presidency and wives. She wants us all to know that they love us. She has seen the hand of the Lord in all of our lives in the past nine years. She is grateful for the opportunity and that she was able to support her husband.
As we read the scriptures and find something new, the Holy Ghost testifies that it is true. That’s how He knows that Heavenly Father lives, that Jesus lives and atoned for us, that we have a prophet.
Keep your white shirts. It’s not about your white or your blue shirt. You represent Jesus Christ. You are preparing yourselves now for the very thing that you see today—to become like the two men that are here visiting us. They are men of God. The Spirit of God has worked upon them. Your new stake presidency is called of God. I endorse them to you. Stay on the path. How our family has been blessed by service in the church! How the Spirit of God has moved over our family to provide what is needed for their growth! Grateful to his wife for understanding and knowing that the gospel is true. Loves parents and ancestors who died for this church. “I know that God lives, and I do know that He is directing this work.” If miracles have ceased, it is because of lack of faith. But we have seen miracles in our stake. “Those miracles are to confirm to us His reality, so that we can continue on.” We have a prophet on the earth; there is a prophet today visiting us. Joseph was a prophet. The Book of Mormon is true.
We have some tall shoes to fill. Grateful for past presidency. She felt prompted to get ready for the evening meeting right away. Elder Christofferson were so kind and genuine; it was like they had always known them. “Maybe we shouldn’t be driving for the next couple of days…I promise that we will get a grip.” Testimony of God’s love for us. Jesus Christ Is our Savior; He loves us, and I love Him. The scriptures are true; the Book of Mormon is true. President Monson reads and prays daily. Testimony of prophet. Thankful for her wonderful parents. Grateful for family and children and for Kirk’s children. “I love them; they are my own.” I hope that you will accept Kirk and me and that we will do everything that we are supposed to do, and more.
Gratitude to Sister Poulsen. We need look no further than to the members of this stake to see examples of righteousness. Grateful to the outgoing presidency. I don’t know how I can fill their shoes. I know that there are 15 to 20 members of the stake that can serve better than I. (No, there are probably more like 25 to 30). He was called by a prophet of God. He has learned some things before he came here, but he knew the gospel truths before that. Gratitude for his wife. “I would not be here without her.” Gratitude for the sealing ordinances of the temple. The Book of Mormon is the word of God; it is a shield against the power of the destroyer. Joseph Smith was indeed as the prophet of God, holding all of the keys of all those who proceeded him. “I stand all amazed at the love Jesus offers me.” Until your testimony is strong enough, look to the brethren and trust in their testimony. Jesus lives, and with His stripes we are healed.
The change of leadership in the stake is a testimony to observe and see the workings of the Spirit. President Monson is a true prophet of God. It is a testimony to see how smoothly things go in a change of leadership. The first presidency and quorum of the twelve are inspired of God. No success in life can compensate for failure in the home. We have seen the deterioration of the family. Follow the counsel given by the prophets. They see far into the future and into the past. We are extremely blessed to be the recipients of their seership. Scriptures are true.
What a privilege to receive counsel from a prophet. He testified that the outgoing presidency has loved and served us. He’s looking forward to working with new presidency. White shirts and ties are the uniform of the Priesthood. The gate is narrow and the path straight. The Gate is Him. He is the Redeemer of the world and our personal Savior. It is a gift from the Spirit that he knows that Jesus is the Savior. The boy Joseph knelt in the Sacred Grove in humble prayer seeking—the Father and the Son appears to him. The restored gospel is here; we are led by a prophet today. As we follow the prophets, we are shielded and protected. The Book of Mormon is here for us not only as a second witness of Jesus Christ, but to give us direction.
What a blessing to be President and Matron of the Redlands Temple. Her heart broke over the devastation in Japan. She lived in Japan with her parents when she was 18 and 19. People sold their land to be able to go to Hawaii to be sealed as a family. It broke her heart to see so many lose their homes and the land. Thank you for going to the temple regularly. I know it is the House of the Lord; I feel His presence. I’ve never seen Him; I’ve never seen anything from the other side, but I know they’re there. Please go to the temple.
He still expects President Poulsen to come and give him a hug when he goes to the temple. Every day is a good day in the temple. The ordinances performed in the temple are ordinances of exaltation. (The ordinances prior to that are ordinances of salvation.) His parents were married and sealed in the Logan Temple; he was born in the covenant. He had the faith that it was true when he was a young missionary. As he testified, he found that he knew. Ordinances are valid as long as we keep our covenants.
A welcome to investigators. He loves seeing the missionaries sitting with investigators. Much has been spoken of the Holy Ghost. Through the power of the Holy Ghost the stake presidency was changed in the last 36 hours, and the loyalty of the members has changed like a snap of the fingers. Where else do you see that? Through the power of the Holy Ghost we can know the truth of all things.
1. I can see, hear, and know, and watch the mysteries of the gospel unfold through the power of the Holy Ghost.
Why wasn’t the young man bitter? His burden was lifted by the power of the Holy Ghost and the testimony that he already had.
There is a member of the Godhead.
Paul said, “The fruits of the Spirit are…” You don’t have to have the waves of intelligence constantly. Can you feel the fruits of the Spirit in your life? I knew when I had the Holy Ghost with me because of Paul. Equate the fruits of the Spirit with having the Holy Ghost with you. “I know that I have the Holy Ghost when I treat my wife (people) the way that I am supposed to.” (The man that he was speaking to was abusing his wife.)
Expressing thanks to all who have participated in the preparations of the conference. “Please speak slowly; you are being translate…It didn’t work. I guess I didn’t speak slowly enough.” Words in Spanish. “If you don’t know Spanish, take it on faith that that made sense. That’s what I do.”
Expression of gratitude for other speakers. The Lord draws near and grants an extra blessing of His presence to those released and those sustained. Deepest thanks to outgoing presidency and their wives and families. The Lord has magnified you and given you added gifts and capacity to serve.
The Lord is the source for those who are called. He knows that the Lord has manifested His will for the new presidency. Pray for these men frequently in your homes. The Lord has added blessings to bestow on us and the stake as we pray for them. Petition the Lord for their sake and for our own.
He gets to see President Monson up close. He doesn’t give us a long list of to dos. He does a few things. Pay close attention. Take note and respond.
1. We need more missionaries; well prepared and faithful; YM and YW and couples! You can serve as church missionaries from your home. Couples do so much good, even if they don’t speak the language. “The worse they spoke, the more the people loved them.” Moroni at the top of the Tokyo Temple turned 90 degrees.
2. More attention to marriages and family. Some divorces are urgent and necessary and open doors for a better future. Difficult cases for the prophet to cancel sealings. Teach again and again and again the importance of what happens at home and between couples: honorable, faithful, fidelity. Guard against those things that will separate an eternal union. Brethren, lead out in spiritual things at home. You and your wives work together, but husbands lead out. You take the lead. Let that be your legacy.
(13 year old whose father was shot on Sunday called his family together for morning prayer and scripture reading, because of his father’s example.)
D&C 18:34-36 “You can testify that you have heard my voice and know my words.” Scriptures help us learn the language of the Spirit and recognize the voice of the Lord. Even when we can’t be with our children, they can have the voice of the Lord.
3. Look after one another; minister to one another; rescue both temporally and spiritually. Even with President Monson’s heavy responsibilities, he finds time to minister personally. Apostle of Compassion. He acts in faith. He does what he can now—smile, handshake, blessing, prayer. He is a wonderful model for us to follow. Do what we can now and have faith that the Lord will provide.
D&C 123:13 Let us cheerfully do all things that lie in our power. And then we can stand still with the utmost confidence that we will see the hand of the Lord. (Florence, though homebound, saved the life of someone who was near suicide through visiting teaching by mail.)
We can all have access to the Gift of the Holy Ghost and the witness of the Holy Spirit. Jesus asked the Apostles to wait until they received the Holy Ghost. He is essential to help us remember what we know, what we’ve been taught; essential to help us understand; essential to give expression with a divine witness of the truth of what we receive or speak. More powerful than seeing or feeling or touching. It is possible to doubt your senses. The witness of the Spirit cannot be doubted or forgotten. More powerful than any other form of testimony. Available to everyone who will seek it.
Jesus is His Son, the Only Begotten. The Father and the Son came to boy Joseph when he asked for guidance. They commissioned him as the prophet of the restoration. Joseph was faithful despite all of the challenges and sacrifices, even to death, in maintaining the cause of the Father and Son. He bore witness of the Savior that is incomparable. “Joseph, this is My Beloved Son.” We can all receive this same witness through the Holy Ghost. The Holy Ghost will be with the new presidency in all they do. It will make your testimony powerful and convincing. As you follow that Spirit, in your home there will be food, enough for you, and a little extra so that you can share. You will know that the Lord knows you and is looking after you. You will feel His love more than ever before. You will have a sense of His approval as well as His love.