Sunday, April 26, 2015

The Salt Lake City Marathon

We just had a busy week. There was something going on every single night. I'm also trying to finalize plans for our trip to Italy/New York/Boston. There just doesn't seem to be enough time in the day to get everything done!!!

But most importantly this week: Casey ran the Salt Lake City Marathon that he has been training for the past four months or so. I'm so proud of Casey for all of his hard work. He gets up every morning (almost) at 5:30am to go run. Who does that? Crazy?! Well only those that can reach their goals do that. It's hard work but hard work pays off.

Kailee and I decided to volunteer for the marathon so we could help but also be there during the run. We had a hard time finding parking, we had to do a little crowd control (which we did not like) and then we handed out medals to the runners as they crossed the finish line.



All of the medals for the marathon runners!!! 

Casey ran the marathon in 3:27:42. That's a Boston qualifier time!!! That means next year at this time we will be doing the same thing again. Great job Casey!!!









Monday, April 13, 2015

Wildcat Weekend

Not too much going on this week. Gracie is off track again for three weeks.

Cee Ryle will be working at Cherry Hill this summer as a lifeguard but needed to be certified so he started these lessons that go for three weeks, three days a week for three hours each day. So that makes our dinner times chaotic. Casey drives him up and waits for him because it's not even close to home. At least Cee Ryle is getting some driving time.

On Friday I had the opportunity to go to Denver for a few days. The college of Johnson and Wales flew me out so I could see their campus and be better able to send students their way. I thought it sounded like fun so I decided to take them up on their offer. I made to the airport on time but I was sitting in the wrong area and I thought the flight was delayed. When I went to inqure they told me I was at the wrong place and the flight had just left. Aghhh! They were able to get me on the next flight that left only about an hour later so that was lucky.

Once I got to the Denver Airport there were students waiting to pick us up and take us the hotel. We stayed at the Rennaissance Hotel on the 11th floor. It was nice! It was weird for me to be in a hotel room all by myself. But I took some things to work on for our trip to take up my free time. I was hungry so I walked about a mile to a shopping center and got some food and did a little shopping.



The counselors were mixed with the families and students that were there to visit the college also. We went to campus on Friday night for dinner and then back to the hotel. I just watched TV and did some Italy research.

Saturday morning we went on a tour of campus and various presentations. It is a school that focuses on the culinary arts and students can actually get a batchelors deegree in this. They are unique that way. It's a small, private school but it's great to know about it so I can send students their way if it is a good fit for them.

Denver from my room:

Some students entered these cakes in a competition and I thought they were were remembering: 



The campus: 


Saturday night they took us on bus tour of Denver and then to dinner with the director of admissions and vice president of the school. We went to dinner at Cafe Colore. It was this delicious restaurant with Italian/French food. We got to eat outside and enjoy downtown while we ate.


Yummy salmon: 

Afterwards we went to this old fashioned candy shop right next to the restaurant called Rocket Fizz. I was able to get some fun candy to bring back for the family.


I left early Sunday morning so I still made it back to church in time but I was exhausted. I didn't sleep too well at the hotel. Nothing against the hotel I just kept hearing noises and just didn't feel like I got a good night sleep. It's always harder to sleep when I don't have Casey next to me.

Monday, April 6, 2015

Spring Break

We didn't do much during spring break this year. For starters it was only Cee Ryle and me at that had the same week off. Gracie has it next week. Sidney had it a few weeks before. Casey was working.

Cee Ryle and I just did some projects that we have been wanting to get done. We did a lot of cleaning and organizing (well mostly just me cause I was feeling disorganized).

First just a few silly things... Perianne ordered a "selfie-stick" and told us to try it out. So we did. It's silly but really useful. Casey and I are going to take one on our trip.

Obama came to Utah. We could see his caravan from our house window. It just caused lots of road closures. That's all. 

Casey's parents were here for the sealing of Kim and Conner. They got sealed in the Salt Lake Temple on Friday April 3. It was a beautiful day in and out of the temple. We were glad to have the opportunity to attend. 

Afterwards we went to dinner at Bucca di Beppo and we even had the Pope in our midst. 


Saturday was the beginning of General Conferece. I started a few years ago having a little gift that we open everytime an apostle speaks. It's fun and it keeps Gracie paying attention at least for some of the time. It also gives us snacks during conference. 

Kailee and Casey went to take pictures for this announcement that Kailee made. She's walking on April 23-24 but won't really graduate until June because she has a few classes to finish. She's AWESOME! and we are so proud of her for reaching this milestone in her life. 

Sunday was Easter. We didn't do much this year. The Easter Bunny didn't visit, we didn't go to any Easter Egg hunts, we did wear new clothes. It was just different but it was just fine that's all the stuff that Easter is not really about anyway. We did watch conference and enjoyed the talks on Jesus Christ our Savior because it gave us a chance to be reminded of how grateful we are for Jesus Christ and his sacrifice for us.

The older kids did put together a last minute Easter egg hunt because that has been tradition for years. I'm glad they still wanted to do that cause it was fun. 




Here's a summary of the April 2015 General Conference:

Filling Our Homes with Light and Truth

Cheryl A. Esplin
Second Counselor in the Primary General Presidency
When filled with the Spirit and with gospel truth, we have the power to withstand the outside forces of the world that surround and push against us. However, if we are not filled spiritually, we don’t have the inner strength to resist the outside pressures and can collapse when forces push against us.
Satan knows that in order for us and our families to withstand the pressures of the world, we must be filled with light and gospel truth. So he does everything in his power to dilute, distort, and destroy the truth of the gospel and to keep us separated from that truth. …
One place where we best seek to be filled with light and truth is in our own homes. …
Strong eternal families and Spirit-filled homes do not just happen. They take great effort, they take time, and they take each member of the family doing his or her part. Every home is different, but every home where even one individual seeks for truth can make a difference. …
… As we fill our hearts and homes with the Savior’s light and truth, we will have the inner strength to withstand in every circumstance.
Full Video  |  News Summary  |  Highlight Video

The Family Is of God

Carole M. Stephens
First Counselor in the Relief Society General Presidency
We each belong to and are needed in the family of God. Earthly families all look different. And while we do the best we can to create strong traditional families, membership in the family of God is not contingent upon any kind of status—marital status, parental status, financial status, social status, or even the kind of status we post on social media. …
Our opportunity as covenant-keeping daughters of God is not just to learn from our own challenges; it is to unite in empathy and compassion as we support other members of the family of God in their struggles, as we have covenanted to do. …
… God wants us to be one. God needs us to be one—covenant-keeping daughters united in the diversities of our individual lives who desire to learn all that is needed to be back in His presence, sealed to Him as part of His eternal family.
… The ordinances we receive and the covenants we make at baptism and in holy temples connect the family of God on both sides of the veil—connecting us to our Father through His Son.
Full Video  |  News Summary  |  Highlight Video

Defenders of the Proclamation

Bonnie L. Oscarson
Young Women General President
There are three principles taught in the [family] proclamation which I think are especially in need of steadfast defenders. The first is marriage between a man and a woman. … For anyone to attain the fulness of priesthood blessings, there must be a husband and a wife sealed in the house of the Lord, working together in righteousness and remaining faithful to their covenants. This is the Lord’s plan for His children, and no amount of public discourse or criticism will change what the Lord has declared. …
The next principle which calls for our defending voices is elevating the divine roles of mothers and fathers. We eagerly teach our children to aim high in this life. … Do we also teach our sons and daughters there is no greater honor, no more elevated titles, and no more important roles in this life than that of mother and father? …
The last principle we need to stand and defend is the sanctity of the home. We need to take a term which is sometimes spoken of with derision and elevate it. It is the term homemaker. All of us—women, men, youth, and children, single or married—can work at being homemakers. We should “make our homes” places of order, refuge, holiness, and safety. Our homes should be places where the Spirit of the Lord is felt in rich abundance and where the scriptures and the gospel are studied, taught, and lived.
Full Video  |  News Summary  |  Highlight Video

The Comforter

Henry B. Eyring
First Counselor in the First Presidency
Many are praying to Heavenly Father for relief, for help in carrying their burdens of grief, loneliness, and fear. Heavenly Father hears those prayers and understands their needs. He and His Beloved Son, the resurrected Jesus Christ, have promised help [see Matthew 11:28–30]. …
The Savior described the way He helps lighten loads and gives strength to carry them when He was about to be crucified. He knew that His disciples would grieve. He knew that they would fear for their future. He knew they would feel uncertain of their capacity to move forward.
So He gave them the promise that He makes to us and to all His true disciples:
“And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever; …
“Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid” (John 14:1627).
In just the past few weeks I have seen that promise of sending the Holy Ghost fulfilled in the lives of children of God who were pleading in prayer that their burdens would be lightened. The miracle of the loads being lightened came in a way the Lord promised. He and Heavenly Father sent the Holy Ghost as the Comforter to His disciples to help.
Full Video  |  News Summary  |  Highlight Video
Saturday Morning Session

“Is Not This the Fast That I Have Chosen?”

President Henry B. Eyring
First Counselor in the First Presidency
There are more hungry, homeless, and lonely children of Heavenly Father than we can reach. And the numbers grow ever farther from our reach.
So the Lord has given us something that we each can do. It is a commandment so simple that a child can understand it. It is a commandment with a wonderful promise for those in need and for us.
It is the law of the fast. …
The brief time we fast every month and the small amount we offer for the poor may give us only a small part of the change in our natures to have no more desire to do evil. But there is a great promise, even as we do all that we reasonably can to pray, to fast, and to donate for those in need:
“Then shall thy light break forth as the morning, and thine health shall spring forth speedily: and thy righteousness shall go before thee; the glory of the Lord shall be thy rearward.
“Then shalt thou call, and the Lord shall answer; thou shalt cry, and he shall say, Here I am” (Isaiah 58:8–9).
I pray that we will claim those great blessings for ourselves and for our families.
Full Video | News Summary | Highlight Video

The Plan of Happiness

President Boyd K. Packer
President of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles
Over the years I have frequently taught an important principle: the end of all activity in the Church is to see that a man and a woman with their children are happy at home and sealed together for time and for all eternity. …
The commandment to multiply and replenish the earth has never been rescinded. It is essential to the plan of redemption and is the source of human happiness. Through the righteous exercise of this power, we may come close to our Father in Heaven and experience a fulness of joy, even godhood. The power of procreation is not an incidental part of the plan of happiness; it is the key to happiness. …
The only legitimate, authorized expression of the powers of procreation is between husband and wife, a man and a woman, who have been legally and lawfully married. Anything other than this violates the commandments of God. …
Reverently now I use the word temple. I envision a sealing room and an altar with a young couple kneeling there. This sacred temple ordinance is much more than a wedding, for this marriage can be sealed by the Holy Spirit of Promise, and the scriptures declare that we “shall inherit thrones, kingdoms, principalities, and powers, dominions” (D&C 132:19). I see the joy that awaits those who accept this supernal gift and use it worthily.
Full Video  |  News Summary  |  Highlight Video

We’ll Ascend Together

Linda K. Burton
Relief Society General President
Today I wish to honor husbands, fathers, brothers, sons, and uncles who know who they are and who are doing their best to fulfill their God-given roles as described in the family proclamation, including righteously presiding and providing for and protecting their families. …
It must be difficult, at best, for covenant men to live in a world that not only demeans their divine roles and responsibilities but also sends false messages about what it means to be a “real man.” One false message is “It’s all about me.” On the other end of the scale is the degrading and mocking message that husbands and fathers are no longer needed. …
Brothers and sisters, we need each other! As covenant-keeping women and men, we need to lift each other and help each other become the people the Lord would have us be. And we need to work together to lift the rising generation and help them reach their divine potential as heirs of eternal life. …
Will you join me in seeking the help of the Holy Ghost to teach us how we can better lift each other in our complementary roles as covenant sons and daughters of our loving heavenly parents?
Full Video  |  News Summary  |  Highlight Video

The Parable of the Sower

Elder Dallin H. Oaks
Of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles
The parable of the sower warns us of circumstances and attitudes that can keep anyone who has received the seed of the gospel message from bringing forth a goodly harvest. …
The Savior’s examples could cause us to think of this parable as the parable of the soils. The suitability of the soil depends upon the heart of each one of us who is exposed to the gospel seed. In susceptibility to spiritual things, some hearts are hardened and unprepared, some hearts are stony from disuse, and some hearts are set upon the things of the world. …
… We have the seed of the gospel word. It is up to each of us to set the priorities and to do the things that make our soil good and our harvest plentiful. We must seek to be firmly rooted and converted to the gospel of Jesus Christ (see Colossians 2:6–7). We ensure this conversion by prayer, by scripture reading, by serving, and by regularly partaking of the sacrament to always have His Spirit to be with us. We must also seek that mighty change of heart (see Alma 5:12–14) that replaces evil desires and selfish concerns with the love of God and the desire to serve Him and His children.
Full Video  |  News Summary  |  Highlight Video

Choose to Believe

Elder L. Whitney Clayton
Of the Presidency of the Seventy
The decision to believe is the most important choice we ever make. It shapes all of our other decisions. …
Belief and testimony and faith are not passive principles. They do not just happen to us. Belief is something we choose—we hope for it, we work for it, and we sacrifice for it. We will not accidentally come to believe in the Savior and His gospel any more than we will accidentally pray or pay tithing. We actively choose to believe, just like we choose to keep other commandments. …
We likewise must give place for the hope that we will find spiritual light by embracing belief rather than choosing to doubt. Our actions are the evidence of our belief and become the substance of our faith. We are choosing to believe when we pray and when we read the scriptures. We are choosing to believe when we fast, when we keep the Sabbath day holy, and when we worship in the temple. We are choosing to believe when we are baptized and when we partake of the sacrament. We are choosing to believe when we repent and seek divine forgiveness and healing love.
Full Video  |  News Summary  |  Highlight Video

Why Marriage and Family Matter—Everywhere in the World

Elder L. Tom Perry

Of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles
We … believe that strong traditional families are not only the basic units of a stable society, a stable economy, and a stable culture of values—but that they are also the basic units of eternity and of the kingdom and government of God. . . .
It is because of our belief that marriages and families are eternal that we, as a church, want to be a leader and a participant in worldwide movements to strengthen them. …
Despite what much of media and entertainment outlets may suggest, however, and despite the very real decline in the marriage and family orientation of some, the solid majority of mankind still believes that marriage should be between one man and one woman. …
We need to remind ourselves once in a while … of the wonderfully reassuring and comforting fact that marriage and family are still the aspiration and ideal of most people and that we are not alone in those beliefs. …
We want our voice to be heard against all of the counterfeit and alternative lifestyles that try to replace the family organization that God Himself established. We also want our voice to be heard in sustaining the joy and fulfillment that traditional families bring.
Full Video  |  News Summary  |  Highlight Video
Saturday Afternoon Session

Therefore They Hushed Their Fears

Elder David A. Bednar
Of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles
Trust and confidence in Christ and a ready reliance on His merits, mercy, and grace lead to hope, through His Atonement, in the Resurrection and eternal life (see Moroni 7:41). Such faith and hope invite into our lives the sweet peace of conscience for which we all yearn. The power of the Atonement makes repentance possible and quells the despair caused by sin; it also strengthens us to see, do, and become good in ways that we could never recognize or accomplish with our limited mortal capacity. Truly, one of the great blessings of devoted discipleship is “the peace of God, which passeth all understanding” (Philippians 4:7).
The peace Christ gives allows us to view mortality through the precious perspective of eternity and supplies a spiritual settledness (see Colossians 1:23) that helps us maintain a consistent focus on our heavenly destination. Thus, we can be blessed to hush our fears because His doctrine provides purpose and direction in all aspects of our lives. His ordinances and covenants fortify and comfort in times both good and bad. And His priesthood authority gives assurance that the things that matter most can endure both in time and in eternity.
Full Video  |  News Summary  |  Highlight Video

Why Marriage, Why Family

Elder D. Todd Christofferson
Of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles
A family built on the marriage of a man and woman supplies the best setting for God’s plan to thrive—the setting for the birth of children, who come in purity and innocence from God, and the environment for the learning and preparation they will need for a successful mortal life and eternal life in the world to come. A critical mass of families built on such marriages is vital for societies to survive and flourish. That is why communities and nations generally have encouraged and protected marriage and the family as privileged institutions. It has never been just about the love and happiness of adults.
Our claims for the role of marriage and family rest not on social science but on the truth that they are God’s creation.  Each individual carries the divine image, but it is in the matrimonial union of male and female as one that we attain perhaps the most complete meaning of our having been made in the image of God—male and female.
Full Video  |  News Summary  |  Highlight Video

The Music of the Gospel

Elder Wilford W. Andersen
Of the Seventy
Sometimes in our homes, we successfully teach the dance steps but are not as successful in helping our family members to hear the music.  It is hard to dance without music. Dancing without music is awkward and unfulfilling—even embarrassing. Have you ever tried it?
We learn the dance steps with our minds, but we hear the music with our hearts. The dance steps of the gospel are the things we do; the music of the gospel is the joyful spiritual feeling that comes from the Holy Ghost. It brings a change of heart and is the source of all righteous desires. The dance steps require discipline, but the joy of the dance will only be experienced when we come to hear the music.
The challenge for all of us who seek to teach the gospel is to expand the curriculum beyond just the dance steps. Our children’s happiness depends on their ability to hear and love the beautiful music of the gospel.
Full Video  |  News Summary  |  Highlight Video

Latter-day Saints Keep on Trying

Elder Dale G. Renlund
Of the Seventy
God cares a lot more about who we are and who we are becoming than about who we once were. He cares that we keep on trying.
In His mercy, God promises forgiveness when we repent and turn from wickedness—so much so that our sins will not even be mentioned to us.  No matter how wicked, we can say, “That’s who I was. But that past wicked self is no longer who I am.”
Even if we’ve been a conscious, deliberate sinner or have repeatedly faced failure and disappointment, the moment we decide to try again, the Atonement of Christ can help us. And we need to remember that it is not the Holy Ghost that tells us we’re so far gone that we might as well give up.
No matter what, with His help, God expects Latter-day Saints to keep on trying.
My invitation to all of us is to evaluate our lives, repent, and keep on trying. If we don’t try, we’re just latter-day sinners; if we don’t persevere, we’re latter-day quitters; and if we don’t allow others to try, we’re latter-day hypocrites. As we try, persevere, and help others do the same, we are true Latter-day Saints.
Full Video  |  News Summary  |  Highlight Video

Truly Good and without Guile

Elder Michael T. Ringwood
Of the Seventy
In a world where praise, position, power, accolades, and authority are sought on every side, I honor those wonderful and blessed souls who are truly good and without guile, those who are motivated by a love of God and their neighbors, those great women and men who are “more anxious to serve than to have dominion.”
Today there are some who would have us believe our search for relevance can be satisfied only by obtaining position and power. Yet, thankfully, there are many who are uninfluenced by this perspective. They find relevance in seeking to be truly good and without guile. I have found them in all walks of life and in many faith traditions. And I find them in large numbers among the truly converted followers of Christ.
I honor those who selflessly serve each week in wards and branches around the world by going above and beyond in fulfilling callings. But callings come and go. Even more impressive to me are the many who without formal callings find ways to consistently serve and lift others.  There are always members who seem to know who needs help and when to offer it.
Full Video  |  News Summary  |  Highlight Video

The Lord Is My Light

Elder Quentin L. Cook
Of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles
If the grim realities you are facing at this time seem dark and heavy and almost unbearable, remember that in the soul-wrenching darkness of Gethsemane and the incomprehensible torture and pain of Calvary, the Savior accomplished the Atonement, which resolves the most terrible burdens that can occur in this life. He did it for you, and He did it for me. He did it because He loves us and because He obeys and loves His Father. We will be rescued from death—even from the depths of the sea.
Our protections in this life and for eternity will be in individual and family righteousness, Church ordinances, and following the Savior. This is our refuge from the storm. For those who feel they are alone, you can stand resolutely in righteousness knowing that the Atonement will protect and bless you beyond your ability to fully understand.
We should remember the Savior, keep our covenants, and follow the Son of God as the young sunflower follows the sunshine. Following His light and example will bring us joy, happiness, and peace. As Psalm 27 and a favorite hymn both proclaim, “The Lord is my light and my salvation.”
Full Video  |  News Summary  |  Highlight Video
Priesthood Session

The Greatest Generation of Young Adults

Elder M. Russell Ballard
Of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles
What we need now is the greatest generation of young adults in the history of the Church. We need your whole heart and soul. We need vibrant, thinking, passionate young adults who know how to listen and respond to the whisperings of the Holy Spirit as you make your way through the daily trials and temptations of being a young, contemporary Latter-day Saint.
In other words, it’s time to raise the bar not only for missionaries but also for returned missionaries and for your entire generation. …
Please use the skills you learned on your mission to bless the lives of people around you every day. Do not shift your focus from serving others to focusing exclusively on school, work, or social activities. Instead, balance your life with spiritual experiences that remind and prepare you for continued, daily ministering to others. …
Be strong, brethren. Keep the commandments of God. The Lord Jesus Christ promises all things we desire to do in righteousness will be ours. Church leaders are counting on you. We need every one of you young adults to prepare to marry, to serve, and to lead in the days ahead.
Full Video  |  News Summary  |  Highlight Video

Yes, We Can and Will Win!

Elder Ulisses Soares
Of the Presidency of the Seventy
We cannot allow ourselves to be confused by popular messages that are easily accepted by the world and that contradict the doctrine and true principles of the gospel of Jesus Christ. Many of these worldly messages represent nothing more than an attempt of our society to justify sin. …
All of us can receive the strength to choose the right if we seek the Lord and place all our trust and faith in Him. …
… Because of the wave of confusion and doubts spreading throughout the world today, we must hold ever more tightly to our testimony of the gospel of Jesus Christ. Then will our ability to defend truth and justice greatly increase. We will win the daily battles against evil, and, rather than fall on the battlefields of life, we will rally others to the Master’s standards.
I invite all to find safety in the teachings contained in the scriptures. …
I invite all to find safety in the wise words of our current prophets. …
I invite all to trust in the merits and in the power of the Atonement of Jesus Christ. Through His atoning sacrifice, we can gain the courage to win all the wars of our time, even in the midst of our difficulties, challenges, and temptations. Let us trust in His love and power to save.
Full Video | News Summary | Highlight Video

Fatherhood—Our Eternal Destiny

Larry M. Gibson
Former First Counselor in the Young Men General Presidency
Should we not … develop a clear vision of our eternal destiny, particularly the one Heavenly Father wants us to achieve—eternal fatherhood? Let our eternal destiny drive all of our decisions. Regardless of how difficult those decisions may be, Father will sustain us. …
Fathers, … every day you are teaching your children what it means to be a father. You are laying a foundation for the next generation. Your sons will learn how to be husbands and fathers by observing the way you fulfill these roles. …
Brethren, with all the energy of my soul, I ask you to consider this question: Do your sons see you striving to do what Heavenly Father would have them do?
I pray the answer is yes. If the answer is no, it’s not too late to change, but you must begin today. I testify that Heavenly Father will help you. …
I know that Heavenly Father is concerned about each of us individually and has a personal plan for each to achieve our eternal destiny. … May we each enjoy the fulness of Father’s blessings in this life and the fulfillment of His work and His glory by becoming fathers to our families for eternity (see Moses 1:39).
Full Video  |  News Summary  |  Highlight Video

On Being Genuine

President Dieter F. Uchtdorf
Second Counselor in the First Presidency
If Jesus Christ were to sit down with us and ask for an accounting of our stewardship, I am not sure He would focus much on programs and statistics. What the Savior would want to know is the condition of our heart. He would want to know how we love and minister to those in our care, how we show our love to our spouse and family, and how we lighten their daily load. And the Savior would want to know how you and I grow closer to Him and to our Heavenly Father. …
… If you feel small and weak, please simply come unto Christ, who makes weak things strong. The weakest among us, through God’s grace, can become spiritually strong, because God “is no respecter of persons.” …
… Resist the temptation to draw attention to ourselves and, instead, strive for a far greater honor: to become humble, genuine disciples of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.
Full Video  |  News Summary  |  Highlight Video

Priesthood and Personal Prayer

President Henry B. Eyring
First Counselor in the First Presidency
With your acceptance of the priesthood, you received the right to speak and to act in the name of God.
That right will only become a reality as you receive inspiration from God. Only then will you be able to speak in His name. And only then can you act in His name. You might have made the mistake of thinking, “Oh, that isn’t so difficult. I could get inspiration if I am ever asked to give a talk or if I ever need to give a priesthood blessing.” …
All of us must speak and act in the name of God in moments where our unaided judgment will not be enough without inspiration. Those moments can come upon us where there is not time to make preparation. …
So you will pray for the way to know their hearts, to know what things are amiss in the lives and the hearts of people you don’t know well. You will need to know what God would have you do to help them and to do it all as nearly as you can, feeling God’s love for them.
Full Video  |  News Summary  |  Highlight Video

The Priesthood—a Sacred Gift

President Thomas S. Monson
I echo the spirit of that special hymn and say to you: Come, all ye sons of God who have received the priesthood, let us consider our callings; let us reflect on our responsibilities; let us determine our duty; and let us follow Jesus Christ, our Lord. While we may differ in age, in custom, or in nationality, we are united as one in our priesthood callings. …
Brethren, each of us has been entrusted with one of the most precious gifts ever bestowed upon mankind. As we honor our priesthood and live our lives so that we are at all times worthy, the blessings of the priesthood will flow through us. …
As bearers of the priesthood of God, we are engaged in the work of the Lord Jesus Christ. We have answered His call; we are on His errand. Let us learn of Him. Let us follow in His footsteps. Let us live by His precepts. By so doing, we will be prepared for any service He calls us to perform. This is His work. This is His Church. Indeed, He is our captain, the King of Glory, even the Son of God. I testify that He lives and bear this witness in His holy name.
Full Video  |  News Summary  |  Highlight Video
Sunday Morning Session

Blessings of the Temple

President Thomas S. Monson
As I think of temples, my thoughts turn to the many blessings we receive therein. As we enter through the doors of the temple, we leave behind us the distractions and confusion of the world. Inside this sacred sanctuary, we find beauty and order. There is rest for our souls and a respite from the cares of our lives.
As we attend the temple, there can come to us a dimension of spirituality and a feeling of peace which will transcend any other feeling which could come into the human heart. We will grasp the true meaning of the words of the Savior when He said: “Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you. … Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid” (John 14:27).
Such peace can permeate any heart—hearts that are troubled, hearts that are burdened down with grief, hearts that feel confusion, hearts that plead for help. …
My brothers and sisters, in our lives we will have temptations; we will have trials and challenges. As we go to the temple, as we remember the covenants we make there, we will be better able to overcome those temptations and to bear our trials. In the temple we can find peace.
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Returning to Faith

Rosemary M. Wixom
Primary General President
This year Primary children are sharing the joy and the brightness of their faith in Jesus Christ when they sing the song “I Know That My Savior Loves Me.” They sing the truth: “I know He lives! ... My heart I give to Him.” Like Primary children, every one of us can strengthen our faith in Jesus Christ on our individual journey and find joy. …
… Answers to our sincere questions come when we earnestly seek and when we live the commandments. … Our faith can reach beyond the limits of current reason. …
As President Dieter F. Uchtdorf said: “We are all pilgrims seeking God’s light as we journey on the path of discipleship. We do not condemn others for the amount of light they may or may not have; rather, we nourish and encourage all light until it grows clear, bright, and true” (“Receiving a Testimony of Light and Truth,” Ensign or Liahona, Nov. 2014, 22).
When the Primary children sing “A Child’s Prayer,” they ask: “Heavenly Father, are you really there? And do you hear and answer every child’s prayer?” (Children’s Songbook, 12–13).
We too may wonder, “Is Heavenly Father really there?” only to rejoice—as my friend did—when the answers come in quiet, simple assurances. I testify those simple assurances come as His will becomes ours.
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Seeking the Lord


Elder José A. Teixeira
Of the Seventy
The more we understand the extraordinary role of Christ in our lives, the more conscious we become of our purpose here in mortality, which is to have joy. That joy, however, does not preclude us from experiencing trials and difficulties, even some so great and complex that they may lead us to think that happiness is not possible in such circumstances. …
I believe that as we deepen our understanding of the Savior, we will have an increased desire to live joyfully and a conviction that joy is possible. Consequently, we will have a greater ability to go about each day with more enthusiasm for life and for keeping the commandments of God, even in challenging circumstances. …
Every day, we should consider including frequent interactions with the teachings of Christ. …
The choices and priorities we make with our time online are decisive. They can determine our spiritual progress and maturity in the gospel and our desire to contribute to a better world and to live a more productive life.
For these reasons, I would like to mention three simple habits that will establish healthy online activity. …
Habit number 1: Visit the Church’s official website for resources. …
Habit number 2: Subscribe to the Church’s official social networks. …
Habit number 3: Make time to set aside your mobile devices.
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Is It Still Wonderful to You?

Bishop Gérald Caussé
First Counselor in the Presiding Bishopric
My brothers and sisters, is the gospel still wonderful to you? Can you yet see, hear, feel, and marvel? Or have your spiritual sensors gone into standby mode? Whatever your personal situation, I invite you to do three things.
First, never tire of discovering or rediscovering the truths of the gospel. …
Second, anchor your faith in the plain and simple truths of the gospel. …
Finally, I invite you to seek and cherish the companionship of the Holy Ghost. …
When we have the Spirit with us, our spiritual senses are sharpened and our memory is kindled so we cannot forget the miracles and signs we have witnessed. That is why, knowing Jesus was about to leave them, His Nephite disciples prayed fervently “for that which they most desired; and they desired that the Holy Ghost should be given unto them” (3 Nephi 19:9). …
That we may always have eyes that see, ears that hear, and hearts that perceive the wonders of this marvelous gospel is my prayer.
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Waiting for the Prodigal

Elder Brent H. Nielson
Of the Seventy
Some of you, like [my] family, have family members who have temporarily lost their way. The Savior’s instruction to all who have 100 sheep is to leave the ninety and nine and go after and rescue the one. His instruction to those who have 10 pieces of silver and lose one is to search until you find it. When the lost one is your son or your daughter, your brother or your sister, and he or she has chosen to leave, we learned in our family that, after all we can do, we love that person with all of our hearts and we watch, we pray, and we wait for the Lord’s hand to be revealed. …
May you and I receive the revelation to know how to best approach those in our lives who are lost and, when necessary, to have the patience and love of our Father in Heaven and His Son, Jesus Christ, as we love, watch, and wait for the prodigal.
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Where Justice, Love, and Mercy Meet

Elder Jeffrey R. Holland
Of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles
I express my gratitude for the Atonement and Resurrection of the Lord Jesus Christ and acknowledge events in the divine plan of God that led up to and give meaning to the “love Jesus offers [us]” (“I Stand All Amazed,” Hymns, no. 193). …
We cannot fully comprehend the Atonement and Resurrection of Christ and we will not adequately appreciate the unique purpose of His birth or His death—in other words there is no way to truly celebrate Christmas or Easter—without understanding that there was an actual Adam and Eve who fell from Eden, with all the consequences that fall carried with it. …
… That Atonement would achieve complete victory over physical death, unconditionally granting resurrection to every person who has been or ever will be born into this world. Mercifully it would also provide forgiveness for the personal sins of all, from Adam to the end of the world, conditioned upon repentance and obedience to divine commandments. …
So today we celebrate the gift of victory over every fall we have ever experienced, every sorrow we have ever known, every discouragement we have ever had, every fear we have ever faced—to say nothing of our resurrection from death and forgiveness for our sins. That victory is available to us because of events that transpired on a weekend like this more than two millennia ago in Jerusalem.
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The Gift of Grace

President Dieter F. Uchtdorf
Second Counselor in the First Presidency
A powerful expression of [Christ’s] love is what the scriptures often call the grace of God. …
To that end I would like to speak of grace. In particular, first, how grace unlocks the gates of heaven and, second, how it opens the windows of heaven. …
… We cannot earn our way into heaven; the demands of justice stand as a barrier, which we are powerless to overcome on our own.
But all is not lost.
The grace of God is our great and everlasting hope. …
But the grace of God does not merely restore us to our previous innocent state. If salvation means only erasing our mistakes and sins, then salvation—as wonderful as it is—does not fulfill the Father’s aspirations for us. His aim is much higher: He wants His sons and daughters to become like Him. …
Another element of God’s grace is the opening of the windows of heaven, through which God pours out blessings of power and strength, enabling us to achieve things that otherwise would be far beyond our reach. It is by God’s amazing grace that His children can overcome the undercurrents and quicksands of the deceiver, rise above sin, and “are perfect[ed] in Christ” (Moroni 10:32).
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 Sunday Afternoon Session

Preserving Agency, Protecting Religious Freedom

Elder Robert D. Hales
Of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles
As we walk the path of spiritual liberty in these last days, we must understand that the faithful use of our agency depends upon our having religious freedom. …
Brothers and sisters, we are responsible to safeguard these sacred freedoms and rights for ourselves and our posterity. What can you and I do?
First, we can become informed. Be aware of the issues in your community that could have an impact on religious liberty.
Second, in your individual capacity, join with others who share our commitment to religious freedom. Work side by side to protect religious freedom.
Third, live your life to be a good example of what you believe—in word and deed. How we live our religion is far more important than what we may say about our religion.
Our Savior’s Second Coming is drawing nearer. Let us not delay in this great cause. Remember Captain Moroni, who hoisted the title of liberty inscribed with the words “In memory of our God, our religion, and freedom, and our peace, our wives, and our children” (Alma 46:12). Let us remember the people’s response: exercising their agency, they “came running together” with a covenant to act (Alma 46:21).
My beloved brothers and sisters, don’t walk! Run! Run to receive the blessings of agency by following the Holy Ghost and exercising the freedoms God has given us to do His will.
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Stay by the Tree

Elder Kevin W. Pearson
Of the Seventy
Enduring to the end is a hallmark of true discipleship and is essential to eternal life. But when trials and challenges come our way, we are often told to simply “hang in there.” Let me be clear, to “hang in there” is not a principle of the gospel. Enduring to the end means constantly coming unto Christ and being perfected in Him. …
Lehi’s vision of the tree of life is a powerful parable on enduring to the end. Please prayerfully study and ponder Lehi’s dream; then liken it unto yourself. As you do, carefully consider six important principles that help us endure to the end.
1. Don’t forget to pray. …
2. Come unto Christ and be perfected in Him. …
3. Press forward with faith. …
4. The Book of Mormon is key to spiritual survival. …
5. Don’t be distracted and deceived. …
6. Stay by the tree. …
Brothers and sisters, enduring to the end is the great test of discipleship. Our daily discipleship will determine our eternal destiny. Awaken unto God, cling to truth, keep your sacred temple covenants, and stay by the tree!
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The Eternal Perspective of the Gospel

Elder Rafael E. Pino
Of the Seventy
The Father’s desire is to give everyone the opportunity to receive a fulness of joy. Latter-day revelations show that our Heavenly Father created a great plan of happiness for all His children, a very special plan so that we can return to live with Him. …
… Understanding the plan will help people keep the commandments, make better decisions, and have the right motivation.
During the time that I have served in the Church, I have witnessed the devotion and faithfulness of Church members in different countries, some of which have political, social, or economic conflict. One common factor that I have often found in these faithful members is the perspective that they have of eternity. The eternal perspective of the gospel leads us to understand the place that we occupy in God’s plan, to accept difficulties and progress through them, to make decisions, and to center our lives on our divine potential. …
The Lord knows what He wants to accomplish with each one of us. He knows the kind of reform He wants to achieve in our lives, and we do not have the right to counsel Him. His thoughts are higher than our thoughts.
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Thy Kingdom Come

Elder Neil L. Andersen
Of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles
We live in days of wars and rumors of wars, days of natural disasters, days when the world is pulled by confusion and commotion.
But we also live in the glorious time of the Restoration, when the gospel is being taken to all the world. …
Brothers and sisters, seeing and believing the Lord’s miracles as He establishes His kingdom on earth can help us see and believe that the Lord’s hand is at work in our own lives as well.
The Lord declared, “I am able to do mine own work” (2 Nephi 27:20). We each try to do our part, but He is the grand architect. Under the direction of the Father, He created this world. “All things were made by him; and without him was not anything made which was made” (Joseph Smith Translation, John 1:3 [in the Bible Appendix]). …
Our faith grows as we anticipate the glorious day of the Savior’s return to the earth. …
… May His prayer be our prayer: “Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven” (Matthew 6:9–10).
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If You Will Be Responsible

Elder Jorge F. Zeballos
Of the Seventy
What responsibility do we have as members of the Church of Jesus Christ? President Joseph Fielding Smith expressed it as follows: “We have these two great responsibilities. … First, to seek our own salvation; and, second, our duty to our fellow men” (Teachings of Presidents of the Church: Joseph Fielding Smith [2013], 294).
These, then, are the main responsibilities that our Father has assigned to us: seeking our own salvation and that of others, with the understanding that salvation means reaching the highest degree of glory that our Father has provided for His obedient children. These responsibilities that have been entrusted to us—and which we have freely accepted—must define our priorities, our desires, our decisions, and our daily conduct. …
Discipleship requires us not only to learn our duty, make correct decisions, and act in accordance with them, but also essential is our developing the willingness and the ability to accept God’s will, even if it does not match our righteous desires or preferences.
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Be Fruitful, Multiply, and Subdue the Earth

Elder Joseph W. Sitati
Of the Seventy
Our mortal journey began with both a divine charge and a blessing. A loving Father gave us the charge and the blessing to be fruitful and to multiply and to have dominion so that we can develop and become even as He is. …
First, God charged us to be fruitful. …
We become fruitful as we abide in Christ and as we “take upon [ourselves His] name [and] … serve him to the end” (D&C 20:37) by helping others come unto Him. …
Second, God charged us to multiply. …
… Bearing children gives other spirit children of God the opportunity to also enjoy life on earth. …
Third, God charged us to subdue the earth.
To subdue the earth and have dominion over every living thing is to control these things so they fulfill the will of God as they serve the purposes of His children. Subduing includes gaining mastery over our own bodies. …
Developing the ability to subdue the things of the earth begins with humility to recognize our human weakness and the power available to us through Christ and His Atonement.
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The Sabbath Is a Delight

Elder Russell M. Nelson
Of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles
I am intrigued by the words of Isaiah, who called the Sabbath “a delight” (Isaiah 58:13). Yet I wonder, is the Sabbath really a delight for you and for me? …
… The Sabbath was His gift to us, granting real respite from the rigors of daily life and opportunity for spiritual and physical renewal. God gave us this special day, not for amusement or daily labor but for a rest from duty, with physical and spiritual relief. …
How can you ensure that your behavior on the Sabbath will lead to joy and rejoicing? In addition to your going to church, partaking of the sacrament, and being diligent in your specific call to serve, what other activities would help to make the Sabbath a delight for you? …
The Sabbath provides a wonderful opportunity to strengthen family ties. …
We make the Sabbath a delight when we teach the gospel to our children. …
… Study of the gospel makes the Sabbath a delight. …
… You can experience true delight on the Sabbath from family history work. …
Make the Sabbath a delight by rendering service to others, especially those who are not feeling well or those who are lonely or in need.
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