Priesthood Session

5:00 p.m. Choir Combined Priesthood Choir Provo MTC

5:01 p.m. Conducting President Thomas S. Monson, Prophet, Seer, Revelator

Welcome to the general priesthood session.  Relayed by satellite throughout the world.

5:02 p.m. Choir: Called to Serve

5:05 p.m. Invocation by David S. Baxter Quorum of the Seventy

5:07 p.m. President Monson

5:08 p.m. Choir Lord I Would Follow Thee

5: 12 p.m. Elder Richard G. Scott Quorum of the Twelve Apostles

We are gathered in the brotherhood of the Priesthood of God.  We are privileged to be able to bless others through the use of the Priesthood.  Do we value how great this is to hold the priesthood, considering so few men hold the Priesthood in the world.

It is the authority to act in God’s name.  Essential to move God’s work forward.  As we are true and faithful our ordination will be Eternal.  But, conferring the authority doesn’t necessarily confer the authority of the office, which comes through obedience to the commandments.

Christ is the perfect Priesthood role model, with humility and power.  It flows to the service of others without thought of self.  We can bless, console and counsel when appropriate.

Example of a private personal priesthood interview.  How often do we use our priesthood to bless others?  Are our thoughts conducive to the Spirit, or should we have a thorough house cleaning?  Do we avoid stimulants and substances inconsistent with the Word of Wisdom?  Do we avoid pornography?  If we are divorced do we provide for our children, not just what the law requires?  If married are we faithful to our wives in thoughts and deeds?  Are we kind and supportive to our wives and children?  Do we help our wives with the household chores?  Do we lead in prayer, home evening?  If we need to take corrective action, let’s do so now.  If there are worthiness issues speak to your bishop now.  These matters will not heal themselves.

How to bless the lives of others with the Priesthood.  Proclamation states husband and wives should be equal partners.  Every wife would welcome this.  Many husbands do practice equal partnership with their wives.  I encourage all men to establish equal partnerships with your wives.

Be sensitive to the promptings of the Spirit.  Be more aware of how to make greater use of the Priesthood in the lives of those you love and serve.  Remember the widows in need.  Be aware of the challenges you could help with in their homes, small repairs.  As a Bishop, be attentive to those sisters who serve in the ward council.

Bishops do you give the same credence to the wife as you do a husband when counseling them?  Do single sisters get the proper attention when attending a family ward?  Do they receive proper callings, and proper priesthood support.  The priesthood is to serve, inspire, and help.

Some cultures place men in superior positions.  This is NOT the way of the Lord.  Some place women as property to men.  This is Lucifer’s idea, and all priesthood holders must reject this.  Men are not superior to women.  Nothing could be further from the truth.  God saved his most supreme creation until the end, after all else was created:  woman.

No creation more inspiring than a lovely daughter of God.  One who honors and respects her body, one who enlarges her mind and nurturers her spirit.

Women are fundamentally different from men.  Are compassionate.  Some become discouraged because they feel they are not doing all they should do.  As a husband or son, express your gratitude to your wife and mother for what they do.  Express your gratitude often.  Too many women seldom hear gratitude.

Men hold your wives in your arms when you sense they need lifting, and tell her you love her.   Often we don’t recognize that which is of value until we lose it.

Shouldn’t have to lose your priesthood to appreciate it more fully. Despite age or infirmity we do the work God gives us until the last breath of our life.  May the Lord guide us to be more inspired.

5:29 p.m. Elder J. E Jenson Presidency of the Quorum of the Seventy

Atonement of Christ, and the administration of the sacrament by the Aaronic Priesthood.
Arms of safety, related story of a young girl about to fall into depths of the Grand Canyon.  A young 19 year old man, heard her screams, climbed over the rail, and held her for over an hour while rescuers came to them.

Arms are tangible.  We use them to express safety as well as love.  Arms of safety is useful in teaching the Atonement to others.  When we are baptized we feel those arms as we come to the sacrament meetings and partake of the sacrament.

Sabbath after Sabbath you Aaronic Priesthood holders administer the sacrament to us.  There is a spiritual healing or cleansing associated with the sacrament.  We are to repent of our sins and come to the Lord with a contrite heart and a humble spirit.

Through the broken bread we witness we take upon ourselves Christ’s name, keep His commandments and have His spirit to be with us.  We experience a cleansing.  We experience the arms of safety.  The Aaronic Priesthood holder should remember he is acting on behalf of the Lord.  Mostly our youth are exemplary; but, occasionally we see some drifting and informality.  Check in the mirror before you leave and make certain everything is in place.  True servants of Christ are properly dressed and groomed.  Follow Christ’s standards, not the casual informal standards of the world.

Nothing should be distracting to the congregation as you administer the sacrament.

Sometime we feel the Atonement applies only at the end of life.  It is more than that.  It is a power upon which we can call during our every day lives.   The Atonement is real.

5:40 p.m. Elder James J.   Quorum of the Seventy

Speaks to the Aaronic Priesthood holder about who they are, and how to accomplish what they want to do.  We are in the final stages of the great war, between those followers of Christ and those who reject Christ and his Atonement.

Satan instigated the pre-mortal war.  Tragically 1/3 followed Satan, and we are part of the 2/3 who did not.  Satan and his followers were cast out to this earth, and we see their influence in the blood and horror that reigns on this earth.  Christ will return to this earth which has rejected him to reign and rule.  This time, God’s Kingdom will not be lost, but will overcome the world.  This Kingdom has already been established through the Restoration.

The most noble and valiant spirits of God are here now engaging in this war.  You, the Aaronic Priesthood holders and the young, valiant and noble spirits, entrusted to come to the earth in the last days, to choose good over evil.

Satan knows if he can entice you into transgression he can prevent you from your potential future, full time mission, temple marriage, family.  Our days and the days ahead are perilous.  Nothing in history compares with that which surrounds us now, including Sodom and Gomorrah.

Remember young men to be sober.  Understand you cannot partake of alcohol, drugs, or tobacco.  You cannot lie, cheat or steal.  You cannot deface your body with tattoos and piercings.  You cannot do these things and be valiant in your priesthood callings.

We can defeat Satan now as he was defeated in the beginning, Faith in Jesus Christ and his Atonement.

1.  Do as young Joseph Smith did, pray to God, regularly.  It is a pre condition to revelation.  The more frequent the prayer the more frequent the revelation.

2.  Learn to hear God’s voice.  It is a small still voice.  It is felt more than it is heard.  It comes as feelings and impressions.  Set aside your light mindedness.

3.   Obey the word of the Lord as it is given to you.  Do as He bids you to do, no matter how hard it seems.
These are your days.  Do not squander them.  Take the shield of faith.  Fight the good fight of faith.

5:51 p.m. President Monson

5:53 p.m. Choir and Congregation Praise to the Man (Death cannot conquer the hero again!  Earth must atone for the blood of that man.  Wake up the world for the conflict of justice.  Millions shall know Brother Joseph Again!  Traitors and tyrants now fight him in vain.  Indeed, mingling with Gods.)

5:56 p.m. President Dieter F. Uchtdorf, Second Counselor, First Presidency

Thank you brethren for your strength and moral worthiness.    Years ago some brethren were given the task to move a grand piano from one location to cultural hall.  It seemed a near impossible task.  As they stood around the piano, one spoke.  Brethren stand close together, and lift where you stand.  They did this, and the piano rose and moved as if on its own power.  They needed only to stand together and lift where they stood.

Tonight he wants to expand on this concept of lifting where we stand.  This is simple, but a principle of power.  Most are eager to roll up their sleeves and go to work.  Most magnify their callings by serving others.  But, there are others who struggle with this concept.

Either they seek to lead, or they seek to hide.  Those who seek to lead think they are capable of more than they are asked to do.  If only I were a bishop, they might think.  If an important leader, might they work harder than they do now.

Those who seek to hide feel they are too busy to help in the Church.  Whether it be cleaning the chapel, helping someone move, or teaching a class, some do not accept the call to serve.

The root cause of these tow, is selfishness.  Let those who will lead, serve others.  This is how Christ lived his life, and how a priesthood holder must live his.  Christ did not care for the honors of man.  Through his life, Christ always made time for the sick, afflicted, and the downtrodden.  Too often we get caught up in seeking the honors of men.

We are judged, will He look on our positions in the world or Church?  Will He care how many meetings we attended?  God will judge differently from how we judge.  He is pleased with a noble servant, not a self serving noble.

Moving story about John Moyle, who walked regularly 22 miles to Salt Lake Temple each week.  Lost his leg when severely broken.   His hands carved Holiness to the Lord.  His Grandson President Moyle called as a general authority.  John’s service like that of his grandson was just a pleasing to the Lord.  John understood the meaning of lift where you stand.

Personal recognition is not important.  We don’t know the individual names of the 2000 Sons of Helaman; but as a group they will always been known for their service.   No calling is beneath us, as they all provide us with an opportunity to serve and grow.  This leads us to personal spiritual growth.  Whatever your calling, see it as an opportunity to bless others and to become what God wants you to become.

Believes the Lord has certain callings for every man.  Sometimes we don’t hear the rest of what the Lord is telling us.  Sometimes we are called just to lift where we stand.  God knows what is best for us.  Each of us stands at a unique place.

Don’t lift the piano by yourself.  Let’s all lift where we stand.  Nothing can keep this divine work from moving forward.  May we cease to retire and never cease to tire.

6:14 p.m.  President Henry B. Eyring, First Counselor First Presidency

Encourages Priesthood holders who are overwhelmed.  Priesthood duties will often stretch you to where you feel whether you can stretch any more.

You may have thought when younger that it will get easier.  Those who are older, are smiling.  The more faithful service you give, the more God will ask of you.  You must go in service and faith to your outer limits.  It is like building muscles.  You push them, and they re-grow larger and stronger.

The Savior was born in mortal life was tempted, but never sinned.  Then he paid the price for our own sins.

It is not surprising that we feel overwhelmed.  When we feel inadequate we need to remember the Savior.  He reminds us we are not alone.  Put scriptures on your mirror to remind you that you are not alone.  Christ said I will be on your right and on your left, I will go before your face.   President Eyring was so blessed by President Monson.

Like Elisha’s servant there are those who we may not see who are with us.  There are more with us and on our side than we know.

Shortly after being called to the 12, President Faust called him to a meeting.  He asked if it had happened yet?  Don’t ask me for help, ask God when you are feeling overwhelmed.

God gives you opportunities to serve and grow.  Ye who embark in the service of God do so with all your might, mind and strength.

I’ll go where you want me to go dear Lord.  I’ll be what you want me to be.  We will find joy where ever the Lord asks us to serve.  We will be changed by the Atonement to allow us to go home and live with Him.

When we give our all, God will give us all we need.  Angels will bear us up.  This is God’s true Church.

6:28 p.m. President Thomas S. Monson

You have witnessed tonight the strength of the two counselors of the First Presidency.  Testifies the First Presidency is united in the spirit of Christ.

Thanks the missionary choir for the music.  Has an experience they might be interested in.  Had a desperate call from MTC.  A missionary was going home and going to quit.  He is absolutely certain he cannot learn Spanish, though called to a Spanish mission.  President Monson suggested the Elder report to the class to learn Japanese.

The Elder did that, and claimed he was absolutely certain he could learn Spanish.  Where there’s a will there’s a way.

This may be the largest assembly of priesthood holders ever gathered.

Many areas in the world have experienced difficult economic times.  We must make certain that those for whom we are responsible must not go hungry, or without shelter or clothes.

We advise the Church members to be prudent, live wisely, not beyond your means.  Avoid unnecessary debt.  Make your homes places of prayer.  We need God’s guidance in our daily lives.

The worth of souls is great in the sight of God.  A new heart will I give you and a new Spirit will I put within you.  Ye shall be my people, and I shall be your God.

What will qualify us to receive this blessing?

1.  Learn what we should learn.
2.  Do what we should do.
3.  Be what we should be.

1.  Learn what we should learn.  Apostle Paul placed an urgency on what we should learn.  Lay aside sin and let us run the race with patience, looking toward Christ.  The priesthood is the power of God delegated to man.  But it can also be called the perfect plan of service.  The priesthood is an instrument of service.  President Lee, said when one becomes a priesthood holder he becomes an agent of the Lord.  When we are on the Lord’s errand, we are entitled to His help.

2.  Do what we should do.  D&C 107, learning moves to doing.  Let every man learn his duty, and then to act in the office to which he is appointed.  No assignment is menial.  Each has eternal consequences.  If we do not magnify our callings, God will hold us responsible for those we might have saved (John Taylor).

3.  Be what we should be.  Be an example of the believers.  Pray concerning our assignments, seeking divine help in accomplishing what we have been accomplished to do.  Divine favor will be with those who seek it.  Be even as I am said Christ.  I am the Good Shepard, who gives his life for his sheep.  I know my sheep.  As the Father knowest me, I know the Father.  May we learn what we should learn, do what we should do, and be what we should be.

By so doing, the blessings of heaven will attend to us.  Read excerpts of letter who passed away three years ago at 90.  When baptized at eight was impressed at receiving Holy Ghost.  Tried to live so not to lose this gift.  On one occasion this gift saved his life.

Was a gunner in a bomber in WWII.  He was assigned on this flight for a difficult mission.  The plane was hit, and burst into flames.  He jumped last, and was shot at by enemy planes.  He couldn’t inflate his life raft.  Prayed to God to save him.    Was able to finally inflate raft.  Floated for three days in enemy territory.  Survived a great storm.  He prayed.  The Holy Ghost prompted him to command the submarine that had passed them by several times, to pick them up by the power of Jesus Christ, the power of the priesthood.  It did so.  May we ever follow Christ.

Choir

Benediction by Keith R Edwards Quorum of the Seventy

#ldscon