It’s the first weekend in April,  and once again time for the LDS General Conference.  There will be lots of opportunites to listen, watch, blog, tweet, and othewise participate in General Conference this April.

Most cable companies and satellite compnies will carry General Conference.  On Dish it will be carried live on BYUTV channel 9403.  The Church’s website will have a live stream here.    If you want to experience some of the newest technology, try the LDS Newsroom’s Twitter feed, which you can follow here:  The twitter search term for conference is #ldsconf, as well as #LDS and #Mormon.  Plug those exact search terms into Google, and you’ll fine a plethroa of information about General Conference.  Or, perform the same search directly on Twitter, and you will be amazed at what you will find in terms of General Conference discussion. The Newsroom also has an article on the conference.  

In the Bloggernacle, I’m certain there will be several blogs commenting on and following General Conference.  Here are a few, I anticipate will have open threads or other feeds, comments and posts:

Temple Study

By Common Consent

Dave’s Mormon Inquiry

Mormonism Unveiled

I’m sure there will be others, so feel free to leave me a link and I will add them.

9:00 a.m. Mormon Tabernacle Choir The Morning Breaks

9: 01 Conducting Thomas S. Monson, Prophet, Seer Revalator,

Welcome to the first session.  Special welcome to all participating in conference center and throughtout world whereever you may be.  Grateful to TV, Cable, Satellite for their public service in brinigng conference to world.  

9: 02 Choir Press Forward Saints

9:05 Invocation Charles Didier Quorum of Seventy

9:06 a.m. President Monson

Note with sadness, Elder Wirthlin’s passing.  No doubt he is carrying on the other side of the veil.  After fasting and  prayer calling

 Neil Lindon Anderson as new Apostle.  Unanimous voting.  Takes his place on the stand within the Quorum of the Twelve–longest walk ever, per President Monson.

Has traveled to Mexico City to re-dedicate the Temple.  87,000 at Aztec stadium for great program,.  80 minutes dance, and Mexican history.  Got his own sombrero, and even serendaded the group.  First learned it in 9th grade Spanish class.  Had two decdicatory sessions.  Last week, dediciated Draper Temple.  685,000 attended open house.  365,000 attended dedications including those attending brocast dedications.  Many more dedications to come.  Looks forward to many more.  We reevaluate and try to do better.

Church is doing very well.  Work of Lord moves forward.  53,000 missionaries 348 missions in world.  Take seriously Christ’s mandate to teach all nations, baptising in name of Father, Son and Holy Ghost.  Grateful for missionary sacrafice.  Countless other volunteers as well.  Thankful for all volunteers and their services.

Perpetual Education Fund moves forward.  35,600 young people enrolled and trained to improve their schools.  18,900 have finished their training.  They are increasing their income three to four times.  Is an inspired program.  Thank you for faith and devotion to Gospel, for your love, service.  It is such service that allows Lord to accomplish His purposes.  Thank you for your kindness and prayers on my behalf.  Has felt these prayers and is grateful for them.  Anxious to hear messages of the next two days.  Those who will address us have sought Heaven’s help.  

To new members we welcome you.  To those who struggle, we pray for you.  God loves each of us, and is mindful of our needs.  May we be filled with His Spirit.  Kind rembrence of Pres. Hinckley who is serving well on other side.  

9:15 a.m. Choir Israel, Israel God is Calling  (note–Babylon the great is falling–you got that right–there is not a more prophetic and timley line in any hymn–Come to Zion, and within Her walls rejoice).

 9:21 a.mElder Robert D. Hales, Quorum of the Twelve Apostles. 

Come to Zion.  How blessed we are to be led by a Prophet.  Pres. Monson, growing up in great depression learned how to serve others.  He was taught by Pres. J. Ruben Clark, be kind to widows and the poor.  He looked after 84 widows and cared for them.  His service is his hallmark of ministry.

Our children are growing in times of economic adversity.  What we learn now and bless us for generations to come.  Speaks to us whose past choices are now limiting us today.  Those who have too much debt, are addicted.  Some debt may be necessary–house, possibly car.  Unfortunately additional debt incurred when we can’t control our wants and addictive impulses.  We must turn to Lord and follow his commandments to break cycle of debt.  Prays we will be filled with hope in Savior and His doctrines.

Our challenges are part of our mortal test.  Our situation not beyond Christ’s reach.  All our struggles and be for our experience and own good.  Lord doesn’t allow us to suffer beyond what we can endure.  Adversary knows us well.  Knows how to tempt us.  We can recognize his temptions.  We need to be able to say get thee behind me.  Not our tempations but our response is the measure of our character.

Provident provider?  We responsbile to provide spiritually and materially.  We need to joyfully live within our means.  Avoid excessive debt.  When we live providently we can provide for our families.  Thou shalt not covet.  World is full of idea of entitlement.  We want all our neighbors have and we go into debt, and get things we really don’t need.  We give away priceless agency.  Money we could have used to care for others now goes to pay debt.  We become depressed, self worth affected, relationships weakened.  Don’t have time or energy to seek the spiritual.  How do we overcome?  Lessons learned from his wife. 

1.  Learned as newly wed, in Air Force.  Saw a beautiful dress.  Suggested they might buy it.  Wife liked the dress, but noted, “we can’t afford it.”  The three most loving words are I love you.  

2.  Several years later, second lesson.  Financially secure.  Wanted to buy wife a nice coat.  Wife asked, where would I wear it?  Taught unforgetable lesson.  Are you buying this for me, or for you?  Is gift to show love for me, or to show the world you are great provider?  Was thinking more about him.  Had discussion about provident living, better to pay mortgage and saving for education funds.

We all need to learn to say “we can’t afford it” even though we might want it.  Or, we need to say we don’t need it.  We can learn more from communicating with husbands and wives.  Help each other to live providently.  Law of tithe helps us overcome things of this world.  We make sacrifice for others.  We all pay same 1/10th annually.  We all receive blessings.  Fast offerings is at least cost of two meals.  

Need to review our budgets.  Recognize difference between wants and needs.  Do we really want to buy that thing now, or take that dream trip later?  When we want to posses something, ask, is this benefit temporary or will it have eternal value and significance?  Will it help us avoid debt.

Addicition is craving of natural man, and is insatiable.  Addicted we crave worldly possesion.   As child of God should seek his love, security and hope of the future, which brings us Eternal Joy.  

I will give away all my sins to know Thee.  Promise Him we will do whatever it takes.  Through prayer, fasting, we can feel his love and power in our lives.  Only through Atonement can we obtain a mighty change of heart and change our addicitve behavior.  I invite you to come unto Christ.  Do not spend money for that which is no worth.   Feast upon that which perisheth not.  We can only over come addiction through our love of Christ.  

Testimony Christ has overcome all things.  We can over come worldly temptation through Christ.   Very, very powerful message.

9:36 a.m. Margaret Lifferth Primary Presidency

Lovest thou me, asked Christ of Peter?  We need to nourish our children today.  Need to feed His lambs and sheep.  Need to cultivate in homes respect for each other and respect for God.  Work to teach respect and reverence.  Invite spirit of worship in our homes and chapels.  Today standards of respect assailed in the world and media.   Are we the examples we need to be.  Am I an example of respect?  Do I listen to both sides of issue?  How do I respond to others with whom I disagree?

By living as an example we show we are truly sons and daughters of God.  Respect for others and love of God close cousins.  Reverence flows from admiration and respect for God.    Reverent behavior not a natural one.  It must be taught.  Harshness is not wise.

Make good choices, Internet Choices, live law of Chastity.  Self mastery essential to teach.  Reverence invites revelation.    When Spirit testifies, this revelation invites true reverence and respect.

Use proper language in prayer.  Reverence increases by showing respect for local and general Church leadership, including Priesthood leaders.  Teaching respect in address, i.e., Brother, Sister, President, Bishop, shows respect.  Parents must set standard for reverent behavior.  Gather to renew covenants that will heal our souls.  Take disruptive kids out.  Turn off cell phones and Blackberry.  This helps with reverence and sets a good example.  Stop texting during Sunday meetings.

1.  Love those in your class.   Take time to explain reverance.  Define acceptable behavior.

2.  Be prepared.  Prepare yourself and material.  

3.  Speak with parents whose children have disabilites.  All children deserve a chance to learn.

9:47 a.m. Michael A. Neider Second Counselor Young Men Presidency.

Greateful to Church leaders.  Virtuous added to YW themes.  We are commanded to be virtuous.  Practice virtue and holiness.  Invites 12 to 18 year old men specifically to listen, as well as parents and other Priesthood leaders.  

Study, or obtaining God’s word critical.  Dedicate ourselves as students.  Study scripture regularly.  We should be ernest student of revealed principles.  

Teaching of fundamentals is urgent, to better understand our task.  Priesthood leaders must do their homework.  Quorum is a class and a service unit.  We can build and strengthen each other here.  D&C 85: 107 how to minister to quorum members.  How deacon’s quorum president can edify his quorum.

Questions will come into your hearts.  Does our quorum operate as outlined in scriptures?  If not, why not?  Advisors and leaders will help.  Use inspired Church handbooks.  More can be expected from Aaronic Priesthood quorum presidencies.  Focus on quorum duties.  Quorum leaders will find individual quorums meeting separately by age group.

Prayer, fasting, scripture, duty to God, scouting, all used to better our young men.  Use these tools in quorum activities as directed by Spirit.  

Matt Anderson, Teacher’s Quorum President.  Only member of quorum then attending at that time.  Determined to bless members of quorum.  Asked list of members from clerk.  Called this boy, and in broken Spanish invited this boy out.  Omar came to Church, and soon his family followed.  Matt continued visiting and using his keys of Presidency, using his faith and powers of heaven.  He met with success.  

You are powerful tools in Savior’s hands.  Bishops don’t overlook priesthood quorum presidencies and YM presidencies.  They can be a great help.  Leaders should be students of Christ’s life.  May we “do our homework.”  Let us go forward in faith and virtue.

Jesus is the Christ.  He lives and loves us.  

9:57 a.m. President Monson

9:58 a.m. Choir Now Let us Rejoice

10:01 a.m. Alan F. Packer  Quorum of the Seventy 

Extend love and support to Elder Anderson.  Many families are challenged by serious times today.  Yet, this is a wonderful time to be alive.  These are days when prophesies are fullfiled.  Time to work out our salvation.  Those who build on bedrock, survive.  We must know and stand independent of worldly creatures.  Understand God is Father of spirits and He loves us.  Holy Ghost can commuincate with our minds and hearts.  

In high school one passion was American football.  Had one experience helped him over years.  Was on defense.  Lots of noise.  Reacted as coach has taught.  To his surprise he felt ball in his hands.  Gave a tug.  Heard a voice, tackle him.  Dropped him on the spot.  Wondered how he heard that voice above all the noise.  We need to be aquianted with voice of Holy Ghost.  Need to follow these promptings.  They will keep us safe in troubles times.

Tesimony is personal witness borne to our souls by Holy Ghost.  Testimony is to know and to feel.  Conversion is to become.   Alma challenged us to experiment on the Word of God.  If it is a good seed, and we do not cast it out, it will swell in our breast.  We will know that it is a good seed, because it enlightens our understanding.  

Ponder and broaden and deepen out testimony.  Study it out in our minds.    Answers come as a still small voice.  Cause our bussom to burn within us.  Jospeh Smith taught us to listen to thoughts coming into our minds.  We can feel pure intelligence flowing into us.  We grow in the spirit of Revelation.  

Usually testimony doesn’t come as a dramatic demonstration.   Unrealistic expecations of how answers come, we will miss them when they do come.  Ask for a testimony of truth.  Prayer is the most powerful way to gain testimony.  Seek and ye shall find.  Knock and it will be opened to you.  If you do his will you will know if it is of God or not.  In time personal testimony will come.  By power of Holy Ghost we will know truth of all things.   Having capacitiy to recieve revalation will be necessary in coming years and times.

This is a great time to be alive.  This is our day and our time.  God is Father of our spirits.  Christ is Reedemer and Savior.  We can personally receive inspiration.  

10:11 a.m D. Todd christopherson, Quorum of the Twelve Apostles 

Warm and sincere welcome to Elder Anderson.  2007 Peru massive earthquake.  One branch president, Conde, set to help others whose homes damaged.  Wife Pamela approached with one of her children.  But, Conde’s home gone.  Every earthly possession buried in the home.  Yet, they have all they need.  They have each other, their children, sealed in Temple.  They can rebuild with the help of God.

Simple illustration of profound power.  We need strong Christians who can preservere, overcome temptations, make important things happen, and defend truth of Christ against moral relativism.  The source is God and access to power is through our covenants with God.  God binds himself to exhalt us if we keep his commandments, including parcipitating in sacred rituals.

One ordinance is baptism, individually though name.  Others are performed in Temples built for that purpose.  We can inherit exhaltation and highest glory God can give.  New and everlasting covenant is Gospel of Christ.  Gospel constitutes the new and everlasting covenentat.  For God so love the world that he gave his only begotton son–the new and everlasting covenant reduced to one sentence. 

What is it about covenants with God that helps us endure difficult times?  We enjoy continous flow of blessings from God.  Word of Wisdom is one such covenant.  Leads to health lives.  Obedience gives us greater control over our lives.  Enhances our capacity to deal with challenges.  

Love begets love, compassion–compassion.  Community of Saints sustains one another.  If we keep commandments God will nourish and strengthen us.  Yet, we will still face challenges.  Righteousness does not preclude suffering.

Covenants produce faith necessary to do all things expedient in Lord.  As we honor covenants our faith expands.  Fruits of obedience become evident.  We face life with hope knowing we will succeed in the end because we have God’s promise and He cannot lie.

Adhering to covenants will help us in times of trial.  It enabled ancient saints even suffering death in its most horrid forms.  In offering whatever sacrfice that God requires, our faith becomes unbounded with affilictions becoming gains in our lives.  

Paul’s thorn, he sought that it might depart, but eventually took pleausre in his infirmities.  

Final aspect strenght through covenants, is bestowal of Divine power.  Allows God to flow into our lives.  We exercise our agency and elect to recive God’s power into our lives.  We are prepared to receive added light and spiritual power.  Temple endows us with power from on high.  Gift of Holy Ghost is part of everlasting covenant.  Gift by which Adam quickened.  Apostles endured through Holy Ghost.  He is also our comforter.  

Holy Ghost bears witness of our words, and gives us that which we should say.  Helps us get over insurmountable hurdles.  Allows us to press forward.  Confirms validity of our covenants.  Qualify for all Priesthood ordinances we can.  Times of distress, let covenants be paramount.  God will answer us and will sustain us.  In his own time and way He will stretch forth His hand. 

10:27 a.m. Choir Consider The Lillies  

10:32 a.m. President Thomas B. Monson 

Greatful for Choir.

10:33 a.m. Henry B. Eyring, First Counselor First Presidency 

Welcomes Elder Anderson warm welcome.   Great privlege to speak to us, hopes to enourage us.  One challenge in common, all must deal with adversity.   When comfortable times have gone on adversity can bring fear, and anger.  Anger comes from feeling that what is happening is unfair.  Good times can seem to be deserved.    How can this happen is difficult with those afflicted are blameless and ones we love.  These things can shake faith in God.  Doubt can grow and spread and some can turn away from God, charging him with indifference and uncaring, possibly to loss of faith in a God at all.

Purpose is to assure is God lives and loves all humanity.  Adversity is part of evidence of God’s infinite love.  Greatest gift of God is Eternal Life, and our spirits are changed.  We must be transformed by making righteous choices.  We epxeirence misery, sickness, even joy of forgiveness.  This comes only through Christ’s Atonement, which we can only faintly understand.  Christ knows from experience how to heal and help us.  

Christ chose to learn through His own personal experience.  Book of Mormon, Alma teaches how Christ took upon Himself all our sins.  The Spirit knows all things, yet, Christ suffered in the flesh to take our sins upon Him.

Joseph Smith cried out in agony is Liberty Jail, Oh God where art thou?  How long will thy hand be stayed?  God’s reply can help us all.  Thine adversity and afflictions will be but a small moment.  If we bear it well, we will be exhalted. 

We are being prepared for Eternal Life.  God will rescue his diciples.  We can find peace in the midst of struggle.   Examine our lives to know we have done all we can to be worthy of God’s help.  

We are full tithe payers.  We are assured that things will work out.  The Lord always suits the relief to the person in need to strenthen and  purify them.  Great trials of life is losing a husband or wife to death.  President Hinckley taught of this.  God feels the needs of these people.  

The Lord helps us each to encourage and inspire others.   Visit sick, affilicted, impart of our substance if we can.  Even if we are poor, if we someone who is more poor, we should help, and enjoy the blessings of peace.  Pattern of seeing somene in need and helping them will not cease.

Age and illness can test the best of us.  We should help others who need out help, despite the fact we may need great help ourselves.  Are we keeping the faith worthy of the Crown of Righteousness?

God lives.  He sets course for each of us.  Christ lives.  Atonement makes possible our purification as we keep our covenants.  He can and will give us strength to rise through our trials.  Pres. Monson holds the keys.  This is the Lord’s true Chruch.  We suffer with those He places in our way.

10:54 a.m. Choir  My Redeemer Lives

10:58 a.m. Benediction William Parmley Quorum of the Seventy