Instant Post-Conference Thoughts: Sunday Afternoon Session (April ’24)

Note:  These are the instant, post-conference, mildly-filtered things that ran through my brain and heart as I watched this session of General Conference. If you are looking for deep, spiritual analysis, this is not the place. Drive on.

• We are already at the last session. Crazy. It is always such a great weekend and even though sometimes I grumble about it being exhausting, I always emerge glad that I powered through every session. There is SO MUCH of worth that I feel like Lehi, pointing at the tree: “It’s RIGHT THERE, just TAKE IT!”

• Glad to see President Nelson there and smiling.

Elder D. Todd Christofferson.

Plan of Redemption is for everyone. Discusses the differences between the three kingdoms of glory.

“What is the testimony of Jesus? It is the witness of the Holy Spirit that He is the divine Son of God, the Messiah and Redeemer.”

“Note that the distinguishing characteristic for the inhabitants of each kingdom is how they relate to ‘the testimony of Jesus,’ ranging from wholehearted devotion, to not being valiant, to outright rejection.”

Where we end up eternally hinges on our testimony of Jesus:

Celestial: “The inheritors of the celestial kingdom ‘receive’ the testimony of Jesus in the fullest sense by being baptized, receiving the Holy Ghost, and overcoming by faith.”

Terrestrial: “Not being valiant in the witness of the Savior suggests a degree of apathy or casualness—being ‘lukewarm’— as opposed to the people of Ammon in the Book of Mormon, for example, who were ‘distinguished for their zeal towards God.’”

Telestial: Outright rejection when offered.

We need to be valiant on our testimony

“Our faith in Jesus Christ needs to be nourished daily. It is nourished as we pray daily, study the scriptures daily, reflect on the goodness of God daily, repent daily, and follow the promptings of the Holy Ghost daily.”

We need to be valiant publicly, willing to share with the world.

Don’t be casually engaged, be anxiously engaged.

“Being valiant in the testimony of Jesus means encouraging others, by word and example, to likewise be valiant, especially those of our own families.”

Talked about Maxwell’s teaching that casualness can accelerate from generation to generation. Scary stuff.

Told a beautiful story about a Hawaiian family that could have been offended by the way they were treated at church, but instead came back and persevered. Now over 100 people are still in the church because the father wouldn’t be dissuaded.

“My invitation is to act now to secure your place as one who is valiant in the testimony of Jesus. As repentance may be needed, ‘do not procrastinate the day of your repentance.’”

“Our Father wants all His children who will to enjoy eternal life with Him. … Jesus suffered, died, and was resurrected to make that possible.”

Elder Taylor G. Godoy Saw a sign at the hospital “Call Don’t Fall,: so people wouldn’t hurt themselves. Uses it for a metaphor for prayer.

“I am certain that each of you have had and will have experiences where “calling” will be the answer to ‘not fall.”

“Praying, ‘calling,’ can be a sign of our hope; but taking action after praying is a sign that our faith is real, faith that is tested in moments of pain, fear or disappointment.”

Told a funny story about applying for wedding documents and being gifted a puppy. He was able to use the puppy to get the paperwork through. Wonderful series of miracles. (You need to watch it.)

  1. Always think of the Lord as the first option for help
  2. Pray
  3. Do all you can to obtain the blessings you pray for
  4. Humble yourself to receive the answer in His time and way
  5. Don’t stop. Keep moving forward along the covenant path as you wait for an answer

“This life, by its nature, brings painful experiences, some inherent to our physical bodies, some due to our weaknesses or afflictions, some due to the way others use their agency, and some due to our use of agency.”

As we pray, we can feel the embrace of our Heavenly Father, who sent his Only Begotten Son to relieve our burdens, because if we call out to God, I testify we will not fall.”

• Lots of reference that God will answer our prayers when He feels like it.

• Fresh oranges are delicious

Elder Gary E. Stevenson has a fascination with suspension bridges. Talked about the Golden Gate Bridge and how the two towers support the whole structure.

Love the Lord and love of our neighbor are the two pillars of our bridge. (The 1st and 2nd great commandment) All other commandments hang on these.

“For me, the application of the first great commandment can sometimes feel abstract, or even daunting. Gratefully, as I consider further words of Jesus, this commandment becomes much more graspable.”

“To love the Lord centers first on your heart — your very nature.”

“Loving the Lord is often measured in small daily deeds, footsteps on the covenant path.”

“We love the Father and the Son through the payment of tithes, keeping the Sabbath day holy, living a chaste life, and being obedient.” – using social media to build up rather than tear down.

“Loving the Lord leads to eternal happiness.”

Loving our fellow men is the 2nd tower.

“We succor the weak, lift up the hands that hang down, and strengthen the feeble knees.”

“Love of the Lord is not complete if we neglect our neighbors. This outward love includes all of God’s children without regard to gender, social class, race, sexuality, income, age, or ethnicity.”

“Can you let go of grudges, forgive enemies, welcome and minister to your neighbors, and assist the elderly? You will each be inspired as you build your tower of love for neighbor.”

There is a dependency on both towers: We must live the two commandments in equal balance. “We cannot truly live the first great commandment if we do not follow the second great commandment”

(I knew this was coming) Quoted Dallin Oaks: “Our zeal to keep the second commandment must not cause us to forget the first: Love God with all our heart, might or mind.”

• I love me a good analogy. Elder Stevenson’s two towers is an instant classic.

Elder Matthias Held talked about taking a wrong turn and getting stuck on the wrong highway by not paying attention to the navigation system. (Been there, done that.)

“We correct our wrong choices when we repent. This is where growth happens.”

— got interrupted. Son and bonus daughter just arrived at their new home in Boston. Exciting times!

“Consciously shift your focus and elevate your thoughts to the positive aspects of challenges, because they are always undoubtedly there too.”

—–> “Choose to believe, choose to have faith in Jesus Christ, choose to always trust God, choose to think Celestial.” (Yesterday we were also taught that having faith is a choice, which isn’t always understood.)

“Jesus Christ lives and stands there at every moment, waiting for us to choose to call upon Him to provide succor, strength, and salvation.”

• Halftime hymn: How Firm a Foundation. I was just saying to my EC that I could sure use a rousing hymn for a change. We’re sitting here singling along. Would love to be that conductor.

• It’s nice to see the Conference Center so full again!

Elder Neil L. Anderson Temples

“In the past, temple workers had graying hair. Not any more! Increasingly, there is something drawing us to the house of the Lord.”

“The youth of this Church are incredible. In a difficult world, they take upon themselves the name of Christ.”

“As we are faithful, we are blessed with protection from temptations and distractions.”

Talked about how all things would be in commotion in the last days, neglect, fatigue in the last days.

If someone you love has distanced from the church, don’t despair.

“Why are there so many temples now? One reason is that the Lord has promised to strengthen and bless his people. His promises are being fulfilled.”

“In His house, we are literally endowed with heavenly power.”

“In the temple, we sacredly promise, through our covenants, to follow Him forever.”

“He has promised to strengthen and bless His covenant saints, and His promises are being fulfilled.”

(This is one of those talks where every line is a stand alone quote.)

“Regularly performing ordinances for our ancestors in the temple brings a sweet and sure confirmation that life continues beyond the veil.”

“My beloved friends, if we are able and have not already increased our attendance at the temple, let us regularly find more time to worship in the house of the Lord.”

• I don’t know about you, but I have had a subtle prompting this conference that Temples are kinda important.

President Mark E Pace, Sunday School President

Talked briefly about dispensations and apostasy, and how this is the last one before Christ comes. What;s different about this one? The scriptures, particularly the Book of Mormon.

“While God has promised there will never be another general apostasy, we need to be mindful and careful to avoid a personal apostasy — remembering, as President Russell M. Nelson has taught, ‘We are each responsible for our individual spiritual growth.’”

“We call it ‘study,’ and that’s good because it implies effort. But we don’t always need to learn some new fact. Sometimes reading the Book of Mormon is just about feeling connected to God today.”

“What has the Holy Ghost taught us this week during our study of the Book of Mormon?’ and ‘How does this bring us closer to the Savior?’”

“We improve our teaching on Sunday by improving our study at home.”

“There has never been a people in history with the access to the Book of Mormon and other scriptures that we enjoy today.” “Lehi didn’t have a copy of the brass plates for every tent. 🙂

“The most important copy of the Book of Mormon is our personal copy. It is the copy that we read.”

Talked about gaining his own testimony of the Book of Mormon at the invitation of his mother.

“From the time I started reading the Book of Mormon, I felt that Heavenly Father was aware of my efforts. And felt that it mattered to Him.”

—–> “As we study the Book of Mormon and follow the living prophet, there will be no personal apostasy in our lives.”

President Russel M. Nelson for the big finish!

When he was born there were SIX temples in the church.

Talked about the Church purchasing the Kirtland temple and some Nauvoo sites.

The important things that happened in the Kirtland temple: Christ appeared. Moses appeared with the keys to the Gathering of Israel and the return of the 10 tribes. Elias appeared with the gospel of Abraham, and Elijah appeared and conferred the keys of the sealing power on Joseph Smith.

With Aaronic and Melchizedek priesthood keys, along with the three from Kirtland allowed Joseph to begin the gathering on both sides of the veil.

“The significance of keys being restored to the earth cannot be overstated.”

“Priesthood keys distinguish the Church from other institutions on the earth. Many organizations will make your life better,No other institution can or will influence your life after death.”

—-> Encouraged us to study D&C 109 – the dedicatory prayer of the Kirtland temple.

“Time in the temple will help you to think Celestial and to catch a vision of who you really are, who you can become, and the kind of life you can have forever.”

“Regular temple worship will enhance the way you see yourself and how you fit into God’s magnificent plan. I promise you that.”

“We’re promised that in the Temple we may receive ‘a fulness of the Holy Ghost.'”

“How much does it increase your confidence to know that, as an endowed woman or man armed with the power of God, you do not have to face life alone?  What courage does it give you to know that angels really will help you?”

“Understanding the spiritual privileges made possible in the temple is vital to each of us today.”

“Here is my promise.  Nothing will help you more to hold fast to the iron rod than worshipping in the temple as regularly as your circumstances permit.  Nothing will protect you more as you encounter the world’s mists of darkness. Nothing will bolster your testimony of the Lord Jesus Christ and His Atonement or help you understand God’s magnificent plan more.  Nothing will soothe your spirit more during times of pain.  Nothing will open the heavens more.  Nothing!”

New temples!

  • Uturoa, French Polynesia
  • Chihuahua, Mexico
  • Florianópolis, Brazil
  • Rosario, Argentina
  • Edinburgh, Scotland
  • Brisbane Australia South Area
  • Victoria, British Columbia
  • Yuma, Arizona
  • Houston Texas South Area
  • Des Moines, Iowa
  • Cincinnati, Ohio
  • Honolulu, Hawaii
  • West Jordan, Utah
  • Lehi, Utah
  • Maracaibo, Venezuela

“Let us rejoice in the restoration of Priesthood keys which make it possible for you and me to enjoy every spiritual blessing that we are willing and worth to receive.”

• An exuberant “Now Let us Rejoice” is the perfect way to finish up this conference.

• See you at the temple!

• All my love,

About the author


  1. I probably have never thanked you but I appreciate your conference notes every conference. I am such a visual learner that you frequently hear something I at least partially missed. I always read them, after every session.

  2. I, too, thank you for your notes. I have looked forward to seeing them after each session!

    On another note, as a temple ordinance worker, I noticed a lot of talks mentioning the temple, including Elder Anderson, but especially President Nelson’s. It was powerful. I got online to make a temple appointment, and the system kept crashing. I think I wasn’t the only one trying to make an appointment to get to the temple….. Temple should be busy this week!

    1. Agree with the other posters, your GC commentary is fabulous! And my goodness, TEMPLES. I’ve never experienced a General Conference with this much emphasis on temples and covenants. Incredible!

  3. I, for one, am soooo grateful for your commentary on each Conference session. I always take notes, but your comments make my notes appear elementary. I’m sincerely thankful that your health has improved enough that you can provide these commentaries for us. They are brilliant.
    Thank you for your continued great work. WOW—-15 temples!! Karma

Add your 2¢. (Be nice.)