Saturday, April 4, 2009

LDS 179th Annual General Conference, Saturday Afternoon: Total LDS Membership Now 13,508,509

Note: Full transcripts of all Conference addresses now available in English HERE.

The Saturday afternoon session of the 179th Annual General Conference of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has just concluded, and President Dietrich Uchtdorf, the Second Counselor to the First Presidency revealed that the Church continues to grow steadily. Saturday morning session discussed HERE, and the Saturday evening priesthood session discussed HERE.

Visit this static page to find out how you can watch or listen to Conference sessions. KSL Channel 5 news video of the day's events embedded below:

Video Courtesy of

An outstanding summary of this session is provided by Messenger and Advocate once again, while a more limited summary is also posted on Times and Seasons. President Uchtdorf led off by announcing appointments to General Authority and other Church-wide positions. A complete list of callings can be found HERE. One notable appointment was that of Elder Joseph Wafula Sitati, first African member of the Seventy. In addition, President Uchtdorf provided a statistical membership report:

-- Members: 13,508,509
-- Missions: 348
-- Full-time Missionaries: 52,494
-- Districts: 622
-- Stakes: 2,818
-- Wards and Branches: 28,189
-- Temples: 128

More detailed summaries of the talks are posted by the Mormon Times, at the following links, which reflect the order in which the speakers appeared:

-- M. Russell Ballard of the Quorum of the Twelve: Learning the lessons of the past help us to walk boldly without stumbling. But the process of gaining a testimony hasn't changed; it still requires desire, study, prayer, obedience and service.
-- Quentin L. Cook of the Quorum of the Twelve: The Lord's plan of salvation is big enough for all of Father in Heaven's children. The Father has provided a comprehensive and compassionate plan for his children that saves the living, redeems the dead, rescues the damned and glorifies all who repent. Called for greater respect and civility towards those with different belief systems. Counsels equal regard for all within the LDS community, regardless of activity or commitment.
-- Kevin W. Pearson of the Seventy: Challenging times require greater spiritual power and faith. Avoid the "Six Destructive D's"; doubt, discouragement, distraction, lack of diligence, disobedience and disbelief, all erode and destroy our faith.
-- Rafael E. Pino of the Seventy: Living the gospel does not mean escaping adversity. Rather it means that we will be prepared to face and endure adversity more confidently. Suffering can enable us to better understand the Atonement, since there is no infirmity, affliction or adversity that Christ did not feel in Gethsemane.
-- Richard G. Scott of the Quorum of the Twelve: No reason to worry when we keep temple covenants. When we keep the temple covenants we have made and when we live righteously in order to maintain the blessings promised by those ordinances, we will ultimately prevail.
-- Russell M. Nelson of the Quorum of the Twelve: Pray for the will of the Lord to be done and pray unceasingly. In addition, the concept of 'too much and unnecessary' could also apply to the length of our prayers. Public prayers ought to be short supplications, and not unscheduled sermons.

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