Hello, everybody, friends and family from around the world.
We got invited by President Lund and President Cordon
to make the school video.
Today, we're going to be hiking Ensign Peak,
just north of the Salt Lake City Temple.
This Is Teji, and this is Ammon.
-Hi. -Hey, guys.
This is Hannah and Emily.
This is Joey and that's Bryson.
-Oh, hi. -Hi.
You're ready to get going, Joseph?
Yes, let's do this.
here in the conference center
and across the world.
I'm Elder Gerritt W. Gong of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles,
joined by young women General President Bonnie H. Cordon,
and Young Men General President Stephen J. Lund,
and our eight Intrepid Hiking Adventure Friends.
Let's begin by joining our chorus in singing
the Spirit of God,
followed by an invocation by Condi.
Our dear Father in Heaven,
we are so very thankful to be gathered together tonight.
We are so grateful for the opportunity to hear
from Elder Gong, Sister Cordon, and President Lund.
that the messages that they have prepared for us tonight
will be able to be received into our hearts and into our minds.
as youth with the struggles of today,
we are so thankful and grateful
for the leadership and love thou has given us.
We ask that we might be able to continue
to grow our knowledge and our faith in the gospel.
We are so thankful for everything we have.
We are thankful for our Savior and His eternal atoning sacrifice,
and we pray
that we might always remember to never be alone
and that He's always with us
and that we can truly do all things through Christ.
We say these things in the sacred name of Jesus Christ.
Thank you, Condi.
It's a new year
with new hopes,
new ways to connect and belong,
new opportunities to grow spiritually.
Our youth theme comes from the New Testament.
"I can do all things through Christ,
which strengthens me."
Jesus Christ is the strength of youth.
Today, we're talking about joy and strength in Jesus Christ,
including when we face challenges,
or are looking to know our path ahead.
Shall we say the theme together?
Let's say it together.
wherever we are,
in this room,
around the world.
I can do I all things through Christ,
which strengthens me.
Wonderful. Thank you.
It's inspiring to hear those words out loud.
I feel truth and strength
in knowing I can do all things in Christ.
The next time you feel
may be a little lost
or maybe a little afraid,
say the theme again.
Say it in your mind.
Say it out loud.
The spirit will testify to you
that you can do all things through strength in Jesus Christ.
what symbol goes with this year's theme
and how can it help us focus on our savior?
Thanks, Elder Gong.
We have chosen a trail marker
like this one back here
as our symbol for the year.
You'll sometimes find markers like these
in a variety of places with a variety of names.
In English, we often call this a cairn.
Those of you who speak Dutch call them steenhopen.
In Italy, they're called tumulo.
President Cordon just returned from Mongolia,
where these trail markers are called
-I didn't speak Mong, but she does. Ovoo. -[laughs]
They're, they're usually a mount of rough stones
that have been stacked as way finders
built by those who have previously found a safe way
and that provide guidance and assurance to others that follow.
Have you ever felt a little lost
when you're heading down an unfamiliar trail
or even while wandering a crowded city sidewalk
and then you see a sign
that let you know you're going in the right direction?
It instantly brings a confidence that rushes into your heart.
We each are beloved daughters and sons of God
on our journey through mortality.
Sometimes we might feel a little lost or unsure,
but our savior has provided signs,
all around us.
Spiritual trail markers can give us a reassurance
that, "I can do all things through Christ which strengthens me."
As you ponder this,
no matter how steep the climb or really hard the journey,
we are not alone.
We can draw strength from the savior.
Let's think about this tonight.
Let's ponder what does this look like in our own lives?
The Lord has given us powerful markers
that we sometimes walk right past
without receiving the direction that they offer.
Some of those things might include our patriarchal blessings
and general conference talks given in places like this,
and FSY conferences
and, for that matter, the scriptures and the commandments
that provide safety and peace.
They can confirm our progress
or they can draw our attention to things meant to bring us joy.
Sometimes they warn us of danger ahead.
Our task is to just move our feet one step at a time
to take each step forward
and then the next.
The Holy Ghost
will help guide us
to stay on or to return to the path.
The Holy Ghost knows
who we are,
why we're here,
and in whom we can trust.
The Lord provides spiritual signposts.
They help us know
someone who loves us
is ahead of us on the path
preparing the way.
Our youth-themed video,
I Can do all Things in Christ, shows
finding strength in Christ.
We'll watch that first
and then we'll watch
a video of our hiking adventure with our hiking friends here
and talk about what we learned and felt.
[start of video playback]
Through my hills and valleys,
heavy storm toast to sea
I can feel my savior so close to me
He leads me forward through paths unknown
And, when my strength is God,
he heals my weary soul and shows me
who I could be
He stays with me
and I know
I can do all things
when I'm sinking in the waves
If I reach for His grace,
He will rescue me
I can do all things
with the savior by my side
I can climb to greater heights find the strength I need
I can do all things with Christ
I can do all things with Christ
I will cross that desert
Though it's far and wide (Though it's far and wide)
When I feel the hunger
And I hear the lies
I will pray to heaven
And the winds will cease (Winds will cease)
With my Savior as my guide, I know that I can do all things
When I’m sinking in the waves
If I reach out for His grace
He will rescue me (Rescue me)
I can do all things (I can do)
With the Savior by my side (All things)
I can climb to greater heights
Find the strength I need
I can do all things with Christ (I can with Christ)
I can do all things (I can)
If I’m locked inside a prison cell, He breaks my chains
When I’m laid into the grave, He rolls the stone away
When I face my fears and follow Him with all my faith
He gives me strength
so I can do all things
When I’m sinking in the waves
If I reach out for His grace
He will rescue me
I can do all things
With the Savior by my side
I can climb to greater heights
Find the strength I need
I can do all things with Christ
I can do all things
I can do all things with Christ
It looks a lot different from up here.
Isn't that amazing?
-Yes. -The view changed.
Our perspective changed too.
How does this remind you
of some of the things that we have in our life,
challenges, thoughts, perspectives, belonging?
I used to struggle a lot with loneliness.
It's very very isolating.
You feel like it's just you.
You're the only one feeling alone.
The biggest way I found to help my loneliness
was to then reach out to other people.
That helped me.
In a way, take a step back
and see that I wasn't just the only one feeling alone.
Like what we're saying with,
now that we're on higher ground and we're able to see better.
There's so much more behind all of our trials
and there's so much more hidden underneath,
that fear of talking to people or that fear of sitting alone at lunch.
There's so much behind every person,
and I think it's incredible to think of our eternal perspective.
I think it's very interesting how we could think about Heavenly Father.
Maybe we feel alone
and we feel like he's left us,
but from His perspective, He's like,
"I'm right here. You just can't see me yet."
My father passed away when I was in eighth grade,
and that was definitely hard. I feel like I was definitely alone.
I had my siblings,
but it was hard to see what I was going to receive.
Now that its been a few years and I've really opened up,
I can see the blessings that I've received
and I still sometimes feel alone,
but, if I just pray about it and come closer to God,
I feel like Heavenly Father's with me and so is my dad.
The theme scripture that we have this year,
how does that apply?
How did you see the Savior strengthen you in that trial?
Right after he passed away my ward,
they were just-- I didn't really fully appreciate them.
Just the love that you receive
from being in the church and participating in those activities
and people definitely get to know you
and through that, you can gain support.
Having the common trial with your siblings and your family,
do you think that was something that helped unite you guys?
I feel like there's a boundary between siblings sometimes,
but, with this, we became more vulnerable with each other.
We were able to listen and understand and just really care for each other.
-Vulnerability is what connects us, -[laughs]
-Is that what it sounds like? -Sometimes it does, doesn't it?
Talk to me a little bit about,
why it is that you've decided to be active members of the church.
For me, it gives me peace.
Because of Christ atonement,
we have the opportunity to repent and become clean again.
A wonderful thing, isn't it?
Repentance is awesome and I feel incredible when I feel that,
the joy when I repent and I feel clean again.
How often should we repent?
-Every day. -Yes. [chuckles]
I thought that repentance was all about judgment day.
As long as you get repented before you reach the bar of God,
Why would you repent every day
as long as you know
that you're going to be able to do it then?
When you have a burden on you,
when you make a mistake and you know it was wrong,
or even if you don't know it was completely wrong,
but you still feel the weight of it.
I think that, after I repent and feel the spirit,
I always just feel way more worthy
to go to the temple to pray to Heavenly Father
and I think that's just such a beautiful thing.
I think that the amazing thing about the atonement
is Christ will take all of the things that you are going through
and He will carry them for you
and all you have to do
is choose to look to Him and allow Him to help you.
Jesus Christ understands everything that that you've been through.
In the Garden of Gethsemane,
He felt all the pain, all the trials in the world
and He understands what we're going through.
[end of video playback]
Those were great insights, everyone.
Ammon, thanks for sharing about your father.
That's very tender.
When you think about covenants, how have they shaped your perspective?
Well, sticking to the covenant path
and keeping those covenants has definitely been a struggle.
With my father's passing
that I'm the sole priesthood holder in my house,
that I had to step up and be worthy to keep my covenants
and keep the priesthood in my house for my family and also for myself.
I also wanted to share a story about a time
I found myself in the back of the temple parking lot.
I was sitting there and I turned on my music
that makes me feel happy and comforted.
I sat there and I prayed
and I cried a lot
and I knew that I was feeling the spirit
and I knew that Heavenly Father was speaking to me
in a way that I couldn't just sit in my own home or just anywhere.
I felt like I had to be at the temple.
Temple really is a sacred spot, isn't it?
I've been so blessed with the most amazing family ever.
Growing up, I think I took them for granted.
I didn't realize
the full purpose of family within Heavenly Father's plan.
It wasn't until a couple of months ago when I was really struggling with friends,
I felt so alone, so isolated that no one knew who I was.
They maybe saw the outside Bryson.
I talked to lots of people, but I didn't feel like people knew me.
I had this spiritual prompting like, "Bryson,
take advantage of your family,
and say, hey, this is something I'm struggling with."
As soon as I did that,
I just said, "Mom, dad, my brothers, right?
This is something I'm going, I'm struggling with."
They were there for me.
It wasn't that they pushed me to go to church all those years,
they were there to be a support, to be a comfort.
That's changed my life to realize that.
I think we should all try and be that friend, an example,
and just be loving and kind
towards people who maybe don't have that kind of example.
in their home or in their family.
I think that if we're just there for them,
whether they're struggling having questions, anything like that,
we're there for them, and helping strengthen them,
then we can have a really strong impact.
When I was younger, I had the opportunity
to be able to immigrate from Venezuela to the US.
As many immigrants might know, out in the crowd or around the world,
it can be really scary to go to a brand new place.
As great as it'll be, and all the opportunities that you have,
it's really scary
to go somewhere where you don't speak the language,
and you can't communicate with anyone.
We can't be good examples, and we can't talk to other people,
we crave connection.
Overall, I think
the most important connection is our families
because no matter what happens,
we always have them there, no matter where we go.
My Bishop and his wife have been
really incredible examples of loving our Word family
as much as they would love their immediate family,
and they've told us that before.
It's just so powerful.
Looking around the room at so many people,
we're all gathered here, together, because we love Jesus Christ,
and we're gathered together around the world
for that purpose.
If your families maybe not a place of love,
or you're feeling isolated and alone,
remember you have a gospel family.
There are so many people
with the love of the Savior in common with you,
and we all have that together.
This is a pretty big family here tonight, isn't it?
I love what you have all testified up because it really is true.
There is just a feeling within all of us, we long to belong.
Each one of us,
we all want to be seen, we want to be heard
and we want to be loved by our friends, and especially our family,
but you know what's amazing
is there is help with those relationships.
As we develop a relationship with our Savior,
our ability to connect with others will grow stronger,
and they will be more meaningful.
If we really can focus on the Savior,
some of those other relationships will be stronger.
I call it covenant belonging.
It's when we connect by covenant
with our church leaders and the church,
and with each other as youth.
Covenants are the strongest bond in heaven and on earth.
We've missed being together but now we're gathering in person again.
We're strong in Jesus Christ and with each other.
Shall we see what happens next on our hiking adventure?
[start of video playback]
What do you guys think about the new For Strength of Youth?
I think it's really different from the old For Strength of Youth,
because it makes it
so that we have to take more responsibility
for choosing to do what's right because we believe it's right.
It's hard to not just have yes or no answers
but I think it's strengthening
to know that God wants us to find those truths
and to pray about it and to study and to ponder
and to ask church leaders, to ask parents to ask friends,
and to have healthy discussions
that help cultivate this idea of a personal relationship.
It's hard to get it right
and it's hard to understand things perfectly,
but having an open mind
will help you
be able to become closer with God
and understand what He really means when we receive revelation.
I love how it teaches
to base all your decisions on Jesus Christ,
how He is the rock that you need to build your foundation on.
When you all read the pamphlet
and it talks about this guide represents a higher and holier way,
what does that mean to you?
We were setting the Old Testament
and it makes me think
of when the law of Moses was changed to a higher holier way of living
to remind you more clearly of Christ like the purpose was Christ.
That just reminds me of that,
that now our focus isn't necessarily the rules,
but the higher and holier way is
how can we make decisions
that will bring us back to Heavenly Father in Jesus Christ.
No matter what, we're going to go through hard things.
No matter what, we're going to have trials,
we're going to have hardships, we're going to make bad decisions,
we're going to do things that we regret doing
but I would a thousand times rather have God on my side
when I'm going through those hardships
than when I'm not.
I think it's important to remember
that we're given those trials to teach us and to learn.
God's not going to necessarily take away all of our hardships
because that's why we're here on Earth.
That's why we're here to grow, to learn, to make connections, meet people.
I don't know, that's super powerful.
My dad always tells me
God's love is perfect, our ability to sense it is not.
I think those trials are making us stronger
for different times in different situations.
how each one of you have expressed
the real need to have the Savior in your life,
but what do you do to invite the spirit into your life?
I would just say prayer.
sometimes praying sometimes feels insignificant.
Like the things you're praying for are not really that meaningful
but I promise you
that Heavenly Father doesn't care what you're praying for,
He just wants to hear from you
and that's helped me feel the spirit in so many different ways.
I say scriptures
like I have a strong testimony
that Heavenly Father is trying to communicate through to you.
Every time when you open up the scriptures,
All you need to do is look for it and really study
I personally love attending seminary.
It's just super powerful
and to be able to make that connection,
it's like reading the scriptures together in seminary.
I feel like it's super powerful.
We're having an amazing day here today,
and look, we're only partway of the mountain,
but what a day!
[music] [end of video playback]
Well, thank you for sharing those feelings.
Any other thoughts you'd like to share?
-Yes. Can I say something? -Emily, please.
When the new for the Strength of Youth Guide
I was really hesitant and really nervous for the change
because there wasn't clear cut, yes or no answers on some things.
I like to be a rule follower and that was a big adjustment for me,
but since reading it over, I have gotten the impression
that we have this new guide because the Lord trusts us
and Heavenly Father knows that we can make good righteous decisions
and He's giving us the opportunity to do so.
I also think it's important
that we still counsel with parents and leaders
about the questions that we may be facing
and to also consult general conference talks
because there's not clear yes or no answers in the guide,
you can find good answers to your questions
through the words of the prophets.
Talking about like the things
that are put in place to help the youth make good choices,
I had the amazing opportunity to go to FSY conference.
This past summer,
one of the best experiences of my life.
I remember going into one class
and the professor said,
"If you haven't heard anything that you feel like it was for you,
then this is the class that it was, and it just happened to be on repentance."
It can be a topic that can be seen as a punishment,
but, after that lesson, it completely changed my view.
I went to school
and I have a greenhouse full of plants.
I remember that one of them was missing and I just was panicking over this plant.
My friend turned to me and he's like, "How can you know
one is missing
out of the thousands of plants that there are here?"
I turned to him and I'm like, "I take care of every single one.
I water them, I change their dirt."
I'm like, "I know which one it is, and I need to know where it is."
I think that's a lot like the main reason
why Heavenly Father put repentance there so that way he could get us back.
Speaking of repentance,
I had this experience where, like I had said,
I was really struggling
to feel like I had worth that people knew me
and I had said some things and really hurt people that I cared about.
I just remember walking into my bedroom and looking at the mirror,
and I just started sobbing.
I fell to my knees and I said, "Heavenly Father, I am not perfect.'"
So much peace came upon me and I felt we don't have to be perfect.
Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ don't expect us to be perfect.
They just expect us to be trying our best.
That was so powerful to realize that it doesn't matter what we've done,
through the atonement of Jesus Christ, through repentance,
He looks past what we've done,
and He just looks at who are we trying to become.
I think that's so powerful to me.
I think, in addition to that,
I have struggled with that too,
not feeling like I'm good enough to be able to repent and feel that
but I think that,
in addition to knowing
that we can still approach God when we're not perfect,
knowing that, since Jesus Christ completed the atonement,
He felt all of our temptations, all of our hardships, all of our pain,
He knows what it's like to go through everything we go through,
and He says, "I'm perfect.
I know what it's like to move past those things
and I know that you can do it too with my help."
It's so powerful to know
we really can do all things through Christ.
We're able to become so much better
and we're able to move past anything with Him.
When I was a little kid and up until a couple of years ago,
I've struggled with the speech impediment that really hindered the way I spoke.
Hardly anyone understood me.
It was so hard.
I drew power from the Scriptures about Enoch and Moses.
How they also struggled with their speech
and, through the Lord, their mouths were open.
After years of hard work, prayer, fasting, and help from my parents,
I finally overcame my trial.
I have a strong testimony
that, through Christ our Lord, we can truly do anything.
Thank you, Joey. I totally agree.
That's why I love this new theme.
I love the whole idea of we can do all things through Christ.
I know the Heavenly Father is always there,
wanting us to come to Him.
He's always standing there with open arms
but all it takes is us going to Him because He's always there.
I also know
that I've at least had a lot of struggles
with being able to feel
like I want to go to Christ when I'm going through these hard things.
What have you guys done
to help yourselves
be able to want to go to Christ and to be able to do that thing?
Well, maybe I can jump in on this.
I think the world comes at us very fast in a lot of noise and conflict.
For me, I treasure prayer.
The opportunity to be still
many times during the day, as many times as I need
is sure a blessing
but I am really grateful
that sometimes the Lord doesn't answer my prayers
exactly how I want them to be answered.
Have confidence and trust in the Lord that He knows you well.
I am so grateful for prayer
because it helps me feel the spirit throughout my day.
I feel that way too, President Cordon.
The world comes at us so fast and heavily,
some days it seems
like the world and the pressures that are around you
and that device in your hand almost make your decisions for you.
I'm with Bryson on this. I had a thousand times brother.
Go into the day every day
with the Savior on my side and with a feeling of the spirit.
Every day, before I go outside,
and sometimes during the day,
I open my scriptures and spend time there and reading
until I feel a connection with heaven and feel the Heavenly Father's spirit.
I try to read 10 pages every day, but at least long enough,
and sometimes it takes more than 10 pages that I feel that connection.
Then I like to be on my knees in prayer
until I can actually feel
Heavenly Father's spirit in the room with me there.
When I do those things, my days go a hundred times better,
that time in the scriptures and in prayer
turns out every day to be the most important time of that day.
It helps me to know
that choices have outcomes and consequences.
When we choose to follow Jesus Christ,
in essence, we're trusting His promise
that all things shall work together for our good
in His time and way.
Jesus Christ will help us
when we need to change or repent
when we sinners make mistakes, which we all do.
Our Savior and His atonement
are our most important trail markers,
our greatest source of strength
as we make our way through life.
That's what I felt.
That's what helps me.
Shall we watch the last segment of our hiking adventure?
See what happens.
[start of video playback] [cheering]
How are you?
Doing great, how are you?
Nice to see you.
It's a beautiful day to be up, isn't it?
I want to show get something.
Isn't there something?
Oh, my goodness.
You can see everywhere.
-Isn't that incredible? -[crosstalk]
What does it look like from here as opposed to when we were down below?
How's the perspective different?
You can just see way more up here.
it slowly got a bigger and bigger perspective,
but up here,
you can just see way more than I thought we would be able to see.
That's great. Thank you, Hannah.
As we were coming up the trail,
there were some markers that helped us to know which path to take.
What are some of the markers
that you find are important or valuable in your life?
One marker I think I'm pretty excited to get to
is I'm actually getting my patriarchal blessing in a little bit.
I feel like that's a great marker that can help guide you through life.
I also think another good marker is the general conference.
I think we really need to put that focus on it more
and listen to the talks and, actually, listen to how they can help guide us.
One of the best markers we have is the spirit.
That's the way that Jesus Christ and God can speak to us.
Knowing how to recognize that
and knowing when we are able to feel that
and when we're able to receive personal revelation,
I think that's a great way
and it just helps make life so much easier.
Great. Thank you.
How is the temple,
and, particularly, the fact
that we come to the house of the Lord
to make covenants with God, our Father and with His Son,
how is that a important marker in our life?
When we recognize
that the temple is where we make those covenants,
it helps, it become a great symbol for us.
I think not only the temple has an amazing symbol,
but the peace you feel at the temple is on another level.
It's like a piece of heaven on earth.
There's places to feel that all across the world.
We're continuing, more temples are being built every year
and just creating more sanctuaries on earth
to feel the love of heaven, to feel the love of God in Jesus Christ.
You're thinking of eternal perspective,
of perspective that has our Savior at its center.
How does that change the way that you make decisions?
In surrounding yourself
with people that can help you bring you closer to Christ
is definitely a plus.
I don't think I would've appreciated this as much without you guys.
I think being able to see this perspective
and especially when we were down at the bottom,
we had such a smaller view,
shows us that,
even sometimes when we're struggling in life,
we don't understand why certain things are happening.
This can remind us that there's always a bigger picture
and there's always going to be reason for things.
That's great. Thank you very much, Teji.
Because God loves us so much and knows us so well,
His perspective for us will always be the best thing for us.
That perspective can guide us in a way that no other perspective can.
[end of video playback]
That was an amazing day climbing that Ensign Peak,
that old pioneer memorial all on, all in one day.
-It was cold. -Beautiful thing.
It was really a cold day.
I don't know if you noticed
the surprise look on everybody's face
on that last little clip there
as the group came around the corner and saw Elder Gong ahead.
They had met him the night before and had a wonderful exchange with him,
but we weren't expecting to find him
on the top of the mountain to guide us through that last little step.
It was surprise to everybody,
but the biggest surprise
when that surprise resulted
in this massive group hug at the top of the mountain.
That was my favorite part.
It was so wonderful
to be there all together and to go together to the top.
As you think back on that experience,
is there any other thought or feeling you'd like to share?
On that cold frigid day, we were going up the mountain
and as we were leaving, [?] says, "Bryson,
I want you to go up that mountain and smile
and the clouds will go away."
[chuckles] That was super powerful
to realize we each have our own role to play.
For some people, that might be smiling or just saying hi,
for other people, that might be
having these super deep thoughts and comments,
but we each play a role in the kingdom of God
and we work together to create glory.
I think that was super impactful to me.
Yes, I totally agree.
I felt so loved and cared for on that mountain
and not just by the leaders, but everybody there
and you guys made me felt so comforted and loved.
I think a lot of the time we put aside the leaders that we have in our lives
and we don't really value what they have to say
as much as we really should
but my young women's president has shown me so much love
and that's just set such a great example of somebody who can lead us
and what we should be to somebody else.
I think we should really try to focus
on how leaders in our lives can help us and really focus on what they have to say.
I think we should help other people be able to feel that value and importance
because every single one of us is loved and cared for and valued,
and we should all get to know that
and we can help other people know how much they're loved
by sharing with them and letting them know
Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ love them.
Aiming to love like Jesus Christ is, I think,
one of the most incredible things anyone can do.
Whether or not you see that in another [?]
or your own young men's leader,
I think it's just super great to have that compassion for one another.
Ammon, I loved how you said being like Jesus Christ
because that's our purpose here on earth.
That's the eternal perspective.
When we went to the top of that hill,
we saw so much more
than we did on the bottom or even the middle.
We saw such a bigger perspective.
I recently got my patriarchal blessing
and that showed me my eternal perspective and really helped me out with my life.
Preparing for this event has been a big undertaking
but it's also given me a sense of purpose to my scripture study and my prayer,
praying what do the youth of the world need to hear from the Savior.
I invite you guys to find purpose in your scripture study and your prayer
and maybe say a prayer of who can I bless today
or what can I learn about the Savior from these scriptures
and I think it can be really powerful.
Something that you can't quite see on the video
is Elder Gong was actually standing upward in a hill
and the sun was right behind him and he had both of his arms wide open.
That's what resulted in that group hug.
We just saw him froze for a second and then got so excited
we just had to go see him.
For example, President Lund as well, he visited my FSY conference,
and I remember he gave it devotional, and I have him written on my notes.
President Cordon, the first time I met her,
I was actually speaking in front of a little group,
and she just happened to be on the third row
and I was so nervous
that she would look at me and she mouthed, "You're okay, you got it."
Overall, all of the things that we've been able to learn from them
is they're just disciples of Jesus Christ
who are doing their best and they just show Christ-like love.
I wanted to ask, in these callings that you guys have,
what have you been able to learn from the youth specifically?
That is a great question.
Let me just tell you some things I've learned from you,
but I also want the world to know
as we've gone around the world to see the youth,
they're the same two things.
One, you know who you are,
you have an incredible sense
that your daughters and sons of Heavenly Father.
That is powerful,
to know who you are
and to have your identity so firmly embedded
and the hope to seek to understand that better.
I've seen that through all of the youth that we visit with,
is their knowledge that they know who they are.
Then second, is your purpose.
I loved how you all talked
about how can we build others, how can we strengthen them?
I've noticed that the youth today are action-oriented.
They're going to make a difference in this world
and help people know the savizxor
better than any other time or any other dispensation.
I know the Savior better tonight by being with all of you.
Yes, I have exactly that same feeling about them.
We get to travel around the country, around the world,
and meet with young people,
young people just like you, and young people just like you.
What I've learned, Natali, is
that President Nelson knows wherever he speaks.
When he says that this is a chosen generation,
a preparatory generation
who has come into the world at this time for special purposes.
The overwhelming impression I have on days like this,
is how true that is
and what amazing power there is that's penned up here.
We don't know what our future looks like.
We know it's going to be bright and we know it's going to be good
and there's going to be a lot of happiness.
The goodness that flows
out of rooms like this and the living rooms that are watching
are going to have a lot to do with the brightness of the future world.
Natali, something I've loved learning about this group
and about young men and young women
we meet everywhere
is how fun and how spiritual you are.
There's some people who say you can't be fun and spiritual,
you can't be obedient and kind
but I find
our young men and our young women everywhere
are really fun
and they're really kind
and they're really obedient
and that those things go together.
That true happiness comes
when we know who we are
and we're following on the path that we should follow,
and that makes us happy.
That's something I'm learning and that I love about our youth.
Well, this has been a wonderful time together.
We certainly thank each of you
and thank each of you who are with us here tonight.
We're going to invite our concluding testimonies
and after that
we'll join our youth choir in singing high on the mountain top
and Caleb will offer the benediction.
President Cordon, President Lund, would you like to share first?
Well, this year's theme is just simply 10 words long
but notice something.
While the first five words are aspirational,
"I can do all things,"
it truly is those last five words
that will bring power, purpose, and peace in our lives
which strengtheneth me.
It's only when we combine our effort with the Lord's strength
that we will discover the ability to move forward
in all things
in whatsoever challenge or success, big or small,
Our scripture, Philippians 4:13,
will you go home and mark it,
and make it part of you.
Now, tonight, before you go to bed,
will you just take a moment and ponder
what is one thing you can do or stop doing
that will draw you closer to the Savior?
Now, just don't think about it
but I want you to actually write it down and post it somewhere.
This year, we want to hear about all the things you do
and feel as a Savior strengthening you.
As you serve with Christ like love, as your testimony is strengthened,
as you overcome trials with the help of the Lord,
share your stories with us by using this hashtag,
my dear friends,
the more you seek Him,
the more you will see Him
and the many spiritual markers that surround you.
We love you.
I love you,
but, more importantly,
your heavenly Father and your savior love you.
I leave my witness
that Jesus Christ is our Savior and our redeemer,
and He lives in the name of Jesus Christ.
Thank you, President Cordon,
for that sweet testimony,
and thank you all for joining us here
so that we could come together
and think about making decisions
that are worthy of our times,
worthy of our stations, and worthy of our discipleship.
Let's go from here
to follow Him
with all of our hearts, mights, mind, and strength.
We've loved being with you here tonight,
but, before you go, can I give you a heads-up
on something really great that's coming up this year?
Our next youth event will be a music and arts festival
happening this August.
We want you to be part of it.
You can participate
by sharing your original works of music, poetry, art,
or anything else that illustrates how Jesus Christ has been your strength.
You can submit online at youth.churchofjesuschrist.org
and on social media using the #AllThingsThroughChrist.
Now, I share with you my personal witness
that, because He loves us,
because He loves us so much,
we can do all things through Christ.
Let's love Him in return
by following Him
and by following His spiritual trail markers,
which He places along our way, in the name of Jesus Christ.
We've loved being with you
because we can feel your love of the Lord
and His love of you.
Thank you again
for letting us be part of this journey together,
and thank you each
here in the conference center and across the world
for being part of this spiritual journey.
We're gathered here as a group, but we're also gathered here one by one,
including those in this congregation or my grandson and his deacons quorum.
I'd like to speak to them and to each of you
as though we were speaking one by one.
Wherever you are,
whatever your joys or your concerns,
would you please remember
that Heavenly Father gives us spiritual trail markers
to manifest His love and to guide our path,
please look with eyes to see.
As we've talked about tonight,
you'll find spiritual trail markers in many places,
friends and families,
quorums and classes,
bishops and other leaders,
patriarchal blessings, scriptures,
activities and service,
the holy house of the Lord
the promptings of the Holy Ghost
that draws us to our Savior, Jesus Christ.
Thank you for listening to each other,
for reaching out and inviting so everyone can be included and belong.
Thank you for living the gospel
and keeping the commandments,
for being fun and spiritual,
obedient and kind,
for following Jesus Christ as his valiant disciple,
even when sometimes it's not easy.
Thank you for being the strength of youth,
for demonstrating as Jesus said,
"His truth shall make us free, truly free, and truly happy."
Now, sometimes we feel inadequate,
not good enough,
perhaps even unworthy.
Recently, I met a young man who told me,
if you knew what I had done,
you wouldn't talk to me,
you wouldn't even shake my hand."
I gave him a big hug.
He was surprised
and said he wasn't worthy to be at church.
I said, "There's always a place for you in the Lord's Church,
there's always room for you in his Inn."
Dear young friends,
He always loves you.
Jesus Christ is our Savior and Redeemer.
Because of His atonement,
there is no point of no return.
His light is always on,
His arms are always open to welcome and embrace us.
We are led today by God's living prophet,
President Russell M. Nelson,
and our first presidency
and all the leaders in God's restored Church,
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
The Book of Mormon,
the ordinances and covenants of the house of the Lord,
the testimonies of the prophets and apostles,
and especially the Holy Ghost,
these precious spiritual trail markers
point us to our Savior Jesus Christ,
whose witness I am
and of whom I solemnly testify
in the sacred and holy name of Jesus Christ.
Our Dear Heavenly Father,
we're grateful that we could be here tonight
to gather with the saints.
We're grateful for Jesus Christ and His atonement
and all that He has done for us.
We're grateful for the ability to repent each and every day.
We're grateful for the strength
that Jesus Christ provides
so that we can get through our trials and our weaknesses.
We are very grateful for our prophet President Nelson,
and all he does for us.
We ask the special blessing
upon all the missionaries
that they'll be protected and guided.
Please, bless us as we go home tonight
that we'll be protected
and that we'll be able to make it to our destination safely.
We say this in the name of Jesus Christ. Amen.