President Monson Addresses National Convention

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“President Monson Addresses National Convention,” Ensign, Oct. 1991, 77

President Monson Addresses National Convention

A nationwide program, sponsored by the National Association of Counties (NACo) and aimed at strengthening families, was introduced at the association’s 1991 national convention, held in Salt Lake City.

President Thomas S. Monson, Second Counselor in the First Presidency, spoke in the convention’s opening session, which was held in the Tabernacle on Temple Square.

“You who serve the counties of America represent the people,” President Monson noted, welcoming the representatives of 3,100 county governments. “You are appreciated. You are trusted. Your tasks are many and your challenges great. The social, societal, financial, and moral ills of our country need your attention.

“This convention helps to eliminate the weakness of one standing alone by substituting the strength of many working together. We wish you success in your sessions. We count on you. We know, as do you, that the power to lead is also the power to mislead, and the power to mislead is the power to destroy. You have our love; you have our prayers.”

The convention featured a new NACo program that is designed to strengthen families. The program focuses on five basic concepts:

  1. Strengthen relationships through family activities.

  2. Establish reasonable rules and expectations.

  3. Build self-esteem.

  4. Set achievable goals.

  5. Periodically evaluate family strengths and needs.

The program is introduced by a fifteen-minute video, which was shown during the opening session. NACo leaders say the videotape will be distributed to government agencies, schools, parent-teacher associations, and health and human services organizations.

Another speaker at the conference was U.S. Senator Jake Garn, a former mayor of Salt Lake City. In his address, Senator Garn lamented the evils wrought throughout history by “a few evil despots … who want to control and exercise their dominion over their fellow human beings. …

“There is no doubt in my mind that God intended us to be free individuals,” he continued, “to choose how we would live, how we would worship, that we would have freedom of religion, freedom of choice.”