They Spoke to Us
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“They Spoke to Us,” Friend, Dec. 2005, 14

They Spoke to Us

As you make the October 2005 general conference a part of your own and your family’s life, you might consider using the following ideas for personal study and family home evening. Or you may wish to create your own questions, activities, and discussion ideas. (Page numbers refer to the beginning of the talks in the November 2005 Ensign.)

Search the Words Activity

  1. Into how many languages was general conference translated? (Clue: Search President Gordon B. Hinckley’s talk on p. 103.)

  2. William Tyndale played an important part in preparing the world for the Restoration of the gospel of Jesus Christ. What did he do, and how did that help the young Joseph Smith? (Clue: Read President Boyd K. Packer’s talk on p. 70.)

  3. When and by whom was “The Family: A Proclamation to the World” given? (Clue: Search Elder M. Russell Ballard’s talk on p. 41.)

  4. What did President Hinckley ask us to do by the end of the year, and what did he promise us if we do it? (Clue: Mentioned in several talks. Look in Elder Charles Didier’s talk on p. 48 for one example.)

Quotes and Activities

  1. President Hinckley said, “Somehow forgiveness, with love and tolerance, accomplishes miracles that can happen in no other way” (see p. 81). Is there someone who has offended you or harmed you or your family in any way? Have you offended anyone or done harm to anyone? If you need to forgive or ask to be forgiven, do it now and follow the prophet’s counsel.

  2. Many of the Brethren spoke about the important anniversary we are celebrating this year. It is 200 years since the birth of the Prophet Joseph Smith. Plan a special family home evening in tribute to him. Use President Thomas S. Monson’s talk (p. 67) and Elder Robert D. Hales’s talk (p. 88).

  3. Bishop Keith B. McMullin quoted President Hinckley who said: “This is a season to be strong. It is a time to move forward without hesitation, knowing well the meaning, the breadth, and the importance of our mission. It is a time to do what is right regardless of the consequences that might follow. It is a time to be found keeping the commandments” (see p. 10). Discuss with your family the need for both material and spiritual preparation as we face difficulties and trials.

  4. Elder Joseph B. Wirthlin taught: “In our day a prophet, seer, and revelator, President Gordon B. Hinckley, lives and reveals the word of God to man. His voice sounds in harmony with those prophetic voices of all ages past.

    “‘I invite every one of you,’ he has said, ‘wherever you may be as members of this church, to stand on your feet and with a song in your heart move forward, living the gospel, loving the Lord, and building the kingdom.’” Choose some of your favorite hymns, and together with your family, spend an evening singing about the Restoration, your willingness to obey the commandments, and your love for Heavenly Father and the Savior.

  5. “Where can we hear the words of the Lord?” asked President James E. Faust. “We can hear them from our prophet, President Gordon B. Hinckley, the First Presidency, the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, and the other General Authorities. We can also hear them from our stake presidents and bishops. Missionaries can hear them from their mission presidents. We can read them in the scriptures. We can also hear the still, small voice which comes through the Holy Ghost” (see p. 20). Make a list, with names, of all of these sources of truth that touch your life. Resolve to listen to their words and follow their counsel.

  6. Elder Jeffrey R. Holland said: “Your Father in Heaven knows your name and knows your circumstance. He hears your prayers. He knows your hopes and dreams, including your fears and frustrations. And He knows what you can become through faith in Him.” Every morning and evening, kneel before your Father in Heaven and ask him to help you live that day so that you will become the best that you can be, so that you will be more confident “standing in the presence of God” (p. 28).

Sampler of Conference Gems

President Thomas S. Monson, First Counselor in the First Presidency: “The priesthood is not really so much a gift as it is a commission to serve, a privilege to lift, and an opportunity to bless the lives of others.”

President Boyd K. Packer, Acting President of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles: “There is in the Church a central core of power deeper than programs or meetings or associations. It does not change. It cannot erode. It is constant and certain. It never recedes or fades.

“While the Church is housed in chapels, it lives in the heart and soul of every Latter-day Saint.”

Elder Dieter F. Uchtdorf of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles: “We recognize that we are living in a time of turmoil, disaster, and war. We and many others feel strongly the great need for a ‘defense, and for a refuge from the storm, and from wrath when it shall be poured out without mixture upon the whole earth’ (D&C 115:6). How do we find such a place of safety? The prophet of God, even President Hinckley, has taught: ‘Our safety lies in the virtue of our lives. Our strength lies in our righteousness.’”

Stories to Read and Share

Are you preparing a talk or lesson? In the conference talks beginning on the pages listed below, you’ll find stories you can tell and insights you can share.

  • Village moves to higher ground before tsunami, 16

  • Nurse helps woman with injured leg, 20

  • New member quits job with a cigarette company, 31

  • Man’s 12-year search for the Church, 33

  • Deacons, Scoutmaster fellowship young Paul Sybrowsky, 35

  • Charles Didier’s conversion, 48

  • Young Paul V. Johnson plays ball during general conference, 50

  • Lyman E. Johnson regrets his apostasy, 53

  • Bishop sits in a dunking machine, 53

  • Home teachers travel one week to visit a member, 56

  • Priest who stutters baptizes a girl, 56

  • Deacons and teachers visit Welfare Square to see the fruits of fast offerings, 56

  • Thomas S. Monson visits a Greek couple, 56

  • Thousands of Church members serve hurricane victims in the Gulf States, 60

  • Missionaries testify of Joseph Smith to doubtful man, 67

  • Woman forgives young man who injured her, 81

  • President and Sister Kimball healed during a visit to New Zealand, 85

  • Bishop challenges 11-year-old Ulisses Soares to fill out mission call papers, 98

  • Young woman finds acceptance at Relief Society, 110

  • Two sisters, members of the Willie handcart company, help each other survive, 110

  • Devoted visiting teacher befriends “unapproachable” sister, 114

Photography by Craig Dimond and Christina Smith