by Rene Allen
This weekend was General Conference, a spiritual feast certainly, with the sustaining in Solemn Assembly of a new First Presidency. It seemed strange to me that I didn’t see President Hinckley’s face or that of President Faust. It took time to assimilate the differences, so that it wasn’t until Sunday’s closing session, as our new President revealed intimate stories about his life, that the shift occurred and he did, indeed, in my mind and eye, become the prophet and president of our church.
“Pray for me,” said President Monson, “and I will pray for you so that together we might receive the blessings the Lord has in store for us.” It was the same Thomas S. Monson speaking, the little Tommy of the Christmas coal car story, and the one who wiggled his ears in general priesthood session, who has devoutly and steadfastly served so long as a General Authority that my expectation was for him to be there as always, sitting in one of the big seats during General Conference. But there was a difference, too. As he spoke into the camera, I felt and heard the new authority in his voice.
He talked about the sacrifice of serving, of being absent from home for weeks doing the Lord’s will in the nether most parts of the vineyard. Did I hear him say life as a General Authority was hard?
General Conference is so well-planned and moves so seamlessly from session to session, that I am unaware of what happens behind the scenes and during the six month hiatus between conferences. Common men and women made uncommon by their testimonies and magnified by the Spirit, give consecrated time and talent to this church to which I belong, so that it does move seamlessly along.
I am deeply touched by their charity. I am deeply touched by how much our Heavenly Father loves us. To prepare leaders such as President Monson who has been schooled of the Lord nearly his entire life, is a demonstration of that love.
We are studying the Book of Mormon this year and its great prophets. I look at the stature of our modern day prophets and know they are great, too, as were Nephi, Alma, and Moroni.
How wonderful it is to have a prophet.