Fourteen Fundamentals Spotlighted at Conference

Today marks the first day of the 180th Semi-Annual General Conference of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. As previously blogged, I have been anxiously anticipating attending this Conference, [as I do with all Conferences] and it certainly did not disappoint! Every talk today was marvelous, inspiring, motivating and exciting. I have pages and pages of rapidly scribbled notes and impressions that I plan to make sense out of [and write subsequent brilliant blog posts of course]…soon! However, I want to quickly post about one of today’s “extra-ordinary” Conference moments.  

First, it is important to know that none of the men and women invited to speak during a Mormon General Conference are ever given an assigned topic. Each speaker is invited to study, ponder and pray to receive personal inspiration on their own topic. [a true fact I have personally confirmed]. It’s another one of the great and exciting things about Conference – such wonderful mystery and surprize attached!

Conference Is Like THIS!

Conference is like Christmas! We know there will be beautifully wrapped “packages” being prepared for us, just waiting to be opened and revealed on Conference morning! After six long months, you can almost hear the entire membership of the church collectively holding their breath in anticipation for the moment when the prophet will walk to the pulpit to speak, and let the unwrapping begin!

For example, The first big “present” this morning was the announcement of 5 new Temples to be constructed in the Philipines, Indianapolis Indiana, Hartford Connecticut, Lisbon Portugal, and Tijuana Mexico.

One of the great teaching techniques of the Lord is repetition. The scriptures are full of prophetic repetition [“Thus saith the Lord…” ; “Remember, remember” ; “And again, I say unto you…” etc.] A General Conference for the church is considered living scripture. So, one would expect some prophetic repetition to happen, and when an idea or theme is repeated in Conference, my ears automatically perk up as something that is “a little bit more important”. And, when something is quoted word for word by two or more speakers, then to me, it’s a bit like the Lord getting on His heavenly PA system and saying “Hey everyone, listen up! Did you get that?! In case not, here it is again! Take Notes!”

Today, we were treated to an awesome “heavenly PA” moment!

Not just one, but TWO General Authorities of the church extensively quoted from the same speech.

  1. Claudio R. M. Costa

    Elder Claudio R. M. Costa of the Council of the Seventy in the opening morning session

  2. Kevin R. Duncan

    Elder Kevin R. Duncan, also of the Seventy [his first Conference talk assignment since newly called this year].

Both of these men seperately felt inspired to turn to a speech given by the late President Ezra Taft Benson in 1980 at a BYU devotional, entitled “Fourteen Fundamentals In Following The Prophet“.

President Ezra Taft Benson

Benson was an apostle of the church at the time of this talk, but would later become the thirteenth president and prophet of the Church. The “14 Fundamentals” talk is personally close to my heart. In March of this year, I spent time studying the text, and listening to the audio. I personally thought it was one of the most brilliant, powerful and important speeches I’d heard in a long time. I even worked on a highlight video which I posted on my YouTube account and on this site published March 29th [with limited response]. So, needless to say, I was thrilled to hear Benson’s familiar words quoted this morning by Elder Costa. I became positively giddy later this afternoon to hear it quoted again by Elder Duncan! I think it is all quite extroidinary, don’t you? Let’s recap:

  1. Two General Authorities separately felt inspired to read Benson’s words.
  2. Both felt the words were not only powerful, but important enough to repeat to the Church [and the world] today from the Conference pulpit.
  3. Because we believe the Lord is in charge of what we hear at General Conference, then obviously, it was the Lord who felt it was time to remind the world of what President Benson was initially inspired to say over two decades ago.
  4. Just in case we didn’t get the message the first time around, the Lord made sure to ‘re-broadcast’ the message through two separate mouthpieces, at two separate Sessions of Conference.

Just for the record, I got the message [loud and clear]! 🙂 I’m happy to share it again here on my blog. [because, that’s what blogs do best…repeat information!]

It’s been a great day! I’m looking forward to another amazing day of Living Scripture tomorrow! – MoSop


  1. “none of the men and women invited to speak during a Mormon General Conference are ever given an assigned topic.”

    I have heard this said before. How do you know this is the case for every General Conference?


  2. And it was confirmed to the world generally by Elder Neil L. Andersen, of the Quorum of the Twelve:

    “When you are assigned to speak at the end of the final session of general conference, you listen to every word, wondering which parts of your talk will be given before your turn comes. There are no assigned subjects, no collaboration of themes. The Lord’s way, of course, is always the best way. He takes the individual prayerful efforts of each speaker and orchestrates a spiritual symphony full of revelation and power. Repeated themes, principle building upon principle, prophetic warnings, uplifting promises—the divine harmony is a miracle! I testify that in this conference we have heard and felt the mind and will of the Lord.”

    (April 2010 General Conference, see Ensign, May 2010, p.108.)


  3. I realize that this was written some time ago, but ran across it as I prepare for my RS lesson. Thank you so much! I love this talk and plan on using it as a handout and showing your video! Thank you!

    Liked by 1 person

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