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The general presidents of the Relief Society, Young Women and Primary of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints answered questions during a live worldwide broadcast originating from Brigham Young University. The Sister-to-Sister event, held on Friday morning, May 3, 2019, was part of the annual BYU Women’s Conference, held on the Provo, Utah campus.
Sister Jean B. Bingham, Relief Society general president; Sister Bonnie H. Cordon, Young Women general president; and Sister Joy D. Jones, Primary general president, fielded questions from women across the globe. The panel discussion was moderated by Sister Sheri Dew, former second counselor in the Relief Society general presidency.
“We all live in different circumstances, different needs, but we have similar concerns,” said Sister Jones. “It’s easy for us to fall into comparison to feel we’re not enough, that we’re not giving enough, doing enough, being enough, when in reality, through our Savior, we are enough.”
“We’re still going to have challenges and problems, and that is part of the plan of our Heavenly Father to help us to grow and to learn,” said Sister Bingham.
“We all have things that kind of just derail us a little bit; we have to change our plans,” added Sister Cordon. “It’s always messy.”
“We all have more bad hair days than good hair days,” shared Sister Bingham. “When we allow the Lord to lead us and allow Him to strengthen us, we can overcome all those things.”
Families in the Church
“I think many of us could say ‘my life is not what I planned,’” said Sister Bingham. “We all belong to families in this Church. We need to help one another, understand that every single one of us belongs to the family of God.”
“Everyone wants to feel loved and needed,” stressed Sister Cordon. “Our Heavenly Father put us in families for a reason, and we all have a family and they all look different.”
“The Atonement of Jesus Christ is not exclusionary; it’s infinite,” said Sister Jones.
“I think there are some questions that will not have answers,” said Sister Bingham. “I have to be faithful enough that I can put that on the shelf and let it rest until I can find that answer.”
“We were so touched that so many questions came in, and I just keep thinking about those questions and I want your hearts to feel peace,” said Sister Jones. “Remember the Lord said ‘I will not leave you comfortless.’ I pray that you will seek Him.”
“Seek this Jesus,” Sister Cordon admonished the sisters in her final remarks. “Our Savior, Jesus Christ, never hides from us. He always gives us what we personally need.”
“We need each other, we need unity,” said Sister Bingham. “No matter where we serve, we are all members of Relief Society. We are a great sisterhood throughout the world.”
Developing Spiritual Strength
Elder D. Todd Christofferson of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles and his wife, Katherine, were the final keynote speakers of the conference. The Christoffersons encouraged the audience to develop their spiritual strength in small ways over time.
“In reflecting on the past, I realized that my testimony didn’t come with one stunning event or miracle,” said Sister Christofferson, who stood at the pulpit before a large crowd gathered in the Marriott Center. “It came by small whisperings of the Spirit. It came line upon line and precept upon precept as I heeded the words of modern prophets, studied the scriptures, followed worthy examples and tried to apply gospel principles in my life.”
She said that it’s important to express gratitude to Heavenly Father for our blessings. “As we look back, we will indeed see the hand of the Lord reaching down to bless us in a constant and marvelous manner.”
Elder Christofferson shared that he and his wife have been reassuring each other about their women’s conference speaking assignment for many weeks.
“I truly believe that by your ‘small things,’ our mighty God will do to you great things,” he added. “He has the power to help by His omnipotence and by the grace, mercy and merits of Christ’s Atonement.”
“Some have not understood and have used the love of God as an excuse for not changing, for not growing, for not keeping His commandments,” said Elder Christofferson. “His love demands and deserves their love and loyalty in return. Otherwise, He cannot help them.”
He referred to his wife’s remarks about the importance of prayer and scripture study. “Both are revealed truth. God could not have helped us more as it relates to truth or given us any greater gift than scripture.”
Elder Christofferson continued, “The wealth of scripture that we have in our hands, far more than has been available in any previous era, bears witness that we have a greater need for constant access to the recorded word of God than did His children of any previous time.”
The Latter-day Saint apostle taught that each of us needs to take personal responsibility for our lives.
“Our Heavenly Father is not a ‘helicopter parent,’” explained Elder Christofferson. “He does not generally intervene to protect us from the consequences of our choices.”
He encouraged the audience members to develop their own spiritual strength and stamina.
Elder Christofferson concluded, “Because of the power of the Atonement of Jesus Christ, no one can cause you permanent injury, whether physical, emotional or spiritual. No one can prevent your eventual resurrection and exaltation no matter how hard they try. Only you can forfeit eternal life.”
Visit ChurchofJesusChrist.org to watch the streamed talks from the BYU Women’s Conference in English, Spanish or Portuguese.
Over the two-day conference, more than 140 presenters offered insights on topics of interest to Latter-day Saint women of all ages and service projects. In addition, hundreds of volunteers helped run the annual event.
For more information on the BYU Women’s Conference, visit womensconference.byu.edu.