Philip Newton (pne) wrote,
Philip Newton

General conference thoughts

This weekend was the 172nd Semiannual General Conference of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Some thoughts:

  • Temple recommends will be valid for two years now instead of for only one, to cut down on the number of interviews bishops and stake president have to conduct.

  • The bar for missionary worthiness has been raised. I believe it was M. Russell Ballard who said that there is no time now for young men who go on a missionary to find their testimony or because they have nothing better to do -- that missionaries are needed who are firm and committed and will already be good representatives of the Church and of the message they will present.

  • The words of the middle hymn (which the congregation sings together with the choir) were projected on-screen during the satellite broadcast. That was handy since it meant that not everyone had to have the hymns memorised or bring along a hymn book. My sister tells me they started doing it in April already; at any rate, it's a new thing. (It isn't particularly helpful to those watching in German or any other language other than English, however.)

  • It must have been interesting to listen to Elder Dieter F. Uchtdorf's talk on Saturday morning in a German-language session. I was at home, waiting for Stella to come back from a three-day trip to the temple with the ward Relief Society (they had taken advantage of the fact that Thursday, the 3rd of October, was a public holiday here in Germany) so I didn't go, but Ireen and Sabine both told me that Elder Uchtdorf (who is German) had translated the talk himself and had recorded himself giving the talk in German, and that they played back the recording while he was giving the talk in English. In effect, he was his own simultaneous interpreter! And that way, he could make sure that not only the translation but also the pronunciation would be acceptable. Probably one of the few occasions where listening to the German translation is as good as or better than listening to the original talk! (Another occasion, for me at least, is with certain non-native English speakers whose thick accent makes it difficult for me to understand them; I'd rather hear a translater then since they'll be more easily comprehensible to me.)

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