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5 'Best-Kept Secrets' to Help You Write Your Next Talk

Conference talks and Ensign articles are a good start for your sacrament meeting talk, but when you're stuck, you might need a little something more to make your words more engaging, spiritual, and memorable. 

Here are seven underutilized resources to help you punch up your next sacrament meeting talk:

1. Story compilations from general authorities

Integrating a story into your talk is a great way to teach a lesson in a memorable way. But if you don't have a personal story, you can always use a story from the general authorities. There are a few great compilations of stories you can check out:15591

Consider the Blessings: 50 True Stories from President Monson’s Talks 

Add a little "umph" to your next talk by using one of the 50 true accounts President Thomas S. Monson has shared over the years. The accounts President Monson shares are always true, taken from his own life or the real lives of other people. Those memorable stories have truly become a hallmark of his messages.

-->Read President Monson's favorite stories

It Is Better to Look UpIt Is Better to Look Up

This helpful book gathers more than fifty of the most memorable personal experiences shared in general conference over the years. The result is an irresistible volume filled with remarkable true accounts of God's hand in our lives--and is a great place to look for real stories with a gospel moral.

-->Find favorite conference stories



2. The Latter-day Saint Sacrament Speaker's Resource Book

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Don't be fooled by this book's cover--this tome is a hidden gem that most sacrament speakers don't know about, but should. With classic quotes and stories by LDS Church leaders and scholars, The Latter-day Saint Sacrament Speaker's Resource Book is an indispensable tool in preparing a talk for sacrament meeting. With scriptural references, carefully selected quotes, and inspirational stories—all arranged alphabetically by topic—your talk preparation will be a breeze. 

-->Get this hidden gem for your gospel library




3. The Scripture Citation Index

This lesser-known method for searching conference talks lets you cross reference scriptures that have been cited at general conference. That means, if you have a scripture about your talk's subject, you can find every general conference talk ever given that also used that reference. 

Learn how to use the index with this video from Mormon Life Hacker.


4. Favorite online articles about giving talks

21619There are a large number of articles available online that are specifically written to help Latter-day Saints prepare and deliver an outstanding talk. Here are just a few of our readers' favorites:

5 Ways Not to Start a Sacrament Talk (And What to Do Instead)
How to Write a Talk Like President Monson

How to Prepare a Great Sacrament Meeting Talk
Say It Like a Pro: 10 Public Speaking Tips
7 Tips for Sacrament Meeting Speakers
Steps for Giving Better Sacrament Meeting Talks
Speaking in Sacrament Meeting: For Youth

5. Gospel Topics pages

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This isn't the topical guide or a list of the information in the True to the Faith booklet. The Church explained these pages by saying, "Recognizing that today so much information about The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints can be obtained from questionable and often inaccurate sources, officials of the Church began in 2013 to publish straightforward, in-depth essays on a number of topics."

If your talk's subject has a Gospel Topics page, that's a perfect place to start. Pages also include a sidebar on the right that link to additional resources. 

-->Start searching the Church's Gospel Topics pages

Comments and feedback can be sent to feedback@ldsliving.com