Calling it a "surreal experience" to stand in the Marriott Center and give a devotional address on December 6, Young Women general president, Sister Bonnie L. Oscarson, shared a brief, hilarious look into her years at Brigham Young University.
"Forty-eight years ago, I first set foot on this campus as a 17-year-old freshman," she began. "I remember attending BYU devotionals in the Smith Field House—because there was no Marriott Center yet—and listening to the speakers, just like you are today."
However, new buildings weren't the only differences since her time at BYU. She continued, "Things have changed a lot since then. The female students, back when I was attending BYU, were not allowed to wear pants on campus. Yes, we were cold all winter long."
Despite the cold winters, Sister Oscarson made it through her time at BYU. "The good news is that I did graduate from BYU," she said. "The bad news is that it took me 41 years to do it."
Sister Oscarson then shared a picture of her in mid-air, tossing her graduation hat high above her head, with a wide, joyful smile across her face.
"By showing you this picture, I'm really putting myself out there, I know, but that's how happy I was."
Explaining that she didn't recommend a 41-year graduation plan to the students in the audience, she expressed how she could've never expected to one day stand as a devotional speaker at her alma mater.
Sister Oscarson went on to give a devotional address about the Prophet Joseph Smith, who was born in the month of December.
"With that as inspiration, I would like to talk about three principles inspired by events from the early life of Joseph Smith that might be of value in your current situations and lives," Sister Oscarson said, which included "striving to be the best we can be, holding onto our faith in the face of criticism, and making repentance a part of our daily lives."
"[Joseph Smith] was asked to do some hard things, some unpopular things, but he never wavered," Sister Oscarson said.
"I love the Prophet Joseph Smith," she explained. "His life, example, and experiences provide a rich resource for our learning and understanding of gospel principles. I have mentioned only three today. . . . A close study of the life of this prophet of God will yield many more rich and important life lessons."
You can watch Sister Oscarson's devotional address on byutv.org.