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Elder Cook’s 5 principles to strengthen faith; Elder Kearon speaks on being peacemakers in public discourse

Editor’s note: “This week from the pulpit” highlights recent messages from General Authorities, General Officers, and leaders of the Church. This story has been updated throughout the week. Find summaries of remarks below or use the menu to jump to a specific section.

President Nelson “grateful and humbled” by response to #GiveThanks invitation

In a social media post on Sunday, November 29, President Russell M. Nelson reflected on the response to his invitation to #GiveThanks.

“I am grateful and humbled that you would join in thanking God for His countless blessings to each of us,” President Nelson wrote. “I urge you to make expressing gratitude to God a part of your daily life. An attitude of gratitude gives us better perspective and more peace of mind and heart.”

President Nelson also said one of the ways we can show gratitude is by serving God’s children. “Let us follow His example to ‘Light the World’ by loving and serving others, one by one,” he said.

See the full post on Facebook.

Elder and Sister Christofferson speak on gratitude for the Restoration

In a worldwide address to full-time missionaries, Elder D. Todd Christofferson and his wife, Sister Kathy Christofferson, invited missionaries to answer the question, “What is one aspect of the Restoration that you are grateful for—and why?”

Church News reported on the devotional by Elder and Sister Christofferson, which included their teachings and video clips of missionaries answering that question. Some of the blessings of the Restoration discussed in the hour-long session included the Prophet Joseph Smith, modern-day prophets, knowledge of the Godhead, the plan of salvation, the Book of Mormon, the priesthood, and the organization of the Church.

“Gratitude is important to our happiness and peace in the present and our preparations for the future,” Elder Christofferson said. “In fact, if we are not grateful for today’s blessings, our faith in God and our Savior will be weaker as we look toward the future.”

Read a full summary of their remarks at Church News.

Elder Cook’s 5 principles to strengthen faith

Speaking to the Mexico YSA National Conference on Sunday, November 29, Elder Quentin L. Cook shared five principles in his remarks, “Strengthen Your Faith as You Face Life’s Challenges.”

“Faith and acquiring skills and knowledge require equal effort and commitment,” Elder Cook said, according to Church News.

The five principles include understanding opposition, strengthening your foundation, seeking knowledge, following the prophet, and living so the Atonement can be efficacious in your life.

Read a full summary of Elder Cook’s remarks at Church News.

Elder Kearon speaks on being peacemakers in public discourse

Elder Patrick Kearon of the Presidency of the Seventy addressed students at Ensign College on December 1, encouraging students to avoid the extremes in public discourse and seek instead to be peacemakers.

“Watch your rhetoric and be calm,” Elder Kearon said according to Church News. “Be considerate. Be thoughtful as you consider the ideas, the ideologies, the positions of others. Come close and understand them. You may never fully agree, and that’s OK, but be a voice for peace and get involved at suitable points in your life in the leadership of schools, universities, cities, counties, states, nations.”

Elder Kearon also encouraged students to listen to people who may have a different point of view with the goal to understand and said that doing so will help us realize they are also children of God.

Read a full summary of Elder Kearon’s remarks at Church News.

Primary General Presidency gives 26 ways for children to #LightTheWorld

As the #LightTheWorld campaign begins, the Primary General Presidency shared suggestions for how children can join in daily service prompts.

“Children love to serve and do it so naturally,” President Joy D. Jones told Church News. “Let’s unleash their enthusiasm and power.”

The list includes ideas like, “Give like Jesus. Donate a book or toy to a charity for another child to enjoy,” and “Think of a time that you have felt Jesus’s love. Share your story with a friend or family member.”

See the full list at Church News.

Sister Aburto speaks on giving support to those with mental health challenges

In her October 2019 general conference address, Sister Reyna I. Aburto shared the reality of mental health issues and how the Savior can provide hope and healing. In a new episode of the Latter-day Saint Women podcast, Sister Aburto is joined by her daughter, Elena. They discuss personal experiences their family has faced with mental health, including Elena’s personal struggles with anxiety and depression.

On the episode, Sister Aburto shares a time when Elena, who was at school in Idaho, called her and was sad about something. Sister Aburto tried to give her solutions to fix the problem and Elena eventually ended the phone call. After they talked on the phone, Elena went to see a friend who just listened to her and did what it said in Mosiah, to “mourn with those that mourn” (Mosiah 18:8–9).

Sister Aburto uses this story to show we are all learning how to respond to mental health challenges and how sometimes instead of being a “fixer” we need to be a “listener.” She explains we shouldn’t be too hard on ourselves, both when we are suffering and when we are supporting someone who is suffering.

“What I’m trying to say is ‘Oh, just because Sister Aburto gave this talk she knows what to do and she’s an expert,’ but I’m not. We’re all learning, and we just have to be patient with ourselves and just try to do our best in trying to cope with whatever we are suffering,” Sister Aburto said on the podcast. “And also, in trying to support other people—just try to also help them feel the love of God, bring them to Christ, and bring ourselves to Christ. Because He is really the Master Healer.”

Listen to the full conversation with Sister Aburto and Elena on the Latter-day Saint Women podcast.

Other General Authority and General Officer social media posts

Elder Dieter F. Uchtdorf

Sister Sharon Eubank

Sister Michelle D. Craig

Lead images: Screenshots by Church News
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Lindsey Williams

Lindsey Williams joined the LDS Living team with a passion to find the stories that matter most. Previous stops in her career include BYU-Pathway Worldwide, the Special Projects Department of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, and Utah Valley Magazine. When she's not searching for stories to write, the Colorado Springs native is most likely on a hiking trail. Follow her on Twitter with the handle @lindsey5brooke.

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