SL Trib: 'Mormons told to live in service to others'

In what has become Thomas S. Monson's most frequent theme, the LDS president admonished Mormon faithful at the church's 179th Semiannual General Conference on Sunday to give their lives in service to others.

"We are surrounded by those in need of our attention, our encouragement, our support, our comfort and our kindness, be they family members, friends, acquaintances or strangers," Monson told the 21,000 people seated in the Conference Center in downtown Salt Lake City and millions of others watching via satellite. "Those who live only for themselves eventually shrivel up and, figuratively, lose their life, while those who lose themselves in service to others grow and flourish -- and in effect save their life."

Last year Monson told a reporter the best birthday gift from members would be acts of kindness. This year he received hundreds of cards and letters from Mormon children, teens and adults, describing deeds done as a fulfillment of that birthday wish -- a Mongolian child carried water from the well for his mother, siblings cleaned out the toy closet, a boy sang for an elderly neighbor, and teens made blankets for hospitals, and served in food pantries.

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