From the Church

Church leaders meet with interfaith groups in Italy and Idaho + more messages from this week


Editor’s note: “This week from the pulpit” highlights recent messages by General Authorities, General Officers, and leaders of the Church.

Over the course of this week, Church leaders spoke in Italy at the G20 Interfaith Forum, addressed BYU students at their weekly devotional, and met with media at the Pocatello Idaho Temple tour. Read highlights from each of their addresses.

Earlier this week, Elder Rasband addressed members of the G20 Interfaith Forum in Bologna, Italy.

As reported by Newsroom, Elder Rasband said, “When religion is given the freedom to flourish, believers everywhere perform simple and sometimes heroic acts of service. We stand shoulder to shoulder in service with many of you.”

Elder Jack N. Gerard of the Seventy and Sister Sharon Eubank, First Counselor in the Relief Society General Presidency, accompanied Elder Rasband in meeting with many other faith and civic leaders from around the world.

“Relationships lead to true understanding,” Elder Gerard told Newsroom. “We have to rise above the polarization we see in the world today. And we need to lead to remind our own members to demonstrate through example all around the world that in our faith traditions, the Savior Himself was a great healer. He brought us together and encouraged others not to judge one another but to be tempered, to be measured in the way we consider each other. We can come together and rise above some of [what is] allowed in modern technology, and to find ourselves in a better place, having truly healed the hearts and souls of all mankind, regardless of their faith tradition or no faith tradition.”

Read highlights from the forum on Church Newsroom.

In addressing BYU students in this week's devotional, Elder Dale G. Renlund of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles focused on how to achieve a lifelong conversion to Christ.

Elder Renlund’s father is from western Finland, and the Apostle drew on his roots in his address. He brought up a Finnish word that has resonated with him. He said, “[The word] sisu has been described as stoic determination, tenacity of purpose, resilience, and hardiness. Sisu expresses a characteristic that manifests itself in displaying grit, resolve, and courage in the face of extreme adversity or against the odds. Someone with sisu decides on a course of action, and then adheres to it—no matter what.”

He also said that we should approach our conversion to Christ and dedication to the gospel with sisu—not as a one-time event, but repeatedly and with continued righteousness.

“Enduring to the end is not a separate step in the doctrine of Christ—as though we complete the first four steps and then hunker down, grit our teeth, and wait to die. No, enduring to the end is actively and intentionally repeating the steps in the doctrine of Christ.”

You can watch Elder Renlund’s entire address here.

Church leaders meet with media for Pocatello Idaho Temple open house tour

Elder Gary E. Stevenson of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles and Primary General President Camille N. Johnson attended the media day and open house for the newly completed Pocatello Idaho Temple.

As reported by Church News, Elder Stevenson, Sister Johnson, and Elder Gary B. Sabin, General Authority Seventy and Temple Department assistant executive director, held a brief news conference to kick off the Church’s first public open house in more than 18 months.

In a Facebook post, Elder Stevenson said, “Beauty and attention are paid to every detail to create a house of the Lord. These details are important in the same way the beauty of Solomon’s temple was important, yet they are only the jewelry box—not the jewels.”

And Sister Johnson, who grew up in the Pocatello area, shared on her social media, “I celebrate the contributions of the precious children and youth who cleared sagebrush from the site before the temple groundbreaking and then planted more than 25,000 flowering plants in preparation for the temple open house and dedication. These young people feel a connection to the house of the Lord and a belonging to and with the Savior.”

Read Church News’s full coverage of the event here.

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