Best and Worst: GenConBy: shenpa warrior
In the name of dissonance and ambiguity, remember to include a worst AND a best memory in your comments! Here are two each of mine:
- The debate about conference-as-scripture vs. conference-as-not-necessarily-scripture. Which is it? Either/or? Both/and? Part of this confusion I think comes from blanket (general?!) statements as people describe conference as “the words of prophets and apostles speaking for the Lord” and “modern-day scripture” and, here’s the kicker – “more important than the standard works.” Um, sorry, but generally (!) it seems to me that the standard works are still more important. Otherwise we all have a million talks to read. Or perhaps I’m getting it wrong and the talks have a shelf-life of 6 months? Do older conferences not carry the weight of scripture? Do we need expiration dates?
- The apparent aftermath of any time President Packer speaks. Why does he need to be such a polarizing figure? Even my young son referred to him as “Sir Topham Hatt.” (from the Thomas wiki: “Despite being strict, he shows a fatherly side to the engines. He is quite a strong character and will remind the engines that he is in charge when they start to rebel against his authority.”) I know some of his remarks have been controversial (to say the least) but it seems like lately if he opens his mouth there are 1-people making snide remarks or 2-people starting facebook support groups in his defense.
- Just about every conference I was able to watch on my mission. We got the tapes a week later in Japan, and there was usually a member who rigged up an extra audio feed so we could listen in English. I LOVED conference as a missionary. I even had tapes of old conferences sent to me that I listened to multiple times. I couldn’t get enough of the story of Henry Eyring senior in the onion patch. “I wasn’t there for the weeds Hal.”
- Back to Pres. Eyring again, I have always loved his speaking style. Two things stand out – he doesn’t usually spend time at the beginning with introducing his talks. He just gets right to the point. I love that style, because it feels so engaging and different. He also seems to be able to break through the formality of the GenConWall better than anyone. Many speakers look like they’re talking to millions of people standing at a fancy podium reading teleprompters. He looks like he’s talking to a room of 10 people. He opens up. I first realized how different people could be in different settings when Elder Oaks came to my mission to speak. He was SO personable. Not necessarily in the “content” but in the process. Pres. Eyring I think has mastered bringing the art of “wise and concerned friend you really like” to his GenCon talks.
What are some of your best memories of General Conference? What are some of the worst? What did you like/dislike about Conference last weekend? Remember to be dissonant, ambivalent, and contradictory!