Sunday, April 03, 2011
Well, it's that weekend again where members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints around the world pause Saturday activities and skip Sunday's three hour worship, opting instead for an EIGHT HOUR BROADCAST ! (TEN if you are a male over the age of 12) Yes, it's time for General Conference. You're probably thinking "Jimminy Cricket! That's a lot of church!" and you are right, it is! That's probably why my earliest memories of it include curling up on a bench in a dim chapel for a relaxing weekend of naps. Four naps to be exact, in two-hour installments. But gradually those memories changed to passing the time by doing sketches of the speakers, dozens of speakers!( I really got that podium down to a science.) Later I decided to label the sketches, even putting little words around the sketch if something they said stood out to me. It got to the point where I was hearing so much worthwhile, really great stuff that I found myself scrambling to finish the drawing while the speaker was wrapping up, and finally I abandoned the sketches all together after pages of just the podium and an outline of a suit surrounded by lots and lots of notes. So even if it sounds a little kooky, I sure love those EIGHT hours of hearing our Prophet, and the 12 Apostles, and several other regional leaders from around the globe. I love the new stories, and gospel insights, the laughs, the smiles, and the sweetness of truth well shared. Though it takes a different form these days with 4 little ones piled onto the couch that we've moved in front of the computer, instead of the sleepy chapel from when I was little, I can't help but hope my kids will remember sitting with us, listening for key words for two hours in order to color in their conference bingo squares. Maybe they'll remember the new box of crayons and notepad, or even just the whopping jackpot of 4 Starbursts for a completed bingo square, but either way, I hope they will look back and remember their own conference beginnings, and how out of small things, proceedeth that which was great.