ALL NEWS

President Nelson calls on Latter-day Saints for “solemn assembly”

Apr 4, 2020, 10:33 AM | Updated: 11:03 am
solemn assembly...
This photo shared on Twitter by the @ldsconf account showed church leaders practicing social distancing before the first session began, April 4, 2020. Photo: LDSConf/Twitter

SALT LAKE CITY — President Russell M. Nelson of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints opened the faith’s 190th Annual General Conference Saturday morning by asking church members to take part in a “solemn assembly” Sunday.

Speaking to an empty auditorium, President Nelson noted the differences in this spring’s general conference sessions from the many that came before it. But the spirit behind it remains the same, he said.

“The purpose of this and every general conference is to help us to hear [Jesus Christ],” he said, inviting church members to “commence a lifelong quest to hear him” while also observing the bicentennial of Joseph Smith’s First Vision.

A different kind of general conference

President Nelson acknowledged the change from typical church gatherings, noting the closure of the church’s temples and moves to bring missionaries home.

“Little did I know when I promised you at the October 2019 general conference that this April conference would be memorable and unforgettable, that speaking to a visible congregation of fewer than 10 people would make this conference so memorable and unforgettable for me,” President Nelson remarked.

But he added, scripture counsels the faithful to be prepared rather than fear.

“Of course we can store our own reserves of food, water and savings,” he said, “but equally crucial is our need to fill our personal spiritual storehouses with faith, truth and testimony.”

The solemn assembly and Hosanna shout

President Nelson described the call for a solemn assembly Sunday morning as a spiritual highlight for Latter-day Saints. He called on members of the church to join him in a “Hosanna shout” in order to “express in global unison our profound gratitude to God the Father and his Beloved Son by praising them in this unique way.”

According to a news release from the church, “Solemn assemblies are special, sacred meetings held for a variety of holy purposes.” Hosanna shouts, the release continued, represents the crowd’s reaction to the triumphal entry of Jesus into Jerusalem for Passover.

At various times in church history, members have similar cried out, “Hosanna.” Notably, this took place after the dedication of the Kirtland Temple in 1836, and at the 1892 capstone ceremony of the Salt Lake Temple. At that event, members waved white handkerchiefs. Sunday, President Nelson said, a wave of the hand could replace the handkerchief if you do not have one.

In the past, the church has held solemn assemblies for events such as sustaining a new church president or dedicating a temple.

“We have prayed, and invite you to pray, that the Spirit of the Lord will be with us in such rich abundance that you can hear the messages that the Savior has especially for you—messages that will bring peace to your soul,” President Nelson said.

Related stories: 

KSL and Deseret News bring General Conference home

190th Annual General Conference

The worldwide impact of The First Vision

How art connects people to Joseph Smith’s First Vision

Today’s Top Stories

All News

Famous Dave's Quick 'Que aims to redefine fast-casual...
Alejandro Lucero

Famous Dave’s sticks to its roots in a fast-casual environment

Famous Dave's Quick 'Que location in South Salt Lake aims to bring the same slow cooked flavor to the drive-thru window.
5 hours ago
reckless driving in centerville...
Mark Jones

Centerville man taken into custody for reported reckless driving incident

Centerville police say a 46-year-old man is in custody after an alleged reckless driving incident through Centerville on Tuesday afternoon.
1 day ago
Missing Layton teen...
Mark Jones

Breaking: Teen missing from Layton found safe in Salt Lake City

LAYTON, Utah — The teen missing from a Layton treatment center since last week was found safe and sound Tuesday evening in Salt Lake City. Missing teen Natalee has been found in Salt Lake thanks to a tip from someone who spotted her there. She is safe and being reunited with her family. Gathering more […]
1 day ago
St. Mark's Hospital in Salt Lake City. According to the Utah Hospital Association, staffing at hosp...
Martha Harris

Staffing at Utah hospitals is in a more stable place than a year ago

Staffing at Utah hospitals are at a more stable position than they were last year, according to the Utah Hospital Association. However, they still aren't at pre-pandemic levels.
1 day ago
Ogden police investigate a man who shook a 8-week-old baby on multiple accounts....
Mark Jones

Ogden man in jail after allegedly shaking 8-week-old baby

An 8-week-old baby is in critical condition after being allegedly shook by the father. The father, a 20-year-old man from Ogden, has been arrested.
1 day ago
Utah national parks no longer have a mask mandate...
Allie Litzinger

Number of visitors to Arches National Park is on the decline

Visitors to Arches National Park are on the decline in recent months. A time entry system designed to make for better visitor experience, may be to be blame for fewer visitors.
1 day ago

Sponsored Articles

President Nelson calls on Latter-day Saints for “solemn assembly”