This past weekend, the 185th Semi-Annual Conference of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints commenced to its more than 15 million members across the world, as well as to the general public. It was a momentous occasion because 3 new apostles were called, which that number of new ones called during Conference had not happened in nearly 100 years.
Criticism has arisen because of the men who were called, their background and professions being “wealthy Caucasian men”. This sort of criticism is not new-the LDS church has been scrutinized over time for being a “white church” led by “outdated and “uninformed” older men. Recently, a close group of members who claim to be active in the church (Called to Action: Any Opposed) has made it their mission to vocally and publicly oppose the leaders of the church, and be interviewed by TV stations to display their opposition.
Leaders of our church have always counseled the members that it is healthy and even encouraged to ask questions regarding the truths of the gospel. The Savior Himself invites us to “Ask and ye shall receive, knock and it shall be opened unto you.” The key difference in asking is in the intent. If our hearts are in the right place, the spirit will guide and direct us as we seek for answers. If we only ask in order to satisfy our ego, or to stir up controversy, the spirit cannot dwell with us.
Opposing the leaders of the church has happened in the past, and we have our agency to do so. The problem lies in the way it is happening now-Yelling out in General Conference the opposition instead of raising their arm to the square during their ward or stake conference. Not trying to get television time by letting everyone know they don’t agree with one thing or another.
I myself have asked questions throughout my life in the church and had some questions that were hard to answer, but I was able to get some answers. Are all of my questions resolved? Of course not. But as we dedicate our lives to honest seeking and asking, the Lord has promised He will reveal answers to us at the correct time.
I won’t intend to explain why all men in the quorum are, for the most part, successful white men, because I will not be able to satisfy the opposing opinion, no matter what my reply may be. What I will say is that when a prophet calls someone to a calling, any calling, it is not coming from him. He is a mouthpiece for the Lord and the calling is a Divine one. Even if that prophet can barely hold himself up at the pulpit, and looks as though he may not be able to finish his talk, he still has those prophetic keys. Moses had his arms held up by his brother Aaron in an act of faith to overcome Amalek, and so it was with Elder Uchtdorf as he helped President Monson to his seat.
So I will sustain you, President Monson-I cannot hold you up physically but I will pray for you and for your prophetic mantle.