Talk:General Conference (LDS Church)

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Summary of the 182nd Annual General Conference.[edit]

I was more than a little concerned when I looked at this page and discovered that a summary of the 182nd Annual General Conference was put on it. My concern lies in the fact that the so-called summary might not be accurate, only coming from one editor. So, my question is, does this section even need to exist? If it does, what can be done to make it more encyclopedic? Please post here with comments. I am leaving this section in the article until some consensus is reached about including it. Thanks in advance for the feedback and discussion. --Jgstokes-We can disagree without being disagreeable (talk) 16:15, 4 April 2012 (UTC)

I'm removing that text from the article completely and placing it here for discussion. I really don't think this level of detail on one specific conference belongs on this general subject article. Nothing makes this particular conference any more notable than other ones, other than it is the most recent. -- 208.81.184.4 (talk) 19:24, 4 April 2012 (UTC)
Also of note is this: Wikipedia talk:Articles for creation/182nd Annual General Conference of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints
It looks like the contributor of this extensive text (Sddaniels (talk · contribs)) was trying to have an article created specifically about this particular conference, but article creation was declined, so the editor dumped that text into this article instead. -- 208.81.184.4 (talk) 19:28, 4 April 2012 (UTC)

So then, the question arises, what should be done about this content? It seems pointless to include it, as such a section has never been in the article in the past. So what should be done about this? What concerns me the most is that it was just one editor's perspective on it. So this will have to be reedited if it is to be reincluded in the article. I'd be okay leaving it out or putting it in. Whatever the consensus decides is fine with me. --Jgstokes-We can disagree without being disagreeable (talk) 22:32, 4 April 2012 (UTC)

I consider a TALK page to be an extension of a WP Article; readers can read and learn more here. Charles Edwin Shipp (talk) 03:29, 5 April 2014 (UTC)

My notes on the 183rd April Conference[edit]

Not to be included in the Article, but for your interest, here are my notes [1] which I include to assist other WP editors as they look to improve this article on General Conference (LDS Church). Enjoy, Charles Edwin Shipp (talk) 11:34, 8 April 2013 (UTC)

Another editor told my my notes were inappropriate (even on my own personal TALK page) so I deleted them all. Sorry, Charles Edwin Shipp (talk) 03:32, 5 April 2014 (UTC)

Priesthood Session to be televised.[edit]

The Church recently announced that it would broadcast the Priesthood Session of General Conference live on LDS.org and on BYU-TV. For verification of this fact, please see this article. I feel this information should be included in this article, but I'm not sure where or how to include it. Thoughts? Thanks. --Jgstokes (talk) 06:32, 25 September 2013 (UTC)

I understand your point, but personally I don't think the live broadcasting is that notable. The content has been available to everyone in print and archived video for years. Bahooka (talk) 17:33, 3 October 2013 (UTC)
Agreed: it seems to be a natural evolution of communication on top of already existing/parallel transmission methods. ~Araignee (talkcontribs) 19:35, 3 October 2013 (UTC)

Actually, it is more important than you may realize and indicate since the first paragraph of the article herein says "one exclusively for male priesthood holders" but now it is on the public airwaves. Another thing that is monumental (to members) is that the Womens Conference included all LDS women age eight and older. Focus in their conference last weekend was on youth and the responsibility of Moms and leaders to them—among other topics of the Relief Society, Young Women, and Primary (for the youngest). Charles Edwin Shipp (talk) 03:43, 5 April 2014 (UTC)

Statistics to improve the article herein[edit]

I'll be adding here statistics for Wikipedia editors to edit and improve the Article here, as deemed appropriate. Of high interest is (1) the growth of the Church; (2) International missionary and humanitarian work; (3) new temples, like in Rome; (4) new church leaders; (5) Other.

People worldwide can watch the broadcasts of conference sessions at: https://www.lds.org

Wikipedia editors can validate, authenticate, and reference facts from http://www.MormonNewsroom.org/

Charles Edwin Shipp (talk) 13:52, 5 April 2014 (UTC)

Here are the statistics (ending December 31, 2013) reported in the 184th General (World) Conference: The number of stakes is 3,050 with 405 missions; 571 districts (within a mission but not big enough to be a stake, yet); 29,253 wards and branches, (a branch is not big enough to be a ward, yet). Total membership is 15,082,028 [adding up the files in the membership computer database. The prophet called it 15million.] The number of children of record added in 2013 was 115,486; and the number of convert baptisms was 282,945 during the year. As of December 31, there were 83,035 fulltime missionaries [young elders, young sister missionaries, and seniors] 34,032 church service missionaries “serving throughout the Church.” One temple in Honduras was dedicated during 2013, bring the total of operating temples up to 141 at the end of the year.

The statistical report was preceded by the Audit Report, “to give reasonable assurance” of funds received and disbursed in the year 2013. — Filling the needs to (1) budget, (2) avoid debt, and (3) plan ahead to save against time of need, same advice to members. [Short and sweet.] — Charles Edwin Shipp (talk) 23:47, 5 April 2014 (UTC)

General Women's Meeting not part of Conference?!?!?!?!?[edit]

AsteriskStarSplat recently reverted a change asserting that the general women's meeting held the week before General Conference was not part of General Conference itself and was not included in the Conference Report or the Ensign. Oh, really? I would invite him to consult Ensign. If he were to look at pp. 116-128, he would see that the General Women's Meeting is included in the Ensign. A further glance at the "Conference Summary" on page 3 would inform him that the General Women's Meeting is just another session of conference like any others. Just because it is not considered one of the five "general" sessions doesn't make it any less a part of conference. A glance at the page for the April 2014 General Conference on the Church's website would clue him in on the fact that, according to the website, the General Women's Meeting is as much a part of Conference as any other session. Also, in the DVDs of Conference (I happen to have a copy, so I know this for a fact), the General Women's Meeting appears on a disc with the Sunday Afternoon Session. Why would they include a meeting that is not part of conference with official conference proceedings? I would encourage AsteriskStarSplat to do his research before making claims when the proof is not on his side. Anyone else want to uphold this claim? --Jgstokes (talk) 23:00, 10 September 2014 (UTC)

When conference starts[edit]

The following discussion is closed. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made on the appropriate discussion page. No further edits should be made to this discussion.

Since General conference went from three days (Fri-Sun) to two (Sat & Sun), the opening session of conference is Saturday morning. For a recent example, please see: Ensign, May 2014. The first talk, which opened the conference, was by Thomas S. Monson, titled "Welcome to Conference" and was given on Saturday morning; the last Conference talk was also by Monson, titled: "Until We Meet Again" and was given in the second Sunday session, the last of five sessions. I consider Monson as a reliable expert on when Conference begins and ends. While Rosemary M. Wixom, Bonnie L. Oscarson, Linda K. Burton, and Henry B. Eyring's talks from the General Womens meeting a week previously are then included in that edition of the Ensign, it is clear that it is not as part of Conference itself, but as an adjunct to it, just as the now discontinued June Conference was. Asterisk*Splat 23:21, 10 September 2014 (UTC)

It's not that clear to me. Where is your source proving that this is the case? I have cited a magazine and a DVD proving my case. You have only your own opinion. The talks wouldn't be included in the Ensign if they weren't part of Conference. On the cover itself, it says, "General Conference Addresses." And, as I mentioned in the subject above (which you didn't care to address), the Conference Summary on page 3 includes all sessions of conference, including the General Women's Meeting. So your "consideration" and "opinions" mean nothing. You find me a source, any source that says that the General Women's Meeting is not part of Conference. Then and only then can you substantiate what is now at best only your expressed opinion. I, meantime, have provided TWO sources proving that the General Women's Meeting is part of Conference. I should warn you, you are close to a violation of one of Wikipedia's policies, so I suggest you back down unless and until you find a source to substantiate your claim. Otherwise, you are likely to get yourself blocked for edit warring. --Jgstokes (talk) 23:36, 10 September 2014 (UTC)
It is for those that are introducing a change to provide support for their change. Starting on 15 January 2009‎ and continuing until today, the Women's meeting has not been listed as a session of conference on this article. Please provide a specific citation stating that in addition to the 5 sessions held on Sat & Sun, that the Women's meeting is considered the sixth session of conference, even though it happens before the opening session of conference. Asterisk*Splat 23:54, 10 September 2014 (UTC)
BTW it takes two to tango; I'm just restoring to the last version before DrBrinkley (talk · contribs) made their change today; you're the one insisting on the new text, and are the one not providing a citation that's usable in the article. Asterisk*Splat 23:57, 10 September 2014 (UTC)
This change was sourced and discussed in depth when it was first made. Then it was unilaterally changed by someone else who claimed that the women's meeting wasn't part of conference. But they couldn't prove it, so the change was reversed. Now you have introduced it again. It is up to you to provide proof that it isn't part of general conference. I have already listed two verifiable sources. If you're unwilling to accept them for what they are, that's your problem. Btw, the General Women's Meeting only recently was introduced. Before it was the General Young Women's Meeting in March and the General Relief Society Meeting in September. Both those meetings were considered parts of the respective conferences they preceded by a week. You need to find a source by someone saying that a talk from the President of the Church offiicially begins and ends each conference. Bet you won't find one. Because there were many times when, due to the ill health of the president, his counselors spoke first at the Saturday Morning session of conference and last at the Sunday Afternoon session of conference. The onus is on you, because I have provided sources a plenty to prove my case. In the meantime, the change should be left alone because you violated one of Wikipedia's policies, and, though I would only do so as a last resort, I'm not afraid to report a policy breaker if I need to. I would urge you to consider carefully your options. --Jgstokes (talk) 00:12, 11 September 2014 (UTC)
(edit conflict) That's not born out by the article difs, at least not what you're claiming I did; the change from 5 to 6 sessions was made today with this edit, by DrBrinkley (talk · contribs), and I then reverted it. I can't see anywhere it was previously specifically listing six sessions in the article with a citation for that at any time recently, but I may have missed the edit(s) in the edit history; if it's there I'd appreciate you providing the dif, or even the day it was there previously, because I just don't see what you're talking about. Likewise I didn't introduce a change from 6 to 5, I merely did the revert back to the long term stable text. If you are seeing something else, please provide the dif, because I'm really not seeing where you can substantiate what you are claiming I did; the only other change I've ever had on this article is this edit where I fixed a ref. Asterisk*Splat 00:28, 11 September 2014 (UTC)
The Church History Department has scanned all of the Conference Reports from October 1897 to October 2011 (plus April 1880) and put them out on archive.org at https://archive.org/details/conferencereport — these are the official records of each conference, not the Ensign articles, which technically are reprints from this truly official source. As one example, see: Report of the 170th Annual General Conference of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, LDS Church, 2000, p. 1, The 170th Annual General Conference of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints convened in the Conference Center in Salt Lake City, Utah, on Saturday, April 1, 2000 at 10 A.M. The general sessions of the conference were held at 10:00 A.M. and 2:00 P.M. on Saturday and Sunday, April 1 and 2, 2000. The general priesthood session was held on Saturday, April 1 at 6:00 P.M.  It it clear that there are five sessions, four general sessions, and one priesthood session in this example. I'll find more recent examples if needed, but this was the easiest one to find. Asterisk*Splat 00:53, 11 September 2014 (UTC)
Another example, eleven years later, see: Report of the 181st Annual General Conference of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, LDS Church, 2011, p. 1, The 181st Annual General Conference of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints convened in the Conference Center in Salt Lake City, Utah, on Saturday, April 2, 2011 at 10 A.M. The general sessions of the conference were held at 10:00 A.M. and 2:00 P.M. on Saturday and Sunday, April 2 and 3, 2011. The general priesthood session was held on Saturday, April 2 at 6:00 P.M.  Still five sessions, four general sessions, and one priesthood session in this example. Asterisk*Splat 00:53, 11 September 2014 (UTC)
...and incase anyone want to dispute the authoritative status of the Conference Reports, please see: Tate, Charles D, Jr. (1992), "Conference Reports", in Ludlow, Daniel H, Encyclopedia of Mormonism, New York: Macmillan Publishing, pp. 305–306, ISBN 0-02-879602-0, OCLC 24502140  ...for more information, and confirmation. Asterisk*Splat 01:08, 11 September 2014 (UTC)
Another reference, showing that the General Womans meeting is seperate from General Conference, the same as the meeting it replaced: "Church News", LDS.org (LDS Church), 4 November 2013, The First Presidency of the Church announced November 1 that beginning in 2014, a semiannual general women’s meeting will replace the general Relief Society and general Young Women meetings held annually since 1993. The general women’s meeting will be held the Saturday before each general conference and will be conducted by the general presidencies of the Relief Society, Young Women, and Primary organizations. [...] Since 1993, general meetings have been held for the Relief Society and the Young Women in September and March, respectively. The meetings have included addresses from a member of the First Presidency and all three members of the respective auxiliary general presidency. From 1984 to 1993, a general meeting was held for all women and young women.  |chapter= ignored (help) (emphasis mine). It couldn't be held before general conference if it was part of it. Asterisk*Splat 01:45, 11 September 2014 (UTC)
More refs, that explicitly define General Conference:
  • Kerr, William Rolfe (1992), "Conferences: General Conference", in Ludlow, Daniel H., Encyclopedia of Mormonism, New York: Macmillan Publishing, pp. 307–308, ISBN 0-02-879602-0, OCLC 24502140, Each April and October, members of the Church throughout the world assemble in Salt Lake City, Utah, for two days of meetings called General Conference. [...] The April conferences of the Church are called annual conferences; those in October, semiannual conferences. Current practice includes four two-hour general sessions on Saturday and Sunday, with a special priesthood session Saturday night carried by satellite to thousands of priesthood bearers throughout the world. Prior to 1977, the conferences met for three days. 
  • Godfrey, Kenneth W. (February 1981), "150 Years of General Conference", Ensign, April 1977: the first two-day general conference, replacing the former three-day general conference.  (Note that this article also lists all conferences between 6 April 1830 and 4–5 October 1980)
  • "Additional Resource", MormonNewsroom.org (LDS Church), 3 April 2014, General conferences are conducted each April and October and comprise five two-hour meetings held over two days. The April meetings are called annual conferences and those in October, semiannual.  |chapter= ignored (help)
  • "Topic", MormonNewsroom.org (LDS Church), retrieved 2014-09-11, General conferences are conducted each April and October and comprise five two-hour meetings held over two days. The April meetings are called annual conferences and those in October, semiannual. The sessions on Saturday morning, Saturday afternoon, Sunday morning and Sunday afternoon are open to everyone, while a session on Saturday evening is for Latter-day Saint men and young men who hold the priesthood.  |chapter= ignored (help)
With these, there is no way to say this is an OR interpretation (e.g. generalizing information based on specific events). However, in order to demonstrate that this information is still current, the following are provided, which are specific to this years conferences:
  • "News Release", MormonNewsroom.org (LDS Church), 5 April 2014, Five sessions of the conference will be held Saturday and Sunday, 5-6 April 2014, in the Conference Center in Salt Lake City, Utah.  |chapter= ignored (help)
  • "News Release", MormonNewsroom.org (LDS Church), 2 April 2014, Proceedings of the 184th Annual General Conference of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints will unfold from the Conference Center in Salt Lake City, Utah, on Saturday and Sunday, 5-6 April 2014. [...] General conferences are conducted by the Church each April and October and comprise five two-hour meetings held over two days.  |chapter= ignored (help)
  • Prescott, Marianne Holman (8 April 2014), "Church News", LDS.org (LDS Church), President Monson presided at the conference and spoke in four of the five sessions. His counselors in the First Presidency, President Henry B. Eyring and President Dieter F. Uchtdorf, took turns conducting the sessions. In the opening session of conference Saturday morning, President Monson spoke of the recent Gilbert Arizona Temple dedication and the upcoming Fort Lauderdale Florida Temple dedication.  |chapter= ignored (help)
  • "President Thomas S. Monson: 'Welcome to conference'", LDS Church News, April 5, 2014, Following is the text of remarks delivered by President Thomas S. Monson as he opened the 184th Annual General Conference, which convened in the Conference Center in Salt Lake City on Saturday morning, April 5, 2014. 
  • "President Thomas S. Monson: 'Until we meet again'", LDS Church News, April 6, 2014, Following is the full text of the message President Thomas S. Monson delivered as he brought to a close the 184th Annual General Conference of the Church on Sunday, April 6, 2014. 
  • Walch, Tad (April 5, 2014), "No new LDS temples for now, but President Monson says more to come", Deseret News, LDS Church President Thomas S. Monson did not announce any new temples on Saturday morning during the opening session of the 184th Annual General Conference of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. 
  • "Church News", LDS.org (LDS Church), All members of the Church are invited to participate in the 184th Semiannual General Conference of the Church, which will convene in the Conference Center in Salt Lake City, Utah, on Saturday and Sunday, October 4 and 5, 2014, with general sessions each day at 10:00 a.m. and 2:00 p.m. mountain daylight time (MDT), and the general priesthood meeting on Saturday, October 4, 2014, at 6:00 p.m. MDT.  |chapter= ignored (help)
  • "General Conference", LDS.org (LDS Church), The 184th Semiannual General Conference will be held on Saturday and Sunday, October 4 and 5, 2014, with general sessions each day at 10:00 a.m. and 2:00 p.m. mountain daylight time (MDT), and the general priesthood meeting on Saturday, October 4, 2014, at 6:00 p.m. MDT.  |chapter= ignored (help)
  • Walch, Tad (September 8, 2014), "LDS conference talks may be given in native languages", Deseret News, The new policy will be implemented at the next conference, Oct. 4 and 5. 
Yes, most of these are primary sources, but the LDS Church has the right to define this event, and when it starts, given it is wholly controlled by them. Asterisk*Splat 20:47, 11 September 2014 (UTC)
  • Comment. I've been asked to intervene in this issue as an uninvolved admin. In situations like this, the fair thing to do is to restore the status quo ante—the version of the article that existed before the controversial edits were added—while the issue is being discussed. Edit warring is usually unproductive, and as has been noted, can lead to blocks and nasty things like that. I think everyone should avoid editing on the point until the issue is resolved. (I see that both editors involved here have broken the WP:3RR, which could lead to a block for both. If both editors can all agree to not do this any more, I'm not going to do any blocks or otherwise pursue that issue.)
On the substantive issue, I could contribute some thoughts. I don't know of a good secondary source that could resolve this, but there are probably plenty of primary sources that could at least inform us. For starters, one could view the videos of past general conferences. It is common, in the Sunday morning session, for the person conducting to welcome the attendees to the "fourth general session" of the conference, and likewise at the Sunday afternoon session, to welcome the attendees to the "fifth general session". This would indicate to me that conference begins with the Saturday morning session (#1), continues with the Sat afternoon (#2), and the Priesthood (#3), with the Sunday sessions being #4 and #5. So I don't think that the women's meeting is included. I think it's included in the church magazines, DVDs, and online with general conference basically for convenience of access.
Primary sources aside, we really need a secondary source. I'm sure we can find some newspaper articles or something that make a statement about when conference begins and ends. I'll look around. Good Ol’factory (talk) 00:24, 11 September 2014 (UTC)
This LDS Church webpage might be helpful. According to it, General Conference will be October 4–5, 2014. The notice for the women's meeting the week before is in a separate webpage. Good Ol’factory (talk) 00:29, 11 September 2014 (UTC)
A secondary source (SL Tribune) from 2007, in the days before the general women's meeting: "The General Relief Society Meeting is held each fall before the LDS Church General Conference. The 177th Semiannual General Conference begins Saturday." Good Ol’factory (talk) 00:39, 11 September 2014 (UTC)
Sunstone magazine source: "... President Thomas S. Monson said as he opened general conference last October" (referring to a statement he made in the Sat AM session in Oct 2012). Good Ol’factory (talk) 00:44, 11 September 2014 (UTC)
  • I was also asked to comment here and have to largely concur with what Good Olfactory said. I think most of the arguments above rely heavily on "original analysis of primary sources" sometimes called WP:Original research. Though both are logical, what is needed is a secondary source, as GO said. As for the edit warring, it definitely needs to stop on both sides. As to the original question of whether the RS meeting is part of the conference, I've heard it both ways, but don't know for sure. It wouldn't surprise me if there were a movement toward making it more officially a part of the general conference. A quick Google search turned up this source (which I don't think qualifies as neutral or reliable) that makes the statement, "Unlike the other sessions of general conference, the General Women’s Meetings are not considered part of general conference." And breaking my own rule to perform my own original research, on the https://www.lds.org/general-conference/?lang=eng page it's currently advertising the "General Women's Meeting" on September 27 2014 and "General Conference" on October 5-6. I think to change the article to say that the women's meeting is part of the general conference we'd need a good secondary source that explicitly says that. ~Adjwilley (talk) 04:43, 11 September 2014 (UTC)
  • Comment. I agree with Adjwilley and Good Ol’factory. While it may be that in the future the General Women’s Meetings will become part of this sects General Conference, I don't think that is is now. There are to0 many sources stating that the General Conference starts with the Saturday meetings, especially the secondary source provided by Good Ol’factory (ie the SL Tribune from 2007). Those sources that say it starts during the "General Women's Meeting" are WP:Original research and therefor not reliable. Until a reliable secondary source can be provided changing the status quo, the version of the article before the controversial edits were added should remain.--- ARTEST4ECHO (talk) 14:56, 11 September 2014 (UTC)
All right already! Enough is enough! All I asked for was one source proving the argument that AsteriskStarSplat was putting forth was correct. I certainly don't need to be told by several different editors how wrong I am, nor do I need a mountain of evidence proving that I made an idiot of myself. I accept the evidence that has been presented and have no further qualms about the present wording. I am a little bothered that the evidence of the General Women's Meeting being included in the Ensign and on the General Conference DVDs has been ignored, but I understand (and even accept) the arguments that have been put forth. The present wording can remain, as far as I'm concerned. All I asked for was one source. I didn't need a bunch of sources shoved down my throat. I guess at the end of the day I can only apologize for wasting everyone's time with a pointless conversation and encourage everyone to get back to the real issues of the article instead of my petty complaints. --Jgstokes (talk) 01:27, 12 September 2014 (UTC)
I didn't ignore the evidence you mentioned—I stated that I thought that the women's conference proceedings were "included in the church magazines, DVDs, and online with general conference basically for convenience of access." Good Ol’factory (talk) 03:04, 12 September 2014 (UTC)
@Jgstokes: I don't feel like my time was wasted; I found it an interesting question and learned something in the process. Please don't harbor any hard feelings from what must seem to you like a pile-on. I'm sure it wasn't intended that way by anyone commenting here. ~Adjwilley (talk) 04:01, 12 September 2014 (UTC)
For convenience of access? Really? I doubt they would do something consistently for 43 years or however long the Ensign has been around just for convenience of access (this is about how long the proceedings of women's meetings have been included in Conference editions of the Ensign). FYI, this conference marked the first time that proceedings outside what is traditionally considered to be "General Conference" were included on DVD proceedings of the conference (as the recording of the General Women's Meeting). To me, that sends a clear message that the meeting is to be considered the women's special session of general conference, even if it doesn't coincide with Conference weekend and even if it is not considered an "official" session of general conference. As such, it is on the same level of consideration for the women as the Priesthood session is for the men. I guarantee there would be an uproar if you tried to imply that the priesthood session was not an official session of conference. But that is neither here nor there. The consensus has spoken, and I will honor that consensus. Adjwilley, thank you for your kind response. Nice to know that this topic was appreciated by at least one person. It did seem like a pile-on at the time. I realize now it might not have been, so I apologize if I lashed out irrationally or unnecessarily on this subject. When it seemed that everyone was coming for the sole purpose of proving me wrong, and, feeling a little outnumbered, I lashed out. I apologize if I overreacted. It's one of my bad habits when I feel like everyone is against me and no one is taking my POV seriously enough. I'm working on it. I certainly hold no animosity towards anyone involved in this discussion and hope that no one involved in this discussion holds animosity towards me. Thanks for discussing this, even if the discussion didn't go the way I'd hoped it would. --Jgstokes (talk) 05:50, 12 September 2014 (UTC)
Judging by the mountain of evidence that the women's meeting is not part of conference, I would have to respond: "Yes, really." In any case, I would bet that general authorities of the church care a lot more about convenience of access to the material than whether or not the meeting is technically a part of general conference or not. Good Ol’factory (talk) 07:45, 12 September 2014 (UTC)

I see your point. Fair enough. Thanks for clearing that up. Again, my apologies if I was being unduly stubborn, discourteous, or disagreeable in my responses in regards to this situation. --Jgstokes (talk) 12:43, 12 September 2014 (UTC)

Jgstokes, you're not the only one that is at fault here: I definitely had a big role in escalating this to begin with, before I stepped back and invited three uninvolved admins to sit in judgment on both of our actions. I generally don't respond well in situations when I perceive that someone is quoting/applying rules (or threatening action against me) in a way I feel is unjustified/unfair. When I was editing from an IP I had reasons I couldn't escalate these kind of situations, but in this first editwar using this named account, I let my passions get the best of me. I should have remembered what my grandma taught me, that every time you point your finger at someone, you've got at three fingers pointing back at you. (Reminder to self: edit summaries are for describing an edit made, and are not good locations for carrying on a debate; if I'm tempted to do that, always go to the talk page instead.) I'm also sorry if my extensive list of references made you feel like I was rubbing your face in it; I'm pretty good with references, and that was one way I felt I could make my case in a better way than I did to begin with, and try to keep my cool while doing it. Asterisk*Splat 21:23, 12 September 2014 (UTC)

I see. Thanks for your explanation and apology. As evidenced by my conduct in this case, I don't respond well when someone is making a claim that they refuse to prove. I also don't react well when my being in error on a situation is manifested and pointed out. I should have remembered the catchphrase that used to be on my signature here on Wikipedia: "We can disagree without being disagreeable." I didn't, and for that misconduct, I apologize. I am grateful that the storm seems to have blown over and that we were able to come to an agreement on this issue. That's all that I was hoping for. I will endeavor to conduct myself in a better way next time. Thanks to all who participated in this discussion. As far as I'm concerned, this matter can be closed with honor. --Jgstokes (talk) 05:28, 13 September 2014 (UTC)

Today, President Uchtdorf of the LDS Church's First Presidency referred to the general women's meeting as the opening session of General Conference in this SL Trib article. Jgstokes, did you know something none of the rest of us knew? ;) Bahooka (talk) 05:19, 28 September 2014 (UTC)

Funny you should mention that. I was going to point that out myself. Now we have an official statement validating what I've been claiming all along. No, I didn't know something no one else knew. But I did maintain that since the general women's meeting and its predecessors (the General Relief Society and General Young Women's Meetings) were contained in the Ensign magazine that they were part of conference. Now that view has been validated by a member of the First Presidency. Short of a declaration by Thomas S. Monson, that's about as official a statement on how the brethren view this general women's meeting as I've ever heard. So, based upon President Uchtdorf's statement, once the transcript of his talk becomes available, can we cite it to prove that there are six general sessions for general conference? Can we all agree to that now, in light of this official statement by President Uchtdorf? --Jgstokes (talk) 19:27, 28 September 2014 (UTC)

I'd prefer for the conference to be completed to get a view of how the other sessions are going to be referred to and whether the media and church sources continue to refer to the conference as taking place over the standard two-day weekend. I don't think there's a need to rush on this issue, given that we're on the verge of having much more to work with in a matter of days. Good Ol’factory (talk) 02:22, 29 September 2014 (UTC)
Who said anything about rushing the issue? Earlier I was asked for a citation proving the claims I was making that the General Women's Meeting was part of Conference. And now we have an official statement from one of the three "presiding high priests" of the Church. If that is not authoritative enough for you, what is? Even if they do refer to the sessions by the standard names, do we just stand by and ignore an official statement from a member of the First Presidency? I don't think that's a safe policy to follow. I understand your desires to be cautious, but there's such a thing as being too cautious, and I think that this statement of Uchtdorf's ought to be cited regardless of what happens next weekend. To do otherwise would not be advisable, IMHO. But that's the way I see it. And you're certainly entitled to disagree with me. At any rate, we have to wait until Tuesday, possibly later, for the transcripts to be available in order to cite this source. A lot can happen during that time. Let's see what develops, shall we? --Jgstokes (talk) 04:25, 29 September 2014 (UTC)
By "rushing" I meant hurrying to change things right away based on a single utterance, which I interpreted your initial comment as advocating for. I prefer to rely on multiple secondary sources and specifically here, seeing where things go with this issue, and re-assessing at the end of the traditional conference weekend. One source may be insufficient depending on what direction the majority of the secondary sources go. Good Ol’factory (talk) 09:03, 29 September 2014 (UTC)
There is no harm in waiting until conference has ended (or commenced if the comment is repeated during conference.) There is no rush with an encyclopedia. Bahooka (talk) 14:14, 29 September 2014 (UTC)

Well, it's obvious I'm in the minority here. I still say I wouldn't see a problem citing Uchtdorf's address or the Salt Lake Tribune article about it as proof that there are six sessions, but I understand your desire for caution. In that case, we will wait and see what they say this weekend during what is usually considered the "traditional" sessions of conference, and see how they word things. But we may not have to wait long to find out. If they refer to the Saturday Morning Session as the Second Geenral Session of the 184th Semiannual General Conference, we'll have our answer. In the meantime, we wait. --Jgstokes (talk) 21:50, 29 September 2014 (UTC)

It might answer the question of what the current status is, but it wouldn't really do much to clarify the situation in previous conferences. Rather than relying simply on what is actually said in the primary source (the conference itself), we're going to need to rely on secondary sources for an interpretation of what is said; i.e., is this a change in conference structure, or are they suggesting that this is how it's been all along? Good Ol’factory (talk) 21:59, 29 September 2014 (UTC)
Just as the Priesthood Session is considered a general session (Why else would they refer to the Saturday Afternoon Session as the second general session and then to the Sunday Morning Session as the fourth general session?) I am satisfied that they are now considering the Women's Conference as a general session, even if they may not have done so in the past, which, as it appears from the references provided, they didn't. When General Conference starts on Saturday, we will know for sure. Until that time, I guess I am content to wait. If and when we can insert this into the article, the Salt Lake Tribune reference might be the best one to use. That seems like the most neutral one I can find. Though I find it odd that when I attempted to access the article from the link provided just barely, I got an error message. Will try again after posting this message. As for the issue in question, just another in the series of many reasons to be excited for conference! --Jgstokes (talk) 20:54, 30 September 2014 (UTC)
What I'm trying to say is that we won't necessarily "know for sure" even once the conference ends, let alone as of Saturday morning Utah time. It depends a lot on what is said and whether any secondary source says anything about the issue. I think there's a good chance that nothing is said or reported, in which case we won't really be any further along than we are now. As it stands now, things are somewhat ambiguous: we have Uchtdorf's comment and the SL Tribune's reporting of it, but then we still have things like this from the church, which seem to clearly go the other way. It may well take more time to clarify. Good Ol’factory (talk) 22:13, 30 September 2014 (UTC)
I don't see an ambiguity. The First Presidency does not personally okay the wording of announcements of news bulletins on lds.org. These are put together by representatives of the Church who may or may not have taken President Uchtdorf's comments at the General Women's Meeting into account when writing the article about when conference would be convened. I still believe that, regardless of what is said in conference this weekend or what may be reported in second-party sources, in the interest of a fair, balanced article, we must cite Uchtdorf's statement, whether we cite what he actually said (from the transcript on lds.org) or whether we cite a report of what he said (citing the Salt Lake Tribune article, which makes an excellent secondary source and is fairly easy to verify). An official statement from a member of the First Presidency should not lightly be passed over. I feel confident that something will be said in reference to Uchtdorf's statement during General Conference this weekend, but that's just my opinion. --Jgstokes (talk) 05:34, 1 October 2014 (UTC)
We currently have two church-produced items that say two different things about when the October 2014 conference begins, but you don't see an ambiguity? OK ... Good Ol’factory (talk) 07:29, 1 October 2014 (UTC)
There is no ambiguity. One of those so-called "church-produced items" is a statement from President Uchtdorf, one of the Church's three "presiding high priests". As such, his words should be taken more seriously than the other "church-produced item", which is a statement not put out by the First Presidency but by the Public Affairs Department informing the general public about general conference weekend. The press release makes no reference to the women's meeting and so can hardly be considered an authority on whether or not it is to be considered part of conference. FYI, the transcripts are up for the General Women's Meeting, but they only show up on lds.org when you click on the arrow by the word "Archive." You can access Uchtdorf's talk by clicking here. Let me quote Uchtdorf's exact words: "I am honored to have this opportunity to be with you as we open another general conference of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. In the coming week the First Presidency and the Twelve Apostles will meet with all the General Authorities and general auxiliary leaders, and the remaining sessions of our worldwide general conference will follow on the coming Saturday and Sunday." (emphasis added.) There is no ambiguity. You are free to accept or reject Uchtdorf's words as you choose. I was always taught "whether by mine own voice or by the voice of my servants, it is the same" and that "when the prophet (or one of his representatives) speaks, the debate is over." I would, however, be perfectly understanding if you wanted to wait until this weekend's conference to see how they refer to the sessions or to see what is said about the general women's meeting in relation to the "remaining sessions" of conference. In the meantime, it is pointless to continue to debate this issue, as I don't think either of us will make a dent in the other's position. For now, that's all I have to say. --Jgstokes (talk) 08:12, 1 October 2014 (UTC)
I'm not sure if you understand the meaning of the word "ambiguity" as I am using it. It means, essentially, being open to more than one interpretation or conclusion–or at minimum an acknowledgement that reasonable observers could come to differing conclusions. When one has to present a long argument explaining why they believe that one source takes precedence over another which conflicts with it, you are implicitly acknowledging that there is an ambiguity, even if there exists none in the sphere of your own opinion. When you say there is no ambiguity, you are essentially dismissing and devaluing opinions that differ from yours. I feel that whatever one believes personally, it's more helpful here to acknowledge ambiguity and that views might differ given the conflicting nature of the sources. Good Ol’factory (talk) 09:28, 1 October 2014 (UTC)

I would gladly acknowledge the ambiguity if I saw it. Unfortunately, I don't see it that way. How many different ways can you interpret Uchtdorf's words as cited above? The way I see it, he is one of the three "presiding high priests" whose words, when spoken under the influence of the Spirit and with the approval of the prophet (both of which he had) qualify as the revealed word of the Lord as laid out in the revelations. The presiding high priests have no hand whatsoever in assembling the notices that appear on the website advertising general conference, and thus we cannot say at face value that Uchtdorf's words and the notice from the Church are to be held at the same level, or are to be entitled to the same consideration. One has to be more authoritative than the other. And of the two, I would trust Uchtdorf's words more than a notice put together that did not expressly have the voice and approval of the prophet of God. What I don't understand is why you are trying so vigorously to change my mind. I myself said I would be content to wait on changing the article until we have secondary sources from "general conference weekend" that will settle the debate once and for all. Until that time, further discussion is pointless. It is plain that I will never convince you to take Uchtdorf's words for the truth. And you will never convince me that "other sources" provide a "conflicting opinion" on the issue. Better to leave the issue alone unless and until sources pertaining to the "official general conference weekend" settle the debate once and for all. Fair enough? --Jgstokes (talk) 10:35, 1 October 2014 (UTC)

I'm not trying to change your mind on the substantive issue, vigorously or otherwise, and am unsure why you would think that I am—I'm not strongly advocating for either position at this stage. But I am concerned when other users are so sure of their own correctness that they can't even acknowledge that contrary views might be reasonably held by other users. That's a big challenge when we are seeking to build content through consensus.
See, it's possible that there is no right and no wrong answer to this, or in other words, that it will not be answered definitively "once and for all", or that we are left in a position of uncertainty regarding the issue. This is, again, what I mean by ambiguity. We could be left in a position where you are convinced of one thing and another editor is convinced of its opposite. That's OK, and it happens all of the time in Wikipedia discussions. It's called "no consensus". Users don't have to acknowledge that such a state of affairs can reasonably exist, but it sure makes interactions easier between users. Good Ol’factory (talk) 11:39, 1 October 2014 (UTC)
While I think it's entirely too quick to jump on the statement by Uchtdorf and as amply noted, the timing is very short to perhaps find more verification and sources, here's a random, non-sourced kind of thought I'll just throw out. It may turn out that his statement truly is/was intended to be more "authoritative" and the church will begin addressing the General Women's Meeting as a more "formal" part of the conferences. An initial thought for me was that he made the statement more in an effort to be welcoming and inclusive. With all the attention things such as Ordain Women has brought surrounding the conferences and related issues, a nod toward the importance of these meetings in the overall scheme seemed rather natural. If the Priesthood Session is important for men, then this is as important for women. I think that has actually always been the case, whether the church was holding a meeting for the Young Women or Relief Society organizations as was done previously. So that's in the very tiny "for what it's worth" category of comment as I don't believe there ought to be a lot of passion attached to an opening and kind way of reaching out to the church's worldwide audience of women and girls from a person in his position. ChristensenMJ (talk) 14:45, 1 October 2014 (UTC)
I understand (and accept) what you are saying, ChristensenMJ, but how many different ways can Uchtdorf's statement be interpreted? He categorically described this women's meeting as being an official session of general conference. Why else would he say "the remaining sessions of general conference will follow" this weekend? Those aren't my words. That's what he said. Like I said, I am content to wait before making any changes to this article until we see what, if any difference Uchtdorf's Women's Conference statement makes to the way the "regular" sessions of general conference are referred to. All I am asking is that Uchtdorf's words not be overlooked simply because there appears to be a "conflicting source." As I have observed, the so-called "conflicting source" is not put out by the First Presidency but rather by whomever handles the Church website announcement updates. And it could be that this person, for whatever reason,, failed to take Uchtdorf's words into account when he composed this blurb. On the other hand, we have Uchtdorf, speaking on behalf of the First Presidency, who said in no uncertain terms that the General Women's Meeting was a session of conference. With that in mind, who do you expect me to believe? I believe I would do this Wikipedia article a grave injustice if I were to hold the press release as more authoritative than Uchtdorf's official statement. Is there really any harm in my having a contrary opinion unless and until sources prove otherwise? At any rate, the debate will be settled one way or another within the next three days or so. Then I imagine one or the other of us is going to look very silly indeed. --Jgstokes (talk) 21:31, 1 October 2014 (UTC)
I also just think the potential exists here to put "too much" weight on or read too much into his welcoming words. Yes, maybe they will change the stance or approach and this how they opted to do it, in a rather soft, subtle manner, but it's also quite possible that this was not intended to be some strong announcement of new church policy or direction. It also can't just be broadly assumed that he was speaking on behalf of the First Presidency. He also talked about training and other meetings that will be held among the general authorities this week. It's very much like he could be addressing the general "season" of conference being upon the church. I don't really have much interest in the website announcement & as Good Olfactory has tried to say, I don't have strong feelings about this, but also think the potential for just as much challenge exists when there is a stretch toward finding a source for something. It also can't be had both ways - accepting website announcements or press releases done on behalf of the church and taken as such when it works and @ other times saying they are trumped because of a sentence or two. For many years, the church has distributed an invitation to conference over the signature of the First Presidency that does not differ from what's displayed on the website. Adding context to something that wasn't intended to be so - there is more principle-based, rather than specific to this instance. ChristensenMJ (talk) 22:56, 1 October 2014 (UTC)
ChristensenMJ's comment reminded me specifically that we still do have the letter of September 4, 2014, signed by all three members of the First Presidency, which states that the 184th Semiannual General Conference of the Church will be "on Saturday and Sunday, October 4–5, 2014". I don't know if the letter is online anywhere (they used to post these on the Church News website, but I can't find this one), but I'm looking at a hardcopy of it. (Under Jgsokes's invoked rules of precedence, surely a statement by all three trumps a statement by one of the three.) But I do think you're probably on the right track, ChristensenMJ—my guess is that Uchdorf was trying to be inclusive and emphasize the meeting's importance rather than announcing a technical shift. But again, I do think it's open to either interpretation at this stage. Good Ol’factory (talk) 01:38, 2 October 2014 (UTC)
I think we should wait, but I reviewed the First Presidency letter (it was an invitation to all members, not just women) and it refers the reader to conference.lds.org. At that website the first thing that popped up was the general women's meeting. The transcripts to that meeting are already published under General Conference here. It will be mildly interesting to see what happens regarding session numbers this weekend. Bahooka (talk) 01:49, 2 October 2014 (UTC)
"Mildly" interesting—I think you nailed it. (Mild enough that there's no way I'm getting up at 4:00am on a Sunday (my time) just to find out.) Good Ol’factory (talk) 02:09, 2 October 2014 (UTC)
Yes, those letters have been distributed for many years and no change took place this time. Inclusion of the transcripts at the site of the current (or even those in the past) conference remains consistent with the practice of many years. Interested readers are fortunate to have the information available in speedy fashion. Although not quite the unearthly hour you've noted, Good Olfactory, we just spent several years where the morning sessions begin at 6:00 a.m. local time, so I have a small understanding of that situation! :) ChristensenMJ (talk) 02:52, 2 October 2014 (UTC)

I repeat, what is so wrong about my holding on to a certain belief unless and until sources say otherwise? The general conference this weeekend will surely settle the debate once and for all, so continued discussion on the matter is pointless, as I won't be convinced I'm wrong unless and until they refer to the sessions in the traditional way. In the meantime, I am willing to take Uchtdorf's words for what I believe they are: a clear statement that the way the brethren view general conference from now on will be different. I will be sure to watch all the sessions of general conference live, because, living in Utah, I am not affected by any weird time differences. And you can bet that I will post the results of how they refer to the sessions (whether I'm right or wrong) as soon after it's ascertained as I can. I personally think that those who aren't willing to accept Uchtdorf's words as binding may be in for a surprise. But we will just have to wait and see. --Jgstokes (talk) 05:01, 2 October 2014 (UTC)

I don't think we're continuing discussion in any belief that we are going to settle the issue immediately, but it's more of a discussion to assess where we're at right now given the information available. We've established that we have some evidence on both sides of the issue. What happens at the conference and especially how secondary sources address the issue, if at all, will be able to be added to this mix next week. Good Ol’factory (talk) 05:35, 2 October 2014 (UTC)

We know where we're at. You aren't convinced by Uchtdorf's statement that the Women's Meeting is officially part of General Conference now and are more swayed by a news release from the Church claiming that General Conference only comprises two days. On the other hand, I am fully convinced by Uchtdorf's statement that the brethren now view the Women's Meeting as part of General Conference, whatever their attitude regarding it may have been in the past, and I am not swayed by the news release which the leading brethren had no part in composing or posting online. By Saturday, we will have more information and then I will either be pleased to hear you all acknowledge I was right in my stance or else be convinced that your arguments have more merit than I originally gave them credit for and be thus in a position to admit I am wrong. Until that time, there is likely no need to rehash this issue over and over again, unless another editor has something new to contribute to the conversation. Unless that is the case, I suggest we let this topic rest until this weekend when the truth will resolve this issue one way or the other. --Jgstokes (talk) 06:16, 2 October 2014 (UTC)

I wasn't really meaning where we stand as having individual opinions; rather, where "we" as a community stand as to the current state of the sources, etc. And on that point, I think there's more than what you have summarised. And it's not just you and me, Jgstokes, others have been involved in the discussion too. You should probably leave it users to define their own positions, though—I'm not entirely happy with the way you have characterised my personal viewpoint. I'm also not sure that the issue will necessarily be resolved with any sort of definitiveness within a week, but I'm repeating myself on that point. Good Ol’factory (talk) 07:53, 2 October 2014 (UTC)

Well, then, source-wise, we have one source which states that the Women's Meeting is the opening session of general conference, and one source which states that the general conference will comprise the traditional two days. What more is there? Am I overlooking something? If I am, please point it out to me. Never let it be said that I overlooked a source that shed light on an obscure matter. While other users have been involved in this discussion, I notice that it's mainly been you and me going back and forth for most of the discussion, with other users occasionally chipping in their two cents. I am more than happy to leave it to other users to define their positions, but they don't seem to be doing it. And if you're not "entirely happy" with the way I've characterized your viewpoint, then perhaps you need to clarify so I understand you better and don't mistakenly characterize your viewpoint as something it's not. Because all I've been hearing from you is that "there's a press release from the Church saying that General Conference will be held on October 4-5." You seem unwilling to acknowledge Uchtdorf's words as authoritative, though his status as one of the three "presiding high priests" makes his words so. I'm pretty sure that Uchtdorf wouldn't have said what he said if clarification or further explanation of this point wasn't going to be given in general conference this weekend. At any rate, you still haven't answered my question. Why are you so desperate to convert me to your POV? I don't see where this difference of opinion is doing any harm. All it is doing is prolonging a conversation pointlessly, as neither of us will gain or lose any ground by continuing to discuss this issue. Our best course of action is to wait and see if and when something is said during what is considered the "actual" general conference weekend. Until that time, can't we let this subject rest? --Jgstokes (talk) 10:46, 2 October 2014 (UTC)

Please, stop attributing feelings and intentions to me. I am not desperate to "convert" you to anything and I have no idea where you're getting that from, unless it's some sort of weird Mormon missionary-minded projection. If all you've been hearing from me is "there's a press release from the Church saying that General Conference will be held on October 4-5", then you definitely haven't been reading or understanding my previous comments. (For one, there's also the First Presidency letter signed by all three members .... but the substantive issue has hardly been the focus of my comments. I realize that it might be the most important thing for you.) I think you've just missed my point, and I'm not really going to keep trying to get it across. My previous comments are above; you can read them if you want a recap. Good Ol’factory (talk) 11:18, 2 October 2014 (UTC)
I didn't bother reading most of the above wall of text. However, if they start the Saturday morning session by welcoming people to the 2nd session, then I think you can consider that the General Women's Meeting is now considered part of the whole thing. It is now held twice a year instead of just once a year, so...we'll see in a couple days. ···日本穣? · 投稿 · Talk to Nihonjoe · Join WP Japan! 20:19, 2 October 2014 (UTC)
Which is pretty much what I've been saying all along. I see no reason why we can't all just agree to disagree until general conference settles things once and for all, which I feel confident it will. Until that time, to continue to rehash the issue is pointless. --Jgstokes (talk) 21:50, 2 October 2014 (UTC)
To be fair, Jgstokes, that's not what you've been saying all along. You initially proposed changing things based on Uchtdorf's statement alone. But I agree that you have been agreeing to wait since other users advised more caution.
I'm also of the view that to place an "all or none" emphasis on what is said during the weekend conference sessions might be an application of undue weight. For instance, hypothetically assuming that the speakers treat the conference sessions in the same way they have always done with the same numbering of sessions one through five, it still leaves us with Uchtdorf's previous contradictory statement, and we'd have to figure out how we will address it and the SL Trib coverage of it in this article. Good Ol’factory (talk) 00:59, 3 October 2014 (UTC)
I've been discussing this with a group I belong to on Facebook. They made some interesting observations. They point out that no one is trying to disprove that the Priesthood Session is not an official part of conference, and that if it is, so is the Women's Meeting. Just because it's not referred to as one of the "general" sessions doesn't make it any less a part of the conference. Separate announcements notwithstanding, there's still the evidence that the talks from the General Women's Meeting are included in with other sessions of conference, with the cover of the relevant magazine saying "General Conference Addresses" or "Report of General Conference" or something like that. Why would the First Presidency authorize inclusion of adddresses that are not officially part of conference in a magazine issue that is solely developed to recount conference proceedings? At the end of the day, I have a feeling this issue will be resolved when something is said during the standard "general conference weekend". If it isn't, we'll cross that bridge when we come to it. If nothing is said, I would still be in favor of citing Uchtodorf's statement, whether or not we change the number of sessions listed in the article. I believe that such a course would encourage the reader to come to his/her own conclusion on the matter. The issue isn't as insurmountable as it might seem to be. --Jgstokes (talk) 06:31, 3 October 2014 (UTC)

Post-conference[edit]

So—any developments that might need to be discussed on this post-conference? I didn't watch, so I don't have any original research-y information, but I've seen this SL Trib report, which just says: "Though Dieter F. Uchtdorf, second counselor in the governing First Presidency, had said last Saturday’s general women’s meeting was the first session of the semiannual conference, both Henry B. Eyring, Monson’s first counselor, and Bonnie Oscarson, president of the Young Women’s organization (for girls ages 12 to 17), in her invocation, called Saturday morning’s gathering 'the first session.'" Based on this, I'd be inclined to hold to my previous position that we're in a state of ambiguity, with conflicting statements that can be sourced, and now with the Tribune explicitly acknowledging the conflict. Good Ol’factory (talk) 02:03, 6 October 2014 (UTC)

Because the most recent secondary source article from the Trib states that last Saturday was the first session per conference speakers, and because the primary source of the Church's website states conference is the first weekend in April and October (here), my opinion is that the article should not be changed yet in this area. Bahooka (talk) 13:27, 6 October 2014 (UTC)
I'm unsure what to recommend at this point. Even LDS Church News is of two minds about this; see:
The biannual General Women's meeting has been held a total of two times, and the only explicit statement that it is a session of General Conference is from President Uchtdorf, and the subsequent newspaper articles about what he said. However because he is a member of the First Presidency, his comment has significant weight; it would have held even more weight if the other members of the first presidency had followed his lead in the session numbering on Saturday and Sunday, but they did not. I really don't know what to make of that inconsistency.
Comments above that equate the Priesthood session and the General Woman's meeting are not very useful. We've got 100+ years of conference reports that credit the Priesthood session as part of General Conference, plus all of the other ancillary and secondary sources that document this as well. It's also unhelpful to try to conflate the way the word general as used in "general session" and "General Conference"; the general sessions allow for general admission to the location where the conference is held, whereas the Priesthood session has restricted attendance requirements at the location it is held, and until recently had restrictions on who was allowed to view it remotely as well. Yes there is a legacy of the Annual General Relief Society meeting, and the Annual General Young Women meeting, and there was also the annual June Conference before 1975, but there is no legitimate way to state that citable authoritative sources have explicitly stated that any of those meetings were sessions of General Conference, except for Uchtdorf's solitary statement that was specific to the most recent General Women's Meeting. Asterisk*Splat 23:53, 6 October 2014 (UTC)

Coming late to this discussion, but glad for the research and input that has already taken place. I did notice that there was nothing out of the ordinary in the way they referred to the sessions, but I did notice one thing that would tend to make me still want to cite Uchtdorf's statement in the article: the brother who gave the invocation at the priesthood session referred to it as "the fourth session" of conference. Yet counting the standard way, there were only three. For the priesthood session to make four, he must have been alluding to the women's conference as a session. My advice is to cite Uchtdorf's statement as it is, but still say in the article that general conference has five sessions. Then we are acknowledging that the women's conference is counted as a session, but we still allow for the standard. At least, that's what I would do. Although the fact that the priesthood session was referred to by one person as "the fourth session" of general conference" and that wasn't correct should be noted somehow as well. Thoughts? --Jgstokes (talk) 03:09, 7 October 2014 (UTC)

I don't think we should refer to anything that isn't verifiable by secondary sources. The comment by Uchtdorf in the women's meeting has appeared; the way the sessions were referred to by those conducting the sessions have appeared; the designation as the first session in the Saturday AM invocation has appeared; but as far as I know the "fourth session" reference in the invocation in the Priesthood session has not been referred to in secondary sources. Good Ol’factory (talk) 03:36, 7 October 2014 (UTC)
So do we just ignore this statement of Uchtdorf's, even though we have a secondary source to cite that verifies it? I wouldn't be comfortable with that. It occurs to me that there may be a distinction in the minds of church leaders between "the opening of general conference" and the numbering of the different sessions. It is possible for the women's meeting to be a session of general conference without being officially numbered as one. At least, that's the only thing I can gather from Uchtdorf's statement and the subsequent silence on the issue from other sources. And there does seem to be an conflict in the sources we have available. I guess the best thing to do would be to cite Uchtdorf's statement as quoted in the Salt Lake Tribune, but also post the subsequent news article stating that there was no further mention of this in other sessions of general conference. That would be my recommendation. --Jgstokes (talk) 04:10, 7 October 2014 (UTC)
Since Uchtdorf's statement is reported in secondary sources, we could use it. The only relevant one that has been mentioned here that is not mentioned in secondary sources, as far as I know, is the comment in the invocation of the Priesthood session. Good Ol’factory (talk) 04:25, 7 October 2014 (UTC)
  • As far as I can tell Uchtdorf's statement is the anomaly here. A couple of news articles picked up on it because it was interesting, but it's not significant enough by itself to mention explicitly in the article. I'm not sure to make of the discrepancy myself, but without some sort of official announcement I don't think we are in a position to judge that there has been an official change. And mentioning the discrepancy itself in the article would be giving it way too much WP:WEIGHT. (See also WP:RECENTISM.) ~Adjwilley (talk) 05:20, 7 October 2014 (UTC)

So what do we do, just ignore the fact that Uchtdorf ever made that statement? I believe the readers are entitled to know of this statement, if they don't already. He is one of the three presiding high priests and as such spoke for the entire First Presidency in what he said. Why that failed to have an impact on the way the other sessions of conference were referred to, I don't know. But one thing I do know. The statement has been made, and we have other sources that, while not directly countering it, seem to imply the opposite. So why not cite both and let the intelligent reader sort it out for themselves? This would eliminate the concerns of WP:WEIGHT by neither ignoring it nor featuring it solely. Of course, if the consensus would rather not include either source, I will, as always, abide by that consensus decision. --Jgstokes (talk) 08:15, 7 October 2014 (UTC)

I generally agree with Adjwilley in both the likelihood of an "anomaly" and of care in not placing undue weight on Uchtdorf's prior statement. Most of my prior thoughts from this discussion string remain the same - that this was just a kind, generous way to be welcoming to those women and girls who were in attendance. There is no doubt the church sees this as an important meeting, as they did the specific Relief Society and Young Women meetings in prior years. Yet at least to this point, it is not considered a "part" of general conference. That was addressed in the opening sentence of the Saturday morning session, along with subsequent sessions, including the 2nd and 4th sessions by Uchtdorf himself, as the one conducting. One thing that does not have a solid foundation or case is that he formally spoke each word for the entire First Presidency when speaking to the Women's Meeting. When any of them prepare a talk or make remarks at a conference session, they are not speaking for the entire First Presidency in the way of policy or other formal aspects. Is it fair to say that he was just as welcoming to the Women's Meeting attendees as the other members would be and he spoke in behalf of them, most certainly. It just seems that there's an attempt to make a case for something that, at least until this point, is not the case - that the meeting is part of general conference. All the prior thoughts about inclusion of the meeting's talks in the Ensign and on websites are valid - it's viewed as important and also provided for convenience of those interested. I don't think it makes any sense to try and list this and let someone decide for themselves - that will just create more confusion. ChristensenMJ (talk) 22:16, 7 October 2014 (UTC)
I agree with ChristensenMJ that Adjwilley has set out what is probably the most sound argument in this circumstance. WP:WEIGHT and WP:RECENTISM do come into play here. We do have a conflict, and the definitive resolution is currently not possible—we have some degree of ambiguity, as I've asserted above. But I think to warrant a mention of the issue, we would need somewhat more than what we have, or at least more of a real controversy about the issue being discussed in the secondary sources. Right now it's pretty thin and essentially amounts to a sentence in the introductory remarks of one sermon given by a member of the First Presidency. That's not a lot to hang a hat on given the nature of the evidence that militates for the other side. I also agree that Uchtdorf was not necessarily speaking on behalf of the entire First Presidency or intending to announce a new structure to conference. Instinctively to me, it looked like an olive branch being extended. And I still believe that the Women's Meeting proceedings are grouped with the conference proceedings in magazines, the website, and DVDs essentially for convenience and to promote access. Good Ol’factory (talk) 01:54, 8 October 2014 (UTC)
Well, I can't say I'm convinced that we shouldn't include Uchtdorf's statement in the article. But I did say that if the voice of the consensus determined not to include this information, I would stand by that consensus. If you all are in agreement, since I'm the only one with reservations and since I have not been able to come up with a convincing enough argument for including the statement, then I guess the consensus has spoken. Sorry to have stirred the pot unnecessarily with this whole topic. I can't say I see Uchtdorf's comment in the same light you guys do, but since we have just this one obscure comment and I can't convince any of you that there is merit to my expressed viewpoint, it's time I threw in the towel, apologized for wasting everyone's time with such a trivial matter, and let everyone get back to the real issues pertaining to this article. Thanks for the discussion, even if it didn't turn out how I hoped it would. --Jgstokes (talk) 05:16, 8 October 2014 (UTC)
First, I'm not sure if this should go hear in the conversation or father down. If it should be father down I give my permission for it to be moved.
I found a Salt Lake Tribune article on this subject today, that almost follows this conversation. "More editing, more confusion about Mormon women’s meeting". Interestingly enough it seems the LDS Church itself isn't really sure what is what. Here is the sequence of conflicting events that the news article points out.
First: Uchtdorf call the Women's session the "opening" of conference. This statement is still available in the transcript. - (meaning it is part of conference)
Then several speakers in the Saturday morning session referred to it as the first session of the conference. - (meaning it isn't part of conference)
Then Bruce A. Carlson (Seventy) said the priesthood session was the "fourth session of this special conference", which means the women’s meeting was the first session. - (meaning it is part of conference)
Then the Church edited Carlson's statement out of the transcript, which they have been known to do when something is said that shouldn't have been said. - (meaning it isn't part of conference)
Then LDS Church spokesman Dale Jones said in an official statement that "the women’s meetings are not usually referred to as a session of General Conference". - (meaning it isn't part of conference)
Then the Deseret News (owned by the LDS Church) printed that "the General Women’s Meeting was the first session of the semiannual General Conference" as one of its "20 Memorable Events in General Conference" - (meaning it is part of conference)
Then after this was publicized the Church News’ statement was edited out. - (meaning it isn't part of conference)
However, the original article that the appeared in the Deseret News still appears on the LDS.org website, with the statement saying that the Women's session is part of conference. - (meaning it is part of conference)
So ultimately I think the issue is still extremely unclear. The LDS Church itself dose seem like it is saying "NO", but Uchtdorf's statement and the original Deseret News are still there. At best, if it should be included at all, it should be written in a way that points out that the issue is completely unresolved and it is unknown what is correct and what isn't.--- ARTEST4ECHO (talk) 16:17, 15 October 2014 (UTC)
Great summary. (It all reminds me of a Keystone Cops episode I saw once.) I imagine that prior to the next general conference, the church will make sure that everyone is on the same page about this, because as it stands right now, everybody's pretty much acting ad hoc. I sense a memo being produced. Good Ol’factory (talk) 21:37, 15 October 2014 (UTC)

Thanks for that great research. So there is an ambiguity in secondary sources. Given that, I imagine the Church will issue an official statement at some point, either ratifying and clarifying Uchtdorf's comment or else providing a statement that places the quotation in the proper context. Oh, by the way, Carlson's "statement" was made during the invocation of the priesthood session, so unless it was edited out in the video of the priesthood session, it still exists. Just viewed the video of it, and it has been edited out. Weird. Given the ambiguity, I would either advocate mentioning the ambiguity of sources somehow in the article or else ignoring the issue altogether unless and until the Church comes out with an official statement in future, as I said above. Thoughts? --Jgstokes (talk) 06:29, 16 October 2014 (UTC)

You are correct that Carlson's "statement" was made during the prayer, I just didn't think it was important to the issue at hand. However, as I said, the LDS Church edited Carlson's statement out of his prayer, including in the video. The closest thing that the LDS Church has come to an "Official Statement" the from LDS Church spokesman Dale Jones. He said "While the women’s meetings have long been an important part of General Conference week, they are not usually referred to as a session of General Conference" Later he also said "Edits are routinely made to General Conference proceedings prior to publication of the official record. In this case a simple edit was made by the conference producer to reflect the usual numbering of the sessions." (see here). I agree with Good Ol’factory, except I was thinking of the Three Stooges, "Nyaaaaaahhhhhhh!"--- ARTEST4ECHO (talk) 19:10, 17 October 2014 (UTC)
Absent Uchtdorf's statement in the Women's Meeting, there really would be not much of an issue. It's possible that he just messed up. As we speak, he may be running in lay-down circles on the floor of his office, "Whoop whoop whoop whoop whoop" ... OK, maybe not that last part. Good Ol’factory (talk) 22:53, 17 October 2014 (UTC)
I don't believe we can attribute Uchtdorf's statement to something as simple as "he just messed up." Uchtdorf represented the whole of the First Presidency in speaking at the General Women's Meeting. If he had "messed up," then his comment would have been corrected along with the rest of the edits that were made. But still in the transcript of his talk is preserved the statement that is in question. I do not believe we can lightly pass over it. Nor do I believe it would be wise to say that Uchtdorf's statement constitutes an official change in Church policies and procedures as far as the way Women's Conference is viewed. The best solution, in my mind, is to quote Uchtdorf's statement, mention the ambiguity of sources, and then say something to the effect of, "It is hoped that an official statement from the Church at some future point may clear up the confusion caused by the conflicting sources." That would be my recommendation, anyways. --Jgstokes (talk) 03:23, 19 October 2014 (UTC)
It's possible (in the sense of being not impossible) that he "messed up" in the sense that he said something that was understood by others to mean something that he did not intend, and that the First Presidency had not previously discussed the implications of it being taken in the way it was taken. (It's also possible that there's a power struggle going on in the heirarchy of the church over the issue, and that Uchtdorf said what he said in an attempt to push things in one direction, and other leaders in the church are now using other means to push back. But I find the first possibility mentioned to be far more plausible.) As for how to deal with the issue in the article, I thought we had settled that above. Good Ol’factory (talk) 04:11, 19 October 2014 (UTC)

How many different ways can Uchtdorf's comments be interpreted? The meaning seems to be pretty clear: Uchtdorf was indicating that the Women's Meeting was part of general conference. And now we have the so-called "conflicting sources" that say otherwise. I will admit that they are compelling, but i do not find them to be as compelling or binding or official as Uchtdorf's statement. As I've said until I'm blue in the face, Uchtdorf is not just some random person making a statement. He is one of the "three presiding high priests" who has the promise of the Lord that what he says under the inspiration of the Spirit and the direction of the prophet is "the word of the Lord." The statement still appears in the transcript of Uchtdorf's talk. It would be foolhardy and unjust to ignore it or pretend he didn't say it. And I don't believe we "settled" anything. I had proposed either including Uchtdorf's statement and noting the ambiguity or else leaving it alone unless and until we have further information, and I'm not getting a straight answer from you about your opinion regarding this proposal. You're just repeating what you've said previously, as if you're still trying to convince me to ignore or overlook Uchtdorf's statement. Well, I'm sorry. I can't do that. I take Uchtdorf's statement for what it is, nothing more, nothing less. I know there is ambiguity in sources at the moment, and I'm sorry about that. But unless and until something happens to shed greater light on this issue one way or the other (by either repudiating Uchtdorf's statement or endorsing it), I have to take it for what it is. I would suggest quoting Uchtdorf's statement and noting the ambiguity. But that's just my opinion regarding what we should do. --Jgstokes (talk) 05:40, 21 October 2014 (UTC)

I set out my opinion on what to do previously, which at this stage is to not change the article. I'm not trying to convince you of anything, just voicing my view of some of the possibilities. Good Ol’factory (talk) 08:37, 21 October 2014 (UTC)
I am also wondering why this conversation persists. It seemed settled that no change would take place to the article. ChristensenMJ (talk) 14:23, 21 October 2014 (UTC)
Uchtdorf is one of the "three presiding high priests", but (1) he is the most junior of the three, (2) the other two members of the First Presidency did not support Uchtdorf's statement via the wording used during the sessions they conducted, and (3) Uchtdorf himself didn't give any indication of a change in the number of sessions when he conducted during the actual Conference weekend. I'm not going to project my theories or personal interpretations about why this might have happened, and I don't think that there is any place for that in the article either. Uchtdorf's comment is an anomaly, and official representatives of the church have gone to significant pains to clarify that there are five sessions of conference, and the General Women's Meeting is not one of them. Asterisk*Splat 19:02, 21 October 2014 (UTC)

So that's it, then? We just ignore Uchtdorf's statement altogether? It doesn't matter if Uchtdorf is "the most junior" of the "three presiding high priests"; as he himself stated after making the statement in question, he was asked by President Monson to represent the First Presidency at that meeting. So that to me indicates that he had President Monson's approval to make that statement. The fact that it has still not been eliminated, even from the Ensign and Liahona offiicial proceedings of conference says that his statement should carry some weight and should not be ignored. I am fine if we want to hold off on including Uchtdorf's statement until the Church clarifies it, but I don't think we should just drop the matter and say that "no change" will be made to the article, even if the Church does clarify the issue. --Jgstokes (talk) 01:04, 25 October 2014 (UTC)

Yes, that's pretty much it for now. Nothing of any significance has changed since you made this statement saying you would abide by the consensus to not include the statement in the article. If in the future the church makes an official change or announcement we will of course revisit this and update the article accordingly, but until such a time we should close this thread instead of repeating the same arguments over and over again. ~Adjwilley (talk) 02:06, 25 October 2014 (UTC)
It's presumptive to make a case that Uchtdorf's comments were specifically endorsed by Monson, word by word, and that there was a specific attempt to alter historical practice. Uchtdorf was the member of the First Presidency who spoke at General Women's Meeting because it was his turn. Nothing unique in the timing, as it follows the pattern of who has spoken at a March or September meeting since this First Presidency began their service. As has been noted in many places above, were this truly a change, it would have been very clear in the way meetings were subsequently conducted and referred to the following weekend. {I guess I should not even post this, since I just noticed again, the above comment from Adjwilley about closing this thread, which I agree with, but..... :)} ChristensenMJ (talk) 15:13, 26 October 2014 (UTC)
I know we've been asked to close this thread, but after reading and reflecting upon the comment above, I just had to reply. Presumptive? Really? Uchtdorf himself stated the following in his remarks after making the statement that is under debate: "I am most grateful to President Thomas S. Monson, the prophet of God for our days, for asking me to represent the First Presidency as I speak to the sisters of the Church." (emphasis added) The fact that it was his "turn" had nothing to do with it. He was speaking as a representative of the First Presidency. Hence, I don't see how you can call it presumptive to make the natural conclusion that, in speaking for the First Presidency, under invitation from the president of the Church, his words had the endorsement of the president of the Church. But I recognize that I am in the minority. I will not try to convince anyone further of my point of view, since everyone is bound and determined to believe otherwise regardless. I learned a long time ago that if you mud wrestle with a pig, you both get dirty, but the pig loves it. That being said, I have said all I wanted to say in response to the last comment and I suggest we follow Adjwilley's wise and sage counsel and focus on other issues pertaining to General Conference in the LDS Church. Then, if and when the Church clarifies this issue, the conversation can be resurrected. --Jgstokes (talk) 08:00, 27 October 2014 (UTC)
I don't know much about Monson's day-to-day activities, but it's my best guess that he probably has better things to do than read and give pre-clearance to the text of addresses that are to be delivered by his counselors. Anyway, if we want to adequately judge the importance and relevance of Uchtdorf's specific comments, one has to take relevant things into account that happened after he made the comments, and not just take the text of the speech in isolation and extrapolate from it. From all I have read, it looks like either Uchtdorf made a mistake or that his comment was interpreted in a way that he did not intend, so there was an attempt to rectify this after the fact. Good Ol’factory (talk) 08:13, 27 October 2014 (UTC)
As one of the aforementioned "pigs" who has certainly contributed to an unending wrestle on this issue..... Presumptive? Yes, really. No claim has been made that receiving an invitation or assignment to speak & have it come because it is one's turn diminishes the opportunity. Yet, it should not be held up for more than it is. While the desire to live "by every word that proceedeth" forth is admirable - it remains, as has been amply noted - an isolated statement, given by a sincere, generous and gregarious man who generally speaks in a welcoming, inclusive and positive vein in all of his talks. Yes, a minority view exists here but not because others are "bound and determined to believe otherwise regardless" - it is because the facts don't support that view, regardless of emphasis that may be added. Future conducting notes, a press release, or letter issued over the signature of the church's First Presidency would then be speaking as one in their own behalf. An inclusive talk, taken in isolation, as noted in the prior comment, when there is no support even from the speaker's own mouth a week later ought to be adequate. ChristensenMJ (talk) 15:01, 27 October 2014 (UTC)

The discussion above is closed. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made on the appropriate discussion page. No further edits should be made to this discussion.

Potential source material[edit]

When recently doing the research on the beginning conference session, I ran across the following potential references, that have interesting material that might be used to add to the article:

Thanks. Asterisk*Splat 21:19, 8 October 2014 (UTC)

I agree that they are very interesting to me, but can we prove their relevance to the article in question? And how are you proposing we use these in the article? Thanks for clarifying. --Jgstokes (talk) 23:19, 11 October 2014 (UTC)

Still waiting for clarification on how you intend these sources to be used, Asterisk. Thanks in advance for your response. Look forward to using these sources to improve the article, once we know what you have in mind. --Jgstokes (talk) 07:23, 28 October 2014 (UTC)

With the conflict on this article, I've lost interest in trying to incorporate this material; who knows, perhaps after a couple of months I'll regain interest in it. Asterisk*Splat 16:10, 28 October 2014 (UTC)

I'm sorry you feel that way. I want you to know that I hold no animosity towards you or anyone else who had an opposing view from mine in the previous discussion. I also want to note that disagreements, even intense ones, often crop up on Wikipedia because of differences of opinion and perspective. The key is to try and disagree without being disagreeable. If I crossed a line in that regard, I apologize. It appears that the so-called conflict has been resolved for the moment. Or at least, the discussion has been closed. If you are unable or unwilling to discuss how these sources might potentially be used in this article, perhaps someone else might feel differently. So I am throwing this out to the general public: What are your thoughts on Asterisk's cited sources, and how might we use them in the article? Thoughts? --Jgstokes (talk) 05:14, 29 October 2014 (UTC)

No lines crossed, just not motivated enough to do anything on this right now. Contention eventually saps energy and interest, among other things. Asterisk*Splat 23:33, 30 October 2014 (UTC)

Asterisk, now that it seems the Church has resolved the issue discussed above and below this topic to the satisfaction of all concerned (see my comment below), do you think you'd feel up to discussing how and in what manner you hoped the cited sources could be used in the article? --Jgstokes (talk) 06:51, 31 October 2014 (UTC)

Adjwilley posted in another topic on this page that he felt everyone was tired of discussion about General Conference for the moment and that I was more than welcome to read the sources myself and add whatever I felt was appropriate to the article. The problem with that suggestion is that I don't know how Asterisk intended for these sources to be used. The first source has great historical value, but I'm not sure how to go about condensing the information in it into one or two sentences or paragraphs that could be included in the article. The records relating to the 90th anniversary of conference radio broadcasts and the 65th anniversary of conference TV broadcasts are worth mentioning, but again the issue is how to do so within one or two sentences or paragraphs without going on too long. The 9 conference moments no one saw coming are significant, but again, how do we mention them without being too long winded? The same issue exists with the final source. Anyone who knows anything about me (as evidenced by my comments on talk pages) knows that I tend to run on long at the mouth, so I'm not sure I would trust myself to be concise enough with these sources. I agree that they can and should be added to the article, I just don't trust myself to do it and I don't think any of you should entrust me with this task either. However, if we can come to some agreement as far as what to say about these sources, I would have no problem being the one to insert these sentences/paragraphs into the article at the appropriate places. I just can't see myself writing them because I am too wordy and hate it when stuff I've written has to be trimmed by myself or others. Can we please discuss this? I promise I will try my hardest not to be as difficult or nitpicky as I have about past issues. --Jgstokes (talk) 07:48, 1 November 2014 (UTC)
Will no one discuss this with me? Don't tell me I've driven all of you away because of the preceding and succeeding topics. I really want to see these sources used, but don't trust myself to write the necessary paragraphs/sentences or to determine where they would fit in in the article. I promise to keep this discussion civil. I see no way this topic could become as controversial as the other one, since the sources are less debatable. Please, can we discuss this? Is anyone out there? Hello? *crickets chirp* Oh, well. --Jgstokes (talk) 01:29, 5 November 2014 (UTC)
Levels of interest in particular articles often tend to wax and wane. It may be that the editors involved recently are just burned out or tired with respect to this topic for now. But things change over time. (I've noticed that the interest in this article tends to peak around late March/early April and late September/early October, for obvious reasons.) I've been playing around a bit with the article in the past few days—I think it definitely could use more historical information, since conference has changed quite a bit over the years. I myself am a little burnt out with the topic right now, though. Good Ol’factory (talk) 07:46, 5 November 2014 (UTC)
I accept that. I don't claim to understand it though. We have had literally thousands of conversations of equal or greater intensity and fervor, and this is the first I've heard of anyone getting "burnt out" on a subject. So it appears I only have two alternatives:
1. Wait until interest peaks again, doing nothing in the meantime. This is not an ideal solution to the problem. By the time interest peaks again, these sources may be out of date, with no replacement sources provided.
2. Take care of incorporating the sources into the article myself and chance the consequences. This is not a good solution either. As I explained before, I tend to be very long-winded, as anyone who knows me well can readily attest. I would be deathly afraid of saying either too much or not enough, and neither would be an ideal situation. I have seen things I've worked on edited mercilessly until I can hardly recognize what of the resulting material I have contributed, if anything.
So I'm stuck between a rock and a very hard place. I will have to spend some time considering which would be the lesser of two evils. Whatever I decide, I will post here. Unless the issue is resolved while I wrestle with my options. --Jgstokes (talk) 08:06, 5 November 2014 (UTC)

Facepalm[edit]

<incredulous> Ok, so are Church employees reading this talk page? </incredulous> This is getting even more weird than it was ...

We have our answer, finally, after we reached the completely opposite conclusion. I'm honestly a little very stunned. Asterisk*Splat 23:33, 30 October 2014 (UTC)

Heh, it makes one wonder what was going on behind closed doors. Was all the back and forth and confusion a result of a disagreement higher up? I can't imagine what Wikipedia would be like if we had to have unanimous consensus in order to make any changes. Speaking of which, I've changed the article to reflect the new info. ~Adjwilley (talk) 03:36, 31 October 2014 (UTC)

I applaud the Church's clarification of this issue. I will say I do feel we could have avoided a lot of misunderstandings and contention if we'd taken Uchtdorf's words as official enough. I recognize, however, that until this "official" word came down, the evidence suggesting it was not part of conference was compelling. I will admit, I was still blown away that this clarification came sooner than the next general conference. And things would have been cleared up so much sooner if I had paid attention to how the meeting was termed in the PDF version of the November Ensign. There the answer was, right in plain sight in three places: in the table of contents, on the conference summary page, and on the page where addresses from the session were featured. I'm sorry I missed that. At any rate, it's official now. And now this issue can be put to rest for good. I again apologize if I was unduly difficult in pushing my POV without anything but Uchtdorf's words to back me up. I hope, Asterisk, that now that the issue is resolved once and for all, you will feel up to explaining what you thought the sources you mentioned in an earlier topic could contribute to this article. My thanks to Adjwilley for making this change so promptly after the proper sources verified the truth. As far as the issue of a disagreement at top levels of Church government, I suppose it's possible. Differences of opinion have been known to happen at Church headquarters. And it has usually only been once the prophet has officially decided the matter that such differences are put aside. However, I refuse to believe that Uchtdorf would have made such a game-changing statement without some consent from President Monson. As I understand it, the text of all conference talks has to be approved by the president of the Church before they are given in general conference. This is to ensure that what is said is truly "scripture . . .the will of the Lord, . . the mind of the Lord, . . the word of the Lord, . . the voice of the Lord and the power of God unto salvation." (D&C 68:4) How else could the prophet state with confidence that "They have sought heaven’s help concerning the messages which they will present, and they have felt inspiration regarding what will be said."? Each time he is able to state this unequivocally. I know Uchtdorf's talk in question was given before this guarantee was offered last conference, but I still imagine that President Monson has some say in what is said in general conference. At any rate, I've rambled long enough. What I'm trying to say is, I'm glad the Church has spoken out and resolved this issue now. --Jgstokes (talk) 06:44, 31 October 2014 (UTC)

And also, I don't see how "church employees reading this page" would impact the issuance of a formal statement from the Church. My guess is the First Presidency (and possibly the Twelve?) had been discussing the ambiguity and came to a united decision that Uchtdorf's remarks were in harmony with the Lord's will. Either that or President Monson had been praying for clarity about the issue and had received it. So much for the claims that there is no direct revelation in our day. I'd take this as a direct revelation from the Lord. As I said before, it's good to finally have this resolved. --Jgstokes (talk) 08:44, 31 October 2014 (UTC)
Lol, thank goodness there are prophets to resolve the pressing issues of our day.</snark> For the sake of the organization, I hope they didn't spend as much time on this issue as we did ... Good Ol’factory (talk) 09:28, 31 October 2014 (UTC)
It's great that whatever determination or coordination took place to formally address this is complete. I would second the notion that we spent far more time on this than they did. It's not practical that the church's president approves all talks given, nor is that necessary for him (or anyone else) to say that those assigned to speak seek inspiration in their preparations. There's been a couple mentions here of contention, which I certainly hadn't seen or felt, but hopefully all is well now. ChristensenMJ (talk) 14:59, 31 October 2014 (UTC)

I can easily believe that we spent more time discussing this than the brethren did. However it happened, I'm glad that we didn't have to wait too long for the Church to officially address this issue. I never said it was necessary for the prophet to say that general conference talks were inspired. What I said was that when he does say that, he endorses all the talks that will be given/have been given. So that should have been our first clue that Uchtdorf wasn't just being inclusive or welcoming. It should have been an indication to us that Uchtdorf likely had the approval of Monson to say what he did. The ambiguity that followed has now been addressed, hopefully to everyone's satisfaction. And now the issue can be put to bed, I hope. Asterisk, this got lost in the ensuing conversation, but I still would like to know if you now feel up to discussing how to use the sources you presented in the other topic. I look forward to the feedback and discussion that will take place regarding that subject. --Jgstokes (talk) 04:20, 1 November 2014 (UTC)

You're certainly free to read the sources yourself and add whatever you see fit to the article. I think people are currently tired of "discussion" on this particular page. ~Adjwilley (talk) 04:41, 1 November 2014 (UTC)

I have read them. What isn't clear to me is how Asterisk intended to use these sources within the article. However, any further comments about that issue should be under that topic, so I will post a comment there in a minute. --Jgstokes (talk) 07:34, 1 November 2014 (UTC)

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ "New Presiding Bishopric, Relief Society Presidency and General Authorities Announced at Mormon General Conference". News Release. LDS Church Newsroom. 
  2. ^ Meyers, Donald W. "Dems, Indian leaders praise EchoHawk’s new Mormon post". Salt Lake Tribune. 
  3. ^ Stack, Peggy Fletcher. "Mormon apostle praises family life, laments pain of abortion". Salt Lake Tribune.