October 5, 2015
Original article can be found HERE.
Make the feelings you felt count. Make the messages that resonated with you most matter. Counsel with your family to make sure conference isn’t forgotten. Try out one of these conference-themed activities for your next family home evening.
1. Explore “Conference at a Glance”
When I was little, the first family home evening following general conference always started with the question “What did you learn at conference?” Knowing that that question would come, I always tried to take good notes or remember the gist of at least one story told during conference so that I could report back to my dad.
Now there’s a new resource on LDS.org that takes the pressure off of perfect note-taking. The Conference at a Glance page, which is published during general conference weekend, contains 200-word snippets of each of the talks that were given, focusing on the central message of each. It’s a great tool to jog your memory and jump-start gospel conversations at FHE, especially since it takes a few days for the full text of the talks to be made available online.
2. Make the Messages Visual
I’m a visual learner, so something usually sticks with me longer when there’s a picture to go along with it. My kids are no different.
After last October’s general conference, we made paper boats at FHE to visualize the important principles of holding fast to the gospel as outlined by Elder M. Russell Ballard in his talk, “Stay in the Boat and Hold On!”
My kids loved it. Six months later, my girls still had their boats, and when I asked them what we talked about when we made those paper boats, they both replied, “Stay in the boat,” or stay in the Church.
This time around, President Dieter F. Uchtdorf showed us how powerful an image can be in teaching a lesson when he told the parable of “A Summer with Great-Aunt Rose” during General Women’s Session. He showed the image of a pioneer girl during his talk, and then shared it on his official Facebook page following the session.
Since then, tens of thousands of people on social media have shared and commented on this image. They remembered the story associated with it. They resonated with its message. And, most importantly, they connected with the gospel truths that were shared. (If you didn’t hear the talk live, watch it here.) Showing this image and other visuals used in general conference talks at FHE is a great way to spur conversation and to help “liken” the stories told by our leaders to our own lives to help make the messages stick.
3. Get Answers to Your Questions
When it comes to the gospel, we all have questions. Through the Spirit, we can receive answers. General conference addresses are filled with inspired answers to some of life’s toughest questions. For an upcoming family home evening, invite family members to share some of the questions that they have, look through the most recent talks to see if those questions were answered, and then pray for the Spirit to confirm the truth. As part of this activity, you can visit the Answers to Personal Questions page on LDS.org to see some of the most commonly asked questions and the accompanying answers that were given by Church leaders at the most recent general conference.
4. Memorize a Conference Quote
One of the coolest things to see during conference weekend is the sharing of thoughts and testimonies relating to the different talks on social media. Use your FHE to read some of the “goodness” that was shared over the weekend with the hashtag #LDSconf. Take special notice of the inspiring picture and video quotes that were shared by the official social media accounts of the Church. Those quotes are short. They’re sweet. And they’re perfect to memorize.
Consider spending time at an upcoming FHE pulling up these quotes in the Media Library and picking two or three of your favorites to memorize that night. Committing quotes like “God didn’t design us to be sad. He created us to have joy!” to memory might be just what you need to make it through a hard day.
5. Make a General Conference Quote Jar
After the general women’s session, my 10-year-old daughter turned to me and said, “I want to make a quote wall so that I can remember conference every day.” Not a bad idea.
Following her lead (and integrating it with an idea from the Youth Activities site) my family plans on making a general conference quote jar this year. We’re going to wait until the transcripts are available for all of the talks (check for them here), and then we’re going to print out our favorite talks, highlight the quotes we like the best, and then write each of those quotes on individual sheets of paper to fold and put in a glass jar. As part of our family prayer and scripture study each night, we’ll pull a quote from the jar and talk about it. It’s a great way to remember conference and to receive daily inspiration from our Church leaders.
6. Make Your Own Conference Poster
For those of you who are creative, or who have family members who are, making your own conference poster might be a good post-conference activity.
The Church’s Media Library has a gallery of dozens of images for members to use. To create a poster to share on social media, download the image you want from the Media Library into a word-processing or photo-editing program or mobile app and add your favorite quote from general conference. If you want a physical reminder, create your poster the same way, but instead of sharing it digitally, print, frame, and put it in a place where you can see it every day.
7. Turn Your Recap into a Game
At family home evening, you can never go wrong with playing a game. Be creative and make a game that best suits your family situation. It can be as simple as a “Who Said It?” game of matching quotes with the pictures of the Church leaders who said them (see example of printable here) or as complex as a scavenger hunt.Read how some youth implemented their own conference-themed games.
The objective of these games should be the same as everything we do after general conference—to help us be better.
President Thomas S. Monson put it best at the close of general conference last October, when he said, “May the Spirit we have felt during these past two days be and abide with us as we go about those things which occupy us each day, and may we ever be found doing the work of the Lord.”
Irinna Danielson graduated from Brigham Young University with a degree in print journalism. She is a wife and mother to four beautiful children and serves in her ward Primary in Bluffdale, Utah, teaching the Valiant class.