Imatges de pÓgina

dinance was actually performed in Russia. The Apostle Peter undertood the principle of salvation for the dead, and our Savior understood it, and, I believe, laid it before the congregation in Nazareth. After he had been out teaching and returned to his home at Nazareth, he was called upon to read from the roll, as was the custom in their synagogues, and when it was handed to him he read from the 61st chapter of Isaiah. When I was in Nazareth I visited that synagogue (at least, they tell us its is the same), and when I stood inside that old building, I wondered where He had stood when He spoke on that occasion, and I thought of the glorious doctrine that He alluded to salvation for the dead. I wish to read a few verses from this chapter:

"The Spirit of the Lord God is upon me; because the Lord has anointed me to preach good tidings unto the meek; he hath sent me to bind up the broken-hearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison to them that are bound;

"To proclaim the acceptable year of the Lord, and the day of vengeance of our God; to comfort all that mourn."

He read these verses, which describe His own mission. Among other things, His mission, He tells us, was to liberate the captives and to open their prison doors. This part of His mission He did not fulfill while living in the flesh, so far as we have any account, but we have an account that He fulfilled it afterwards. Peter tells us that He preached to the spirits in prison-those. that Job speaks of when he says that they should be brought forth out of the pit and out of their prison. Jesus went and opened their prison doors; He led captivity captive; He brought joy to the many millions that were waiting in prison, for His coming, who were there because at one time they had rejected the Gospel. They belonged to the antediluvians, and when Noah preached the Gospel to them they rejected him; hence they had a long time to wait, but finally the joyful tidings came to their prison house. Jesus went and preached the Gospel to them, and salvation was offered to them once more. They had learned by sad experience what it meant to reject the Gospel.

This doctrine of salvation for the dead does not have the effect, as some say, to make men neglect the present opportunity, thinking that there will always be a chance for them. For there is ounishment meted out to those who reject the Gospel. It was a long time for the antediluvians to wait before the door of grace was opened unto them. We endeavor to impress upon the hearts of men the necessity of repenting and of living according to the commandments of God in this life. We want all men to understand that there is a law which must be obeyed by every one who shall enter the kingdom of God. Jesus laid it down to Nicodemus when he said that no man can enter the kingdom of heaven, except he is born of the water and of the spirit. The many millions that have passed away without having obeyed this ordinance, if they shall enter the kingdom of heaven, must be born of water and of the spirit, and as this cannot be done in the spirit world, God has provided that that ordinance may be performed for them here upon the earth. We cannot avoid obedience to this law and still be permitted to enter the kingdom of God. Here is the mercy and grace of God manifested unto His children, in that He has devised means whereby they can receive the blessings even after they have departed from this life. You who have entered the Temples of God and performed ordinances for your dead, know what a glorious work it is. You have unselfishly labored for your relatives, and you have been blessed in doing so, for your testimonies have been strengthened, and you have felt that you were in the presence of departed beings, and that you were bringing blessings unto them.

The reason why I dwell on this subject this morning is because many of the Saints who are imbued with a love for their relatives, and who would like to enter the Temples and do work for them, cannot do so because they have not their genealogy. Now, my brethren and sisters, we want you to be diligent in your search for genealogies. For this is a day in which the hearts of the children are turned unto the fathers. As soon as the Prophet Jo


seph brought this doctrine before the
world and the necessity arose of
searching for the fathers, the hearts of
the people were turned that way. The
Lord worked on the hearts of men, gen-
ealogical societies sprang up every-
where; men began to search for the
the names of their forefathers, and
many works have been published
this subject. Those who put forth these
efforts had no idea of salvation for the
dead, but the work of these devoted
men has come to the Saints as a very
great blessing. We want to gather up
all we can in this regard. Many of the
Saints are not acquainted, perhaps, with
the fact that we have a genealogical
society in our midst. We have some
four hundred volumes on genealogies,
and we want to get more. We would
like to get all that is published, both
in England and in this country, that
can be of any aid to the Saints; and
as the same spirit works upon the
hearts of men in Germany, Denmark
and other countries, we want to
gather the information collected
there. They are working now in those
this direction.
In Denmark, Sweden and Norway it
will be a difficult task to gather genealo-
gies, on account of the change that for-
merly took place in names, the children
being called after the first name of the
father. This changes the surname from
one generation to another, like it was
in olden times. In the Bible we read
of Simon Bar-jona. "Bar" means
son-Simon Jonason. Hence it is hard


that back in paying less for your names and in having the chance to visit the library and search the books that are already on hand. All that is paid in will go toward increasing our library of genealogical works. I hope that this matter will be remembered by the Saints. If you write to the Genealogical Society at the Historian's office, you can obtain all the information we can give you and we will help you to get more. I want to say a few words in regard to records. We advise our missionaries to keep diaries on their missions and to jot down the events of their lives. These by and by will be very precious. Many of our brethren from the early decades of the Church have kept records. We would like to get hold of these daybooks at the Historian's office, so that if there is any new matter or anything that might give a sidelight upon events already known, we inay obtain the information. We have men at the office, such as Andrew Jenson and others, who are well acquainted with the events of our Church history, and who can soon gather out of such day-books things that are not known and that will be a to help us. We not would ask children who have possession of their father's records to give them to the office; but if they would lend them to us, we would gather from them what would be of use in our Church history. There may be some who would like to have them deposited in the Historian's office, and we would be glad to take them, mark them, and to trace the names of families in those keep them safely. We are a people that countries. Yet there are several archives in Denmark where we can obtain genealogy, and as the opportunity opens in Sweden and Norway we want to have brethren there to work in this line. We have agents in Germany and Switzerland, so that our German and Swiss brethren can be helped in getting names of their relatives. The same may be said concerning New England. The society is trying to open communication with all the countries from where the Saints have come. Now it costs a little to get work of this kind done, and we would like our brethren who are interested in obtaining genealogy to become members of the society. It requires only a mall entrance fee, and you will get

make history every day; but we want this history written by ourselves. When you read history you find many a character that is described to you far different from the reality, because his history has been written by an enemy. Many of the sects that have sprung up since the days of the Apostles have been represented to us in a very unfavorable light, because their histories were written by their enemies. We do not want coming generations to read our history in a different light from the real truth.

Before I sit down there is another matter that I would like to lay before our brethren. It is now time for school. During the summer months our religion

classes have not been maintained, except in a few places. Now that the school year has commenced we hope that the superintendents and teachers of religion classes will see to it that the classes are again started and that renewed interest is taken in this good work. We have just issued a new edition of outlines, explaining the religion class movement and the procedure, and any of our superintendents or teachers can obtain this by writing to Superintendent Maeser. We hope that this work will not lag, but that we will all see the necessity of giving our children that kind of education that they cannot obtain in our district schools, and that we cannot give at home because we have not the time.

This religion

class movement has been established in order that our children may be trained religiously as well as mentally and physically, and I trust that we will not neglect it. May God bless you, brethren and sisters; may our conference be a feast indeed unto all present, is my prayer, in the name of Jesus. Amen.

"My Shepherd is the Lord my God" was sung by Sister Luella Ferrin.

ELDER M. W. MERRILL. Proper care of Childrer-The duties of TeachersConsequences of neglecting the people-The duty of paying tithing-Promise of a man like ur to Moses.

I have heard it remarked that it paid a good many people to come to conference to hear the singing alone. But a great many things are treated upon in the general conference which supply many wants and answer many inquiries among the Saints. We are here for mutual improvement and for instructions which will apply to us when we get home. There is no doubt in my mind that if the Latter-day Saints throughout the Church were fully up to their duties we would have conditions superior to what they are now. There is a laxity on the part of many of the Latter-day Saints. I believe, however, the Saints are improving. Still there is room for more improvement in the affairs of our lives. We have an organization in this Church which the Lord has given us. It was not instituted by man, but by the inspiration of the Holy Ghost. This organization has

been multiplied somewhat in the last few years, and no doubt will be multiplied more in the future as we advance and become better acquainted with the Gospel. There are a great many of our young people born and reared in these mountains who need our care and attention as well as that of their parents.

I have thought sometimes that many fathers and mothers do not give that attention to their children which they ought to have. They turn them over to the organizations of the Church; in the first place, to the Primary, and then to other associations as they grow older; and they neglect them at home. I have heard young men say that their fathers never asked them to pray in the family, and I have heard girls say the same. This shows a lack of attention on the part of parents. I am quite confident that many of the organizations in the Church are neglected. Take for instance, the Teacher's quorum. Every ward in the Church is supposed to have efficient men to labor as Teachers among the people. I believe that this important organization in the ward is in many instances, materially neglected. If the duties of Teachers were carried out as the Lord designed they should be, we would see a marked improvement in the midst of the people. These Teachers are not confined to spiritual things. They can talk and advise about In temporal things also. many instances, however, Teachers' visits are hurried over while in others they are put off. If the Teacher is expected to visit once a month, he puts it off till the last day before the Bishop requires him to report, and then he hurries around and does not take the time that ought to be taken. I know whereof I speak in regard to this matter, because in the early days I was trained under Brother Jedediah M. Grant. When the Teachers in the district where he labored all did their duty, it was called a reformation. We had quite a reformation in all the Church at that time. I remember very distinctly in the ward where I lived, Brother Grant on one occasion called all the Teachers to the stand. We met in the bowery, and had a board about sixteen feet long, put on some posts for the stand. There were twelve

of us in the ward, and we had to stand up there in a row. He wanted us all to pray, each one in his turn, commencing on the right and going to the left. Someone asked Brother Grant afterward why he did that, and he replied that he wanted to see whether those young men had the spirit of prayer, so that he could judge if they prayed in the households of the Saints. I was quite a boy at the time, and when it came to my turn I hesitated a moment or So. Brother Grant happened to be kneeling right behind me, and he turned around, grabbed me by the leg with his hand and said, "Now, you pray." Well, it nearly scared all the pray out of me. But it was an object lesson and one that was very profitable to me. How many of the Teachers who go into your homes, gather the family together and pray with the family or ask some of the family to pray? I question whether this is very strictly attended to. Now,

it is the Teacher's duty to talk about all matters of interest to the Saints, connected with the kingdom of God. It is their business to inquire of the family if they pay their tithes and offerings, that the poor may be sustained and the hands of the Bishop upheld. In going into the congregations of the Saints it is very seldom that I hear an Elder pray for the Bishop, or for his counselors, or for the Teachers. Teachers need not discuss the condition of the weather, for this is not part of their duty. They should go into the houses of the Saints enjoying the Spirit of the Lord, that they may have a refreshing from the Lord with that family. They go there to bless the family and to do them good, and in order to do this successfully they must concentrate their minds on the object of their labor in the midst of the people. By these means the Saints are instructed in their homes. When we find invalids in the households of the Saints who are unable to attend the gatherings of the people we can comfort and bless them. If this were carried out as the Lord has designed it, the people would become more and more united, and they would be determined to do their duty in paying their tithes and offerings and in attending their meetings. If the teachers did

their duty in every ward, people would feel that they ought to go to meeting. I have heard people say, "We have not seen a Teacher in our house for a year," or for six months, as the case may be. This is not as the Lord designed it and there is some responsibility resting upon the presidents of Stakes and their counselors in regard to this matter. The Lord gave a revelation to President Taylor in his time on this subject. It does not matter how isolated the Saints may live, they are in somebody's ward, and they should be sought after if it takes two or three days to find them. I can remember when Brother Preston was president of the Cache Stake and I was one of his counselors, it took us just one month to get around the Stake and visit the Saints, and then we could not get to all the wards. The Stake at that time ran from Logan to the Montana line. Stakes now are smaller, and they are within the reach of every President. The wards are within the reach of every Bishop, and the teachers can find the people, if they are so inclined. Bishops and Presidents of Stakes should be aroused to the importance of this matter, because when the people are neglected, the Church is neglected, the poor are neglected, the tithes and offerings are neglected. Hence we cannot afford, as officers in the Church, to neglect our duty. If we do the Lord will hold us to account for it.

I believe that a president of a Stake should have a meeting with his counselors at least every week. They should sit down together, sing and pray together, and see what the Lord will suggest to be done in that Stake of Zion. I think Apostle Lyman has advocated this idea. I do not know how far it is attended to, but I say to you, my brethren, it ought to be attended to in every Stake of Zion. Then, following in the same line, every Bishop in the Church should meet with his counselors and talk over matters pertaining to the ward. Just as sure as you do this, you will always find something to talk about that will be of interest and benefit to the ward. If we do not come up to the expectations of the Presidency of the Church, it is because we fail to some extent. We may not fail as individuals, but we

fail collectively.

If we all did our duty

the Church would be improved and the tithes and offerings would be increased. I understand they have increased; but they have not increased enough yet, because the Saints throughout the Church do not all pay their tithing. We call upon all, whether in the Church or not, to pay their tithing. Some who are not in the Church will do it if you call upon them and ask them. Represent to them that they are living upon the land of Zion and that this is the principle upon which the land is to be sanctified and to bring forth of its strength, and you would find that people who are not in the Church would pay their tithing, and it would be the means of bringing them into the Church, because the Spirit of the Lord would work upon them and He would manifest Himself to them by dream and by vision, until they would see the propriety of joining

the Church.


These are questions that have my attention from time to time, and I think they are of importance to the Church. You will read it in the Doctrine Covenants that the Lord at some time or other was going to raise up a man like unto Moses. to lead the people out of bondage. Well, that man may be President Snow, for aught I know. The Lord seems to be working upon his mind to try and lead His people out of bondage. President Snow is working at it all the time. He wants to get the Church and the people out of bondage. Therefore, I say, the man like unto Moses may be President Snow, for aught I know. I do not know who it is. If it is not President Snow, it will be some man a great deal like him, whom the Lord will raise up in a natural way.

connection with the other duties that pertain to our calling.

I was much delighted with the remarks of Brother Clawson and Brother Lund in regard to Temple work. I can bear testimony that they are true. The Lord manifsts Himself unto His Saints in the Temples. These manifestations are private. They are not talked abroad, but many of the Latter-day Saints who have entered into these sacred places have had manifestations from God in approval of the work they were doing for their kindred dead. Let

I pray that the Lord may bless the Saints and fill all our hearts with love toward one another; that we may put away our bickerings and our faultfinding, and turn unto the Lord with full purpose of heart, that He may endow us richly with His Spirit; that our mission on the earth may be filled up in usefulness, so that when we get through it may be said of us, Well done good and faithful serant, enter thou into the joy of thy Lord. God bless you. Amen.

ELDER JOHN W. TAYLOR. Binding, sealing and blessing power of the Priesthood-Patriarchal office not always appreciated-Every authoritative change of officers should be cheerfully accepted-Example of Hyrum emith.

My dear brethren and sisters: I humbly pray that our Father who is in Heaven will bless me with a portion of His Holy Spirit this afternoon, that what I shall say may be in accordance with His mind and will. I feel to bear testimony to the truth of all that I have heard during this conference. have felt so much like we always feel, I suppose, at our conferences-that this is one of the best conferences that I have ever attended.

There is a question that I would like to speak to you upon a little. It seems to be very much in line with the remarks of several of the previous speakers. To commence with, I desire to make a quotation that was made by Elder Clawson yesterday. It is the words of our Lord and Savior to Peter, (Matt. 16, 13-19.) the presiding Apostle, after Peter had received the revelation from God that Jesus was the Christ. Jesus said:

"Whom do men say that I, the Son of Man, am?

"And they said, some say that thou art John the Baptist; some Elias; and others, Jeremiah, or one of the prophets.

"He saith unto them, but whom say ye that I am?

"And Simon Peter answered and said, thou art the Christ, the Son of the Living God.

"And Jesus answered and said unto

him, Blessed art thou, Simon Barjona:

for flesh and blood hath not revealed it unto thee, but my Father which is

us not neglect this important thing, in heaven.

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