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Conference to offer respite from troubled times

21,000-seat center marks first birthday

Millions from across the globe will attend or tune in to the 171st Semiannual General Conference of the Church Oct. 6-7 — seeking comfort, peace and direction amid troubled time.

President Gordon B. Hinckley, center, with counselors, President Thomas S. Monson, left, and President James E. Faust, stand on Church Plaza just east of the Salt Lake Temple. In the background is the Conference Center.
President Gordon B. Hinckley, center, with counselors, President Thomas S. Monson, left, and President James E. Faust, stand on Church Plaza just east of the Salt Lake Temple. In the background is the Conference Center. Photo: Photo by Laura Seitz

Legions will file into the Conference Center to hear the words of President Gordon B. Hinckley and other Church leaders. Others will watch on television, listen to radio broadcasts, follow the proceedings via the Internet or look forward to receiving video-tapes of the historic gathering.

The Oct. 6-7 conference will mark the first anniversary of the dedication of the 21,000-seat Conference Center — one of the largest buildings of its kind in the world.

"I am so grateful that the building is now completed," said President Hinckley last year during the Oct. 8 dedication service.

A record-setting 30,700 people gathered in the Conference Center and in overflow facilities on or near Temple Square to attend the dedication. Following a cornerstone ceremony presided over by President Hinckley outside the center, conference-goers joined in the Hosanna shout — an experience the Church leader said should remain unforgettable.

Last year's Conference Center dedication served as a bookend to a historic eight days. President Hinckley dedicated the Boston Massachusetts Temple — the Church's 100th temple — a week earlier.

General sessions at this year's semiannual conference will be conducted at 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. MDT on Saturday and Sunday. The general priesthood meeting will be conducted Saturday at 6 p.m.

All general sessions of the conference will be relayed via satellite to Church gatherings throughout the United States, Canada, Europe, the Caribbean and Latin America.

Sessions will also be seen live in the Intermountain West on KSL-TV Channel 5, Salt Lake City.

President Hinckley will preside over the conference sessions. He and his counselors in the First Presidency, President Thomas S. Monson and President James E. Faust, will join in conducting various sessions.

Inspirational messages from members of the First Presidency, Quorum of the Twelve and other General Authorities and general auxiliary officers of the Church will highlight the conference.

Photo taken during last year's semiannual general conference captures Salt Lake Temple spires with Conference Center in the background.
Photo taken during last year's semiannual general conference captures Salt Lake Temple spires with Conference Center in the background. Photo: Photo by Jeffrey D. Allred

Music during the sessions will be provided by the Mormon Tabernacle Choir and combined choirs from stakes along Utah's Wasatch Front. General conference will be translated into 51 different languages ranging from Albanian to Vietnamese. Because of the large number of Spanish-speaking conference visitors to Salt Lake City, an audio feed for overflow seating in the Assembly Hall will be in Spanish only. Sign language and closed captions will also be available to hearing impaired visitors.

Information about the conference can be found at the Church's Web site, www.media.lds.org. Conference sessions may be heard live over the Internet in any of the 35 languages at www.lds.org (click on "Broadcast" in the right column). Text of conference addresses will be available at the Church's Web site and the Church News website www.ldschurchnews.com within the week following conference.

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