Elder Jeffrey R. Holland of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles spoke during the Sunday morning session of October 2022 general conference. He spoke about the religious symbol of the cross. The following is a summary of what he said.
Elder Holland’s conference talk summary
While the atoning sacrifice of Jesus Christ is central and essential to God’s plan of salvation for His children, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints doesn’t use the cross as a symbol.
One reason is due to the Church’s biblical roots. The early followers of Jesus chose to not highlight the crucifixion and could “convey their gospel identity through other means.”
The cross was later introduced as a symbol of generalized Christianity, “but ours is not a ‘generalized Christianity.’ … We are, rather, a restored church, the restored New Testament Church. Thus, our origins and authority go back before the time of councils, creeds and iconography.”
Another is “the emphasis on the complete miracle of Christ’s mission — His glorious Resurrection as well as His sacrificial suffering and death.”
A call that Jesus has given to every one of His disciples is in Matthew 16:24: “If any man [or woman] will come after me, let him deny himself, take up his cross and follow me.”
“This speaks of the crosses we bear rather than the ones we wear. … We follow Him everywhere, including, if necessary, into arenas filled with tears and trouble, where sometimes we may stand very much alone.”
Notable quotes from Elder Holland’s conference talk
We are, rather, a restored church, the restored New Testament Church. Thus, our origins and authority go back before the time of councils, creeds and iconography.
It is one of the most powerful paradoxes of the Crucifixion that the arms of the Savior were stretched wide open and then nailed there, unwittingly but accurately portraying that every man, woman and child in the entire human family is not only welcome but invited into His redeeming, exalting embrace.
To be a follower of Jesus Christ one must sometimes carry a burden — your own or someone else’s — and go where sacrifice is required and suffering is inevitable.
Who is Elder Holland?
- Elder Jeffrey R. Holland was ordained a member of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles on June 23, 1994. He was called as a General Authority Seventy in April 1989.
- He served as the ninth president of Brigham Young University, where he was also a professor of English and ancient scripture. During his presidency, the BYU Jerusalem Center for Near Eastern Studies was founded.
- He and his wife, Sister Patricia Terry Holland, were married in the St. George Utah Temple and have three children. Sister Holland has served as a counselor in the Young Women general presidency.
- Elder Holland was Elder Quentin L. Cook’s mission companion in summer 1962 during their full-time mission service in the British Isles.
What has Elder Holland done recently?
- During the April 2022 general conference, he encouraged listeners to search for happiness by embracing the bounties of the gospel.
- Elder Holland’s message for Latter-day Saints on Easter — and every day of the year
- Despite the challenges of the world, Elder and Sister Holland affirm: ‘The gospel of Jesus Christ is the answer’
- Elder Holland: A new pavilion at Heber Valley Camp, and the woman it is named for, remind all to ‘stand as a witnesses of God’
- Elder Holland tells youth in Washington this is their ‘decade of decision’
- Elder Holland and three other Church leaders tell seminary students: ‘Let us bless you with our experience’