President Dallin H. Oaks: ‘Covenants and Responsibilities’

‘The Church of Jesus Christ is known as a church that emphasizes making covenants with God’

President Dallin H. Oaks, first counselor in the First Presidency, spoke during the Sunday morning session of April 2024 general conference. He spoke on covenants and responsibilities. The following is a summary of what he said.

President Oaks’ talk summary

A covenant is a commitment to fulfill certain responsibilities. Personal commitments are essential to the regulation of individual lives and to the functioning of society.

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has always emphasized a commitment to making and keeping covenants with God.

Covenants were foundational in the Restoration of the gospel. A fundamental history of God’s covenant promises are found in the Old Testament and the Book of Mormon. The central role of covenants was reaffirmed in the preface the Lord gave for the first publication of His revelations. The early pioneers received spiritual strength and power by making covenants in the Nauvoo Temple before beginning their historic trek to the Rocky Mountains.

Today, Latter-day Saints understand the role of covenants in the restored Church. The Church’s growth and its purpose in building temples worldwide is to bless the children of God through temple worship and unique blessings associated with being bound to the Savior through covenants.

Those who have been endowed in a holy temple are responsible to wear a temple garment beneath outer clothing, which reminds them of sacred covenants and promised blessings.

See the full text of President Oaks’ talk: ‘Covenants and Responsibilities’

Notable quotes

President Dallin H. Oaks, first counselor in the First Presidency of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. | The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

“Persons who wear their garments faithfully and keep their temple covenants continually affirm their role as disciples of the Lord Jesus Christ.”

“The Church of Jesus Christ is known as a church that emphasizes making covenants with God.”

“Covenants are inherent in each of the ordinances of salvation and exaltation this restored Church administers.”

Who is President Oaks?

  • President Dallin H. Oaks was called to the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles in 1984 and as the first counselor in the First Presidency in January 2018. This year, he became the 19th latter-day apostle to reach the age of 90.
  • President Oaks was a law clerk to Chief Justice Earl Warren at the U.S. Supreme Court and served as a Utah Supreme Court justice until his call to apostleship in 1984.
  • As president of Brigham Young University from 1971 to 1980, he oversaw creation of the J. Reuben Clark Law School and the graduate business school.
  • President Oaks and his late wife, Sister June Dixon Oaks, are the parents of six children. She died July 21, 1998. On Aug. 25, 2000, he married Sister Kristen M. McMain in the Salt Lake Temple.

What has President Oaks done recently?

Read more of President Oaks’ general conference addresses, or follow him on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.

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