President Russell M. Nelson: ‘Moving Forward’

President of the Church

Notable quotes:

“I grieve with each of you who has lost a loved one during this time. And I pray for all who are currently suffering.”
“Unusual times can bring unusual rewards.”
“Our spirits long to progress. And we do that best by staying firmly on the covenant path.”

Summary points:

  • A global pandemic and other difficulties can not block the progress of the Lord’s work and His Church.
  • The challenges and adjustments of the past six months have taught key lessons that will serve Latter-day Saints well moving forward.
  • The Church has provided pandemic humanitarian aid to almost 150 nations, providing relief through hundreds of projects.

Talk summary: 

The world has been overturned in recent months by a global pandemic, raging wildfires and other natural disasters.

“I grieve with each of you who has lost a loved one during this time. And I pray for all who are currently suffering.”

Yet the work of the Lord moves steadily forward. 

“Amid social distancing, face masks and Zoom meetings, we have learned to do some things differently, and some even more effectively. Unusual times can bring unusual rewards.”

Missionaries have been “resourceful, resilient and truly remarkable.” Temples were closed for a time and construction projects briefly delayed. But they too are moving forward. By year’s end, ground will have been broken for 20 new temples.

Family history has increased and new wards and stakes have been created. “And we are gratified to report that the Church has provided pandemic humanitarian aid for 895 projects in 150 countries.”

Meanwhile, increased gospel study in many homes is resulting in stronger testimonies and family relationships. 

“I pray that we as a people are using this unique time to grow spiritually. We are here on earth to be tested, to see if we will choose to follow Jesus Christ, to repent regularly, to learn, and to progress. Our spirits long to progress. And we do that best by staying firmly on the covenant path.”

Through it all, one can know that he or she is loved by Heavenly Father and His Son, Jesus Christ. “They care for us! They and Their holy angels are watching over us. I know that this is true.”

Choose to lay hold upon the word of God as it is declared during this general conference. All who do so will have their testimonies strengthened as they continue to move forward together.

“I bless you to feel the Lord’s love for you.”

In the news:

About the speaker:

Recently on social:

In a Sept. 20 Instagram post, President Nelson taught that not even a pandemic can keep the Lord from embracing His children.

View this post on Instagram

I love going to the hospital to welcome new babies to our family! This treasured experience brings me unspeakable joy every time. I love holding these precious children in my arms and embracing them for the first time, as in the accompanying picture, taken pre-COVID. These past few months, my pattern has been interrupted. Wendy and I have resorted to greeting our new family members virtually. We have missed holding these babies in our arms and look forward to the day when we can do so again. Gratefully, even a pandemic cannot and will not stop the Lord from embracing us. His love is constant. He never stops watching over us. He has promised that He will be on our right hand and on our left, that His Spirit will be in our hearts, and that even His angels will surround us. You and I have a special opportunity to feel His love during the upcoming general conference of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, which will be broadcast on October 3 and 4. I pray that you and your family are preparing to hear the words the Lord will speak to you through His servants. General conference is a magnificent opportunity to feel the depth of the Lord’s love for you. I also hope that you will prayerfully consider inviting friends and family, including those of other faiths, to watch general conference so that they too may feel the Lord’s embrace. I love you, my dear brothers and sisters, and send you my virtual embrace, “un gran abrazo.” I promise that as we turn our hearts to Jesus Christ, He will encircle us in the arms of His love.

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  • President Nelson thanked all those who have turned the COVID-19 pandemic into the Church’s largest humanitarian project to date, in an Aug. 16 Facebook post.

One positive outcome of the COVID-19 pandemic is a tremendous opportunity for service and humanitarian work. COVID-19…

Posted by Russell M. Nelson on Sunday, August 16, 2020
  • In response to riots and protests sparked by the death of George Floyd, President Nelson condemned racism and plead for peace in a June 1 Facebook post.

We join with many throughout this nation and around the world who are deeply saddened at recent evidences of racism and…

Posted by Russell M. Nelson on Monday, June 1, 2020
  • President Nelson wrote about the sacred and sanctifying privilege that taking the sacrament is, in a May 28 Instagram post.
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The other day a family friend asked my wife, Wendy, what it has been like to have the sacrament in our home. Wendy wrote the following in response: • “Knowing that our dining table will become the sacrament table on Sunday, both of us take special care on Saturday to make sure our home is clean and tidy. My husband finds such JOY as he folds the laundry and vacuums. And I am happy to find joy in his joy! • “The highlight for me is hearing my husband bless the sacrament. I can feel how much he loves the Lord and how grateful he is for the Savior’s Atonement by how tenderly he pronounces each word. I can feel how sincere he is about the privilege he and I have—in that sacred moment right in our home—to renew our baptismal covenants and to make a new covenant with God about how we will live the next week. I am moved to tears every time.” • Wendy and I have loved these special times together, but we have also missed partaking of the sacrament with the Saints. Just days ago, the First Presidency announced plans to authorize the resumption of our Sabbath meetings in a careful, phased manner. Sacrament meetings will slowly begin to be held, based on local restrictions. • Some nations have escaped the pandemic so far. Others are experiencing a continuing increase. For them, a home-based Sabbath will be needed much longer. And I am especially concerned for those who desire to partake of the sacrament but do not have a worthy priesthood bearer in their home. They should let their bishop know that they would like to have his delegated representatives come to their home to administer the sacrament. If they wish to provide their own bread and water, based on their specific needs, they may do so. • Partaking of the sacrament is a sacred and sanctifying privilege. Doing so makes it possible for us to draw more fully upon the Lord’s power. We wish for all who desire to partake of the sacrament to have that opportunity. • I love you, my dear brothers and sisters, and I assure you that the Lord is watching over each of you.

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