Music & the Spoken Word: ‘On this day of joy and gladness’

‘We all rejoice that the music and messages of this program can deepen our connection with Him and with each other,’ observes Derrick Porter

Editor’s note: This is the first “The Spoken Word” shared by Derrick Porter during the weekly Tabernacle Choir at Temple Square broadcast. This will be given Sunday, June 23, 2024.

Greetings. Welcome to “Music & the Spoken Word.” I’m Derrick Porter.

More than 2,000 years ago, Jesus Christ called His Apostles to share the glad tidings of His gospel. Their ministry brought joy to people’s hearts. Their teaching gave hope and fostered peace.

Over the past century, the Tabernacle Choir has embraced similar purposes in its weekly “Music & the Spoken Word” broadcast. For a third of that time, Lloyd Newell has given and been the primary writer of the program’s “Spoken Word” messages. Now, he and his wife are stepping into a new role as missionary leaders for the choir’s sponsor, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. On behalf of listeners everywhere, we express gratitude to you, Lloyd, for your 34 years of inspiring service.

At the invitation of President Russell M. Nelson, President of the Church, I am humbled by the privilege of standing in this place and sharing the “Spoken Word” each week. My face and voice are different from Lloyd Newell’s, but the music, the messages and the spirit of this broadcast will continue to bring joy, hope and peace.

I pray to be equal to this unique opportunity. As I begin this new season of service, I recognize that sharing spiritual messages requires something more than my professional experience. It requires a personal connection to the words both spoken and sung.

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I have felt that connection as my wife and I have gathered our children to hear the choir and orchestra. I’ve also experienced it whenever I have brought guests to this broadcast. When the choir sings its final song for the live audience after each broadcast, “God Be With You Till We Meet Again,” these friends often comment about the connection they feel to their families, to their communities and, above all, to the divine.

That connection brings us the greatest joy of all. President Nelson said, “The joy we feel has little to do with the circumstances of our lives and everything to do with the focus of our lives.” When we focus on Jesus Christ and His teachings, he continued, “we can feel joy regardless of what is happening — or not happening — in our lives. Joy comes from and because of [Jesus Christ]. He is the source of all joy.” (See “Joy and Spiritual Survival,” Ensign or Liahona, November 2016.)

We all rejoice that the music and messages of this program can deepen our connection with Him and with each other. On this day of joy and gladness, may the song in our hearts echo the singing of the choir: “Alleluia, alleluia, bright and clear our voices ring, singing songs of exultation to our Maker, Lord, and King!” (See “Hymns” No. 64, “On This Day of Joy and Gladness.”)

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As Lloyd Newell says goodbye to ‘Music & the Spoken Word,’ Derrick Porter introduces himself

Tuning in …

The “Music & the Spoken Word” broadcast is available on KSL-TV, KSL News Radio 1160AM/102.7FM,, BYUtv, BYUradio, Dish and DirecTV, SiriusXM (Ch. 143),, and Amazon Alexa (must enable skill). The program is aired live on Sundays at 9:30 a.m. Mountain Time on these outlets. Look up broadcast information by state and city at

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See the Church News’ archive of ‘Spoken Word’ messages
Lloyd Newell reflects on nearly 35 years of sharing God’s love and hope with ‘Music & the Spoken Word’
Lloyd Newell’s final Music & the Spoken Word message: ‘May peace be with you, this day and always’
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