Accommodating the Saints at General Conference | BYU Studies

Accommodating the Saints at General Conference

Accommodating the Saints at General Conference
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Accommodating the Saints at General Conference

Author Paul H. Peterson,

"Our buildings are very commodious," Elder Joseph W. McMurrin of the Quorum of Seventy told assembled Saints at an outdoor general conference meeting, "but entirely too small to accommodate the people who desire to hear the word of God. Even in this overflow meeting," he added, "notwithstanding the chilliness of the weather this morning, the people are anxious to come and hearken to the counsels that may be imparted."

Elder McMurrin was speaking to hundreds of Saints who, unable to find seating in the Tabernacle for a Sunday morning session of conference, had assembled in a tent adjacent to the Bureau of Information on Temple Square to hear speakers address gospel topics. The year was 1916, but Elder McMurrin's remark would have struck a chord familiar to Church members in both previous and subsequent generations. Accommodating the many Latter-day Saints who faithfully assemble every April and October to receive counsel and direction from prophetic leaders has always been a formidable challenge (fig. 1).

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