All general conferences of the Church are historic occasions. But the October 1975 general conference will long be regarded as marking several historic milestones.
First, it marked the historic filling of the First Quorum of the Seventy as outlined in the Doctrine and Covenants (see D&C 107:25–38, 93–97), to “be gradually organized,” said President Spencer W. Kimball, “eventually with seventy members.” (See page 134 for additional information.)
Second, the conference marked the close of the long era of auxiliary conferences held during the week of general conference. These auxiliary conferences—Sunday School, Relief Society, and Primary—will be replaced by regional meetings held simultaneously throughout the world in June of each year. (See page 138 for additional information.)
Presiding at the October 3–5 conference was President Spencer W. Kimball, Presiding High Priest over the High Priesthood of the Church (D&C 107:65–66), prophet, seer, and revelator, and twelfth President of the Church. Attending the conference sessions were leaders and members from throughout the world who assembled daily in the Tabernacle on Temple Square, with overflow seating at the nearby Assembly Hall on Temple Square and at the Salt Palace, one block away. Presiding over these overflow gatherings were several of the Brethren selected from among the General Authorities.
Seven general conference sessions were held: two on Friday, October 3—a 10 A.M. morning session and a 2 P. M. afternoon session; three sessions on Saturday, October 4—a morning, an afternoon, and a 7 P.M. evening priesthood session; and two sessions on Sunday, October 5—a morning and an afternoon. Also held from 7 to 9 A.M. Saturday morning was the welfare session for priesthood and Relief Society leaders.
During the Friday morning general session, President Kimball presented the names of four new General Authorities: Elder Gene R. Cook, to fill the vacancy in the First Council of the Seventy occasioned by the death earlier in the year of Elder Milton R. Hunter; and three new members of the First Quorum of the Seventy, Elder Charles A. Didier, Elder William Rawsel Bradford, and Elder George Patrick Lee, thus raising the number of General Authorities to 52. (See pages 134–37 for biographical information.)
Sessions of the conference—all, selected, or selected parts of the sessions were carried extensively in the United States and Canada. Through satellite transmission, these selected sessions were heard over 400 radio and television stations in Mexico, Central and South America, Europe, South Africa, the Philippines, and parts of Asia. Some countries in these areas were able to receive selected sessions over international shortwave radio. The general priesthood session held Saturday was transmitted over closed circuit lines to about 225,000 priesthood holders assembled in approximately 1,035 buildings in the United States, Canada, and Australia.
In addition to the sessions already described, the following other general sessions and meetings were held: October 1–2, Relief Society general conference (see page 140 for further information): October 1, a seminar for the Regional Representatives of the Council of the Twelve (see page 138 for further information).
This issue of the Ensign contains in chronological order the addresses and proceedings of the general conference sessions, and for the first time, it contains the addresses given at the Saturday morning welfare meeting. The issue also contains, beginning on page 132, the important correlation of these conference addresses to the curriculum of the Church, thus providing a resource of great value to home and church.