“The time has come,” said President Gordon B. Hinckley to members of the Church in his April 2, Sunday morning general conference address, “for us to stand a little taller, to lift our eyes and stretch our minds to a greater comprehension and understanding of the grand millennial mission of this The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. This is a season to be strong. It is a time to move forward without hesitation, knowing well the meaning, the breadth, and the importance of our mission. It is a time to do what is right regardless of the consequences that might follow. It is a time to be found keeping the commandments. It is a season to reach out with kindness and love to those in distress and to those who are wandering in darkness and pain. It is a time to be considerate and good, decent and courteous toward one another in all of our relationships. In other words, to become more Christlike.
“We have nothing to fear. God is at the helm. He will overrule for the good of this work. He will shower down blessings upon those who walk in obedience to His commandments. Such has been His promise. Of His ability to keep that promise none of us can doubt,” President Hinckley said.
President Hinckley’s remarks followed by a day the Saturday morning, April 1, solemn assembly in which President Hinckley was sustained by members of the Church throughout the world, as were his counselors, President Thomas S. Monson, First Counselor in the First Presidency, and President James E. Faust, Second Counselor in the First Presidency, and members of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles. Included in this solemn assembly sustaining of these the Lord’s prophets, seers, and revelators was Elder Henry B. Eyring, formerly of the First Quorum of the Seventy, who was called to fill the vacancy in the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles (see page 105).
Following this solemn assembly sustaining, four new members to the First Quorum of the Seventy were sustained as was one new member to the Second Quorum of the Seventy. Called to the First Quorum of the Seventy from the Second Quorum were Elders John B. Dickson, Jay E. Jensen, and David E. Sorensen, and sustained as a new General Authority to the First Quorum was W. Craig Zwick of Salt Lake City. Called as a new General Authority to the Second Quorum of the Seventy was Bruce D. Porter of Provo, Utah (see pages 106–7).
In addition to this administrative action, President Hinckley announced in the April 1, Saturday evening priesthood meeting the “honorable release of all regional representatives effective August 15 of this year.” President Hinckley then announced the position of “a new local officer to be known as an area authority. These will be high priests chosen from among past and present experienced Church leaders. They will continue with their current employment, reside in their own homes, and serve on a Church-service basis. The term of their call will be flexible, generally, for a period of approximately six years. They will be closely tied to the area presidencies,” he said (see pages 51–52).
Videotapes of general conference are sent to Church units where transmission of conference is not available.—The Editors