A major theme of the 170th Annual General Conference was centered on bearing witness of the divinity of Jesus Christ. President Gordon B. Hinckley said, “I have become His Apostle, appointed to do His will and teach His word. I repeat that witness of faith to you and to all who hear my voice this Sabbath morning. Jesus is my friend, my exemplar, my teacher, my healer, my leader, my Savior and Redeemer, my God and my King.” Many speakers reinforced the message issued by the Church in the document The Living Christ: The Testimony of the Apostles (available in the April 2000 New Era).
All sessions of the 170th Annual General Conference were held in the new Conference Center. The building, the largest ever built specifically for religious worship, accommodates 21,000. Commenting on the structure, President Thomas S. Monson, first counselor in the First Presidency, said, “We’ve needed a much larger building to accommodate those who attend conference and other activities throughout the year. Workmen with finely honed skills have labored with their hearts and hands to provide a structure worthy of His divine approbation.”
At the Saturday afternoon session the First Presidency announced the callings of seven new General Authorities to serve in the Quorums of the Seventy. In addition, Elder Lance B. Wickman and Elder Lynn G. Robbins were sustained to the First Quorum of the Seventy, having previously served in the Second Quorum of the Seventy.
Six new temples were added to the Church’s temple building efforts. Announced were temples for Aba, Nigeria; Ascunción, Paraguay; Helsinki, Finland; Lubbock, Texas; Snowflake, Arizona; and the tri-cities area of Richland, Pasco, and Kennewick, Washington.