“Conference in Hong Kong,” Ensign, Oct. 1975, 91–92
The area conference in Hong Kong wasn’t an area conference—it was more like a city conference. Although heavily populated, Hong Kong is compact and members were able to travel easily to the Lee Theater where the meetings were held, and the nearby Lee Gardens Hotel where closed-circuit television served the overflow crowd.
Besides the members, most of the city’s 4.5 million inhabitants were touched by the conference because of much favorable publicity. President Kimball’s talk and a special taped program of songs by the Tabernacle Choir were televised. The mission president and local Church members were also interviewed over radio. During a press conference at which Elder Gordon B. Hinckley of the Council of the Twelve was answering questions, he invited Sister Barbara B. Smith, Relief Society general president, to comment on questions dealing with abortion and the women’s movement.
A major article in the Hong Kong Standard, a newspaper with 200,000 circulation, was headlined “Knit up family for a stronger nation, urges Mormon world president.” It reported on the conference and also the press conference.
President Kimball conducted the opening session of the conference, traveling the following day to Taipei. His talk was the highlight, as he assured the Church members of his love for them and stressed the importance of raising young boys so they will be worthy to serve missions. He also spoke about the history of temples in the restored church and announced plans for the temple in Tokyo.
“Everyone wants to go to the temple,” one young man commented, “and now it looks like they will all be able to go.”
Saints in Hong Kong feel that they are truly members of an international church. “We’re so happy the Prophet and General Authorities came all the way to Hong Kong to speak to us,” many commented. “We must now work extra hard to be worthy to go to the new temple in Tokyo. It will be so close.”
Although a typhoon warning was in force and the weather was at first wet and windy, the setting for the conference was beautiful, with chrysanthemums and plants decorating the stage. Members from every branch in the city joined in the choir.
Saints in Hong Kong were deeply grateful for the opportunity they had of participating in the conference. They counted it a blessing to have the General Authorities so near, and will not soon forget the sound of the prophet’s voice.