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What can I learn from living prophets and apostles?

The living prophets and apostles receive revelation to guide the Church, and their counsel reflects the will of the Lord, who knows us perfectly and understands our challenges. Their teachings can help us with the challenges we face today. We are blessed to be led by living prophets and apostles and to receive their counsel every six months during general conference.

Prepare yourself spiritually

As you study these resources, look for truths that will help the youth learn the value of the teachings of the living prophets in their lives.

Mosiah 8:16–18 (A seer can be a great benefit to his fellow men)

D&C 1:38; 68:3–4 (When the Lord’s servants speak by the Spirit, what they say is scripture)

Ronald A. Rasband, “I Stand All Amazed,” Ensign or Liahona, Nov. 2015, 89–90

Gary E. Stevenson, “Plain and Precious Truths,” Ensign or Liahona, Nov. 2015, 91–92

Dale G. Renlund, “Through God’s Eyes,” Ensign or Liahona, Nov. 2015, 93–94

Robert D. Hales, “General Conference: Strengthening Faith and Testimony,Ensign or Liahona, Nov. 2013, 6–8

Jeffrey R. Holland, “An Ensign to the Nations,Ensign or Liahona, May 2011, 111–13

Recent general conference addresses by members of the First Presidency and Quorum of the Twelve

Prophets,” True to the Faith (2004), 129–30

Make connections

During the first few minutes of every class, help the youth make connections between things they are learning in various settings (such as personal study, seminary, other Church classes, or experiences with their friends). How can you help them see the relevance of the gospel in daily living? The ideas below might help you:

  • Invite the youth to share a recent experience in which someone asked them a question about the gospel. How did they respond?
  • Ask the youth to share a talk that impressed them from the most recent general conference. Ask them why it was meaningful to them.

Learn together

Each of the activities below will help the youth find answers to their challenges through the words of the living prophets. Following the guidance of the Spirit, select one or more that will work best for your class:

  • Help the class make a list of challenges that youth face today. Invite each youth to select one of these challenges and search the most recent general conference talks to find counsel that could help someone overcome that challenge. Suggest that they use the “Topic Index” in the most recent conference issue of the Ensign or Liahona.
  • Show a recent general conference talk given by President Thomas S. Monson. Ask the youth to listen for advice and counsel that is particularly important for their age group and prepare a five-minute talk using the counsel they found. Let them practice giving the talks to one another in class.
  • As a class, listen to or watch a general conference talk that might be meaningful to the youth you teach. Ask the youth to identify eternal truths, scriptures, invitations to action, and blessings promised in the talk. (If time is short, consider watching only certain portions of the talk.)
  • Write on the board, “Why is it important to listen to general conference?” Invite class members to come to the board and write a few answers to this question. Then invite them to read the scriptures suggested in this outline and Elder Robert D. Hales’s talk “General Conference: Strengthening Faith and Testimony” to find other possible answers to add to the list on the board. Ask the youth to discuss things they have done to make general conference a more meaningful experience for them. What other ideas do they find in Elder Hales’s talk?
  • Invite class members to read together “Prophets” from True to the Faith. Ask them to look for roles of prophets described in what they read and to write these roles on the board. Give each youth one of the following talks: “I Stand All Amazed” by Elder Ronald A. Rasband, “Plain and Precious Truths” by Elder Gary E. Stevenson, and “Through God’s Eyes,” by Elder Dale G. Renlund. Invite the youth to look for and share examples of Elder Rasband, Elder Stevenson, and Elder Renlund fulfilling these roles, as well as any additional roles of prophets they find. How have the youth been blessed by prophets fulfilling their roles?

Ask the youth to share what they learned today. Do they understand what they can learn from living prophets and apostles? What feelings or impressions do they have? Do they have any additional questions? Would it be worthwhile to spend more time on this topic?

Invite to act

Invite the youth to study the most recent general conference talks as part of their gospel study. Encourage them to share with the class what they learn.

As the next general conference approaches, encourage the youth to prepare by making a list of questions they have, and invite them to prayerfully listen for answers in the conference talks.