Joseph L. Wirthlin

Presiding Bishop (April 6, 1952 – September 30, 1961)
First Counselor in the Presiding Bishopric (December 12, 1946 – April 6, 1952)
Second Counselor in the Presiding Bishopric (April 6, 1938 – December 12, 1946)

General Conference Addresses

  • April 1959 General Conference
    • The Sabbath Day
      • “Brethren and sisters, if people will give consideration of the Sabbath as a holy day and remember God who has given them life as their Father and Jesus Christ, his Son, as their older Brother, meeting together in priesthood meeting and Sacrament meeting with the attitude of prayer, they will be blessed, guided, and directed by divine inspiration whereby they can bear testimony that God actually lives and that Christ is his Son.”
      • “We of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints accept this marvelous revelation, and we accept and look upon the Sabbath day of the Lord as the most sacred day of the week. As a people, we have a great responsibility not only living the gospel but also in constantly keeping the Sabbath day of the Lord holy and sacred, thereby setting an example to the world as a whole.”
      • “He recognized the most important meeting of the week—the Sacrament meeting on the day of the Lord, the day when they should come together and partake of the Sacrament and remember exactly what the Christ had done in dying for all men and making it possible for us to have the gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ for our salvation, our guidance and our direction. I pray the day will come that all of these men of the Aaronic and Melchizedek Priesthood will attend Sunday morning priesthood meeting, Sunday School, and particularly the Sacrament meeting.”
  • October 1939 General Conference
    • Teaching Children
      • “The men and women of tomorrow are in your homes and my home.”
      • “The home is the greatest institution of learning.”
      • “In teaching our children to love God, what is the first lesson? I would suggest that the first lesson is the lesson of prayer, to take the child, although he may be barely able to walk, to the family altar of prayer. Teach him the necessity of communicating with God, his Eternal Father, from whose presence his spirit has but recently come. If we can establish that bond, between God the Eternal Father and our children, through prayer, we are inculcating into their hearts respect for, faith in, and love for their Eternal Father.”
      • “The university of the home has some advantages that the institutions of learning have not, namely, at the head of every Latter-day Saint home there should stand a man who holds the Melchizedek Priesthood. In holding the Melchizedek Priesthood he has the right to inspiration and revelation, as far as it affects those who are attached to his household. If men are living the Gospel of Jesus Christ and attending to their duties in the Priesthood, God will bless them, as far as their children are concerned, giving them leadership and inspiration.”
      • “When a child or an individual thinks that he can be dependent upon society, then he becomes an enemy of society.”
  • April 1939 General Conference
    • Objectives of the Church
      • “To me, the Church has two objectives. The first one is to preach the Gospel of Jesus Christ to every nation, kindred, tongue and people. That has been and is being accomplished through the efforts of the young men and women who are representing the Church in the world today, under the inspired leadership of the mission presidents.”
      • “The next objective, as I understand it, is that one which has to do with the entire membership of the Church, to see that they are counseled, advised, exhorted, and stimulated to the utmost to observe all that the Lord requires of his people.”
  • October 1938 General Conference
    • Priesthood Governance
      • “So Priesthood to me is more than the power of God delegated unto us, whereby we may act as his representatives, it is a perfect system and order of government given to us through which we may help the human race to solve the problems that now afflict it. One of the greatest differences between this government and the government of men is that we have no desire to take away land or natural resources from any nation or people, but we have a desire to help the human race, teach them the ways of life and righteousness as they have been revealed to us in this day and age.”
      • “Those of us who are members of the Priesthood government, who hold the Priesthood of God, should remember that in all of our dealings with the business world we should be honest, fair and square in our dealings.”

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