David A. Smith

First Counselor in the Presiding Bishopric (July 18, 1918 – April 6, 1938)
Second Counselor in the Presiding Bishopric (December 4, 1907 – July 18, 1918)

General Conference Addresses

  • April 1921 General Conference
    • Committed to Service
      • “And oh, how I prayed that God would bless me and give me strength equal to that responsibility. It came, but not with words of logic, not with the power of oratory to convince them, but, as I attempted to form my thoughts in words, I found, as I uttered them, that they fell upon ears long trained to patience, upon hearts that breathed forth the spirit of charity, upon souls that had faith in God and honored his Priesthood. I went from that meeting with a new vision, a new sight. I saw the bigness of the work in an entirely new light. I found that this equipment which I thought I had was only the foundation upon which I must build, and I made a survey of myself.”
      • “I found that it took no effort whatever to tear down, but it took strength, it took courage, it took the power of will to build up. And from that day to this, I have tried; God knows I have tried.”
      • “He who has guile cannot live properly his religion, and be a true servant of God. Hypocrites are undesirable and cannot become useful in the sight of God. To envy is to take a step downward and lessen our power to do good. Evil speaking of our brethren, of our neighbors, of those who are in authority, is the first step to apostasy.”
  • October 1920 General Conference
    • The Gospel in Purity
      • “And I want to tell you that in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, we have the gospel in its purity. I am sorry to say that there are some who profess to be laboring for the welfare of God’s children who are constantly trying to drag it into the mire and to cover it with filth. O, it is a wonderful work, and those who labor in it unceasingly, in faith, with a desire to be helpful, and to do God’s work, receive joy and satisfaction in their work. I want to tell you that I have a testimony that this gospel is true.”
      • “Let us not be double minded; and when we are in doubt, let us go to God in faith, nothing wavering; let our lives be such that our houses are in order, that we are in condition to go to God and ask for his blessings.”
  • April 1920 General Conference
    • A Testimony
      • “You might say, How do you know? I find an answer to that when I am called upon to act under the authority of the Priesthood which has been conferred upon me, and I lay my hands upon the heads of the sick and bless them by that authority, commanding disease to depart and health to be restored, and I see the blessing almost instantly fulfilled. I then know whence that power comes, for I have no right in and of myself to cast out disease. When I exercise the right which has come to me through the Priesthood to act for God, who acknowledges that right, it is not difficult for me to understand these things.”
  • October 1919 General Conference
    • Reverence
      • “Basketball games are necessary, and I would dislike to deprive the boys of the privilege of playing when the meetinghouse is the only place where they can go to play. I would say, let them go there, but let us have that place so guarded that during the whole play those boys have in their hearts a spirit of reverence and of brotherly love, and not a spirit of contention, which breeds hatred in their hearts. Now, I think we agree to that extent, and I would like to see in all the wards and stakes of Zion, as Brother Wells said, a spirit of reverence and worship, a spirit of brotherly love, in our dances, and in our games, and have it continue with us and go with us on the Sabbath day and other days when we enter the Church for the purpose of worship or otherwise.”
      • “I am satisfied, through the observation I have been able to make, that the cause of men and women becoming indifferent to this work, in their later years, is due to the fact that their training in their childhood has not been sufficient to give them a strong foundation upon which the remainder of their lives might be built.”
      • “Let us not neglect the youth of Zion. Let us not neglect the boy who has been ordained to the office of a deacon. Let us find work for him to do.”
  • June 1919 General Conference
    • Remembering Pres. Smith
      • “President Smith was a just man, and he loved his wives and he loved his children, and tried to treat them as wives should be treated and as children should be treated—no favorites among them, and they loved him and tried to honor him.”
      • “I pray sincerely that I may have an interest in your prayers, in your faith, the sustaining influence of which will enable me to do that which is required of me, that I may better uphold and emulate the noble example which has been set me by my beloved father.”

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