From Mormon Newsroom—
The First Presidency of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints announced a new Young Women general presidency and a new first counselor in the Primary general presidency during the Saturday afternoon session of the 188th Annual General Conference. President Dallin H. Oaks of the First Presidency announced that Bonnie H. Cordon will serve as general president of the Young Women organization, which is for female Church members ages 12 through 17. Michelle Craig has been called as the first counselor, and Becky Craven will serve as second counselor.
Read more about these sisters on mormonnewsroom.org
The time has come when we bid farewell to the distinguished and lovable Sisters Bonnie L. Oscarson, Carol F. McConkie, and Neill F. Marriott as the Young Women General Presidency. How thankful we are for their service!
During Sister Oscarson’s tenure as president, we saw the first international Young Women General Board. Traditionally, members of auxiliary general boards live in or near Salt Lake City, Utah for the sake of convenience. Sister Oscarson felt that with modern technology, there was no reason why everyone had to live locally in order to meet and discuss young women issues and curriculum. The original board formed under Sister Oscarson included sisters from Brazil, Peru, Japan, South Africa, and New York City.
Sister McConkie, departing first counselor, recently touched many lives when she shared a youth video on Facebook along with a message about prayer. It looks like her official Church Facebook page is down at the moment; perhaps the Church only runs social media accounts for general presidencies while they’re serving in that capacity. Thankfully, LDS Living caught her words that she posted with the video—
I love the words of the hymn ‘Ere you left your room this morning, did you think to pray?’ Prayer is a mighty spiritual foundation for each of us every day. It is the opportunity to commune with our Father in Heaven, in the name of Jesus Christ, to express gratitude and seek guidance by the Holy Ghost. In a world often chaotic and confusing, a humble prayer will keep us shielded, settled, and centered on the things of most importance.
The Apostle Paul taught the word of the Lord. ‘Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God. And the peace … which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus’ (Philippians 4:6–7).
I know that whenever we seek our Father in prayer, He hears and He will answer. He knows all things and is perfect in love, and He will give us the wisdom we need if we will ask in prayer. —Carol F. McConkie
Sister Marriott, departing 2nd counselor, is a convert to the Church. She joined at age 22 after a young man, whom she later would marry, introduced her to the missionaries. Converts and lifelong members alike learned from her perspectives as a convert, such as when she shared this story of her wedding in conference—
When I was born, my parents planted a magnolia tree in the backyard so there would be magnolias at my wedding ceremony, held in the Protestant church of my forefathers. But on the day of my marriage, there were no parents at my side and no magnolias, for as a one-year convert to the Church, I had traveled to Salt Lake City, Utah, to receive my temple endowment and be sealed to David, my fiancé.
When I left Louisiana and neared Utah, a feeling of homelessness swept over me. Before the wedding, I would be staying with David’s step-grandmother, who was lovingly known as Aunt Carol.
Here I was, a stranger to Utah, going to stay in a stranger’s house before being sealed—for eternity—to a family I barely knew. (Good thing I loved and trusted my future husband and the Lord!)
As I stood at the front door of Aunt Carol’s house, I wanted to shrink away. The door opened—I stood there like a scared rabbit—and Aunt Carol, without a word, reached out and took me into her arms. She, who had no children of her own, knew—her nurturing heart knew—that I needed a place to belong. Oh, the comfort and sweetness of that moment! My fear melted, and there came to me a sense of being anchored to a spiritually safe place.
Love is making space in your life for someone else, as Aunt Carol did for me. 1