Music and Conference

Music has been an important part of my life. My mom sang in a group called Sweet Adelines. I sang in school and church choirs growing up, had a non-speaking role in our High School Musical “Babes in Arms”, and have always loved how music can represent my moods. The music sung and performed at General Conference adds to the spirit of the meetings. It can also express the feelings we have in ways that words can’t convey.

In the October 2022 General Conference, there were 25 songs sung as well as a couple of organ-only prelude songs. These hymns were performed mainly by The Tabernacle Choir at Temple Square (formerly known as The Mormon Tabernacle Choir). Two sessions had other choirs, one was made up of missionaries, including service and senior missionaries. It was a choir of missionaries unlike any other at the conference. The other choir was made up of children and youth from South Jordan Utah.

At the end of this post is a list of the songs sung by these choirs. I will only cover a few of them in detail here and leave the rest for you to discover.

Rejoice the Lord Is King

Sung on Saturday Morning, “Rejoice The Lord Is King” is an inspiring piece that wants you to stand up and praise God. “Lift up your heart! Lift up your voice! Rejoice, again, I say, rejoice!” That is the chorus of the hymn and should we not all lift up our hearts and rejoice that the gospel of Jesus Christ has been restored on the earth?

What does “rejoice” mean? According to the dictionary, it means to “feel or show great joy or delight.” Reading (or singing) the other verses in the hymn brings this feeling and inspires a desire to show our joy and delight. “The Lord, the Savior reigns”, “His kingdom cannot fail”, and “The keys of death and hell to Christ the Lord are [given]”. That knowledge should inspire us all to lift up our hearts and voice in praise and rejoicing.

Hope of Israel

In the Saturday Afternoon session, one of my all-time favorite hymns was sung. “Hope of Israel” is a call to do the Lord’s work. “Hope of Israel, rise in might with the sword of truth and right. Sound the war cry, ‘Watch and pray!’ Vanquish every foe today.” In his epistle to the Ephesians, Paul writes “Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places” (Ephesians 6:11-12). He then goes on to describe the armor of God in verses 13-17.

This hymn calls us the “children of the promised day.” We are the ones who are to fight the good fight in the days given to us and we have hope to overcome. “Strike for Zion, down with error,” tells us to seek and hold on to truth as well as bring the truth forward so that error can be erased.

“See the foe in countless numbers, marshaled in the ranks of sin.” The devil and his minions seem numberless, however, we are urged “on to battle; Now the [victory] we must win!” And win it we shall, through our hope in the God of Israel.

Redeemer of Israel

The Saturday Evening session brought us the children and youth choir singing “Redeemer of Israel“. For me, this song is like one of the Psalms. “Redeemer of Israel, our only delight, on whom for a blessing we call, our shadow by day and our pillar by night, our King, our [Deliverer], our all!” Do we not all ask for a blessing from our Redeemer? Does He not watch over us as a shadow by day or a pillar by night? Who among us does not want His constant care and blessing?

“We know He is coming to gather His sheep”, “As children of Zion, good tidings for us. The tokens already appear.”, and “The hour of redemption is near.” all inspire us to keep going and to trust in the Lord and His goodness, as President Nelson invited us, to overcome the world.

How Great the Wisdom and the Love

Sunday Morning brought with it the singing of a beloved sacrament hymn. “How Great the Wisdom and the Love” is usually sung as the sacrament is being prepared for distribution to the saints during our sabbath sacrament service. To hear it in conference reminded us of His sacrifice to overcome sin and death.

“How great the wisdom and the love that filled the courts on high and sent the Savior from above to suffer, bleed, and die!” Jesus Christ’s Atonement through the shedding of His blood and resurrection was part of God’s plan for our eternal salvation. He was sent with a specific mission to pay the price for sin, “a dying world to save.”

We are reminded that “By strict obedience Jesus won the prize with glory rife: ‘Thy will, O God, not mine be done,’ adorned his mortal life.” Christ fulfilled his mission in life. The hymn then reminds us of our part. “He marked the path and led the way, and [every] point defines to light and life and endless day where God’s full presence shines.” It is up to us to follow His way and follow the path back to God’s presence.

God Be With You Till We Meet Again

Sung after President Nelson announced 18 new temples and with emotion in His voice stated “God be with you until we meet again”, this hymn was sung by The Tabernacle Choir. It was emotional as in my opinion it appeared as if President Nelson was saying goodbye. I don’t know if that is the case, but it is a feeling that others have also expressed. “God Be With You Till We Meet Again” blesses us with protection, and reminds us to keep Him in our thoughts and our prayers and to stay positive through life’s trials until the day comes when we can meet again as a congregation of saints.

“Till we meet, till we meet, till we meet at Jesus’ feet, till we meet, till we meet, God be with you till we meet again.” We can go about our lives and persevere sure in the knowledge that we will “meet again”. That may be next Sunday in our sacrament meeting. It may be in a social setting without any plan to do so. It may not be until that blessed day when we are all gathered around the Savior and kneel before Him to confess that He is our Lord and King.

Tips For Teaching

I’m trying something new that my wife suggested. Each post will have a “tips for teaching” section. This contains my suggestions for how to teach a particular talk, or in this case topic, in a Relief Society, Young Women’s, Young Men’s, or Elder’s Quorum class.

Looking at the music at the conference, my tip is to find one to three hymns that emphasized the topics of the session in which it was performed. Pull out the phrases that coincide with the teachings of the session. For instance, “Now Let Us Rejoice” was the hymn sung before the announcement of 18 new temples. You could recite, or even play, the lines “When all that was promised the Saints will be given, and none will molest them from morn until [evening], and earth will appear as the Garden of Eden, and Jesus will say to all Israel, ‘Come home.’” A discussion could then be had on how temples fulfill this in our lives today. You can point out that the promises to the saints are given through the covenants and ordinances of the temple. That when we are in the temple we are not molested by earthly things. Discuss how the temple can appear as the Garden of Eden through the endowment. And finally, when we enter the Celestial Room of the temple, every one of us can feel the Savior calling us home.


Music is an important part of General Conference. It provides another avenue for the Spirit to enter our hearts and testify to the truths being taught. It can inspire us to live better lives and to do the Lord’s work. Without music, General Conference would be missing an important way in which we praise God and show Him our love for Him and His Son.

List of Hymns

Here is the list of Hymns sung at the October 2022 General Conference:

Saturday Morning

  • In Hymns of Praise
  • Guide Us Oh Thou Great Jehovah
  • Have I Done Any Good in the World
  • Rejoice the Lord is King
  • Brightly Beams Our Father’s Mercy
  • All Creatures of Our God and King

Saturday Afternoon

  • Called To Serve
  • Faith In Every Footstep
  • Glory To God On High
  • I’ll Go Where You Want Me To Go
  • Hope of Israel

Saturday Evening

  • Come Rejoice
  • I Know That My Heavenly Father Loves Me
  • Redeemer of Israel
  • O Thou Rock of Our Salvation

Sunday Morning

  • How Wondrous and Great
  • With Songs of Praise
  • You Can Make the Pathway Bright
  • We Thank Thee O God For a Prophet
  • Let Us All Press On

Sunday Afternoon

  • There Is Sunshine In My Soul Today
  • My Heavenly Father Loves Me
  • Now Let Us Rejoice
  • God Be With You Till We Meet Again

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: