October 2014 LDS Conference Buzz? It’s All About The Native Languages!

WOW! We just enjoyed another memorable, inspirational and “spiritual battery-charging General Conference this past Saturday and Sunday October 4-5, 2015! There’s so much to report! So, What’s all the buzz? For one thing, we just made LDS Conference history with three native languages!

I LOVE CONFERENCE!! I always get so excited. 😀 The anticipation is just like Christmas! But,  just like Christmas it’s over all too soon which leaves me feeling a bit sad and empty 😦 (not to mention totally worn out from my involvement). The good news is that I have about 18 pages in my notebook to sort through, and I can re-watch, read and ponder all the talks again. The best news is that, unlike Christmas, I only have to wait just 6 months for the big event to return!

Today I’m starting a new series about Conference [be sure to click “follow” or “subscribe” so you don’t miss anything! 😉 ].

A ♪♫ FEW OF MY FAVORITE THINGS ♪♫ About The October 2014 General Conference 

NATIVE LANGUAGES!

Elder Chi Hong (Sam) Wong made LDS General Conference history when he delivered his talk in his native language of Cantonese, Oct. 4, 2015

Elder Chi Hong (Sam) Wong made LDS General Conference history when he delivered his talk in his native language of Cantonese on Saturday Oct. 4, 2015 This photo shows what the characters looked like scrolling on the teleprompter.

NEW!! For the very first time in the history of General Conference all speakers could choose whether to give their talk in English or in their native language.

This Conference featured Three Native Languages delivered by 4 speakers:

1 Cantonese, 1 Portuguese, and 2 Spanish.

**Happy Dance!**

I think it’s especially cool that the very first talk in LDS history to ever be given over the Conference pulpit in a foreign tongue was not the expected language of Spanish or even Portuguese but … Cantonese! It just goes to show what a truly global church we are.

From my seat in the Conference Center I could watch the stream of beautiful Cantonese characters scrolling across the teleprompter screen … and I thought, ‘Just how cool is that’?!

I was present inside the Conference Center for three of the four native language talks (I was blessed to get to hear Cantonese on Saturday morning and Portuguese & Spanish on Sunday afternoon). For those seated inside the Conference Center, everyone hears the native language spoken and must read subtitles scrolling on the jumbo-TVs and also projected on large narrow screens hanging on either side of the organ pipes.

What a thrill it was to just sit there in that vast Conference Center and let the sounds and tones of testimony in another language wash over my ears! I’ll never forget being a part of these historic moments.

Conference Center audience reading subtitles on Jumboscreen

Conference Center audience reading subtitles on Jumboscreen – photo @DesNews.com

I do have to say the only ‘down side’ of being in the Conference Center during a native language talk is that it requires a lot of concentration to read the subtitles, and it is hard to take any notes because you must watch the screen very carefully not to miss anything. For those watching by TV / Satellite / Internet the talk is translated and dubbed over  in English (which eliminates the note-taking challenge).

Side Note: I’ve heard many complaints the past few days about the translating/dubbing and a desire to only have subtitles on their TV/Satellite feeds. Here are my thoughts:

1. Many people are unable to read the subtitles due to age, disability or sight limitation. They would be unable to hear the message of the talk if required to read.

2. This is how members of the church globally have been listening to General Conference for the past 50+ years of broadcasting if their native language was not English. I think it’s only fair that we English speaking listeners get a turn.

3. Open Feed Option? Perhaps in the future the church could offer a dedicated/direct Conference Center feed online which would have ONLY the subtitles and no translator voices. That way, those who would like to hear all of the native languages spoken unimpeded could have the option.

Highlights of the four native language talks given during the Oct.2014 LDS General Conference

Saturday Morning, October 4, 2014

Elder Chi Hong (Sam) Wong

FIRST FOREIGN LANGUAGE SPOKEN OVER THE LDS GENERAL CONFERENCE PULPIT = CANTONESE!

Elder Chi Hong (Sam) Wong from Hong Kong SAR, China spoke of a “Rescue In Unity”; correlating our efforts & working in harmony to reach out to those who have become “spiritually paralyzed” and in need of our help. He related the story of the paralyzed man who was brought to Jesus by His friends and lowered down through the roof in order to have the opportunity to feel the Master’s healing touch. Each of us can be like those friends.

“To assist the Savior we must work in unity and harmony”

Saturday Afternoon, October 4, 2014:

Elder Eduardo Gavarret, Spanish

During the Saturday afternoon session, Elder Eduardo Gavarret from Uruguay gave a beautiful talk in Spanish about the importance of listening to the Holy Spirit and acting in accordance to the Savior’s invitation to “Come, Follow Me”. Are we ready and willing to say, “Yes, Lord, I will follow Thee“.

“Generate a change within you that will lead you to say ‘I have no disposition to do evil, but to do good continually'”

Sunday Afternoon, October 5, 2014:

Elder Carlos A. Godoy, Portuguese

Elder Carlos A. Godoy from Brazil spoke in Portuguese about how “The Lord Has A Plan For You“. Elder Godoy shared a personal story about changing the direction of his life after evaluating whether the path he was on was fulfilling his personal patriachal blessing. He reminded us that in making life decisions we should be willing to “pay the price” for our decisions and we should remember that

“Even when things are going well, we should consider if things could be better.”

~~~

Elder Hugo E. Martinez, Spanish

Elder Hugo E. Martinez from Puerto Rico spoke in his native language Spanish about “Our Personal Ministries” and the importance of discovering the needs of others and then filling them. He reminded us that

“He who serves in something is good for something. He who serves in nothing, is good for nothing.”

Bonus!

President Dieter F. Uctdorf, German…

“Before this conference weekend some asked me if I would speak in German, and I said ‘No, but it may sound like it!'” 😉

I loved this Conference, and I love this church! ♥ Stay tuned for more. – MoSop

EXTRAS

  • Check out this nice News Report by FOX 13 Utah summarizing the historic happenings of this Conference. [it even includes a nice clip of the Choir singing during the Saturday Session and if you don’t blink, a tiny glimpse of my head]
  • Don’t forget! Today is the most important part of General Conference: Study, Ponder, Learn, Apply!

2 thoughts on “October 2014 LDS Conference Buzz? It’s All About The Native Languages!

  1. I loved this part of conference too! Unfortunately, we don’t have TV service at our home, so we watched it online. Instead of subtitles, the voices were subdued while an English speaker translated over the top. I was disappointed because my husband was also born in Hong Kong, and I wanted him to be able to hear Elder Wong in his native language. 😦 Other than that, I loved conference as usual! And . . . I totally saw you at conference–I just don’t know which one you were. lol

    • Hi Marianne, Yes the voice-over has been a common complaint (as I mentioned) especially for those who would love to have heard a language that they speak or are familiar with. I’m hoping in the future the Church will offer an option to listen to the speakers in their native language with subtitles only, and an option with the translator voice. Not sure if that’s possible, but it would be nice. Glad you “saw” me! 😀

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