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Do You Know About the Hidden Gems in the General Conference Footnotes?

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Did you know the digital footnotes for General Conference talks often contain bonus gems of inspiration? Here’s how to access them! 

Footnotes are generally simple references to other talks or scriptures. However, as The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has enhanced its official gospel study tools online, the footnotes often include deeper explanations of principles, personal stories, and more. 

The footnotes are under “Related Content” on the web and the Gospel Library app. You can also click on any footnote to expand it. Using the “Related Content” feature is useful because it will expand all of the footnotes and extra content at once. This way you can easily find the most interesting footnotes without having to go through them all. 

Here are some examples from the October 2023 General Conference! 

Elder Dieter F. Uchtdorf related the parable of the Prodigal Son. He said, “One son tells his father he is through with life at home.”

In the footnote, he added more thoughts: “This son was probably young. He was unmarried, which may be an indication of his youth, but not so young that he wasn’t able to demand his inheritance and leave home once he had obtained it.”

Later on, Elder Ucthdorf turns our focus to the brother who stayed and likely carried some emotional baggage. 

Elder Ucthdorf shared this about the older brother’s struggles in the footnotes, teaching, “Remember, the younger son had already received his inheritance. For the older one, that meant that everything else belonged to him. Giving anything to the younger son would mean to take it away from the son who stayed.”

President Nelson added a more personal footnote in his talk inviting us to “Think celestial!”

He said in Conference, “So, my dear brothers and sisters, how and where and with whom do you want to live forever? You get to choose.”

President Nelson clarifies the doctrine and shares his own experience in the related footnote.

“Of course, your agency cannot override another’s agency and the attendant consequences. I was desperate to be sealed to my parents. However, I had to wait until they chose to be endowed, when they were more than 80 years of age. Then they were sealed as husband and wife, and we children were sealed to them.”

Access the “Related Content” feature by clicking on the related contents drawer at the top of any page. An icon will also appear in places such as manuals and books when there is more to display. 

The footnotes are a wonderful place to add context, expound on related principles, and share interesting tidbits that were too long to include in the original text. If you haven’t explored them yet, now is the time to do so! You never know what gems you’ll find tucked away. 

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Aleah Ingram
Aleah Ingram
Aleah is a graduate of Southern Virginia University, where she studied English, Creative Writing, and Dance. She now works full time as a marketing and product manager, writer, and editor. Aleah served a mission in California and loves baking, Lang Leav poetry, Gaynor Minden pointe shoes, and Bollywood movies.

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