News Release

BYU Hosts Virtual Women’s Conference

Relief Society is cosponsor of annual event


Updated Friday, May 1, 2020

Latter-day Saint women and men from around the world gathered virtually on Friday, May 1, 2020, for the BYU Women’s Conference. Speakers shared uplifting messages on the gospel of Jesus Christ. The all-digital event is cosponsored by the Relief Society, the women’s organization of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.


The annual event normally attracts thousands of guests to the Brigham Young University (BYU) campus in Provo, Utah, in early May, but the COVID-19 pandemic prompted organizers to adjust the schedule.

The theme for this year’s virtual event is “Gather All Safely in Christ.” The general session of the women’s conference was streamed live Friday morning in three languages: English, Portuguese and Spanish.

“We can gather virtually across various time zones and geographic locations,” said Sandra Rogers, chair of this year’s conference, in the opening session. “We share our faith, hope and charity with you and add our prayers to the many that are being offered to stem the tide of the COVID-19 pandemic. You and your families are in our hearts.”

Rogers added, “I believe the Lord sees our care and will give us strength as we climb this 2020 version of a pioneer rocky ridge.”

Kate Holbrook, managing historian of the Church History Department, discussed some of the important messages learned about revelation from the Prophet Joseph Smith’s First Vision.

“One of them is that family status, education, wealth and maturity are not the things God takes into account when deciding whom to speak with,” explained Holbrook.

“Joseph Smith told people about the treasure of his First Vision several times during his lifetime,” she said. “He described the experience differently at different times, because he was in front of different audiences and wanted to emphasize what mattered for each of those audiences.”

Sister to Sister Event

Leaders of the Church answered questions submitted by women all over the world in a prerecorded “Sister to Sister” conversation. The panel included Sister Reyna I. Aburto, second counselor in the Relief Society general presidency; Sister Becky Craven, second counselor in the Young Women general presidency; and Sister Lisa L. Harkness, first counselor in the Primary general presidency. Sister Tracy Browning of the Relief Society general board moderated the discussion.

“Our intent is not to address all the questions we have received,” said Sister Aburto. “Our prayer as we have this conversation is that we can all get closer to our Heavenly Father, and also get closer to our Savior so we can hear Him … so we can also get closer to each other … as women of faith.”

The leaders discussed topics such as how people are spending their time in isolation during the coronavirus outbreak, addressing challenges with mental and emotional health, motherhood and service.

“Isn't it wonderful that we are living in a day when we can talk more openly about our feelings, so we can help bear one another's burdens without judgment or confusion?” said Sister Harkness.

“It is important to take time for ourselves, sisters. And that applies to all of us, not just those who have young children,” counseled Sister Craven as she addressed the challenges facing mothers.

“I know that we are living also through really peculiar times right now, but I feel that this is a time to reflect on and cherish the blessings we have received from God,” stressed Sister Aburto. “This is the time really to minister to others according to our circumstances, and we are seeing this around the world as people are just helping each other in different ways.”

Watch the Sessions

The general session is available on the Church’s YouTube channel, the BYU Women’s Conference website and various social media channels.


Four video-on-demand sessions are also available on YouTube and the conference website. Speakers include Sister Jean B. Bingham and Sister Sharon Eubank of the Relief Society general presidency and others.

“We are living examples of the power of gathering despite challenging times,” said Sister Bingham. “At the same time that we are experiencing these major challenges, this is an unprecedented time of great opportunities for personal growth. We are being reminded of those things of lasting value on which to focus our energy.”

Sister Bingham and Sister Eubank shared examples of how Latter-day women around the world are serving in “simple yet remarkable ways.”

“At first glance, you would think a global pandemic would make ministering harder, but in fact it has simply brought out our creativity in new ways,” said Sister Eubank. “Something extraordinary is not going to be stopped by a little social distancing.”  

She continued, “We may feel that our contributions are so simple or so small that they don’t have much impact. Yet we know from the Savior’s example, meaningful service does not have to be flashy or widely known to be of great value.” 

For information on the BYU Women’s Conference, visit

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