Photo Essay

Photo Essay: Reflections of General Conference

Every six months, members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints gather at the Conference Center in Salt Lake City and millions more tune in via the Internet and television to watch and listen to general conference.

Speakers include the general authorities and general officers of the Church, who prayerfully seek inspiration to know God’s will before addressing the worldwide congregation.

Mormons travel to Utah from all over the world to participate in the conference, which is held on the first weekend in April and October.

The April meetings are called annual conferences, and the October meetings are referred to as semiannual.

The attire of those attending conference often reflects the diversity of a global Church that now has more than 15 million members. A family currently living in Orem, Utah, wears their traditional Ecuador-style clothing.

This woman who is wearing a colorful dress representing the Pacific Islands pauses for a prayer on Sunday morning. General conferences began in 1830, when the Church was organized by Joseph Smith in the United States, but now members live throughout the world.

Conference goers gather around the reflection pool on the plaza at Temple Square, a popular attraction during general conference. It is an area that inspires meditation, reflection and prayer.

The afternoon sun highlights the Salt Lake Temple on Temple Square during general conference weekend, Saturday, 4 October 2014.

A view from the refection pool on the plaza in front of the Salt Lake Temple on Temple Square during October general conference 2014.

For some families, watching on television or listening by radio to conference broadcasts is a tradition. But some Latter-day Saints are thrilled to be attending conference in person for the first time.

These youth from Wyoming take notes as they listen to the messages. Church leaders often speak directly to younger members when delivering their talks to give encouragement and counsel to help them navigate challenges in their lives. Many of today’s youth may be the future leaders of the Church.

Those attending general conference sessions can use headsets to listen in their native languages. Talks are translated into 94 languages.

Music, considered an important part of conference, is provided by the world-renowned Mormon Tabernacle Choir, organists and Church choirs from Utah.

A man observing the rush of conference goers inside the Conference Center October 2014 represents the energizing and serene qualities that can be experienced at general conference.

A large lighting fixture inside the Conference Center captures the attention of a group of girls.

A bird’s-eye view of a water feature inside the Conference Center. A girl points to the skylight directly above.

A woman cheerfully waves as she stands in line for standby seating at a general conference session at the Conference Center.

This group listens to conference being translated into Spanish in the Assembly Hall on Temple Square.

Sister missionaries assist those on Temple Square during general conference weekend. They also provide tours of Temple Square throughout the year.

Two young girls reverently kneel with a sister missionary at the reflection pool in front of the Salt Lake Temple as their grandmother watches nearby.

A baby stroller turns into an impromptu chair for a man listening to a general conference session. Families often take advantage of the plush lawns and large shade trees while listening to general conference talks via speakers on Temple Square.

The weather during the recent 184th Semiannual General Conference in October was warm and sunny.

Visitors enjoy the reflection pool in front of the Salt Lake Temple and the well-maintained gardens throughout Temple Square.

Three sisters dressed in white enjoy the reflection pool near the Salt Lake Temple on Sunday morning during general conference.

In the warmth of the Saturday afternoon sun, children test the waters of the reflection pool located east of the Salt Lake Temple.

On Sunday morning, a couple has a conversation near the reflection pool on Temple Square.

A silhouetted couple share a quiet moment against the backdrop of the Conference Center water feature during general conference weekend.

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