Sunday, April 6, 2008

President Monson, MVP

It was conference this weekend. I watched more of it on Saturday and Sunday then I have in many years. The kids are getting old enough that I can largely ignore them and actually watch. Because this was President Monson’s first conference at the head of the Church, I was especially interested to listen to him. He did not disappoint. He was funny, poignant, measured, and personal.

It seems that much of what you hear from conference speakers could be read be another person and it would make no difference. It’s just a bunch of words. But President Monson’s closing remarks seemed directly attached to him. It’s funny, but in the Church we (or at least me) are so starved for real connection with our leaders that we latch onto anything that seems unscripted. While I assume President Monson wrote out his comments in advance, his delivery seemed authentic and unrehearsed. I always got that vibe from President Hinckley. He was a professional, meaning he excelled at the craft of delivering conference talks. I used to note the contrast in how he had the audience eating out of his hand and how other speakers didn’t. Well, President Monson owned the pulpit today. I was impressed.