By MICHAEL SMAR
It’s Saturday of spring Conference.
The sun shines outside on an arid Utah morning. The air inside the Tabernacle is moist with the Spirit.
Heads jerk up when President Hinckley hints at the construction of a new Tabernacle.
Elder Tingey says he’s going to talk about not shopping on Sunday and some of the crowd laugh nervously. They think it’s a joke.
The Mormon Youth Chorus, decked in daring red and blue scarves, switch on like a high-end stereo when their director raises his wooden pointy thing. They sound big.
Sister Okazaki is holding up a bottle of peaches.
Elder Packer tells a complicated joke about arsenic not being habit forming. Everybody laughs. Once he starts talking, you hear the amalgamation of hundreds of hushed whispers while the people who know what arsenic is explain to their neighbors what they were just laughing at.
President Hinckley says his patented “Elder Packer has just spoken to us…” and the morning session is over.
The people who come from far away get to sit on the main floor of the Tabernacle. If you walk by them, German goes in one ear, Tongan out the other.
President Monson gets things going.
The wide-eyed Ricks College choir sings.
Provost Hafen leaps right over BYU President and the Second Quorum of the Seventy and gets called to the First Quorum.
President Faust listens with his head nestled in the corner of his red velvet chair. Many droopy-eyed spectators who got up at 4 a.m. to get in follow his lead.
Elder Scott moves the crowd. He gives a whole talk about being happy even in sad times, and barely anybody realizes that his wife died last year.
The last “amen” reverberates. Everybody rushes to the new General Authorities.
It is Saturday of spring Conference