SALT LAKE CITY– Visitors to General Conference could listen to I Know That My Redeemer Lives, among other hymn from volunteer singers outside of the conference center.
“This is to counteract the spirit of the protesters,” said Dakota DeWaal from the YSA providence stake in Utah. “To invite the Holy Ghost.”
DeWaal said that he was the one asked in his stake to organize a gro of volunteers to come and sing at the entrances between Temple Square and the Conference Center. He and the volunteers from his stake performed during the first session of conference.
“We don’t rehearse, we don’t practice, we just come,” DeWaal said. “Some have never been in choir or anything before.”
Authorities of the church asked people in multiple stakes to volunteer during for the five sessions of conference.
“It really is a form of missionary work,” DeWall said. “We’re representing the church through hymns.”
DeWaal said that the idea of singing outside the Conference Center began when missionary sisters on Temple square. They started singing hymns to help members feel the spirit. Authorities of the church saw that the sisters could not fulfill all their responsibilities if there were busy singing and decided to ask members from different stakes to perform instead.
“It is a great opportunity to come and feel the spirit of General Conference,” DeWaal said.
DeWaal said that he thinks the singing calms the protestors because the power of the Spirit.
There are 80 singers for each session of conference, split into two gros for each entrance of temple square. There are 400 volunteers all together.