Minutes and Discourses, 6–8 April 1842
Special conference of the church, Minutes, and JS, Discourses, , Hancock Co., IL, 6–8 Apr. 1842. Featured version published in “Conference Minutes,” Times and Seasons, 15 Apr. 1842, vol. 3, no. 12, 761–763. For more complete source information, see the source note for Letter to Isaac Galland, 22 Mar. 1839.
From 6 to 8 April 1842, a “Special of the ” was held in , Illinois; JS presided and gave discourses, and conference clerk took minutes. In previous years the April conference was labeled a “general conference,” but JS decreed on 3 October 1841 that no further general conferences would be held until the Nauvoo was completed. A general notice about the conference, published in the Times and Seasons, suggests all church members were expected to attend. On 6 April 1842, before the conference started, JS met with members of the to provide “instructions how to organize & adjourn the special conference.” JS did not attend the first day of the conference because of illness.The most pressing business of the conference was ’s report on why he had not yet joined on their mission to Europe and Palestine. Hyde and Page had mostly remained together from April 1840—when they were appointed to serve a mission—to the end of summer 1840, raising money for their voyage. Hyde then left Page in and traveled to and to obtain additional funds. In early 1841 Hyde and Page were chastised in the church newspaper for delaying their mission, and in response Hyde departed across the Atlantic. Page intended to eventually meet Hyde in , but church leaders instructed him to return to . At JS’s request Page reported on his travels, attributing his delay primarily to Hyde’s appropriation of their shared funds and the difficulty of raising additional money. JS censured Page but stated that the church would retain him in full fellowship. Those at the conference ratified this decision and voted to send Page to , where he had recently proselytized.Other conference business included instruction by , , and , who emphasized the importance of a well-organized and disciplined . , Hyrum Smith, , , , and preached additional discourses. JS also preached multiple times, seeking to quell rumors regarding polygamy and providing instruction on the use of the baptismal font.On the final day of the conference, individuals were for the dead and for health in the temple font. Additionally, , , , , , , and 275 men as . Woodruff commented that “more Elders were ordain[ed] on this occasion than were ever ordained in the Church of Latter Day Saints in one day before.” JS closed the conference with a benediction.’s minutes of the conference were published in the 15 April 1842 issue of the Times and Seasons.
“Conference Notice,” Times and Seasons, 15 Mar. 1842, 3:734.
JS, Journal, 6 Apr. 1842, underlining in original.
Notice, Times and Seasons, 15 Jan. 1841, 2:287; Letter from John E. Page, 1 Sept. 1841.
The decision was likely influenced by a letter and a petition from residents in Pittsburgh, both of which reported favorably on Page’s work there. (Letter from Levick Sturges et al., 30 Jan. 1842; Petition from Richard Savary et al., ca. 2 Feb. 1842.)
Woodruff, Journal, 8 Apr. 1842.
Woodruff, Wilford. Journals, 1833–1898. Wilford Woodruff, Journals and Papers, 1828–1898. CHL. MS 1352.