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Eight hundred young men and women between the ages of 14 and 18 from four stakes attended the For the Strength of Youth (FSY) conference in Brazzaville, Republic of the Congo during August 7-18, 2023. The theme for this year’s conference was “I can do all things in Christ” (Philippians 4:13). The conference we held at the Moukoundzi Ngouaka Primary School in Brazzaville. The youth came from the stakes of Brazzaville, Diata, Makélékélé, and Pointe-Noire, and from districts of the Congo Brazzaville Mission.
The youth from the Pointe-Noire Stake, on the Atlantic coast, took a 585 km bus ride to the conference venue in Brazzaville. Youth from Ouesso, on the northern border with Cameroon, arrived after a difficult 15-hour, 832 km bus ride. Both groups of youth impressed their adult chaperones with their faith, patience, and spirituality.
Elder Charden Ndinga, Area Authority Seventy, presided over the conference, and Alain and Rochelvie Kizimbou and Serge and Félicité Goma were the conference organizers. This event was made possible by the volunteer service of scores of youth counselors.
The FSY program included classes on living the Gospel, preparing to serve full-time missions, family history, seminary and institute, and self-reliance. The youth spent a great deal of time studying the Scriptures in small discussion groups. The youth enjoyed delicious food and a dance competition held near the end of the program.
Conference attendees were honored by the visit of a delegation from the Congo Assistance Foundation of Congo’s First Lady Antoinette Sassou, who was represented by her Secretary General Michel Mongo, Advisor to the Head of State. The Assistant General Secretary for Education in the First Lady’s foundation commended the initiative of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints to bring together young people from all corners of the country to teach them the correct principles and truths that will help them grow in righteousness and discipline. She urged the young people to love their neighbors and live in harmony.
Elder Ndinga thanked the Foundation for having helped in the acquisition of the conference site. To the youth, he conveyed the greetings of the presidency of the Africa Central Area. He encouraged them to be a choice generation, a rising generation. He urged them to prepare to serve full-time missions, to gain a deeper testimony of Jesus Christ, to perform temple ordinances, and to prepare to form families in the future.
During the concluding testimony meeting, many young participants testified of the truthfulness of the Church and of the Book of Mormon, which is the keystone of our religion. The also shared their conviction that as members of the Church they must set an example and be of service to others, serve full-time missions, and obey the principles of the Gospel.