This article provides the history of the First Presidency Christmas devotionals and instructions on where to find the text or videos of the devotionals.
History of First Presidency Christmas Devotionals
First Presidency Christmas devotionals began as a yearly event to honor Church employees. The earliest record of them taking place is 1964, although they were not broadcast until 1982. During the 1980s, the broadcasts were televised in the United States, Canada, and Puerto Rico.
Due to increased popularity in the 1990s, the devotionals began to be broadcast around the world. From 1984 to 2000, the devotionals were held in the Tabernacle at Temple Square. The devotional venue moved to the Conference Center in 2001.
From 1994 to 2013, all members of the First Presidency usually spoke at the devotional. From 2013 on, however, only one member of the First Presidency spoke to allow other Church leaders the opportunity to share Christmas messages. For example, in 2015, members of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, Relief Society General Presidency, and the Presidency of the of Seventy joined the First Presidency as speakers.
Where to Find the First Presidency Christmas Devotionals
- The annual First Presidency Christmas Devotional is broadcast on the Church’s website, which also features an archive of archive of past devotionals back to 2009.
- In the Gospel Library, tap Jesus Christ, then His Birth (Christmas), and then Christmas Devotionals.
- The Church History Library also houses a collection AV 977, which includes the audio and video of devotionals from 1964 up until two years ago.
Information summarized from the article “Ask Us: Top Five Reference Questions about Christmas.”