From the Life of President John Taylor


Preparing for the Call

Ensign, June 1993, 7–9; April 1978, 33

President John Taylor’s family lived in England when he was born. He was the second of ten children. Several events in young John Taylor’s life helped him prepare for his calling as third President of the Church.

John’s brother: He gets to start next.

John attended a local church with his family every week. His parents taught him to pray, pay tithing, and go to church.

John: Thank Thee for the blessings …

When he was young, he saw a vision of an angel holding a trumpet to its mouth.

John: What could this mean?

On the Taylor farm, John learned to work hard. His chores included milking cows, ploughing, sowing seed, and haymaking.

John: Come on, girl, we need to finish by sundown.

When John was 15, he became an apprentice for a cooper, or barrel maker. A year later, the cooper went out of business and John became an apprentice for a lathe turner and carpenter. He worked there for five years.

Carpenter: Keep your hand steady, John.

While he was an apprentice, he used his spare time to study the Bible and to pray. He sometimes heard angelic choirs singing.

John: It says here that baptism by immersion is the only way.

These childhood events prepared John to accept the gospel and later become the third President of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. He did many important things for the Church, including starting the Primary as a program of the Church.

The angel he saw in his dream was like the Angel Moroni on top of latter-day temples, proclaiming the gospel to all lands.