Solemn Assembly and Sustaining of Church Officers

Gordon B. Hinckley

First Counselor in the First Presidency


Gordon B. Hinckley
 

President Benson has requested that I now handle the business of the Solemn Assembly for which we are met. This is a tremendously significant and sacred occasion for members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints throughout the world.

Dating from October 10, 1880, when John Taylor was sustained to succeed Brigham Young as prophet, seer, revelator, and President of the Church, each such occasion has been designated a formal Solemn Assembly of the body of the Church to express the voice of the Church. There have been ten such in the past. In each case, holders of the various offices of the priesthood were assembled in this Tabernacle and seated by quorums or groups in various areas of the building, each voting as a quorum or group on the officers of the Church as they were presented.

We have now reached a point where many times the number seated in the Tabernacle are assembled in other church halls across the United States and Canada, as well as in other parts of the world. Furthermore, many are seated in their homes, listening to the conference. All of you, wherever you may be, are invited to participate in this solemn and sacred undertaking when we sustain a new President of the Church together with other officers. In these present circumstances, it is considered unfeasible to seat by quorums those assembled in the Tabernacle and the many other halls. We shall, however, vote by quorums and groups. Wherever you are, you are invited to stand when requested and express by your uplifted hands whether you choose to sustain those whose names will be put before you.

General Authorities assigned to the Assembly Hall on Temple Square will observe the voting in that gathering. In stake centers, a member of the stake presidency will observe the voting and advise us of any negative votes.

We shall now proceed with the business of this great constituent gathering, this Solemn Assembly, which is convened here in Salt Lake City and, by extension, in many areas of the world.

The First Presidency will please arise. It is proposed that we sustain Ezra Taft Benson as prophet, seer, and revelator and President of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Those in favor, please manifest it. Those opposed may manifest it.

It is proposed that we sustain Gordon Bitner Hinckley as First Counselor in the First Presidency of the Church and Thomas Spencer Monson as Second Counselor. Those in favor may manifest it. Those opposed may manifest it.

It is proposed that we sustain Marion G. Romney as President of the Council of the Twelve Apostles and Howard W. Hunter as Acting President of the Council of the Twelve Apostles. Those in favor. Any opposed.

It is proposed that we sustain as members of the Council of the Twelve Apostles Marion G. Romney, Howard W. Hunter, Boyd K. Packer, Marvin J. Ashton, L. Tom Perry, David B. Haight, James E. Faust, Neal A. Maxwell, Russell M. Nelson, Dallin H. Oaks, and M. Russell Ballard. Those in favor, please manifest it. Any opposed.

It is proposed that we sustain the Counselors in the First Presidency and the Twelve Apostles as prophets, seers, and revelators. Those in favor, please manifest it. Any opposed. The First Presidency will please be seated.

The members of the Council of the Twelve Apostles will please arise.

It is proposed that we sustain Ezra Taft Benson as prophet, seer, and revelator and President of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, together with his Counselors and members of the Council of the Twelve, as they have been presented and voted upon by the First Presidency. All in favor, please manifest it. Any opposed. You may be seated.

The following will please arise wherever they are: all ordained patriarchs; all ordained high priests, including members of the First Quorum of the Seventy and the Presiding Bishopric; all other seventies and all ordained elders, wherever you may be participating. It is proposed that we sustain Ezra Taft Benson as prophet, seer, and revelator and President of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, together with his Counselors and members of the Council of the Twelve Apostles as they have been presented and voted upon. All in favor, please manifest it. Any opposed may manifest it. Please be seated.

Will all of the Aaronic Priesthood please arise—that is, all ordained priests, teachers, and deacons. It is proposed that we sustain Ezra Taft Benson as prophet, seer, and revelator and President of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, together with his Counselors and members of the Council of the Twelve Apostles as previously presented and voted upon. All in favor, please indicate by the uplifted hand. Any opposed may so indicate it. You may be seated.

Will the entire congregation, including all of those who have stood previously, now arise. It is proposed that we sustain Ezra Taft Benson as prophet, seer, and revelator and President of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, together with his Counselors and members of the Council of the Twelve Apostles as they have been presented and voted upon. All in favor, please indicate by the uplifted hand. Any opposed, may so indicate it. Thank you; you may be seated.

We shall now remain seated as we sustain other General Authorities and general officers of the Church. It is proposed that we sustain as the Presidency of the First Quorum of the Seventy Carlos E. Asay, Dean L. Larsen, Richard G. Scott, Marion D. Hanks, William Grant Bangerter, Jack H. Goaslind, and Robert L. Backman. As further members of the First Quorum of the Seventy: A. Theodore Tuttle, Franklin D. Richards, Theodore M. Burton, Paul H. Dunn, Hartman Rector, Jr., Loren C. Dunn, Robert L. Simpson, Rex D. Pinegar, J. Thomas Fyans, Adney Y. Komatsu, Joseph B. Wirthlin, Gene R. Cook, Charles A. Didier, William R. Bradford, George P. Lee, John H. Groberg, Jacob de Jager, Vaughn J. Featherstone, Royden G. Derrick, Robert E. Wells, James M. Paramore, Hugh W. Pinnock, F. Enzio Busche, Yoshihiko Kikuchi, Ronald E. Poelman, Derek A. Cuthbert, Rex C. Reeve, F. Burton Howard, Ted E. Brewerton, Angel Abrea, John K. Carmack, Russell C. Taylor, Robert B. Harbertson, Devere Harris, Spencer H. Osborn, Philip T. Sonntag, John Sonnenberg, F. Arthur Kay, Keith W. Wilcox, Victor L. Brown, H. Burke Peterson, J. Richard Clarke, Hans B. Ringger, Waldo P. Call, Helio R. Camargo.

Additionally, the following Brethren have been called as members of the First Quorum of the Seventy to serve for periods of approximately three years under the practice instituted in the April 1984 general conference: Hans Verlan Andersen, George I. Cannon, Francis M. Gibbons, Gardner H. Russell.

As the Presiding Bishopric: Robert D. Hales, Presiding Bishop; Henry B. Eyring, First Counselor; Glenn L. Pace, Second Counselor.

As Emeritus Brethren: Eldred G. Smith, Patriarch Emeritus, and the following Seventies with emeritus status: Sterling W. Sill, Henry D. Taylor, Bernard P. Brockbank, James A. Cullimore, Joseph Anderson, John H. Vandenberg, O. Leslie Stone. All in favor, please manifest it. Contrary, if there be any, by the same sign.

Sister Patricia T. Holland, who has served as first counselor in the general presidency of the Young Women, is the wife of President Jeffrey R. Holland of Brigham Young University. The many demands upon her time incident to her husband’s responsibilities, as well as her family responsibilities and the burden of traveling to and from Provo, have made it advisable to extend to her an honorable release. We likewise release Sister Maureen J. Turley, second counselor in the Young Women presidency. All who wish to join in an expression of gratitude for the devoted service of these sisters in these respective callings may indicate by the uplifted hand.

Sister Ardeth G. Kapp, president of the Young Women, has asked Sister Maureen J. Turley to serve as her first counselor and Sister Jayne Broadbent Malan to serve as her second counselor. Those in favor, please manifest it. Any opposed by the same sign.

It is proposed that we sustain all other general officers and board members as presently constituted, together with all Regional Representatives who at present are serving. All in favor, please indicate it. Any opposed.

President Benson, insofar as I have been able to observe, the voting in the Tabernacle has been unanimous in favor of the proposals made. Any negative votes in any other assemblies will be noted and brought to our attention.

Thank you, brothers and sisters, for your sustaining vote. We feel that you have sustained us not only with your hands but also with your hearts and your faith and prayers, which we so urgently need, and pray that you will continue to do so.

We shall ask now that Elders Andersen, Cannon, Gibbons, and Russell come forward and take their places with the First Quorum of the Seventy, and we invite Sister Malan also to come forward and sit with Sister Kapp.