Whenever there’s a phone call or knock at the door, the first words out of Elder Ian Sidney Ardern’s mouth are typically “How can I help you?”
Born to Harry and Gwladys McVicar Wiltshire in Te Aroha, New Zealand, in February 1954, Elder Ardern recounted that it is often the seemingly small acts of service that make the greatest difference in the lives of the giver and the receiver. “Service is not always convenient, but it always blesses your life,” says Elder Ardern.
Elder and Sister Ardern met while attending the Church College of New Zealand and married in the Hamilton New Zealand Temple on January 17, 1976. Their four children grew up in a home where a loving concern for one another and a need to understand and live gospel principles were priorities. “It’s a blessing to see these same priorities in the homes of our married children,” says Elder Ardern.
The Lord expects much of His children, and He provides a way for those expectations to be met. “I am most grateful to all those who have helped our family to follow the Lord,” Elder Ardern says.
Following the teachings of the prophets in the home has been a priority for the Ardern family. Daily scripture study became a habit because the young children made sure it was held so they could take turns placing a red sticker on the calendar to show the reading that day was done. “By small and simple things good habits can be formed,” says Sister Ardern.
Prior to his call to the First Quorum of the Seventy, Elder Ardern served as a missionary in France and Belgium, stake Young Men president, high councilor, bishop’s counselor, bishop, stake president’s counselor, president of the Fiji Suva Mission, and Area Seventy.
Elder Ardern received bachelor’s and master’s degrees in education from the University of Waikato in New Zealand. His professional career includes many Church Educational System positions, including teacher, director, seminary coordinator in New Zealand, principal of the Church College of New Zealand, and Pacific Area Director.