FIRST PRESIDENCY -- Miscellaneous
QUESTION:† Which of our latter-day apostles served
the longest in the First Presidency without serving as the President of the
ANSWER:† Elder J. Reuben Clark holds the distinction
of having served the longest in the First Presidency without serving as
President of the Church.† Elder Clark
served a total of 28 years and 6 months in the First Presidency.† He served as First Counselor to Presidents
Grant, Smith, and McKay, and he served as Second Counselor to Presidents Grant
QUESTION: At one point in
our church's history, we had two apostles serving in the First Presidency who
both had sons serving in the Quorum of the Twelve, and each of the two sons
later served as President of the Church.†
Can you name the two fathers and the two sons?
ANSWER: On April 7, 1910, John Henry Smith was
sustained as 2nd Counselor in the First Presidency.† His 2nd cousin, President Joseph F. Smith,
was serving as the President of the Church.†
Both of these brethren had sons serving in the Quorum of the Twelve.† George Albert Smith was the son of John Henry
Smith and Joseph Fielding Smith was the son of Joseph F. Smith.† Both of these sons later served as President
of the Church.
QUESTION: Only twice in
this dispensation have the three most-senior apostles served together in the
First Presidency.† Can you name the two
times when this unique situation occurred?
ANSWER: From April 1900 to
April 1901, the First Presidency consisted of Presidents Lorenzo Snow, George
Q. Cannon, and Joseph F. Smith.† These
were the three most-senior apostles at that time. This unique situation occurred
again when President Howard W. Hunter became President of the Church and called
Gordon B. Hinckley and Thomas S. Monson as his counselors.† These three were the most-senior apostles at
that time. The 1901 situation involved an interesting change of policy. On December 9, 1899, Franklin D.
Richards, the President of the Quorum of the Twelve, passed away.† Upon Elder Richards' death, the seniority of
the members of the First Presidency was as follows: President Lorenzo Snow as
most-senior, George Q. Cannon as 2nd-most senior, and Joseph F. Smith as
4th-most senior.† Brigham Young, Jr. was
now the third-most senior apostle and he began serving as the Acting President
of the Quorum of the Twelve.† Brigham
Young, Jr. had been ordained an apostle on February 4, 1864 but he did not become a member of the
Quorum of 12 until October 9, 1868.† Joseph F. Smith had been ordained an apostle
on July 1, 1866, and he
became a member of the Quorum of 12 on October
8, 1867.† Up until April 5, 1900, seniority in the Quorum
of 12 was based upon the date when one was ordained an apostle, rather or not
this included membership in the Quorum of 12.†
However, on April 5, 1900,
it was announced by President Snow that the seniority in the Quorum of 12 would
be based upon the date that an apostle became a member of the Quorum, not on
the date of ordination to the apostleship.†
Thus, Elder Smith, who was sustained to the Quorum of 12 before Elder
Young, now became the third-most senior apostle, and we now had the three
most-senior apostles serving together in the First Presidency.
apostles have had a grandfather and then a father serve in the First
ANSWER: Three apostles
have had a grandfather and then a father serve in the First Presidency.† They are [followed by the grandfather and the
father] George Albert Smith (George A. Smith, John Henry Smith), Hyrum Mack Smith (Hyrum
Smith, Joseph F. Smith), and Joseph Fielding
Smith (Hyrum Smith, Joseph F. Smith).
QUESTION: Who is the
most-recent high priest (non-apostle) to have served in the First Presidency?
ANSWER: The most
recent non-apostle to have served in the First Presidency is Elder Henry Thorpe
Beal Isaacson.† He served with President
David O. McKay.† Other high priests
(non-apostles) that have served in the First Presidency include Sidney Rigdon,
John R. Winder, J. Reuben Clark Jr. (he eventually was ordained an apostle),
Frederick G. Williams, William Law, Charles W. Nibley, Jesse Gause, John C.
Bennett, Joseph Smith Sr., and John Smith.
QUESTION:† Have we ever had a set of brothers (biologic brothers)
serve in the First Presidency together?
ANSWER:† Twice in church history we have had brothers serving
together in the First Presidency.† Joseph
Smith Sr. and his brother, John Smith, served together as counselors in the
First Presidency in 1837 and 1838.† Two
sons of Brigham Young, John W. Young and Brigham Young Jr., served together in
the First Presidency in the 1870ís.
Elder Dieter F. Uchtdorf, who was
born in Ostrava, Czechoslovakia, was the first brother born outside of the United States to serve in the First Presidency in many years. †Can you name the next most-recent First
Presidency member that was not born in the United States?
ANSWER:† Elder Charles
W. Nibley, who was born in Hunterfield, Scotland, was sustained as Second Counselor to President Heber J. Grant
28, 1925. †Prior to Elder Uchtdorf, he was the most
recent First Presidency member not born in the United States. †Other brethren who
served (all prior to Elder Nibley) in the First Presidency that were born
outside of the United
include Charles W. Penrose (London, England), Anthon H. Lund (Aalborg, Denmark), John R. Winder (Biddenham, England), George Q. Cannon (Liverpool, England), and William Law (Tyrone County, Northern Ireland).
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