Three Church leaders — Elder Ronald A. Rasband, Elder Gary E. Stevenson andElder Dale G. Renlund — were named to the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
President Henry B. Eyring, first counselor in the First Presidency, presented their names at the Saturday afternoon session of the Church's 185th Semiannual General Conference in the Conference Center in Salt Lake City, Utah. Millions of Church members around the world watched or listened to the meeting in more than 80 languages.
It’s been over a century since the Quorum of the Twelve had three vacancies. Additionally, with the call of Elder Renlund, 100 apostles have now served since the Church was organized in 1830.
The three new apostles will fill the vacancies created in the Twelve by the recent deaths ofElder L. Tom Perry, President Boyd K. Packer and Elder Richard G. Scott. All served for several decades as general authorities in the Church.
Read additional in-depth stories about each of the new apostles:
Elder Ronald A. Rasband was serving as the senior president in the Presidency of the Seventy at the time of his call to the Twelve. He became a general authority of the Church in April of 2000.
Elder Gary E. Stevenson was serving as the Presiding Bishop of the Church since March 2012 and previously served in the First Quorum of the Seventy, to which he was called in 2008. Elder Stevenson will continue in his position as Presiding Bishop for what is expected to be a short period until his replacement is named.
Elder Dale G. Renlund had served in the First Quorum of the Seventy since April 2009 prior to being named to the Quorum of the Twelve.
Like the apostles in ancient times, the men who hold that title today come from a variety of fields, including law, business, medicine, academia and the judiciary, and they too put aside their respective professions to serve full-time as witnesses of Christ.
The Quorum of the Twelve Apostles is the second-highest presiding body in the government of the Church. In addition to their primary responsibility to be special witnesses of Jesus Christ throughout the world, apostles have administrative responsibilities as they oversee the programs and development of the global Church.
Church members look to them for inspired teaching and see and hear their messages in worldwide, regional and local meetings as well as in Church publications and productions, including print, video and social media.
A replacement in the Quorum of the Twelve is called by the President of the Church, who seeks and receives inspiration in extending the call. The new member of the Twelve may be called from the general authorities who are senior leaders in the Church or from the general Church membership around the world.
The new apostles will address the worldwide Church audience on Sunday morning during a session of the Church’s general conference. They will be ordained this week and begin their service in the Quorum of the Twelve immediately.