When there is a vacancy in The Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, the President of the Church is the one who ultimately issues the calling to a new apostle. The process of receiving that inspiration includes earnest prayer and discussion with all of the current apostles. President Gordon B. Hinckley shared this after filling a vacancy left by the passing of Elder Marvin J. Ashton in 1994:
“In filling that vacancy, each member of the First Presidency and the Quorum of the Twelve was at liberty to make suggestions. I am confident that in every case, there was solemn and earnest prayer. A choice was then made by the First Presidency, again after solemn and serious prayer. This choice was sustained by the Council of the Twelve. Today, the membership of the Church in conference assembled has sustained that choice."
Not every apostle has a detailed public account of their experience when they were called to the Twelve, but the President of the Church traditionally includes it in his biography. Here we share the accounts from our current Church President, Thomas S. Monson, and the past 4 Presidents of the Church: Gordon B. Hinckley, Howard W. Hunter, Ezra Taft Benson, and Spencer W. Kimball.
When Spencer W. Kimball was called to the Twelve
from his biography, ‘Spencer W. Kimball’, written by Edward L. Kimball & Andrew E. Kimball, Jr., (pp. 189-195)
“Daddy, Salt Lake City is Calling,” were the words that Spencer W. Kimball heard when he walked through the door on July 8th, 1943. Stake President Spencer W. Kimball had casually come home for lunch, as he usually did.