The Prophet and Apostles Share What It Was Like to Be Called as an Apostle

"Saturday of April conference of 1984 has been circled on our calendar for many years, for that date was targeted as the first time in my life that our only son would be old enough to attend general priesthood meeting with me," President Russell M. Nelson said the first time he stood at the pulpit in general conference as an apostle. "Brothers and sisters, little did we know that on that day my name would be presented as a member of the Council of the Twelve."

The announcement came as a surprise to then-Elder Nelson and his family, and the phone began ringing frequently in between conference sessions. "Our married daughters telephoned us between sessions. One who was expecting a baby, said, 'Daddy, I was so shocked by that announcement—I think I am going into labor.'"

Then, Elder Nelson humorously added, "That she did. So, President Hinckley, your announcement from the First Presidency should get credit at least for 'an assist.' Our twenty-second grandchild arrived safely last evening!"

While humorous and surprising, Elder Nelson's story of being called as an apostle also carries deep spiritual messages and shows the humility of this great man, as do the experiences shared by all apostles the first time they spoke in general conference as an apostle. 

► You'll also like: The First Testimonies Our Prophet and Apostles Shared in Conference After Their Call 

President Russell M. Nelson, April 1984

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A wide array of feelings has flashed through my heart since I heard the call that will change my life. The first feeling is that of personal inadequacy. . . .
Fortunately, these feelings are blanketed by feelings of faith, for I know the words of Nephi are true: “I will go and do the things which the Lord hath commanded, for I know that the Lord giveth no commandments unto the children of men, save he shall prepare a way for them that they may accomplish the thing which he commandeth them.” (1 Ne. 3:7.) I have implicit faith in the Lord and in His prophets. I have learned not to put question marks but to use exclamation points when calls are issued through inspired channels of priesthood government. . . .
Feelings of commitment well up from the depths of my soul. My sweetheart, Dantzel, and I first made those covenants in the temple of the Lord over thirty-eight years ago, to consecrate our lives to the service of the Lord. Today, I reaffirm that promise, to give all I have to the building of the kingdom of God on the earth. In accepting this call, knowing that challenges, charges, and keys will be conferred and that buffetings will likewise come, I commit my effort, my energy, and my all.
Lead image from Deseret News by Spenser Heaps. All other images from lds.org
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