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RIP: M. Russell Ballard
A man of faith, conviction, and selfless service.
Recently, a leader of my faith, M. Russell Ballard, passed away at the age of 95.
As many of you know, I'm never shy about talking about my Latter-day Saint faith and the way it guides my life, establishes my value system and personal code, as well as complements my thinking as a political theorist and constitutionalist. Our church leaders include the First Presidency (the prophet and his two counselors), the Quorum of Twelve Apostles, and the Quorums of the Seventy.
Elder Ballard had, until his passing, been serving as the Acting President of the Quorum of the Twelve. As an Apostle, we Latter-day Saints sustained him, and sustain the other members of the Quorum, as prophets, seers, and revelators, special witnesses of Christ with the same weight and authority as the Apostles of the primitive Church. Elder Ballard had been serving as an Apostle since he was called to the position in 1985. While members of the Seventy are usually released from their callings around when they turn seventy, the calling to the Apostleship is a lifelong calling.
I had the honor and blessing of meeting and shaking hands with Elder Ballard while serving as a Latter-day Saint missionary in 2007. He had a strong grip and a penetrating eye, a cheerful countenance but a serious gaze when discussing matters of the gospel and the work we were engaged in in the Lord's vineyard. He left me and my fellow missionaries with an apostolic blessing in our endeavors, both in the mission field and in our future steps in life. It is one of my fondest memories.
M. Russell Ballard was preceded in death by his wife Barbara, with whom he is now having a glorious reunion, and leaves behind a tremendous family legacy of seven children, 43 grandchildren, 105 great-grandchildren, and one great-great-grandchild.
The Daily Saucer is our place for freelance contributors and editorial staff to offer short takes on the news cycle, quick observations on the issues, and brief thoughts on broader topics. The views offered in this space reflect only the personal views of the authors.
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