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Sunday, August 12, 2018

Latest Apostolic Statistics: Part Two--Updated Ages & Other Important Information

Hello again, everyone! Having set the stage in the first part of this apostolic age update (posted just a few moments ago), we now move on to talk specifics regarding the long-form and decimal ages of our current apostles, which will also include updated information on the average ages of the First Presidency, Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, and the 15 apostles as a group, current and future nonagenarians, and any other pertinent information. So let’s get right into all of that.  Again, all data is current as of today.

We start with the First Presidency. As noted near the end of my previous post, President Nelson is now less than one month away from his 94th birthday, which puts his long form age at 93 years, 11 months, and 3 days, or 93.92 decimal years. President Oaks, who, as noted in a post published, is marking his 86th birthday today, is exactly 86 years old, and his decimal age is, of course, exactly 86.00 years. And President Eyring is now 85 years, 2 months, and 12 days old, with a decimal age of 85.20 years.

The three now have a combined 265.12 years of life experience, which puts their average age at 88.37 years as of today. President Oaks remains closest to that average, with his age now being 2.37 years below that average. Obviously, Presidents Nelson and Eyring are still respectively above and below the average.

We move on now to the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles. First, President Ballard, who, as some of you may be aware, will be celebrating his 90th birthday in less than two months, has a long-form age of 89 years, 10 months, and 4 days old, with a decimal age of 89.84 years. Elder Holland is now 77 years, 8 months, and 9 days old, which puts his decimal age at 77.69 years.

Elder Uchtdorf, at just under a month older than Elder Holland, is now 77 years, 9 months, and 6 days old, with a decimal age of 77.76 years. Elder Bednar’s long-form age is 66 years, 1 months, and 28 days, which makes his decimal age 66.16 years.  Elder Cook, whose birthday is now less than one month away, is 77 years, 11 months, and 4 days old, which is 77.93 years. Elder Christofferson has a long-form age of 73 years, 6 months, and 19 days, with a decimal age of 73.55 years.

Elder Andersen, whose birthday was just 3 days ago, is now 67 years and 3 days old, which puts his decimal age at 67.01 years. Elder Rasband now has a long-form age of 67 years, 6 months, and 6 days, with a decimal age of 67.51 years. Elder Gary E. Stevenson, whose birthday was three days before that of Elder Andersen, is currently 63 years and 6 days old, or 63.02 in decimal years.

We now come to the final three apostles. Elder Renlund is now 65 years, 8 months, and 30 days old, with a decimal age of 65.75 years. Elder Gong is now 64 years, 7 months, and 20 days old, which puts him at 64.64 decimal years.  Elder Soares, who will observe his birthday 6 days before President Ballard does, is now 59 years, 10 months, and 10 days old, making his decimal age 59.86 years.

The current members of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles have a combined 850.72 years, which averages out to 70.89 years. As I noted previously, the ages of Elders Christofferson and Rasband put them above and below that average respectively, with Elder Christofferson being 2.66 years older and Elder Rasband being 3.38 years younger.

Based on the information I provided earlier, this means that our 15 apostles have a combined 1115.84 years of life experience, which averages out to 74.39 years. Elders Holland and Christofferson stand closest to that average, with the former being 3.3 years older, and the latter being only 0.84 years younger.

We now move on to the nonagenarians. President Nelson remains the 7th oldest apostle in Church history, and now has just under 11 months before he will move up on that list. President Ballard will join that list in 1 month and 26 days. Elder Soares now has 30 years, 1 month, and 20 days until he will observe his 90th birthday, and the other 13 apostles will join that list at various points between the two, which I will detail more fully closer to the time.

I continue to track all of this information, and will do my level best to pass updates on to you regularly, with my hope being to post such updates every 6-8 weeks for the foreseeable future. That does it for this post. Any and all comments are, as always, welcome and appreciated. Thank you for the privilege of your time.

If you enjoyed what you read here and would like to stay informed of newly-added content, please feel free to subscribe. Until my next post, I wish each one of you all the best, and pray that the Lord will bless you all in everything you do.

Latest Apostolic Statistics: Part One--Updated Data for President Oaks, President Nelson, and Longest-Serving Apostolic Groups

Hello again, everyone! While I have no desire to distract or take away the focus from the discussion on future temple prospects, or from the post I put up earlier today in honor of President Oaks’ 86th birthday today, another 6 weeks have come and gone since I last posted updated information on the latest apostolic statistics (on Sunday July 1, 2018). Since this 1.5 months have seen an impressive number of changes in the data related to that information, it seems appropriate to do so again.

As always, before we begin the discussion of that updated data, I wanted to recognize that there may be many of you who are not interested in the information I will be providing. So I will not in any way be offended or bothered if any of you prefer to bypass this information (which will, as always, be covered over the course of two posts).

As usual, all data is current as of today (Sunday July 1, 2018). This update will again feature the data in the same order as previous updates. We will start with some data about the Presidents of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, then turn our attention to the Presidents of the Church. After discussing those things, the first post will end, and the second (to be published shortly after the first) will then highlight the latest data about all 15 of our apostles, including information on those who have had a birthday recently and those whose birthdays are getting closer.

So let’s begin with some information on President Oaks’ current tenure length as President of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, which will include exploring how soon he will move up on this list. The length of his service has currently spanned 6 months and 29 days. As noted in previous updates, he will be marking 2 additional tenure milestones before the end of this year, and will be marking 5 others in 2019.

Just over a month from now, on Sunday September 16, he will become the 26th longest-serving Quorum President, as by that time he will have served longer than President David O. McKay. After another month, on October 22, he will become the 25th longest-serving Quorum President, having served longer in that capacity than President Gordon B. Hinckley. Then in 2019, he will mark 5 milestones, one in April, two others in July (which will be observed two days apart), and the remaining two in November, and December. I will mention the specifics of those milestones closer to that time.

Moving on now to President Nelson, since he was ordained and set apart as Church president on the same day he set apart President Oaks as Quorum President, his tenure has spanned 6 months and 29 days as well. He is now 93 years, 11 months, and 3 days old.

He will observe the first tenure length milestone of his presidency in just under two months from now, on Thursday October 11 (when he will have served longer than President Howard W. Hunter). He will observe both another tenure-related and his first age-related milestone two days apart in July of 2019, with subsequent milestones more spread out in the years following that. And again, I will be detailing those more specifically closer to the time when they will be reached.

As I have also noted before, by all accounts, President Nelson remains healthy, vigorous, and fully involved in the day-to-day work of moving the Church forward. And as far as I know, neither of his counselors (who are both 7-8 years younger than he is) are suffering from any major health issues, which means that these Brethren will likely be serving together for at least the next several years, and I could easily see them at least making the list of the longest-serving First Presidencies in the Church, which will, as previous noted, occur on Sunday April 1, 2024.

And by the end of that same year, not only will the current First Presidency reach a couple of other milestones, but President Nelson will by then have become the first centenarian apostle and Church president. I know that, as recently as last year, I had offered my opinion that, if President Nelson became president of the Church, he would likely not serve for very long, but given the fact that he is considerably more healthy now than President Monson may have been for the last 5-7 years of his life (if not the entire decade of his presidency).

And as a former heart surgeon, it has been very rightly pointed out that President Nelson would know how to take care of himself. With that in mind, I would not be surprised if President Nelson is still around in 6-8 years, or even lives longer than that.

As for the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, except for President Ballard (who will be 90 on October 8, which is 3 months and 1 week from today, and who appears to be in fairly good health as well, though he may not be as healthy as President Nelson), all other apostles are younger than 80.  

With that in mind, the current members of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, who have served together since March 31 of this year, will most likely easily make the list of the longest-serving apostles on that same day in 2021. By the end of that same year, they will have moved up 3 spots on the list. I will give more specific data in this regard closer to that time.

By the end of 2021, the current group of apostles in the First Presidency and Quorum of the Twelve Apostles will have made and moved up on the list of other apostolic groups to become the 12th longest-serving such group in Church history, and other milestones will be reached in the years following.

All of those milestones will depend on how long Presidents Nelson and Ballard live and serve, and on how much they (or anyone else) are affected by health issues. I continue to track the health and ministry of these Brethren and will keep you posted.

With that said, I want to conclude this portion of the update. That does it for this post. Any and all comments are, as always, welcome and appreciated. Thank you for the privilege of your time. If you enjoyed what you read here and would like to stay informed of newly-added content, please feel free to subscribe.

Until my next post (which should be the second one on this subject and will be published here within the next few minutes), I wish each one of you all the best and pray that the Lord will bless you all in everything you do.

President Dallin H. Oaks Celebrates His 86th Birthday

Hello again, everyone! I am back in the early-morning hours of August 12 to pay tribute to the final apostle who has his birthday this month. President Dallin H. Oaks. He is marking his 86th birthday today. So let's dive right into this tribute post.

Dallin Harris Oaks was born in 1932, to Dr. Lloyd E. and Stella Harris Oaks. His mother traces her ancestry back to Martin Harris, who, as we know, was one of the three witnesses of the Book of Mormon. His first name was given in honor of the last name of an artist with whom his mother had worked (as the model) for a statue in Springville Utah.

His father, an opthalmologist, died when young Dallin was age 7 from complications of tuberculosis. Being the oldest child of his family, the death of his father gave him some unique opportunities to help his mother and to be an example to his younger siblings, which was one thing of which he has frequently spoken.

After his father died, his mother was able to earn a graduate degree at Columbia University and support her family by working to provide adult education opportunities for those who needed it. She also went on to become the first woman to be part of Provo's City Council, and to serve for a time as assistant mayor.

In the meantime, Elder Oaks attended Brigham Young High School, where he played football and became a certified radio engineer. Once he started attending BYU, he took many opportunities to be the radio announcer at high school games. At one of those games, he was introduced to June Dixon, whom he dated and would later marry.

He was unable to serve as a full-time missionary because he was a member of the National Guard, and there was a possibility he could have been called up to serve during the Korean War. Dallin and June were married in 1952, and he graduated from BYU two years later with a degree in accounting. He went on to study law at the University of Chicago, graduating with his degree 3 years later.

He spent the early part of his professional career clerking for Chief Justice Earl Warren of the US Supreme Court. After that, he practiced law at Kirkland and Ellis. He left that job in 1961 to become a professor at Chicago Law, While in that capacity, he served as interim dean.

During that time, the University of Chicago was desperate to get Dr. Russell M. Nelson, a renowned heart surgeon, on their staff, and Professor Oaks was asked to try and talk him into coming. Although those efforts proved unsuccessful, that encounter led to a lifelong friendships for the Nelsons and the Oaks. He also served on the foundational board of a a Mormon thought periodical. He was also chairman of the university's disciplinary committee,

He took a leave of absence from the University while serving as legal counsel to the Bill of Rights Committee of the Illinois Constitutional Convention. He left the law school for good in 1971 when he was appointed the new president of BYU (for which many candidates, including Brother Nelson, were considered), a position he held for nine years.

He then went on to serve for five years as chairman of the board of directors for PBS, and eight years as chairman of the board of directors of the Polynesian Cultural Center. In 1980, he was appointed a justice of the Utah Supreme Court, an office he held for the next four years. He was rumored to have been considered by two US Presidents (Gerald Ford and later Ronald Regan) for a nomination to the US Supreme Court.

However, a surprise change in direction for him came in 1984. President Gordon B. Hinckley, then a counselor to the ailing Church President, Spencer W. Kimball, tracked him down via phone call to let him know that he had been selected to become an apostle and member of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, filling the second of two vacancies that had risen due to the deaths of Elders LeGrand Richards on January 11, 1983, and Mark E. Petersen exactly one year to the day later. (Due to the ill health of President Spencer W. Kimball, neither vacancy had been filled for over a year prior to April 1984.) Elder Oaks became the junior apostle to Elder Russell M. Nelson, though the two were sustained in the same General Conference.

Although both were called at the same time, Elder Oaks was unable to be present at the General Conference at which the two were sustained. President Hinckley, in leading that sustaining, offered the following explanation:

"With reference to Dallin Oaks, I should like to say that while we nominate and sustain him today, he will not be ordained to the apostleship, nor will he be set apart as a member of the Council of the Twelve, nor will he begin his apostolic service, until after he completes his present judicial commitments, which may require several weeks. He is absent from the city, and necessarily absent from the conference. We excuse him. "

Elder Oaks was ordained an apostle just short of four weeks after being sustained (having been sustained on April 7 and being subsequently ordained to the apostleship on May 3). He had his first opportunity to respond to his apostolic call six months later, speaking on the importance of witnesses, within the context of his new assignment to be a special witness of Jesus Christ.

He has now been an apostle for over 34 years, during which time he has filled a wide variety of assignments in his time as an apostle, and has had many opportunities to meet with and speak to Church members in various parts of the world. In 2002, he and Elder Holland were asked to be the first apostles in quite a while to live on-site in two of the Church's geographical areas, with then-Elder Oaks being based in the Philippines, and Elder Holland being assigned to preside in Chile.

In addition to the death of his father, then-Elder Oaks also experienced the death of his wife June, who passed away in 1998. Just over two years later, Elder Oaks married Kristen M. McMain, who has been by his side ever since. With the death of President Monson, Elder Oaks became the second most-senior apostle, and his apostolic seat-mate, President Nelson, felt impressed to call him to serve as First Counselor in the First Presidency, and he was set apart in both that capacity and as President of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles on January 14 of this year.

During his apostolic ministry, Elder Oaks has had 71 opportunities to speak during General Conference (and he had one additional opportunity to do so prior to his apostolic call). You can review any of those talks on a wide variety of subjects here. And now that he has been called to the First Presidency, we will hear from him at least 2-3 times per General Conference.

I am grateful to have been able to take the opportunity to share more about Elder Oaks. I testify that his apostolic call, along with the calls of all other apostles, has indeed been divinely directed and inspired, as has how and when Elder Oaks has moved up in the ranks of apostolic seniority. Speaking personally, I hope Elder Oaks has had a wonderful birthday, and I hope to see him continue to live and inspire us for many years to come.

That does it for this post. Any and all comments are, as always, welcome and appreciated. Thank you for the privilege of your time. If you enjoyed what you read here and would like to stay informed of newly-added content, please feel free to subscribe. Until my next post, I wish each one of you all the best and pray that the Lord will bless you all in everything you do.