SALT LAKE CITY — At the Saturday afternoon session of the 173rd Annual General Conference, the First Presidency of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints announced changes in the leadership of the Seventy and the Sunday School. A currently-serving General Authority was named to the First Quorum of the Seventy, and five new General Authorities and 37 new Area Authorities were called to serve the Church.
In view of his previously announced appointment as president of Brigham Young University (BYU), Elder Cecil O. Samuelson, Jr. was released as a member of the Presidency of the Seventy. Elder Samuelson was also released as general president of the Sunday School.
Elder Merrill J. Bateman was named to replace Elder Samuelson as a member of the Presidency of the Seventy and as general president of the Sunday School. Elder John H. Groberg and Elder Val R. Christensen will continue to serve as first and second counselors, respectively, in the general presidency of the Sunday School.
Elder Bruce D. Porter, a member of the Second Quorum of the Seventy since 1995, will continue his service to the Church as a member of the First Quorum of the Seventy. Members of the Seventy have responsibility for administering the work of the Church throughout the world under the direction of the First Presidency and the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles. Some of them also have executive responsibilities in a number of Church departments. Those called to the First Quorum of the Seventy usually serve until they reach age 70. Those called to the Second Quorum of the Seventy serve for a period of about six years.
The new General Authorities called as members of the Second Quorum of the Seventy are Elder Mervyn B. Arnold, Taylorsville, Utah; Elder Shirley D. Christensen, Pasco, Washington; Elder
Clate W. Mask, Jr., Gilbert, Arizona; Elder William W. Parmley, Alamo, California, and Elder W. Douglas Shumway, Show Low, Arizona.
First Quorum of the Seventy
At the time of his call to full-time Church service in April 1995, Elder Bruce D. Porter, 50, was a professor of political science at BYU in Provo, Utah. He is a former executive director of the U.S. Board for International Broadcasting and a former research fellow at Harvard University. He has also served as an analyst for the Northrop Corporation and as a professional staff member of the U.S. Senate Armed Services Committee. A native of Albuquerque, New Mexico, Elder Porter graduated from BYU. He earned a master’s degree and a doctorate from Harvard University. Elder Porter has served the Church as a bishop, branch president, stake president’s counselor, full-time missionary and stake mission president. As a full-time Church leader, he has served in the Europe East Area Presidency. Elder Porter and his wife, Susan Elizabeth Porter, are parents of four children.
Second Quorum of the Seventy
Elder Mervyn B. Arnold, 54, was serving as stake Young Men president in the Taylorsville Utah Valley Park Stake prior to his call as a general authority. After earning bachelor’s and master’s degrees from BYU, he worked in real estate and banking prior to his current employment in the Church’s missionary department. He has served the Church as a mission president, counselor in a stake presidency, bishop, elders quorum president and full-time missionary. Elder Arnold is married to Devonna Kress Arnold, and they are parents of six children.
Elder Shirley D. Christensen, 64, was serving as a gospel doctrine Sunday School teacher and temple ordinance worker in the Columbia River Washington Temple before today’s call to the Seventy. He returned last summer from three years of service as the president of the Argentina Resistencia Mission. Elder Christensen studied political science at BYU and was self-employed for 35 years as a fruit grower. In other service rendered to the Church, he has been a counselor in a stake presidency, regional welfare agent, bishop, high councilor, branch president and full-time missionary. He and his wife, the former Geniel Johnson, have six children.
Elder Clate W. Mask, Jr., 60, retired after 30 years as a teacher and administrator for the Church Educational System (CES). Before his call as a general authority, Elder Mask was serving as bishop of the Tempe University 6th Ward. He earned a bachelor’s degree from BYU and a master’s degree from Cal State – Northridge. Elder Mask began his career in construction sales before joining CES. Other Church service positions include mission president, high councilor, stake Sunday School president, stake missionary, bishop’s counselor, branch president and full-time missionary. He and his wife, Carol Garns Mask, are parents of six children.
Elder William W. Parmley, 67, was serving as a gospel doctrine teacher in his home ward prior to receiving his new assignment in the Seventy. A physician and emeritus professor of medicine, Elder Parmley received his education at Harvard and Johns Hopkins University. He taught for 30 years at the University of California San Francisco School of Medicine. He has served as an Area Authority Seventy, regional representative, stake president, counselor in a stake presidency, bishop and full-time missionary. Elder Parmley and his wife, Shanna Lee Parmley, are parents of four children.
Elder W. Douglas Shumway, 62, recently served as president of the Bolivia Santa Cruz Mission. He earned a bachelor’s degree from BYU and has been self-employed for 38 years as the owner of
Whiting Brothers Investment Company. Elder Shumway’s previous service in the Church includes regional welfare agent, counselor in a stake presidency, bishop, high councilor, stake mission president, stake Young Men president and full-time missionary. He and his wife, Dixie Ann Jarvis Shumway, have eight children.
Announced today was the release of Elder J. Devn Cornish, an Area Authority Seventy who has been called as a mission president.
37 new Area Authority Seventies were also named. Area Authorities give voluntary Church service in support of Area Presidencies within their assigned geographic areas.
Called as Area Authority Seventies: D. Fraser Bullock, 47, Alpine, Utah; Luis G. Chaverri, 54, Guapiles, Costa Rica; Ronaldo da Costa, 48, Brasilia, Brazil; Stanley G. Ellis, 56, Spring, Texas; Randy D. Funk, 50, Aurora, Colorado; José A. García, 57, Panama City, Panama; Robert H. Garff, 60, Bountiful, Utah; Julio G. Gaviola, 47, Manila, Philippines; Francisco I. Gímenez, 51, Barcelona, Spain; Carlos A. Godoy, 42, São Paulo, Brazil; S. Horacio Guzmán, 51, Guanajuato, México; Yu Chen (Philip) Ho, 51, Taipei, Taiwan; Beaver T. Ho Ching, 56, Pago Pago, American Samoa; Robert Koch, 56, Zurich, Switzerland; G. Steven Laney, 50, Ontario, Oregon; Barry Lee, 58, Flagstaff Hill, Australia; Miguel A. Lee, 47, Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic; Kuen (Tony) Ling; 51, Hong Kong; Lamont W. Moon, 62, Duchesne, Utah; Alexander A. Odume, 46, Benin City, Nigeria; Adesina J. Olukanni, 46, Ikeja, Nigeria; Fernando D. Ortega, 51, Buenos Aires, Argentina; Antonio R. Oyola, 46, La Paz, Bolivia; Adilson de Paula Parrella, 40, São Paulo, Brazil; Luigi S. Peloni, 50, Verona, Italy; Rafael E. Pino, 47, Miranda, Venezuela; Gelson Pizzirani, 51, São Paulo, Brazil; Gerold Roth, 53, Mondsee, Austria; A. Kim Smith, 49, Short Hills, New Jersey; W. Blake Sonne, 60, Orlando, Florida; Ronald A. Stone, 59, Midway, Utah; Subandriyo, 44, Jakarta, Indonesia; Jeffrey C.
Swinton, 55, Salt Lake City, Utah; Donald P. Tenney, 62, El Cajon, California; José L. Torres, 43, México City, México; Pita R. Vamanrav, 58, Nuku’alofa, Tonga; Perry M. Webb, 53, Farmington, New Mexico.