Wednesday, March 5, 2008

Update on President Uchtdorf

Here are a few updates on the appointment of Dieter F. Uchtdorf, a German and former airline pilot, to the 1st Presidency of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

I had the opportunity to listen to President Uchtdorf speak to the Latter-day Saints gathered in churches throughout Germany, Switzerland, and Austria on the 24th of February. After local business was conducted in each congregation, a satellite broadcast from Salt Lake City was started. President Uchtdorf was the final speaker, and naturally spoke in German.

Somehow (mainly by being late) our family (my mom, Tamara was still home recovering from surgery) ended up in the English speakers room. This was O.K., especially for the talks given in English, but for the German ones I preferred to listen in the original. When President Uchtdorf spoke I took Emma out into the Foyer let her run around while I listened. Gratefully she was calm and only a minor distraction.

His talk was great. He reminds me of the many great Germans I have come to know and love over the years. His voice seemed a bit nervous, at least more so than the other speakers, at the beginning. But he settled in and spoke very freely thereafter. He spoke about missing home, which is Germany, and his children and grandchildren.

He then spoke of the missionary who baptized his wife and how excited he was that the missionary found her. She joined the church when they were both teenagers. He was attracted to her instantly. He said he been able to meet that missionary many times in their lives. And he was, in fact, able to seal (marry for time and all eternity) the grandson of that missionary in the Salt Lake City Temple just a few weeks prior to the conference. That was very touching.

It was a wonderful and unexpected opportunity!

Here is a site with video of the 1st Presidency News Conference.

Here is a Times & Seasons discussion about the new first presidency with focus on the newest member, President Uchtdorf.

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March 2007