Grampa Bill's General Authority Pages
Howard W. Hunter I Accept Without Reservation

Delivered 11 October 1959

    This address was delivered by Elder Howard W. Hunter of the Council of the Twelve Apostles in the concluding session of the 129th Semiannual General Conference of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints held Sunday afternoon 11 October 1959 in the Great Mormon Tabernacle on Temple Square in Salt Lake City, Utah. It was the first time he addressed the Saints as a General Authority, having been sustained to the Twelve in a Solemn Assembly the previous day. He would be ordained an Apostle four days later on 15 October 1959.

    I do not know what one should say who has been so newly called and sustained, so I will tell you what is in my heart this afternoon.

    I love the Church. I want you to know that I love our great leader, President McKay, and with all my heart and soul I sustain him as prophet, seer and revelator. And I sustain President Clark and President Moyle, President Smith, the President of the Council of the Twelve, each individual member of that Council, and all of the General Authorities.

    Not many of you know me, so perhaps you would permit me to be just a little bit personal this afternoon. I have lived most of my life in California, having been born in Boise, Idaho, and having lived there until I was graduated from high school.

    I am grateful for a humble home, for modest circumstances, for my father and my mother, both of whom reside in California. Howard W. Hunter, Conference Report, October 1959, p.121 It was in California that I met my companion. We came to the temple here in Salt Lake City where we were married and sealed for eternity. We have had three sons, one of whom was called home in infancy. Our second son, having completed a mission in Australia, is now in his last year at Brigham Young University. He married his sweetheart in the temple and caused us to become grandparents just a few days ago. Our other son is now serving in Australia in the mission field.

    We have been grateful for our home and the fact that our boys have stayed close to the program of the Church. My wife has been a sweet and loving companion and has always sustained me in the callings which have come to me.

    I had the privilege of serving as a bishop in the Church for a little more than six years. I am grateful for the people of that ward and the lessons they taught me and the opportunities that came to me. For nearly ten years I have served as president of the Pasadena Stake in California. Again I am grateful for those people, for their love and their affection, for their sustaining influence, for the counselors that have worked with me. I am grateful to the Church for all of these things and what it has meant to us in our life.

    Before I was graduated from law school, three boys were born to us. Since that time I have been engaged in the private practice of law -- until yesterday. Somebody asked me yesterday what my plans are, and the only answer I could give is that I have not yet been told what my plans are.

    I want you to know that I have a firm, uncompromising conviction that God lives, that Jesus is the Christ, that the gospel was restored in this latter dispensation by the instrumentality of the Prophet Joseph Smith. I have an abiding conviction of the truthfulness of this fact and that our President, whom we sustained at this conference, holds those same keys, powers, and authority.

    I do not apologize for the tears that come to my eyes on this occasion because I believe that I face friends, my brethren and sisters in the Church, whose hearts beat the same as mine today, in the thrill of the gospel and in service to others.

    President McKay, I want you to know and all of the membership of the Church to know, that I accept, without reservation, the call which you have made of me, and I am willing to devote my life and all that I have to this service. Sister Hunter joins me in this pledge.

    May I request today your prayers on my behalf, for I know that only with the help of my Heavenly Father, can I meet the challenge and develop those qualities which distinguish the other members of this council from men of the world.

    I am grateful. I bear my testimony to you humbly. May we go forward together in righteousness, I humbly pray, in Jesus' name. Amen.

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