This biographical sketch is adapted from the "News
of the Church: Elder Francisco J. Viñas of the Seventy" in the
Ensign for May 1996.
Service lies at the heart of knowing our Heavenly Father
and loving his children, says Francisco J. Viñas.
“Everything important that my wife and I have learned
in life has come through service,” he says. “In fact, a large part of our
testimonies has come through serving the Lord.”
Elder Viñas is grateful that the gospel has
provided him with opportunities to share that testimony as he has ministered
to others. He has been an Area Authority, regional representative three
times, stake president, bishop, and mission president in Argentina.
In Spain, where Francisco was born in Seville on
28 December 1946, he has been serving as country director of the Church
Educational System (CES) since 1993. His assignment there represents a
homecoming of sorts for Elder Viñas, whose parents
immigrated to Paraguay in 1948. Before settling in Montevideo, Uruguay,
two years later, they were baptized into the Church.
While growing up in Montevideo, Elder Viñas
developed a love of basketball and eventually played in his country’s professional
basketball league while simultaneously serving as bishop.
Before working in CES in 1977 as an institute director
in Montevideo, Elder Viñas was a production cost supervisor for
the Bayer Company and then worked in the Church’s finance department in
Uruguay. He later became CES system coordinator in Uruguay.
On 30 December 1966, Elder Viñas married Cristina
Gaminara in Montevideo. They were sealed in 1974 in the Salt Lake Temple.
Because of his demanding work and Church service, Elder Viñas and
his wife make the most of their family time together with their three children.
“All my callings have helped prepare me for this
new opportunity to serve, but I am especially grateful for the influence
and tutoring of the General Authorities,” he says. “They are men of God.”
Elder Viñas was sustained to the First Quorum
of the Seventy on April 5, 1998. He continues to serve in the First Quorum
at this writing.