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Mormon History: LDS (Mormon) Prophet Howard W. Hunter 1/3
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is a video describing how to learn more about the Mormon Church.
Howard W. Hunter was born on November 14, 1907, in Boise, Idaho. His father was not a member of the Church, and when Howard wanted to be baptized at age eight, his father forbade it. He finally persuaded his father to let him be baptized when he was twelve years old. At fifteen he earned his Eagle Scout, he was only the second scout in Boise to earn this award. Hunter also excelled in music and learned to play the piano, violin, marimba, drums, saxophone, clarinet and trumpet. After high school, a band he had formed was able to play on a cruise ship during a two-month tour of the Orient. When he returned he learned that his father had finally joined the Church.
On June 10, 1931, Howard W. Hunter married Clara Jeffs, a young lady he had been dating for some time. They had three children, one of whom died in childhood. Soon after their marriage, Howard found a job working for the Los Angeles Flood Control District. It was in this job that he became interested in legal matters and decided to study law. He graduated with his law degree in 1939 and was admitted to the bar the same year.
On Hunter's 46th birthday his parents surprised him by showing up at the Mesa Arizona Temple ready to be sealed to each other and him, along with his sister, who had also made the trip. This was a pleasant surprise for President Hunter—he and the members of the Pasadena California Stake over which he presided had traveled quite a distance in order to attend the temple in Mesa. The Los Angeles California Temple would open three years later in 1956, also during his tenure as stake president.
n 1940, Howard W. Hunter started his own private law practice. A year later, he became bishop of his ward; he served in that position for eight years. Two years after his release from that calling, he was called to be stake president and served in that calling for nine years. During that time he helped in the building of the Los Angeles Temple, and helped start the early-morning seminary program in the area.
In 1959, Howard W. Hunter went to Salt Lake City to attend general conference, and while there he was called to have an interview with President David O. McKay. When he arrived for the interview, President McKay immediately began, "The Lord has spoken. You are called to be one of his special witnesses, and tomorrow you will be sustained as a member of the Council of the Twelve" (Eleanor Knowles, Howard W. Hunter, p.144). Hunter was stunned, but accepted the call and was ordained on October 15, 1959.
From 1964 to 1972, Howard W. Hunter served as the President of the Genealogical Society of Utah and oversaw the first uploads of records to computers. In 1970 he was called to be the Church Historian. In 1989, Elder Hunter was called to be the President of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, and on May 30, 1994, was sustained as the Prophet and President of the Church. Of his calling President Hunter said, "I have shed many tears and have sought my Father in Heaven in earnest prayer with a desire to be equal to the high and holy calling which is now mine" (LDS Church News, "I Pledge My Life and ... Full Measure of My Soul," June 11, 1994). He encouraged all members to become temple worthy, heralding the huge temple-building program of his successor, Gordon B. Hinckley. Howard W. Hunter served for only nine months until his death on March 3, 1995.
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