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Boyd K. Packer - Reorganizing a Stake

I wish you could accompany the General Authorities some time on an assignment to reorganize a stake. It has been my experience on a number of occasions to assist in these reorganizations. It never fails to be a remarkable experience. Some time ago, late on Sunday night, returning after the reorganization of a stake with Elder Marion G. Romney, we were riding along silently, too weary I suppose to be interested in conversation, when he said, "Boyd, this gospel is true!" (An interesting statement from a member of the Twelve.) And then he added, "You couldn"t go through what we have been through in the last forty-eight hours without knowing that for sure."

I then rehearsed in my mind the events of the previous hours; the interviews we had held, the decisions made. We had interviewed the priesthood leadership of the stake and invited each of them to make suggestions with reference to a new stake president. Virtually all of them mentioned the same man. They indicated him to be an ideal man for a stake president with appropriate experience, a fine family, sensible and sound, worthy in every way. Near the end of our interviewing, with just two or three left, we interviewed this man and we found him equal to all of the estimates that had been made of him during the day. As he left the room at the conclusion of the interview, Brother Romney said, "Well, what do you think?"

I answered that it was my feeling that we had not seen the new president yet.

This confirmed the feelings of Brother Romney who then said, "Perhaps we should get some more men in here. It may be that the new president is not among the present priesthood leadership of the stake." Then he said, "But suppose we interview the remaining few before we take that course."

There was another interview held, as ordinary as all of the others had been during the day—the same questions, same answers—but at the conclusion of this interview, Brother Romney said, "Well, now how do you feel?"

"As far as I am concerned," I said, "we can quit interviewing." Again this confirmed Brother Romney, for the feeling had come that this was the man that the Lord had set His hand upon to preside over that stake.

Now, how did we know? Because we knew, both of us—together, at once, without any doubt. In reality our assignment was not to choose a stake president, but rather to find the man that the Lord had chosen. The Lord speaks in an unmistakable way. Men are called by prophecy.

Boyd K. Packer shares an experience: “Follow the Brethren,” Tambuli, Sept. 1979