Thursday, February 25, 2021

Remarkable Experiences in the Life of Elder Glen L. Rudd #35 - Some Highlights from Elder Glen L. Rudd’s Service as a General Authority

(Compiled by Dennis B. Horne)

            Elder Faust met with the Area Presidency and some of the office personnel the next day and announced that there were to be some changes in General Authorities and that the Brethren were creating a Second Quorum of Seventy. He also announced that Members of the First Quorum would be released at age 70 if they were still in the First Quorum. If they had a year or two to go in the Second Quorum, they were allowed to stay on. This applied very much to me because I was moved from the First Quorum to the Second Quorum, and even though I was almost 71, I was allowed to stay on until I completed at least five and a half years as a Seventy.

 

***

            On Saturday I received a phone call from Elder Doug Martin, telling me that the First Presidency had excommunicated George P. Lee for apostasy. George had been released from all of his responsibilities for some time. The Brethren felt that it was necessary to take further action. I know that this was a difficult thing for President Hinckley personally.

 

***

            General conference was enjoyable. I had no special duties. I was able to just go, smile, and enjoy what the Brethren did.

Monday, February 22, 2021

Remarkable Experiences in the Life of Elder Glen L. Rudd #34 - Elder Rudd’s Call as a General Authority (First Quorum of Seventy)

 (Compiled by Dennis B. Horne)

            On March 25, 1987, I received a phone call from President Thomas S. Monson while in the New Zealand Temple. After a few moments of greeting he said, "We need to get serious." He then notified me that President Ezra Taft Benson had authorized him to extend a call to me to become a member of the First Quorum of Seventy. Marva and I were in the office together when we received the call. President Monson spoke with Marva also. He gave us instructions to get tickets and fly home in time for the April conference.

            Six days later we were on our way home. When we left Honolulu we boarded a Boeing 747 and had seats in the first­class section. When we climbed the stairs into that area of the plane, we saw John R. Lasater and his wife and Douglas J. Martin and his wife, Wati. The six of us were the only ones in the first-class section. We all shook hands and smiled at the others. The six of us were on the same journey. No one dared to talk about why we were all headed to Salt Lake City. All of us had awkward smiles on our faces. Finally we began to talk and it wasn't long before we were quite certain of each other's assignment. Even though no one would say out loud why they were traveling to Salt Lake City.

            After being sustained and set apart I received an assignment to work in the North America West Area as a counselor to Elder Gene R. Cook. Elder Ted E. Brewerton was the First Counselor. I also was assigned to be in the Missionary Department where I worked with Elders J. Richard Clarke and Russell C. Taylor. That was the busiest of all the assignments I had. I worked every day and hardly took even a Monday off, unless it was necessary because of travel. This was indeed one of the busiest and most difficult years I spent as a General Authority.

Saturday, February 20, 2021

Remarkable Experiences in the Life of Elder Glen L. Rudd #33 - Elder Rudd Serves as President of the New Zealand Temple

(Compiled by Dennis B. Horne)

            July 1984 started like every other month, but drastically changed on the 6th. I was a little slow getting to work that morning because I had a bad night and was in the shower when President Gordon B. Hinckley called. I dressed quickly and rushed to his office where he called me to be the president of the New Zealand Temple. I accepted the call and then went to my office in the Church Office Building to recover. After a few short minutes, I went home, talked with Marva, then went to the airport and flew to Lubbock, Texas for a welfare assignment.

 

***

            On the 14-16 of August, the First Presidency held a seminar for the new temple presidents. It started at 8:00 a.m. in the auditorium, and all General Authorities were invited. President Hinckley, Elder Howard W. Hunter, and Elder Grant Bangerter were the speakers. We were in meetings the rest of that first day on the 22nd floor and over in the Salt Lake Temple. It was a very spiritual day, and it was wonderful to hear the General Authorities speak and teach us. There were 13 new temple presidents altogether. I remember hearing President Hinckley saying, "I feel a little sorry for you brethren who are going to leave your loved ones and families and go away to the different temples. The only one I don't feel sorry for is the one who is going to New Zealand. His is a very special assignment." I did find out that most everybody would have liked to have the assignment at the New Zealand Temple.

Tuesday, February 16, 2021

Remarkable Experiences in the Life of Elder Glen L. Rudd #32 - Brother Rudd’s Adventures with Traffic Tickets

 (Compiled by Dennis B. Horne) 

            While presiding over the Florida Mission, 80 cars were assigned to our mission, which meant that 161 missionaries had a car all the time. The rule to be in by 10:00 p.m. was strongly enforced and, for the most part, obeyed.

            However, one night I received a call about midnight from a young, inexperienced elder who was greatly distressed. His companion had been locked up in jail. They had missed a stop sign in a little town in northern Florida and were stopped and given a ticket. The policeman had demanded fifty dollars at that time, which the missionaries did not have, so the driver was locked up in jail.

            I told the young elder to go right to the home of the sheriff and tell him he had just locked up an ordained minister of the gospel. I continued, "Tell the sheriff that his mission president in Orlando demands that the elder be released immediately, that we will have him in court at the proper time. You might even tell him that the Speaker of the House of Representatives is an active Latter-day Saint and a good friend of the mission president, and that the Church does not allow this to happen."

Saturday, February 13, 2021

Apostles, Prophets, and God’s Former Priesthood Restriction

By Dennis B. Horne

“We do not expect the people of the world to understand such things, for they will always be quick to assign their own reasons or to discount the divine process of revelation.”

(President Spencer W. Kimball[1])

            The purpose of this piece is to substantiate the inspired genesis and continued correctness of the priesthood restriction on black male members (meaning African-Americans) until June of 1978. With the many confused or contrary voices of critics, activists, liberal academics and scholars, doubters, and dissenters now proclaiming the restriction was instituted by a prejudiced and political President Brigham Young, presentation of the abundant contrary evidence is both helpful and needful. Many lacking understanding have labelled the former restriction in the Restored Church of Jesus Christ as wrong and racist, and even call for the Church to issue a public apology (something that won’t happen). They suppose if they shout loud and long enough, or write enough articles and blogs, what they say will displace truth and become the main narrative.

            Because The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is the Lord’s Church and Kingdom of God on earth, the truth is that the restriction was implemented by Him, and thereafter continuously maintained and sustained by Him, through His prophets, until He removed it by revelation in 1978. The following items reinforce and support this reality: 

Friday, February 12, 2021

Remarkable Experiences in the Life of Elder Glen L. Rudd #31 - Some of Elder Rudd’s Adventures as a Mission President

(Compiled by Dennis B. Horne)

            [Editorial Note: A couple of the below accounts are of miracles attendant to President Rudd’s mission service and priesthood administrations, though he writes them in a way that one might miss that fact unless reading carefully.]

            In the Florida Mission, we needed a new branch president in a small city in southern Georgia. My counselors spent most of their time working with the thirty-nine branches in the mission. They were familiar with the priesthood leaders and the good people who resided in those branches. I had also met many of them. I felt that a certain brother should be the new branch president, but my counselors objected. I said, "He is the best man there and would be a good branch president." My first counselor stated, "But he wasn't a full tithe payer last year." I responded, "I agree, we should not put in someone who doesn't pay a full tithing, but I would like to interview this man anyway. Until last year he always paid a full tithing. I think there must be some serious problem that we need to know about." Both of my counselors felt he definitely should not be called unless he was a full tithe payer. Every leader in every branch and in all of the four districts was a full tithe payer. In fact, we didn't even have anyone on our auxiliary boards who wasn't a full tithe payer. This was a most unusual situation and my counselors felt we would be making a mistake if we called the brother I felt we should call.

            As a result, we did not make the call. We waited a little while and the next time we were together, I brought it up again. I expressed my feeling that this brother should be the branch president. They still disagreed. So I said, "Why don't I at least interview him?"

Tuesday, February 9, 2021

Remarkable Experiences in the Life of Elder Glen L. Rudd #30 - Brother Rudd’s Call as a Regional Representative

(Compiled by Dennis B. Horne)

            Around 1964, the Quorum of the Twelve began to discuss the possibility of doing away with the priesthood committees and establishing a group of men who could become expert teachers in the priesthood responsibilities previously covered by the four different committees. In August 1967, the priesthood committees were dissolved and the brethren who served on them released, including myself.

            After everyone was released, a group of 69 men were called to be regional representatives, and their work began during September 1967. I was still in the mission field at that time, but was aware of the changes because Elder Lee and President Tanner had discussed them with me.

            The new regional representatives traveled to Salt Lake to receive special training from the Brethren. The first instruction given to this group of men by Elder Lee was that they were to become as home teach­ ers to bishops and stake presidents. It was explained that they were not assigned to make policies and decisions, but were to represent the Twelve and implement the training programs initiated by the Brethren. This new assignment and direction was difficult for some men. Elder Lee and President Kimball taught the regional representatives that they were coaches, not quarterbacks. They were to teach and train and allow the stake presidents to do the job of actually running the work of the Lord. They pointed out that the regional representatives were not administrators but were to do everything they could to help the stake and mission presidents do their work in the best possible way.

Sunday, February 7, 2021

Remarkable Experiences in the Life of Elder Glen L. Rudd #29 - Elder Matthew Cowley talks about his father (Elder) Mathias Cowley

(Compiled by Dennis B. Horne)

            [Editorial Note: Elder John W. Taylor (son of President John Taylor) and Matthias F. Cowley were close friends and were unfortunately unable to stop being involved with plural marriage after the second manifesto of 1904. Therefore, they had to resign from the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles. Elder Taylor became bitter and was eventually excommunicated, dying out of the faith. Elder Matthias Cowley, despite being dropped from the Quorum, stayed true and faithful to the church and gospel, raising his family to be loyal to the Brethren. Some historians have claimed that Elder Cowley was disfellowshipped, but the below information corrects that misconception. Little is known today about Matthias Cowley’s life, with the below information provided by Brother Rudd and Elder Matthew Cowley being much of what is known today (outside of the suspect information published by cultist polygamous groups). I once had the idea of writing a biography of Matthias, and Brother Rudd offered to help me with it, but I found the plural marriage issues such a mess that I dropped the notion. Elder Rudd incorporated the below quotations from four other cited sources into his own writings about Matthias Cowley:]

 

            I thank God, my brothers and sisters and friends, that I was reared in a good home. I thank God that in that home I was taught that it was more important to be moral than to be careful, that I was taught from the days of my youth to honor the priesthood of Almighty God. I was frequently told, as were the rest of the members of my father's family, by our father, that if there ever came a time or an occasion to choose between loyalty to him and loyalty to the priesthood of God, always to choose loyalty to the priesthood of God. I thank God that such an occasion never arose. (Matthew Cowley, Matthew Cowley Speaks, p. 85)

Friday, February 5, 2021

Remarkable Experiences in the Life of Elder Glen L. Rudd #28 - Elder Rudd Shares that Elder Cowley Knew Life Is Eternal

(Compiled by Dennis B. Horne)

 [Editorial Note: This choice reminiscence contains much repetition with another.] 

            For 15 years I had the privilege and opportunity of being extremely close to President Matthew Cowley. I first met him in 1938 when I arrived in the New Zealand mission. He always had a positive and happy disposition. He rarely got angry. He had the ability to accept life and to adjust to all situations. He had the greatest sense of humor of any person I ever met. I think the most important part of his personality was his great ability to see interesting, exciting, humorous aspects of every occurrence of his life. He did not have the ability to allow himself to get depressed. However, in the last two or three months of his life, I saw a great change come over him. He always joked and pointed out to me and others the humor in the normal events that took place in our lives.

            Even with his great call to the apostleship, he continued to carry the heavy loads of the Church, but never to feel weighed down with the problems of the whole Church. He still worried about individual people and their concerns in life. He would rather bless the sick sister than  solve some of the pressing problems that weighed heavily upon the Brethren. He had respect for other men’s ability and earnestly worked toward helping individuals solve some of their personal problems.

            Up until October conference of 1953 he lived in his rather normal, happy fashion, but something happened to President Cowley during the conference. He had a rather light hearted spirit about him and had humorously talked about two or three different subjects he might speak about during conference. He always wanted to give a talk on baptism.  He evidently had some great thoughts that had never been expressed about the principle of baptism. As conference approached, he told me two or three times, “I believe I’ll say what I want to say about baptism this time.” And so, I was somewhat surprised when he delivered a different talk. It was his old theme song and as I read it now, I think it was a farewell address. When the conference was over, he still had his sense of humor, but there had been a decided change in him. He told me he didn’t think he’d live long and we had quite a number of discussions about life and how long men ought to really live.

Wednesday, February 3, 2021

Remarkable Experiences in the Life of Elder Glen L. Rudd #27 - Great Events in the Life of Matthew Cowley, as Told by Elder Glen L. Rudd (Part 6)

(Compiled by Dennis B. Horne)

Elder Matthew Cowley, member of the Quorum of the Twelve (Part 3)

             [Editorial Note: This is the last of a 3-part series looking at highlights from the years Elder Matthew Cowley spent at a member of the Quorum of the Twelve. These are also part of a larger series of 6 posts reviewing interesting events in the life of Elder Cowley, and those are in turn part of a larger series of blogs about Elder Cowley and Glen Rudd. Elder Rudd spent much in time and energy and resources seeking to keep the memory of his remarkable mission president alive; especially as a way to strengthen faith in others. Glen Rudd knew that other people’s faith in Christ could be strengthened by reading or hearing about Elder Cowley’s faith and the miracles that followed it. He healed the sick, caused the deaf to hear and the blind to see, and was involved with raising the dead; all because of his great faith in God.]

             Miracles are here, and they are here to stay. They are not just things that happened in Bible days or in Book of Mormon days. They are here now and they do regularly occur.

            Not long ago there came into my office a man who is in his late forties. I had a nice friendly visit with Joe. We talked about a wonderful event that occurred early in his life. Forty years ago, Elder Matthew Cowley and I went to the Salt Lake County hospital to bless a little Joe who was dying with polio. He was in an area restricted for polio patients. After we had scrubbed up and put on gowns and hoods, with everything covered but our eyes, we were escorted down the long corridor of the hospital to give this little eight-year old boy a blessing. His mother had begged us to come, and before we went in she pleaded, "Don't let my little boy die."

Monday, February 1, 2021

Remarkable Experiences in the Life of Elder Glen L. Rudd #26 - Great Events in the Life of Matthew Cowley, as Told by Elder Glen L. Rudd (Part 5)

(Compiled by Dennis B. Horne)

Elder Matthew Cowley, member of the Quorum of the Twelve (Part 2) 

            [Editorial Note: This is a continuation, as part 2, of 3 posts about Elder Cowley as a member of the Quorum of the Twelve, out of a series of 6 delving into highlights of his life. These in turn are among others that touch on interesting and unusual experiences recorded by Elder Rudd regarding his friend and mission president. There may be a little repetition.]

            Brother Cowley was marvelous, just a great man. We talk about miracles. There were many miracles. I was blessed to be a part of some of them. It got to be where he could hardly go anywhere to bless the people without me or one of the other missionaries. He would come to my office at my poultry business where I was always busy trying to get orders out and wait an hour or an hour and a half till I could clean up and go with him to the hospital or to wherever someone was waiting for a priesthood blessing. It was wonderful to know how he loved to bless people.

            The phone used to ring on some of those occasions. It would be the secretary to President George Albert Smith. She’d say, “Brother Rudd, President Smith’s trying to find Brother Cowley. Have you got him down there?”