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Thomas S. Monson
Thomas S. Monson, the
16th President of the Church of Jesus
Christ of Latter-Day Saints, died on January 2, 2018, at the age of
90 years. The Deseret News,
where Monson began his career, and which he rose to be general manager of,
described him as a "large, faithful, energetic, gregarious, intelligent
man with a prodigious recall that allowed him to memorize talks and remember
everyone he met."
Monson became a bishop
in the LDS Church at age 22 and president of the faith's Canadian Mission at
31. He was just 36 when he was ordained as a modern apostle of Jesus
Christ. (In the LDS Church, apostles are prophets who receive divine
revelations. The Quorum of Twelve Apostles is a governing body of the
church and selects a successor after the death of the President.) He
oversaw church operations in Eastern Europe, including gaining permission for
the church to operate in East Germany.
He became President of
the LDS Church in 2008, following the death of Ezra Taft Benson (aged 94). The
church expanded under his leadership, and he received many honors and
accolades, but the most interesting fact about him, in my opinion, is that he
also served as the secretary of the Utah
State Roller Club, a group of pigeon breeders.
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