Tuesday, February 05, 2008

New Mormon Leader

From the New York Times:

An 80-year-old former advertising and publishing executive, Thomas S. Monson, was named on Monday to be the 16th president of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, one week after the death of the previous president, Gordon B. Hinckley.

Mr. Monson’s appointment was expected. Leadership changes in the 13-million member Mormon Church are based on seniority in the upper ranks, which makes the transition free of politics, but also guarantees a certain mantle of age. Mr. Hinckley was 84 when he got the job in 1995. He died at age 97...

Mr. Monson, whose elevation to the church presidency also makes him a prophet of God in the eyes of Mormon believers, was born in Salt Lake City, and has lived a life — common in the Mormon church, where there is no professional paid clergy — that has straddled the business and religious worlds.

His career, beginning in the late 1940s in advertising and later as sales manager for the Deseret News Press, a commercial printing firm then affiliated with the church, went hand-in-hand with his advancement into bigger and bigger assignments for the church itself.

They pick 'em' young, don't they.

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