First let me state that I support Church leaders at all levels, local and general, in doing their best to serve God. I support and encourage them to do good in leading the Church. However, it has come to my attention that Russell M. Nelson, Dallin H. Oaks, Henry B. Eyring, and the other members of the Quorum of the Twelve have acted in violation of the revelations of God and teachings of the Church.
On January 16, 2018, there was a broadcast held for members of the Church, in which the Quorum of the Twelve announced that they had chosen Russell M. Nelson as the new President of the Church, and had already ordained and set him apart in this calling.
Todd Christofferson, conducting the event, stated:
“We are pleased to announce to you this morning that Russell M. Nelson was set apart as the seventeenth President of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints on January 14, 2018. With President Dallin H. Oaks and First Councilor and President Henry B. Eyring as Second Councilor in the First presidency. President M. Russell Ballard was set apart as acting president of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles.”
Later Russell M. Nelson also spoke, stating:
“Two days ago, as Brother Christofferson has said, all of the living Apostles met in the upper room of the Salt Lake Temple. There, they made a unanimous decision first, to reorganize the First Presidency now, and second, that I serve as President of the Church. Words are inadequate to tell you what it felt like to have my brethren, brethren who hold all the priesthood keys restored through the Prophet Joseph Smith in this dispensation, place their hands upon my head to ordain and set me apart as President of the Church.
The issue arises because according to the Doctrine and Covenants and teachings of the Church, all things in the church must be done by common consent. Furthermore, no Church officers may be ordained or serve in their positions without the vote of the church to which their office pertains.
65 No person is to be ordained to any office in this church, where there is a regularly organized branch of the same, without the vote of that church; — Section 20:65
In the Doctrine and Covenants Student Manual in the chapter entitled “Section 26, The Law of Common Consent” it states:
Elder Bruce R. McConkie explained that “administrative affairs of the Church are handled in accordance with the law of common consent. This law is that in God’s earthly kingdom, the King counsels what should be done, but then he allows his subjects to accept or reject his proposals. […] Accordingly, church officers are selected by the spirit of revelation in those appointed to choose them, but before the officers may serve in their positions, they must receive a formal sustaining vote of the people over whom they are to preside. (D. & C. 20:60–67; 26:2; 28; 38:34–35; 41:9–11; 42:11; 102:9; 124:124–145.)” (Mormon Doctrine, pp. 149–50.)
Also, according to Handbook 2 Section 19.3
Members who are called to most Church positions should receive a sustaining vote before they begin serving. The Chart of Callings indicates whether a sustaining vote is needed and what congregation should give it.
It is clear from the above statements that the entire Quorum of the Twelve Apostles have acted contrary to the scriptures and teachings of the Church. They have ordained and set apart Russell M. Nelson as President of the Church, with Dallin H. Oaks and Henry B. Eyring as his councilors; without first receiving the common consent of the church.
In light of the scriptures, as well as the following teachings and policies, I will be casting my vote:
“If a member in good standing gives a dissenting vote when someone is presented to be sustained, the presiding officer or another assigned priesthood officer confers with the dissenting member in private after the meeting. The officer determines whether the dissenting vote was based on knowledge that the person who was presented is guilty of conduct that should disqualify him or her from serving in the position.” — Handbook2 Section 19.3
D&C 26:2. When Should a Person Cast a Negative Vote?
“I have no right to raise my hand in opposition to a man who is appointed to any position in this Church, simply because I may not like him, or because of some personal disagreement or feeling I may have, but only on the grounds that he is guilty of wrong doing, of transgression of the laws of the Church which would disqualify him for the position which he is called to hold.” (Smith, Doctrines of Salvation, 3:124.) — Doctrine and Covenants Student Manual “Section 26, The Law of Common Consent
Therefore, in accordance with the teachings of the church, and out of no malice or ill-intent, I must vote in opposition to the motions to sustain Russell Marion Nelson Sr. as President of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints; with Dallin Harris Oaks as First Counselor in the First Presidency; and Henry Bennion Eyring as Second Counselor in the First Presidency; as well as Melvin Russell Ballard Jr. as Acting President of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles.
These men cannot legitimately serve in these callings, because their ordinations were done in transgression of the laws and teachings of the church. I will be casting my vote from a place of respect, and not out of criticism. I have observed a breach in the laws of the God and the church, and I must oppose that.
I do not oppose a properly organized First Presidency consisting of Russell M. Nelson, Dallin H. Oaks, Henry B. Eyring. Likewise, I do not oppose the sustaining of Russell M. Nelson, the counselors in the First Presidency, and the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles as prophets, seers, and revelators; as I do support them in receiving these gifts.
It is my desire to remain a member in good standing within the Church. I have a testimony that Jesus Christ is our Saviour, and that Joseph Smith was a Prophet of God. I strive to live the Gospel of Christ the best I can. And it is from this very same desire to follow God’s commandments that I must cast my opposing vote.