Talk:General authority

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First "resident of Europe" GA?[edit]

What does this even mean? Other European citizens were General Authorities before Charles A. Didier (born 1935), such as Danish Anthon H. Lund (died March 1921) who was in the First Presidency under Heber J. Grant and Joseph F. Smith. It it is supposed to mean European citizen, it is plainly incorrect. If it is supposed to mean that the person was residing in Europe when called, that's pretty unimportant since many General Authorities have to move to Utah anyway as part of their calling. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 13:30, 8 September 2012 (UTC)

Continuing revelation[edit]

Time to fix this article. See


As general authority is not actually a title, but an informal description of church leaders who have general authority in the Church, it seems that the name of this article should not be capitalized, under Wikipedia conventions. It's also the practice of a lot of modern historians not to capitalize it. Any objections? COGDEN 01:11, 14 Jul 2004 (UTC)

You've convinced me. Go for it. Alanyst 04:14, 14 Jul 2004 (UTC)
The church-owned Deseret News Church Almanac routinely capitalizes "General Authority" so why not follow their usage?--L.E./
I did a Google search on the website, which yielded only 6 pages in which general authority was capitalized out of about 77 total usages of the term. Thus, it appears that the Deseret News is more likely not to capitalize general authority. In a similar google search of the site, I found that only 11 out of 149 pages (mostly church press releases) do not capitalize general authority. But that's not surprising, since the church tends to be pretty quick to capitalize. This probably stems from the Quaint 19th Century practice of capitalizing words for Emphasis, which early church leaders were fond of doing. But the fact that the church often does not capitalize general authority indicates a lack of strong preference by the church. That being the case, I say we should stick to common Wikipedia practice of not capitalizing common nouns. Therefore, I'm going to move the page. If anyone has any strong feelings on the subject, we can discuss moving it back. COGDEN 22:50, July 18, 2005 (UTC)
The most recent edition of The Style Guide for Publications of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints says to capitalize "General Authority." —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 03:54, 7 April 2008 (UTC)
I don't think we generally follow that. The LDS Church capitalizes a lot of terms that WP does not. Good Ol’factory (talk) 04:02, 7 April 2008 (UTC)

Folklore Section[edit]

The folklore section confuses me. I don't really see the point of including it in its current form. Any thoughts? --TrustTruth 23:02, 11 April 2006 (UTC)

Number of GAs[edit]

168 and 169 have been used in the article as the number of GAs would exist if 2 quorums of the 70 were filled to capacity. Where does this number come from?

I get 3 (First Presidency) + 12 (Apostles) + 3 (Presiding Bishopric) + 140 (2 full Seventy quorums) + 7 (Presidents of Seventy) = 165

Would be curious to see where the other numbers come from. Are we assuming more than 2 counselors in First Presidency? -SESmith 09:00, 13 May 2007 (UTC)

Just poor math skills. 140 Seventies, 3 First Presidency, 3 Presiding Bishopric, 12 Apostles, 1 Patriarch = 159, not 169. I've fixed the footnote. Paul D. Anderson 20:36, 13 May 2007 (UTC)
OK, I see. I had forgotten the Patriarch to the Church and assumed the 7 Presidents were separate from the full Quorums. The 159 number makes more sense to me. -SESmith 21:01, 13 May 2007 (UTC)

"Maximum" number of GAs[edit]

Although it's probably OK to include information on the current number of GAs (see discussion above), on reflection I don't know if it's at all helpful or even accurate to provide information on the "maximum" number of GAs that could exist. First, even if no new quorums were created that had GA status, the First Presidency could always have more than 3 members by the calling of additional Counselors in the First Presidency, which essentially means that the maximum number of GAs (and 1st Pres Counselors) is unlimited. Second, new quroums (e.g. of Seventy) could be given GA status. Third, other positions could always be created and given GA status as Assistants to the Twelve were in the past. Fourth, presidencies of the YM and Sunday School could be given GA status. I don't think the church hierarchy sees the potential number of GAs being "limited" somehow. What does everyone think? -SESmith 23:12, 15 May 2007 (UTC)

Also, "emeritus" general authorities—aren't they still technically "general authorities"? An example is Eldred G. Smith the Patriarch Emeritus. He still receives a GA stipend and is still given office space and parking at the Church Office Building, as are members of the Seventy who have been given emeritus status. These persons are not included in the church's Ensign "centerfold" of the GAs, but I don't think that in any way means they are not still GAs. -SESmith 23:16, 15 May 2007 (UTC)

Equivalency to Cardinal (Catholicism)?[edit]

Would the LDS church consider a General authority to be equivalent to a Cardinal in the Roman Catholic church? Bearian (talk) 22:51, 1 February 2012 (UTC)

Maybe some Mormons would, but I think that there would probably be a general resistance to analogizing general authorities to any group of leaders in Catholicism. However, I don't think there is a better analogy that could be made between general authorities and something in the RC Church. The argument could be made that the Cardinals act more as as a single priesthood quorum would in the LDS Church, but the general authorities are composed of five quorums, really. Good Ol’factory (talk) 02:29, 10 February 2012 (UTC)
Not knowing much about the hierarchy of the Roman Catholic Church, I can't say for sure. Having scanned the WP article on cardinals, I would say in some ways they are equivalent, but in other ways they are not. The prophet is our "pope." And since the apostles and seventies travel throughout the world, it could be said that they are, in a way, our "cardinals." But based on the differences in organization and belief of Catholics verses Latter-day Saints, I would say that the roles are very different. But I will leave the solid answering of this question to someone more knowledgeable than I. At any rate, the topic, though interesting to consider, doesn't appear to have any relevancy to the article's content, unless you are wanting to put a comparison of the two within the text of the article. --Jgstokes-We can disagree without being disagreeable (talk) 04:11, 10 February 2012 (UTC)