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There are perceptions that the Church is corporate and institutional, said Elder D. Todd Christofferson.

“There is a misconception that we come out of a professional and business life and we are basically corporate-style leaders,” he said. “In reality, we are shepherds and witnesses. We draw upon our past experiences and any skills and talents we developed, but that’s not the focus. The focus is on what the Lord wants and how He wants us to do that.”

In the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles there are no factions, lobbying, or power centers, said Elder Neil L. Andersen. There are “differing opinions,” but “there are no egos.”

“The Lord puts a lot of people together who are not that alike in many things—their professions, how they grew up, where they come from,” said Elder Andersen. “They are alike in their testimony of the Savior and in their humility. They don’t seek position; they are not trying to be the smartest person in the room. The Lord can work with that. I have never seen anyone show anger, and I have never seen anyone put anyone down.”

Elder Gary E. Stevenson described two perspectives by which he comes to the apostleship—his own background as a business executive and his background as the Church’s Presiding Bishop directing temporal affairs.

The apostleship “is not like being a business executive; it is quite different than an executive role in a business,” he said. “The role of an Apostle of the Lord Jesus Christ is really a ministerial, pastoral role,” he said.

The role of being a witness of Jesus Christ to the world, he explained, “informs and defines us.”

While some may think general Church leaders live a “charmed life,” the fact is that, just as with all of God’s faithful children, life is filled with “great blessings and challenges,” said Elder Quentin L. Cook.

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