Church President Russell M. Nelson celebrates 99 years on 9/9

Sep 9, 2023, 12:35 PM

President Nelson holds a birthday card...

President Russell M. Nelson of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints looks at birthday cards sent to him for his 99th birthday in his office at the Church Administration Building in Salt Lake City, Utah, on Friday, September 8, 2023. (Intellectual Reserve)

(Intellectual Reserve)

SALT LAKE CITY — President Russell M. Nelson, president of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, is celebrating his 99th birthday Saturday.

President Nelson participated in meetings and other duties in the Church Administration Building on Friday. He and his wife, Wendy, then met in his office with his children and their spouses and his counselors in the First Presidency, President Dallin H. Oaks and President Henry B. Eyring, and took pictures to celebrate the occasion.

group in an office

President Russell M. Nelson of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and his wife, Wendy, pose with his eight of his 10 children and their spouses gathered in honor of his 99th birthday in his office at the Church Administration Building in Salt Lake City, Utah, on Friday, September 8, 2023. (Intellectual Reserve)

In church photos, President Nelson is seen looking at a large number of birthday cards sent to him.

In the 60 years following his birth in 1924 in Salt Lake City, President Nelson became a husband and father, raised a family of 10 children, and became a world-renowned heart surgeon and medical researcher. He entered full-time church service as a member of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles in 1984 and was set apart as the 17th president of the church on Jan. 14, 2018.

man in medical clothes

Russell M. Nelson in 1982. He was a world-renowned heart surgeon for many years before being called as an apostle in 1984. (Intellectual Reserve)

During his first address as an apostle at the church’s April 1984 general conference, he said, “Now, I understand fully that the call to the holy apostleship is one of witness to the world of the divinity of the Lord Jesus the Christ. I know that salvation is centered in him!”

A testimony shared in the most recent general conference also focused on Jesus Christ: “Whatever questions or problems you have, the answer is always found in the life and teachings of Jesus Christ. Learn more about his atonement, his love, his mercy, his doctrine and his restored gospel of healing and progression. Turn to him! Follow him!”

Boy in a sailor suit

Russell M. Nelson 28 months old in 1927. (Intellectual Reserve)

President Nelson became the oldest president of the church in April 2022 when he turned 97 years, 7 months and 6 days old. Previously, President Gordon B. Hinckley had been the oldest church president. He died on Jan. 27, 2008, at 97 years, 7 months and 5 days old.

See a timeline of President Nelson’s life here.

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Church President Russell M. Nelson celebrates 99 years on 9/9