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I was ordained a High Priest when I was 56. I was not called to any positions in the Church that required that calling. My wife and I team teach in primary.  I am having personal doubts that I should have been called to the HP’s just because I’m just older than the average Elder’s Quorum member. What is your opinion? Thank you.





Dear Eric,

The short answer is that men are ordained to be High Priests when they need to be for a calling in a stake presidency, high council or to be in a bishopric, sometimes for a ward clerk or ward mission leader or simply at the discretion of the stake president.  Church Handbook 2:  Administering the Church Melchizedek Priesthood

It sounds like in your case it was the discretion of your stake president.  You may not know the reason why, your stake president may not know either, but the Lord knows.  Sometimes that is all the insight we are given and we have to trust Him.  This reminds me of a story.  Steve Young recently wrote an autobiography.  In it he talked about why he didn’t serve a mission.  Most people assume it was because of football, but he says that wasn’t the reason.  At that time in his life, he was playing 7th string quarterback and Lavell Edwards had just approached him about switching to the defense.  Steve looked on this as a demotion, and decided that it was time to serve a mission.  He started his papers but immediately started feeling a great anxiety.  Apparently, he suffers from anxiety and just being at school, away from his family was hard for him.  So he returned to his Bishop, and told him that he had changed his mind.  I imagine he was very nervous, but the Bishop was very kind.  In fact, the Bishop told Steve that he had had an impression that Steve would come in and say what he just said and that the Bishop was to support him in that decision.  Steve further said as he was leaving, the Bishop told him to go and do what he “was born to do.  Play football.”  That idea was puzzling to Steve, after all hadn’t he just been demoted by Coach Edwards?  What possible future could he have in football?   And the rest is history.  (I read this story in a review of his book in the Sept/Oct 2016 issue of LDS Living magazine.)  You see neither Steve or the Bishop knew what the future held, but the Lord knew.  That’s what mattered.

Alma gives us some great words to ponder on this topic in Alma 13.  The chapter heading reads: “Men are called as high priests because of their exceeding faith and good works—They are to teach the commandments—Through righteousness they are sanctified and enter into the rest of the Lord…” Chapter 13 is a great read for High Priests. Some are called to do good (future calling) and some are called because they have done good already (past).  Either of these may be the case for you.

This reminds me of a story that was once related to me:  a stake president told a story of receiving a strong prompting to go visit an elderly brother who was in the hospital and to ordain this man a high priest.  This brother had been marginally active for a long time due to health issues, so the stake president was surprised by this prompting.  Obediently, he went to the hospital where the man had been lying unconscious for days and found him miraculously awake.  He informed the man of the prompting and asked him if he wished to be ordained.  The man agreed, and the ordination occurred.  A few hours later, he died.  The President could only surmise that the man’s mission on the other side required him to be ordained a high priest before he departed (or perhaps as Alma taught it was because of some good he had done in the past.) Either way, the stake president was grateful to have followed the prompting.

I’m not suggesting that is the case for you, of course, but the point is . . . the Lord knows what the future holds and where he will need you.  Trust Him and wait to see what He unfolds in your life.





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