When he was a child, President M. Russell Ballard’s family was not active in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. He did not understand what it meant for his grandfather, Elder Melvin J. Ballard, to serve in the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles. Melvin J. Ballard died on July 30, 1939, at the age of 66; at the time President Ballard was 11.
The Church News video, titled “Grand Design,” features President Ballard’s memories of his grandfather. Now the Acting President of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, President Ballard would give anything to have spoken to his grandfather about their shared Apostolic calling.
“He should have told me who he was,” said President Ballard. “So I've tried really hard with my grandchildren to talk to them from time to time and let them know what my testimony is. Because I think one of the key roles of a member of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles is to try to encourage and lift and help those who are trying to get through this mortal experience.”