As a 30-year-old, Gérald Caussé began working for a retail group in France, where the company president, a man of another faith, called him into his office to ask, “I just learned that you are a priest in your church, is that true?”
“I replied, ‘Yes, that is correct. I hold the priesthood,’” now Presiding Bishop Caussé recalled in his address at the priesthood session of general conference.
The company president asked if he had studied at a theological seminary, and Bishop Caussé replied that between the ages of 14 and 18, he had studied seminary lessons nearly every day.
The company president was so impressed that he offered Bishop Caussé a managing director position in one of the group’s companies, explaining, “I know your principles, and I know what you’ve learned in your church. I need you.”
“He was right about what I had learned in the Church,” Bishop Caussé said. “The years that followed were challenging, and I don’t know if I could have had any success without the experience I acquired by serving in the Church from the time I was a young man.”
He then recounted his experiences as a youth growing up in a small branch of the Church.
“The service I rendered during those teenage years helped me build my testimony and anchor my life in the gospel,” he said.
“We have many young men attending or tuning in to this meeting tonight who hold the Aaronic Priesthood,” he observed. “I see many of you sitting next to mature men, perhaps your fathers, your grandfathers, your older brothers or your priesthood leaders — all holders of the Melchizedek Priesthood.”
The gathering offers a vision of the unity and brotherhood that exists between the two priesthoods of God, Bishop Caussé remarked.
Referring to the examples set by John the Baptist and Jesus, Bishop Caussé said, “Just think of what would take place in our priesthood quorums if the relationships between the holders of the two priesthoods were inspired by the pattern established by Jesus and John the Baptist.”
As with John, the role of Aaronic priesthood holders is to “prepare the way” for the work of the Melchizedek Priesthood, he observed. They do so by fulfilling their duties, Bishop Caussé explained.