In a Church News video, President Ballard explained that his grandfather, who was an apostle before him, died when President Ballard was only a boy. Since President Ballard’s parents were not active members of the Church, he never heard his grandfather give an address, something which has been “one of the great sadnesses” of his life.
However, President Ballard felt a connection to his grandfather as he visited Boston, where he gave a devotional on Oct. 20 to 12,000 Latter-day Saints. President Ballard explained that the last trip his grandfather made before he died was also to Boston, so this visit had special meaning to him.
Recalling how beloved his grandfather was, President Ballard spoke about what he would have liked to have learned from him.
“I’ve often thought if I had known that this was going to happen to me — this matter of coming along many years later and moving about in his footsteps — I would’ve wanted to know more about what it meant to be an apostle.
“It’s been tender for me to be here and know that this was his last stand as a disciple of Jesus Christ,” he added. “He was so devoted to the Lord Jesus Christ and gave himself so completely in the service of the Master. So I feel obligated to do everything I can to declare and to teach that the gospel is once again on the earth.”