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Changes in leadership

Church consolidates 4 areas

The First Presidency has announced changes in area leadership assignments and the Church's administrative areas.

Elder Neil L. Andersen has been called as the senior president of the Presidency of the Seventy replacing Elder Earl C. Tingey. Elder Jay E. Jensen has been called as the newest member of the Presidency of the Seventy.

In addition, the Church's administrative areas were consolidated in Europe, Australia, New Zealand, and the Pacific Islands. In January, the First Presidency announced that the Europe Central and Europe West Areas will be combined to form the Europe Area and the Australia and New Zealand/Pacific Islands Areas will be combined into the Pacific Area.

"As we have prayerfully considered the matter of how to more effectively establish the Church in all the world as required by the revelations, we have felt impressed to reduce the current number of areas and to place upon Area Presidencies an increased responsibility for the operation of the Church," the Jan. 24 letter said.

All changes will be effective Aug. 1.

The Presidency of the Seventy, under the direction of the First Presidency and the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, supervises domestic areas of the Church, assists with international administration and guides ongoing training of area and local leaders.

Elder Neil L. Andersen was called to serve as a member of the First Quorum of the Seventy in April, 1993, at age 41. Prior to his call as senior president, he was serving as a member of the Presidency of the Seventy, with supervisory responsibility for the North America Southwest Area. He also works closely with the leadership of the Brazil Area. He previously supervised the Idaho Area and served as president of the Brazil South Area, executive director of the Audiovisual Department, assistant executive director in the Priesthood Department, and as first counselor in the general Sunday School presidency.

Elder Jay E. Jensen was serving as executive director of the Curriculum Department and editor of Church Magazines at the time of his call to the Presidency of the Seventy. He has served in area presidencies in Central and South America and in different areas in the United States and Canada, and as the Church's director of Scriptures Coordination. He was called to full-time Church service June 6, 1992, being named to the Second Quorum of the Seventy and to the First Quorum of the Seventy on April 1, 1995.