President Boyd K. Packer gives health update at mission president seminar

Published: Saturday, June 25 2011 8:43 p.m. MDT

PROVO — With a little dose of humor, President Boyd K. Packer, president of the LDS Church's Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, gave an update on his health as he spoke Saturday to a group of new LDS mission presidents.

"They installed a pacemaker to keep my heart beating," he said with a wry smile. "I quite like that."

Speaking to the annual Mission Presidents Training Seminar at the Missionary Training Center in Provo, President Packer took advantage of the opportunity to explain what happened last Sunday, when it was reported that he collapsed following the rededication of an LDS meetinghouse in Cambridge, Mass. He said there are two sets of steps one must negotiate in coming down from the stand at that meetinghouse.

"I got through the first set of steps all right," President Packer said, "but on the second set I looked down and the second step was gone. I couldn't see it."

President Packer said he didn't collapse or fall, but he was still taken to a hospital for observation. Upon returning to Salt Lake City, he saw his doctors and the decision was made to implant the pacemaker.

With typical good humor, President Packer quoted a few lines from a variation of Edgar A. Guest's "It Couldn't Be Done": "They said it couldn't be done, but with a smile he went right to it. He tackled the job that couldn't be done, and by George, he couldn't do it."

"So," he said, chuckling with the congregation, "we will see."

President Packer was joined by most of the rest of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles at the seminar. Following his introductory update, he spoke to the new mission presidents on the subject, "The Voice That Can Be Felt Rather than Heard."

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