At his request, J. Spencer Kinard has been released from his assignment with the Mormon Tabernacle Choir.

The announcement was made Thursday by the First Presidency of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.Kinard, 50, has been the longtime narrator of "Music and the Spoken Word." The church said those duties will now be handled by others who in the past have been substitute commentators for the weekly choir broadcast.

The choir was informed of Kinard's resignation at their Thursday night rehearsal.

On Wednesday, Kinard resigned as vice president of news/public affairs for KSL-TV, according to William R. Murdoch, KSL's executive vice president and general manager. His resignation followed a period of unrest in the newsroom over rumors about his relationship with KSL anchorwoman Jennifer Howe. Both have denied any improprieties.