Letter of Counsel Regarding the Presiding Quorums or Inspired Direction about World Church Leaders (January 20th, 2015)

Archived Version

The church must reduce expenses because of budget limits. One way to reduce expenses is the
early retirement of some world ministries employees. Several World Church leaders suggested
they retire early to reduce expenses.

General officers called by the president of the church are released from their callings by the
president before they retire. I prayerfully considered early retirement for some general officers
for several months. Now the Spirit lets me offer the following counsel:

1. Susan D. Oxley is released with honor as an apostle and member of the Council of Twelve Apostles effective June 30, 2015. When she is released from the Council of Twelve she will retire from church employment after over 12 years of service. When she is released, Sister Oxley will be reinstated to the priesthood office of evangelist. The Spirit’s witness is that Apostle Oxley has faithfully fulfilled her apostolic calling since her ordination June 4, 2005. Her ministry as an apostle included a time of devastating loss in her life. Apostle Oxley brought inspired apostolic witness and leadership in various field assignments. Her field assignments included Western USA Mission Field, Canada and Pacific Mission Field, and Canada and Australia Mission Field. She also helped develop material for the international church. Apostle Oxley’s wisdom, commitment to compassionate justice, and calming spirit blessed the leading councils and quorums of the church. The Spirit celebrates her return to the ministry of evangelist. Her apostolic experience will enrich her ministry as a spiritual companion and minister of blessing to her loved ones, the church, and the world.

2. James A. Poirier is released with honor as a counselor to the presiding bishop and member of the Presiding Bishopric effective June 30, 2015. When he is released from the Presiding Bishopric, Brother Poirier will retire from church employment after over 19 years of service. He will continue to serve in the priesthood office of bishop. The Spirit confirms that Bishop Poirier has effectively fulfilled his calling as a member of the Presiding Bishopric since his ordination April 16, 2013. Bishop Poirier provided valuable experience and perspective in the Presiding Bishopric. As a Presiding Bishopric member and as bishop of Canada, he began important initiatives that will bless the church in Canada and throughout the world. These initiatives are increasing funding for mission. They will result in more people becoming disciples of Jesus Christ in Community of Christ in Canada and elsewhere. While Bishop Poirier is retiring from church employment, he will continue to serve as a gifted minister of generosity and as a respected mentor to others.

The president of the church is responsible for releasing general officers according to the Spirit’s guidance and individual circumstances. No more action is necessary.

I want to thank Apostle Oxley and Bishop Poirier for accepting the calls from God that I presented to them. I know they were hesitant as they thought about the demanding roles they were called to accept. Fortunately, they responded with faith, courage, and willingness to serve.

Also, we thank the families of Apostle Oxley and Bishop Poirier for the sacrifices they made for all of us. We pray God will bless Apostle Oxley, Bishop Poirier, and their families with the joy and peace of the gospel in the years ahead.

In the Peace of Christ,

Stephen M. Veazey, president of the church
January 20, 2015
Independence, MO USA