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Ulisses Soares

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Ulisses Soares
Elder Ulisses Soares (46802114135).jpg
Quorum of the Twelve Apostles
March 31, 2018 (2018-03-31)
Called byRussell M. Nelson
LDS Church Apostle
April 5, 2018 (2018-04-05)
Called byRussell M. Nelson
ReasonDeaths of Robert D. Hales and Thomas S. Monson, reorganization of the First Presidency
Presidency of the Seventy
January 6, 2013 (2013-01-06) – March 31, 2018 (2018-03-31)
Called byThomas S. Monson
End reasonCalled to the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles
First Quorum of the Seventy
April 2, 2005 (2005-04-02) – March 31, 2018 (2018-03-31)
Called byGordon B. Hinckley
End reasonCalled to the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles
Personal details
BornUlisses Soares
(1958-10-02) October 2, 1958 (age 61)
São Paulo, Brazil
Alma materPontifical Catholic University of São Paulo, (B.A., accounting and economics, 1985)
National Institute of Postgraduate Study, (MBA)
Spouse(s)Rosana Fernandes Morgado (1982–present)
ParentsApparecido and Mercedes Carecho Soares

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Ulisses Soares (born 2 October 1958) is a Brazilian religious leader and former businessman who serves as a member of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS Church). He has been a general authority since 2005 and served as a member of the church's Presidency of the Seventy from January 2013 until his calling to the Quorum of the Twelve in March 2018. He is the LDS Church's first apostle from South America, being from Brazil. As a member of the Quorum of the Twelve, Soares is accepted by the LDS Church as a prophet, seer, and revelator. Currently, he is the junior and fifteenth most senior apostle in the church.[1]

Early life and education[edit]

Soares was born in São Paulo, Brazil, the son of Apparecido Soares and Mercedes Carecho Soares. He is of Amerindian and European descent.[2] His family joined the LDS Church when he was about five, after learning of the church from an aunt who had joined. The LDS branch they first attended met in a rented space above a bakery, and Soares has spoken of fond memories of the smells of baking bread wafting into sacrament meeting.[3] As a young man, Soares served as an LDS Church missionary in the Brazil Rio de Janeiro Mission.

Soares was educated in Brazil, receiving a bachelor's degree in accounting and economics from the Pontifical Catholic University of São Paulo in 1985. He also received an MBA from the National Institute of Postgraduate Study.[4]


Prior to his call as a general authority, Soares was employed as the director of temporal affairs for the LDS Church's Brazil South Area. At the time of his call as a general authority, he was working on a special assignment for the church's Presiding Bishopric in Salt Lake City.[5] He had worked for Pirelli Tire Company and other multi-national corporations as an auditor and accountant. He was convinced by Donald L. Clark to take a job as a senior auditor for the church. After Clark was called as a mission president, Soares replaced him as director of temporal affairs.

LDS Church service[edit]

Soares has served in the LDS Church as an elders quorum president, counselor in a bishopric, member of a stake high council and regional welfare agent. In 1995, Soares was appointed the first president of the São Paulo Brazil Cotia Stake.[6] Soares served as president of the Porto Portugal Mission from 2000 to 2003.

General authority seventy[edit]

In 2005, Soares became a member of the LDS Church's First Quorum of the Seventy. In his first talk at a general conference in October 2005 he emphasized that the gospel is about people not programs.[7] He has served as a counselor and as president of the church's Brazil South Area and as a counselor in the Africa Southeast Area. On January 6, 2013, Soares became a member of the Presidency of the Seventy, replacing Walter F. González. In that capacity, Soares had responsibility for the church's North America Southeast Area,[8] along with the Idaho and North America Central areas.[9] While serving in that assignment, Soares participated in the dedications of the Meridian Idaho, Fort Collins Colorado, and Star Valley Wyoming temples.[10][11]

Quorum of the Twelve[edit]

On March 31, 2018, Soares was sustained as a member of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles.[12] He and Gerrit W. Gong were sustained to fill the vacancies created from the deaths of Thomas S. Monson and Robert D. Hales.[13] He was widely reported as one of the first two "non-white" members of the Quorum of the Twelve.[14][15] The appointments of Soares and Gong was called the church leadership's "most significant nod to global diversity since the 1978 revelation on the priesthood" by LDS studies scholar Patrick Q. Mason.[16] Marcus Martins, an LDS expert in sociology and a native of Brazil, said that the call of Soares showcased the potential for international service of many Brazilian members of the LDS Church.[17]

The first major tour Soares did as an apostle was to multiple countries in western Africa.[18] He traveled with Neil L. Anderson, and their wives, to Senegal, Nigeria, Ghana, and the Ivory Coast.[19] As of June 2018, he is assigned to serve on the church's missionary executive council.[20] He is also serving as a member of the church's human resources committee and as the apostle with responsibility for the church's Africa West and Central America areas.[21]

In 2019, Soares dedicated the church's Fortaleza Brazil Temple in June[22][23][24] and the Arequipa Peru Temple in December.[25][26] Also in December 2019, Soares was a speaker at the First Presidency Christmas Devotional.[27] Along with all members of the First Presidency and Quorum of the Twelve, he participated in the dedication of the Rome Italy Temple in March 2019, along with accompanying Dallin H. Oaks in the dedication of the Barranquilla Colombia Temple in December 2018.[28] Also in 2019, Soares visited an immigrant welcome center and the Texas Central Foodbank to review the operation aid being given by the church and to show general support.[29][30] In September 2019, Soares presided at a "Face to Face" worldwide broadcast for young adults, along with Craig C. Christensen, a general authority seventy. The event originated from the campus of Brigham Young University, with questions answered in Spanish, Portuguese, and English to generate international participation in the event. This was the church's first worldwide broadcast which originated using multiple languages.[31]

In February 2020, Soares did a multi-country ministry tour of Central America, during which he visited the president of Guatemala and the leader of Costa Rica's legislature.[32][33][34][35]

Personal life[edit]

Rosana and Ulisses Soares

Soares married Rosana Fernandes Morgado in the Sao Paulo Brazil Temple in October, 1982. They served as missionaries in the Brazil Rio de Janeiro Mission at the same time, but did not meet until they were both at a stake dance in Sao Paulo.[36] They have three children.


  1. Apostolic seniority is generally understood to include all ordained apostles (including the First Presidency and the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles. Seniority is determined by date of ordination, not by age or other factors. If two apostles are ordained on the same day, the older of the two is typically ordained first. See Succession to the presidency and Heath, Steven H. (Summer 1987). "Notes on Apostolic Succession" (PDF). Dialogue: A Journal of Mormon Thought. 20 (2): 44–56..
  2. "The Mormon church's newest — and most diverse — apostles say they're just regular people humbled by the calling".
  3. Swensen, Jason (31 March 2018). "Church members rejoice at calling of first Asian American, Latin American apostles".
  4. "Elder Ulisses Soares", Liahona, May 2013, p. 139.
  5. "Elder Ulisses Soares". ChurchofJesusChrist.org.
  6. 2008 Deseret Morning News Church Almanac (Salt Lake City, Utah: Deseret Morning News, 2007) p. 323.
  7. "Elder Ulisses Soares called to serve as first Latin American apostle in LDS Church - KSL.com".
  8. "Elder Soares called to Presidency of Seventy", Church News, December 15, 2012, p. 13.
  9. Morgenegg, Ryan (12 November 2015). "Changes announced for Area Presidencies". Church News.
  10. Salt Lake Tribune article on Star Valley Temple dedication
  11. Salt Lake Tribune article on dedication of the Fort Collins Colorado Temple
  12. "5 curiosidades sobre nosso novo apóstolo, o Élder Ulisses Soares". 31 March 2018.
  13. "Latter-day Saints Sustain New First Presidency in Solemn Assembly: Two new leaders named to the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles", Newsroom, LDS Church, 2018-03-31
  14. "Mormon Church Selects 2 Senior Leaders, and Neither Is a White American".
  15. McCombs, Brady. "Mormons make history with Brazilian and Asian leaders".
  16. Peggy Fletcher Stark "Nelson makes history with his choice of Mormonism’s first Asian-American and Latin American apostles", Salt Lake Tribune, March 31, 2018
  17. "Nelson makes history with his choice of Mormonism's first Asian-American and Latin American apostles".
  18. [https://www.deseretnews.com/article/900023248/lds-elders-gong-soares-first-3-months-as-apostles.html article on Soares
  19. "Elder Andersen and Elder Soares Visit West Africa Area - Church News and Events".
  20. "New mission leaders prepare to take off from 'Missionary Training Center launch pad'". 29 June 2018.
  21. Deseret News June 30, 2018]
  22. article on the Forteleza Brazil Temple dedication
  23. Salt Lake Tribune article on Temple dedication
  24. Diario do Nordeste article on the dedication of the Forteleza Brazil Temple
  25. article on dedication of the Arequipa Peru Temple
  26. Salt Lake Tribune article with section on the Arequipa Temple dedication
  27. article from the Provo Daily Herald highlighting quotes from the First Presidency Christmas Devotional
  28. KUTV article on the dedication of the Barranquilla Colombia Temple
  29. Deseret News article on Soares' visit to Teas institutions
  30. Salt Lake Tribune article covering same events
  31. article on Face to Face event
  32. Salt Lake Tribune article on Soares' Central America ministry tour
  33. an earlier source also covering Soares' Central America tour
  34. El Mundo article on Soares in El Salvador
  35. Prensa Libre article on Soares' talk
  36. "Elder Ulisses Soares: A 'witness' for the world", LDS Church News, April 13, 2018


External links[edit]

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints titles
Preceded by
Gerrit W. Gong
Quorum of the Twelve Apostles
March 31, 2018 –
Succeeded by

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