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Spotlight: Stake

Getting To Know President James Carlson

Posted: Monday - August 7, 2023

This month we'll be getting to know our stake presidency and bishops! We're grateful for their inspiration and leadership. We're grateful for their families who support them.

We're starting with stake president, James D. Carlson. He's answered some questions for us.

How did you find Jesus in your life?

When I turned 12 my father took me to the Tabernacle in Salt Lake City to attend the General Priesthood session. I remember sitting on the wooden benches with my view of the pulpit partially blocked by a column. I will never forget when President Spencer W. Kimball stood and started to speak in his raspy but sweet voice. From the top of my head to the soles of my feet, I was filled with the Holy Ghost testifying to me. It was a feeling so strong and powerful that I will never forget. I knew I was in the presence of a living prophet. Prior to this experience my testimony of Jesus Christ had been nurtured but it was impressed upon me individually at this moment and I felt Jesus knew me and I was a son of God.

How did you meet your spouse?

I met DeAnn while I was serving a mission in Charlotte, North Carolina. I had the opportunity to teach and baptize her friend. I knew she was planning to go out to Idaho for school and when she went to school we kept in touch. I returned home and we started to date, mostly long distance but it all worked out and has been the best decision of my life.

What General Conference talk has been on your mind lately and why?

President Russell M. Nelson talk on “The power of Spiritual Momentum” If we are looking for peace in our lives we need to seek peace and harmony and end any personal conflicts that rage in our hearts. He gives us 5 points to help us maintain positive spiritual momentum.

  1. Get on the covenant path and stay there.

  2. Discover the joy of daily repentance.

  3. Learn about God and how He works.

  4. Seek and expect miracles.

  5. End conflict in your personal life.

What is your go-to ice cream flavor?

One scoop chocolate and one scoop mint chocolate chip.

How many children, in-laws and grandchildren do you have?

Six children, three girls and three boys, four of whom are married. We have three grandchildren, two boys and one girl, and another boy coming in September.

Where else have you lived and how long have you lived in North Carolina?

Utah and California. We have lived in North Carolina for 28 years.