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SALT LAKE CITY — LDS Church officials announced that two of its top leaders will not attend the upcoming LDS general conference.
LDS Church President Thomas S. Monson, and Elder Robert D. Hales of the LDS Church’s Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, will not attend sessions of the 187th Semiannual General Conference, held Saturday and Sunday.
Elder Hales, 85, was admitted to the hospital “several days” ago for treatment of “pulmonary and other conditions,” according to a statement early Thursday afternoon by Eric Hawkins, spokesman for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
“To permit their continued medical attention to Elder Hales, his doctors have determined that he should not participate in the church’s general conference this weekend,” Hawkins said.
Elder Hales was absent during the April 2011 general conference due to health challenges, but returned the following conference in October 2011. For a time, he delivered his remarks during general conference while sitting, but has recently been able to stand at the pulpit.
"I continue to work with doctors and physical therapists to regain my strength," Elder Hales said in a statement in October 2011. "I am grateful for the faith and prayers that made it possible for me to participate in general conference and resume my responsibilities. I am touched by the many kind expressions of love and support shown to me and for your continued prayers."
Later Thursday afternoon, Hawkins confirmed that President Monson will also not attend meetings this weekend. He cited an earlier statement church officials released in May saying President Monson would no longer attend regular meetings.
"Because of limitations incident to his age, President Monson is no longer attending meetings at the Church offices on a regular basis," the statement said. "He communicates and confers with his counselors on matters as needed."
President Monson was absent Saturday during the church's women's session of general conference.
Elder Hales was sustained a member of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles on April, 2, 1994, and has served in that capacity since that time. President Monson was sustained the church's 16th president on Feb. 3, 2008.
This story will be updated as more information is released.