To paraphrase Jane Austen, it is a truth universally acknowledged that we each have a spirit Pokemon. (That would be a great start to a Pride & Prejudice/Pokemon mashup — Pride & Pokemon. Why has no one done this?!) In any case, even our beloved prophet and apostles have an inner Pokemon — and we’ve figured out exactly which ones.
Before you go any further, please know that this post is in no way an attempt to diminish the sacredness and seriousness of our First Presidency and Quorum of the Twelve’s callings. They are exemplary men who deserve our utmost respect and love, and this list of Pokemon is entirely based on personality traits and characteristics.
I’d like to think if they ever read this, they would laugh while simultaneously inwardly being like, “Yeah, I’m totes Pikachu,” or whatever. (Although in all fairness, they probably wouldn’t use the word “totes,” as all of them are 60+ years old…) In any case, this is a light-hearted, fun post meant to examine the similar qualities between our beloved prophet and apostles and our favorite Generation 1 Pokemon.
Ready? Time to catch ’em all. *Channels my inner Ash Ketchum and turns cap backward*
President Russell M. Nelson — Wartortle
Pokedex Entry: Its furry tail is very popular as a symbol of long life . . . and wisdom.
I had a hard time deciding between Wartortle and Chansey, as Chansey, like President Nelson, is a healer. Wartortle, though, with his tail as a symbol of long life and wisdom makes for a perfect President Nelson. Between our prophet’s 94 years of life, 71 years as a doctor, and 34 years as a general authority, his wisdom cup definitely runneth over.
President Dallin H. Oaks — Geodude
Pokedex Entry: Geodude has incredibly high defensive power, making it virtually resistant to any physical attacks.
I feel like Geodude’s Pokedex entry was LITERALLY (Chris Traeger voice) written about President Oaks. Due to President Oaks’ days as a lawyer and judge, his defense skills are off the charts and he can withstand and refute any argument thrown his way. Plus, he’s solid as a rock…type. Heh heh.
President Henry B. Eyring — Pidgey
Pokedex Entry: Among all the flying Pokémon, it is the gentlest and easiest to capture.
President Eyring is the sweetest, most gentle man, which makes Pidgey the perfect pick as his spirit Pokemon. President Eyring is everything you’d want in a grandpa, similar to how Pidgey is everything you’d want in a starter Pokemon.
President M. Russell Ballard — Vulpix
Pokedex Entry: Inside Vulpix’s body burns a flame that never goes out.
President Ballard’s devotion to the Lord and following His commandments has been present his entire life — which is probably why his friends called him “the bishop” in college. Like Vulpix, the fire in his heart is forever burning, whether that’s in regards to missionary work, his service as the Lord’s apostle, or simply being the best he can be.
Elder Jeffrey R. Holland — Arcanine
Pokedex Entry: Arcanine is known for its bravery and fierce loyalty.
Again, it’s like this Pokedex entry was written for Elder Holland himself! It’s so spot on. Considering that Elder Holland himself said, “The crowning virtue of love is always loyalty,” it’s no surprise that Arcanine is his spirit Pokemon. Plus, Arcanine breathes fire, and c’mon — if that ain’t Elder Holland, what is?!
Elder Dieter F. Uchtdorf — Articuno
Pokedex Entry: A legendary bird Pokémon that is said to appear to doomed people who are lost in icy mountains.
Firstly, of course Elder Uchtdorf had to be a flying Pokemon. I mean, obviously. Secondly, Articuno spends its time guiding the lost back to safety — just as Elder Uchtdorf guides the lost sheep back into the fold. Read Elder Uchtdorf’s “Come, Join With Us” from October 2013 and you’ll see exactly what I mean.
Elder David A. Bednar — Alakazam
Pokedex Entry: Its highly developed brain is on par with a supercomputer.
Here’s a little, 100% true factoid: I have to read Elder Bednar’s talks like five times to fully comprehend all of the doctrine he imparts in general conference. His talks are incredible (and sometimes incredibly complex). Like Alakazam, Elder Bednar’s got the brain of a supercomputer, and the rest of us are just trying to catch up.
Elder Quentin L. Cook — Dragonite
Pokedex Entry: It is a kindhearted Pokémon that leads lost and foundering ships in a storm to the safety of land.
When Elder Cook was a little boy, he ran back into the school during a fire drill (which he may not have even known was a drill!) to rescue shoes that belonged to a boy who was too poor to get another pair if his became damaged. Dragonite, like Elder Cook, is kindhearted and loves to lead others to safety, always taking the time to help those in need.
Elder D. Todd Christofferson — Onix
Pokedex Entry: Onix has a magnet in its brain. It acts as a compass so that this Pokémon does not lose direction.
Elder Christofferson is another one whose talks I typically have to read a few times to fully grasp. Throughout his life, Elder Christofferson has been stalwart, always striving to follow the Lord’s counsel — and just as Onix has an internal compass, so does Elder Christofferson. Because of that, he never loses direction and is constantly walking the covenant path.
Elder Neil L. Andersen — Lapras
Pokedex Entry: “A gentle soul that can . . . ferry people across the sea on its back.”
Elder Neil L. Andersen has always put his family first. When his children were growing up, the family read scriptures and sang a hymn every single night. Just as Lapras carries people across stormy seas, Elder Andersen has devoted his life to carrying his own family (and everyone he meets!) across the stormy seas of life.
Elder Ronald A. Rasband — Rattata
Pokedex Entry: Small and very quick . . . If you see one, it is certain that 40 more live in the area.
Growing up, Elder Rasband was actually pretty mischievous. His sister said that when he would be assigned chores, he’d inevitably get a different friend to do the chore for him every week! Just like Elder Rasband, Rattata can be pretty mischievous, tricking travelers and taking their food. Plus, Elder Rasband has never had any shortage of friends — and Rattatas are the same way, always following their friends and traveling in groups.
Elder Gary E. Stevenson — Hitmonchan
Pokedex Entry: This Pokémon has an indomitable spirit and will never give up in the face of adversity.
As a self-professed lover of “four-wheeling, snowmobiling, skiing, snowboarding, and various water sports,” it’s no surprise that Elder Stevenson was the COO of Icon Health and Fitness. Hitmonchan too is a lover of sport and has the spirit of a boxer who spends his life working toward a world championship. Plus, they share an “indomitable spirit” that leads them to success.
Elder Dale G. Renlund — Eevee
Pokedex Entry: Eevee is a unique Pokémon that can adapt to its environment by changing its form and abilities when evolving.
With the exception of Ditto, Eevee is probably the most adaptable Pokemon. Similarly, Elder Renlund has spent his life adapting to different circumstances, splitting his growing-up years between Utah and Sweden. No matter the circumstances in his life, Elder Renlund has learned to adapt and thank the Lord for each experience.
Elder Gerrit W. Gong — Pikachu
Pokedex Entry: Pikachu can help other Pikachu who are feeling weak by sharing its electric current.
When each general authority is sustained, another member of the Quorum of the Twelve writes a short biography about their life. Elder Gong’s, written by Elder D. Todd Christofferson, is titled “Elder Gerrit W. Gong: Love the Lord and Trust Him“. Elder Gong loves and trusts the Lord, just as Ash’s Pikachu implicitly trusts him and is devoted to following and pleasing him.
Elder Ulisses Soares — Clefairy
Pokedex Entry: This . . . Pokémon is friendly and peaceful.
I think this one is honestly best summed up in the words of Elder David A. Bednar: “Elder Soares is a pure, guileless, and innocent disciple of the Savior.” Clefairy is friendly and peaceful, and Elder Soares shares those same qualities. Plus, who doesn’t love Clefairy? And just like Clefairy, to know Elder Soares is to love him.
What do you think — do these Pokemon match their general authority counterparts? Comment your thoughts below!