General Authority Seventies are Church leaders called by the First Presidency to be “especial1 witnesses” and to assist the Twelve in “building up the church and regulating all the affairs” and “preaching and administering the gospel” throughout the world (Doctrine and Covenants 107:25, 34, 38). They act under the keys and direction of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles. In a revelation to Joseph Smith, the Lord taught, “It is the duty of the [Twelve Apostles] to call upon the Seventy, when they need assistance, to fill the several calls for preaching and administering the gospel” (Doctrine and Covenants 107:38).
General Authority Seventies serve full-time in the Church. They are generally released in the year they turn 70 years old and are granted emeritus status. Like the Quorum of the Twelve, they travel widely to teach the gospel of Jesus Christ, to support and counsel with Church leaders, and to assist in directing missionary work, humanitarian aid, temple building, family history, and other Church efforts. Some General Authority Seventies serve in the Presidency of the Seventy; others serve in Area Presidencies. Many Seventies live near Church headquarters and assist in directing important Church efforts from there.
Though all Seventies have equal authority, some are designated as General Authorities and others are designated as Area Seventies.