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Author Topic: Changes in the handbook  (Read 176 times)

cook

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Changes in the handbook
« on: April 05, 2021, 05:55:53 am »
I came across this: (lds living I think)

“In recent months, our minds have been drawn with particular focus to Latter-day Saints who are single adults. We want you to know that you are loved—and so very needed in building the kingdom of God. For this reason, we felt to search carefully for policies and misperceptions that might limit the Church service of single members. What we found was that Church policy already allows for broad service by single adults—and it could be even broader. We feel today’s policy adjustments can make a big difference. We hope your leaders know to put you to work—including as counselors in bishoprics, on high councils, and as organization presidents and counselors.”

In the singles section introductions it says: "The leadership positions include ward and stake organization presidencies, elders quorum presidencies, bishopric counselors, high councilors, and stake presidency counselors."

Help me out here. What has changed or has anything?Is it only more clearly spelled out that also single men, young single men can be called as counsellors in bishoprics or to high councils, relief society presidents etc? Has there been a problem with this in the US? I have to ask it that way, because we very often tend to have one YSA man in the bishopric and at least one of those in the high council as well. Had plenty of YSA sisters in RS presidencies and even more in YW and Primary presidencies... (Like both my husband and brother served as YSA's in the bishopric and high council (not at the same time) after their missions, I served in RS and Primary... The executive secretary for the stake has most often been a YSA as well as the sister secretary to the Stake Presidency etc.

So I don't quite get what the change is...
 
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AndrewR

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Re: Changes in the handbook
« Reply #1 on: April 05, 2021, 06:02:56 am »
I too saw no difference. I think it is a way to ensure that there is no bias. My own YSA daughter is the ward Primary president. I have known many YSA HC's.
Don't ask me, I only live here.
Nauvoodle since March 2005 #1412
 
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Hobbes

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Re: Changes in the handbook
« Reply #2 on: April 05, 2021, 10:01:19 am »
I'm aware of no policy change, but would hazard a guess that it's clarity to address a cultural issue. I was a single adult until about 30 and served in YSA wards and family wards. My experience was that some leaders are as you two have experienced and treat single members without differentiating them: having them serve in any position that would be appropriate based on their skills and abilities and not their marital status. But others clearly viewed single members as lesser and unsuited for "real" responsibility. Personal experience included seeing this with lay members, Bishops, and Stake Presidents. Having an explicit statement to the contrary seems like a helpful step in addressing that prejudice.
 
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Jason

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Re: Changes in the handbook
« Reply #3 on: April 06, 2021, 12:15:26 am »
I think there was cultural expectations that young single adults would not be called in too many leadership positions. They were probably seen more as advanced youth groups rather than fully functioning adults. This wasn't done by everyone, but it was enough of a cultural thing to be noticed.
 
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dyany

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Re: Changes in the handbook
« Reply #4 on: April 08, 2021, 01:56:12 pm »
In my experience, single members were discouraged in bishoprics except for YSA/student wards. In fact, I was told it was forbidden until my early 20s. I know it was only a few years ago that they started allowing single or divorced persons be hired as CES instructors. I know of an amazing, faithful man that was released from his stake YM leadership role the second he was divorced (his wife had left the church and was not very nice, so it was not even a 50/50 fault thing).

I'm sure part of the issue is Idaho Mormon culture, but it's definitely a thing.
 
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Roper

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Re: Changes in the handbook
« Reply #5 on: April 08, 2021, 04:05:23 pm »
It was a thing as well in Texas 20 years ago. Single men could only serve as counselors in the Bishoprics of YSA wards They could not serve as Bishop of any ward and could not serve as counselors in family wards. Additionally, single men could not teach Seminary and could not serve in Primary. I don't know how much of that was policy and how much was cultural. But it was definitely practiced.
All grown-ups were once children...but only few of them remember it. ― Antoine de Saint-Exupéry, "The Little Prince."
 
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Sparky

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Re: Changes in the handbook
« Reply #6 on: April 08, 2021, 06:50:40 pm »
I think it was policy back then, because I remember it from when I lived in Delaware and Maryland, a far cry from Texas and Idaho!
 
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cook

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Re: Changes in the handbook
« Reply #7 on: April 09, 2021, 12:45:06 am »
It could be then the policy never reached Europe 😁. Like said, some 20 years ago my young single brother and husband servedvin bishoprics and high councils. 18 years ago when my husband was a bishop one of his councellors was a single divorced man. Often in the Stake YM presidency as well as YW has been young single people. Etc...

I think still a single man cannot serve as a bishop. And I can understand that. Quite often the issues people want to talk about are marital and about children. It may be more comfortable for the bishop to discuss those having some idea about it. But more so, for the role I think it is important for the bishop have someone as close as a spouse to be there for the support.
 
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dyany

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Re: Changes in the handbook
« Reply #8 on: April 10, 2021, 01:21:52 pm »
My guess is that in areas with more sparse priesthood holders (like Europe), they didn't have or enforce that policy because they didn't have the latitude to do so. It was considered more of a 'best practice' kind of thing. And now that SO many are single or divorced here, we have a similar paucity of married, worthy priesthood holders.
 
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