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Prince’s Research Excerpts: Priesthood & Mormonism – 1941

Below you will find Prince’s research excerpts titled, “Priesthood, 1941.” You can view other years here.

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1941:  Jan.:  Stake MP Committee functions.

“The stake presidency with the approval of the high council shall appoint a Melchizedek Priesthood Committee with a minimum of five members, consisting of a member of the stake presidency, a high councilor, a High Priest to represent the High Priests’ quorum, a Seventy, and an Elder.  Additional members may be appointed if necessary to do well the work of the committee.  From the committee the chairman shall choose, with the approval of the stake presidency, four assistants–a High Counselor, a High Priest, a Seventy, and an Elder.  A secretary of the committee may also be appointed.

1. To train quorum officers in their duties so that they might become effective in their leadership.

a. By conducting a monthly leadership meeting with the officers and leaders of the quorums and groups.  (See Dec., 1940, Era, p. 744.)

b. By stimulating and assisting them to make their work more effective.  (As to the Seventies, this relates exclusively to local activities in stakes and wards, and does not conflict with the system of supervision of the First Council of Seventy.)

c. By keeping in touch with the work and activities of all the Melchizedek Priesthood quorums in the stake.

d. By visiting the meeting of every quorum and group at least quarterly.

e. By encouraging regular council meetings of the quorum presidency.

f. By seeing that instructions of the Council of Twelve relative to quorum activities are carried out.

2. To report promptly to the stake presidency any vacancy in a quorum presidency.

3. To make a quarterly report and to collect quarterly quorum reports and send them to the Council of Twelve.”

(“Melchizedek Priesthood,” IE 44(1):38, Jan., 1941)

Jan.:  Elders’ Conventions.

“The question has been asked whether it is permissible to hold stake conventions of Elders.

The presiding brethren have ruled that such conventions may be held quarterly if so desired by the stake presidency.  They will necessarily be under the direction of the stake presidency and the stake Melchizedek Priesthood committee.

The purpose of these conventions should be to stimulate the Elders’ quorums into greater activity and to furnish such information as these quorums may need for their best progress.”  (“Melchizedek Priesthood,” IE 44(1):38, Jan., 1941)

Apr.:  Responsibility of f quorums to enforce Word of Wisdom

“Every Priesthood quorum in the Church, Melchizedek and Aaronic, may well be reminded that the First Presidency has charged it ‘with the responsibility of (a) keeping its own members free from the vice of using alcohol and tobacco, and (b) assisting all others to do likewise.’  This charge was contained in a letter to the Council of Twelve, published in The Improvement Era, February, 1938, and it is still in force.

It is regrettably the case that reports show nearly every quorum of Melchizedek Priesthood in the Church has a few members who tamper more or less with tobacco and liquor.  The approved method of winning these members to abstinence is our universally used missionary method of personal contact.

And the requirement is made of the presidency of every Priesthood quorum, Melchizedek and Aaronic, that they see that this method is employed with every addict in their quorum.  We are engaged in a struggle for the right.  We cannot, we must not give up.  So wise, energetic, tactful and persistent efforts should continue with every addict until victory is won.  Let those responsible see that the Quarterly Reports show progress in these matters.”  (“Melchizedek Priesthood,” IE 44(4):232, Apr., 1941)

Apr.:  Extension plan “simplified”.


To insure wider application of the Aaronic Priesthood Extension Plan, to make it more definitely a part of the Aaronic Priesthood program, and to eliminate duplication of committees, meetings, and reports, a simplified plan of organization and procedure has been adopted.  An outline of the new plan follows:

Simplified Plan of Organization and Supervision of Aaronic Priesthood Committees Including Operation of the Aaronic Priesthood Extension Plan and Separate Committees for Stake and Ward Adult Aaronic Priesthood.


Stake Aaronic Priesthood Committee

Whose duties and responsibilities under the stake presidency include promotion and supervision of the Aaronic Priesthood Extension Plan in the wards.

. . . .

This committee will meet once a month as a stake committee, and once a month with ward chairmen and quorum advisers in the regular leadership meeting.

. . . .


Responsible for all quorum activities, and also for the success of the Aaronic Priesthood Extension Plan.

. . . .

This committee is to hold two meetings each month.  The first meeting, to be held during the second week of the month, is to be devoted to a discussion of quourm matters, including Standard Quorum Awards, quorum projects, assignments, etc.

. . . .

The second meeting is to be held during the fourth week of the month, and will be devoted to the Aaronic Priesthood Extension Plan, including correlation of leadership, activities, and missionary work among inactive members.

. . . .

What the New Simplified Plan Will Do

1. Eliminate the Stake Aaronic Priesthood Extension Committee.  Its duties, with one exception, (see No. 2 below) will be taken over by the Stake Aaronic Priesthood Committee.

2. Transfer correlation of social, fraternal, and recreational activities of these three groups, which are conducted on a stake basis, to the Stake Budget Committee in settin gup its year-round program for all stake groups, as provided in the Budget Plan.  It is provided that the stake chairman of Aaronic Priesthood is to be a member of the Stake Budget Committee.

3. Center responsibility for all phases of Aaronic Priesthood activity of the stake in the Satke Aaronic Priesthood Committee under the stake presidency, and in the ward, in the bishopric and the Ward Aaronic Priesthood Committees.

4. Combine the Aaronic Priesthood quorum activity report and the Extension Plan report into one simplified, clear-cut, easily understood report form.

5. Separate the Adult Aaronic Priesthood work from regular quorum supervision, setting up separate stake and ward committees for adults, with their own program of missionary work, supervision, and reports.  These committees will operate entirely independently of the Stake and Ward Aaronic Priesthood Committees, but in close cooperation, under the guidance of the member of the stake presidency assigned to Aaronic Priesthood in the stake, and under the bishopric in the ward.

Explanatory Notes

Under the new procedure, the Stake Aaronic Priesthood Extension Committee is eliminated entirely.  Its duties are now assigned to the Stake Aaronic Priesthood Committee, with the exception of the correlation of stake social, fraternal, and recreational activities, which, under the Budget Plan, are assigned to the Stake Budget Committee.  In this correlation of activities, the Stake Aaronic Priesthood Committee will cooperate, as all such activities which concern boys or young men of Aaronic Priesthood age become a part of the Aaronic Priesthood program.

It now becomes the responsibility of the Stake Aaronic Priesthood Committee to promote the Extension Plan in the wards, to confer with bishoprics and ward Aaronic Priesthood chairmen, to encourage them to adopt the new plan and put it into effect at once.

In the ward the Extension Plan will operate very much as at present, but with the Aaronic Priesthood chairman and his committee given more direct responsibility under the bishopric.

The bishop will continue to preside in his capacity as president of the Aaronic Priesthood of the ward.  His counselors will also continue in their present responsibilities–one, preferably the first counselor, directly responsible for the Teachers’ age group; and the other, preferably the second counselor, responsible for the Deacons’ age group.  The bishop will personally be responsible, as at present, for the Priests’ age group.

Responsibility for the routine details of the Ward Extension Plan will rest with the Ward Aaronic Priesthood Chairman, who becomes special assistant to the bishopric in the Extension Plan.  It will be his duty, under the direction of the bishopric, to see that the regular monthly meeting is called, to see that the individual record cards are properly filled out, checked, and segregated in age groups for each monthly meeting; to contact the Sunday School and Y.M.M.I.A. groups to insure their attendance and participation in the monthly meeting; and, with his committee, and secretary to follow through the operation of the Extension Plan.

At the monthly meeting the bishop may delegate as much of the detail as desired to the Ward Aaronic Priesthood Chairman; but, in all cases, the three members of the bishiopric, as the presidency of the Ward Aaronic Priesthood, and responsible for all activities which concern members of the Aaronic Priesthood, are to attend, to direct the meeting, and to take charge of their departments when the meeting divides for consideration of specific problems of their respective age groups.

In these separate departments, the bishop will meet the leaders and advisers of Priests’ groups consisting of the Priests’ quorum adviser, the Sunday School teacher of the Advanced Senior class, and the M Men leader.  The first counselor, preferably, will meet with leaders of the Teachers’ age group consisting of the Teachers’ quorum adviser, the Sunday School teacher of the Senior class, and the Explorer leader.  The secound counselor, preferably, will meet the leader of the Deacons’ age gropus consisting of the Deacons’ quorum adviser, the teachers of both the Junior and Advanced Junior classes in the Sunday School, and the Scoutmaster.

In each of the groups the names of inactive members will be discussed and assigned for personal visits.  It is recommended that two names be assigned to each leader, except the members of the bishopric, each month for visit and report.  In making visits, every possible effort should be made to discover the causes of inactivity.  When reports of visits are made, these causes should be carefully considered, and where they concern leadership, lack of preparation, program activities, or any other cause within the control of the Extension group, every possible effort should be made to remove the causes as quickly as possible.

An active, dependable secretary, for the stake committee, and one for the ward committee are indispensable to the success of this plan.  One secretary should serve in the ward for both the Aaronic Priesthood Committee and the Extension Plan.


Stake Organization

Member of Stake Presidency–Adviser

Stake Chairman

(To be a member of the High Council)

First Counselor

(To be selected at large)

Second Counselor

(To be selected at large)

These members may, or may not be members of the High Council, as desired by the stake presidency.


This committee should meet at least once each month to consider ward reports, progress of work in the wards, and ways of making this missionary work most effective.  It should also meet with ward adult committees in the regular monthly leadership meeting to discuss reports, exchange suggestions for increasing the effectiveness of the work and the development of social programs and Welfare Plan projects.

Ward Organization

Two, four, six or more members, according to the size and needs of the ward.

This committee is to direct and carry on active missionary work among adult members of the Aaronic Priesthood.  Being a missionary committee, specifically for adult members of Aaronic Priesthood, it will function separately from the Ward Aaronic Priesthood Committee or other missionary groups.


At least once a month.

At this meeting experiences should be exchanged, reports of progress considered, and plans developed for greater effectiveness in missionary contacts.

A definite program should be provided for social activities for the adult group.

Participation in the Church Welfare Plan should be a part of the adult Aaronic Priesthood activities in every ward.”

(“Aaronic Priesthood,” IE 44(4):234-236, Apr., 1941)

4 Apr.:  Heber J. Grant’s call to the Apostleship.

“There are two spirits striving with us always, one telling us to continue our labor for good, and one telling us that with the faults and failings of our nature we are unworthy.  I can truthfully say that from October, 1882, until February, 1883, that spirit followed me day and night telling me that I was unworthy to be an Apostle of the Church and that I ought to resign.  When I would testify of my knowledge that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of the Living God, the Redeemer of mankind, it seemed as though a voice would say to me: ‘You lie!  You lie!  You have never seen Him.’

While on the Navajo Indian reservation with Brigham Young, Jr., and a number of others, six or eight, on horseback, and several others in ‘white tops’–riding along with Lot Smith at the rear of that procession, suddenly the road veered to the left almost straight, but there was a well beaten path leading ahead.  I said: ‘Stop, Lot, stop.  Where does this trail lead?  There are plenty of foot marks and plenty of horses’ hoof marks here.’  He said, ‘It leads to an immense gulley just a short distance ahead, that it is impossible to cross with a wagon.  We have made a regular “Muleshoe” of miles here to get on the other side of the gulley.’

I had visited the day before the spot where a Navajo Indian had asked George A. Smith, Jr., to let him look at his pistol.  George A. handed it to him, and the Navajo shot him.

I said, ‘Lot, is there any danger from Indians?’

‘None at all.’

‘I want to be all alone.  Go ahead and follow the crowd.’  I first asked him if I allowed the animal I was riding to walk if I would reach the road on the other side of the gulley before the horsemen and the wagons, and he said, ‘Yes.’

As I was riding along to meet them on the other side I seemed to see, and I seemed to hear, what to me is one of the most real things in all my life, I seemed to see a Council in Heaven.  I seemed to hear the words that were spoken.  I listened to the discussion with a great deal of interest.  The First Presidency and the Council of the Twelve Apostles had not been able to agree on two men to fill the vacancies in the Quorum of the Twelve.  There had been a vacancy of one for two years, and a vacancy of one for one year, and the Conference had adjourned without the vacancies being filled.  In this Council the Savior was present, my father was there, and the Prophet Joseph Smith was there.  They discussed the question that a mistake had been made in not filling those two vacancies and that in all probability it would be another six months before the Quorum would be completed, and they discussed as to whom they wanted to occupy those positions, and decided that the way to remedy the mistake that had been made in not filling these vacancies was to send a revelation.  It was given to me that the Prophet Joseph Smith and my father mentioned me and requested that I be called to that position.  I sat there and wept for joy.  It was given to me that because of my father having practically sacrificed his life in what was known as the great Reformation, so to speak, of the people in early days, having been practically a martyr, that the Prophet Joseph and my father desired me to have that position, and it was because of their faithful labors that I was called, and not because of anything I had done of myself or any great thing that I had accomplished.  It was also given to me that that was all these men, the Prophet and my father, could do for me; from that day it depended upon me and upon me alone as to whether I made a success of my life or a failure.

There is a law, irrevocably decreed in Heaven before the foundations of this world, upon which all blessings are predicated, and when we obtain any blessing from God, it is by obedience to that law upon which it is predicated.

It was given to me, as I say, that it now depended upon me.

No man could have been more unhappy than I was from Ocboter 1882, until February, 1883, but from that day I have never been bothered, night or day, with the idea that I was not worthy to stand as an Apostle, and I have not been worried since the last words uttered by Joseph F. Smith to me: ‘The Lord bless you, my boy, the Lord bless you; you have got a great responsibility.  Always remember this is the Lord’s work and not man’s.  The Lord is greater than any man.  He knows whom He wants to lead His Church, and never makes any mistake.  The Lord bless you.'”  (Heber J. Grant, 4 Apr., 1941; CR Apr., 1941, pp. 4-5)

6 Apr.:  Appointment of Assistants to the Twelve.

“The First Presidency and Twelve feel that to meet adequately their great responsibilities and to carry on efficiently this service for the Lord, they should have some help. 

Accordingly it has been decided to appoint assistants to the Twelve, who shall be High Priests, who shall be set apart to act under the direction of the Twelve in the performance of such work as the First Presidency and the Twelve may place upon them.

There will be no fixed number of these assistants.  Their number will be increased or otherwise from time to time as the necessity of carrying on the Lord’s work seems to dictate to be wise.”  (First Presidency, 6 Apr., 1941, IE 44:269[May, 1941])

24 Apr.:  Minutes of 1st Council of 70 meeting.

“Excerpt from the Minutes of the First Council of Seventy Temple Meeting, April 24, 1941.  (Note:  This was the last meeting attended by Brother Rulon S. Wells.  He went to the hospital two days later.)

MISCELLANEOUS:  Elder Wells stated that it has been the policy, in considering the brethren for filling vacancies in quorum presidencies, to say nothing to the men involved until the First Council has approved their selection, but that in many cases it may be well to allow the stake president to approach the men, advising them they are being recommended subject, of course, to the interview that will procede their setting apart.

* * *

Elder Wells commented that the First Presidency held all the powers and keys of authority, The Twelve also, and the First Seventy also, according to the Revelations, and that the First Quorum of Seventy could do anything they may be authorized to do by the Presidency or The Twelve.  He further stated that the equality of power existing between these three quorums of the Priesthood (First Presidency, Twelve, and First Quorum of Seventy) was not vested in any other group or body.

Brother Wells pointed out three special offices in the Priesthood which the Lord had specified by whom the ordinations should be performed:  Bishops–by the First Presidency; Patriarchs–by The Twelve; Seventies–by The First Seven Presidents, but that being quorums of equal power and authority that either of the three quorums (First Presidency, Twelve, and First Seventy) could do anything the others could do.  He also said that the office of Apostle is to be a special witness, and that a Seventy is a special witness, and that in his judgment the 144,000 High Priests referred to in Revelations are Seventies.

Elder Wells stated that it used to be the practice to ordain presidents of Seventy rather than setting apart presidents of Seventy.

President Ivins reported that when the Saints left Nauvoo four members of the First Quorum of Seventy were on the High Council to look after the affairs of the people.

Elder Ivins suggested that if the practice of ordaining presidents of Seventy were employed it would be impossible to remove them except through disfellowshipment or excommunication.  President Wells then said that President John Taylor gave instructions to the effect that ‘if presidents of Seventy were neglectful and unworthy the First Council has no authority to take away their office but  but merely to suspend them pending action of the First Quorum of Seventy.’

Elder Wells stated that the present use of High Councils is more executive than judicial, they being used as aids to the Stake Presidents, whereas their assignment is judicial in its nature.”  (LDS Archives, Pq M251.3 B855 195-?; xerox)

1 Jun.:  When should priesthood meetings be held?

“In the May, 1940, number of The Instructor were published two letters from President RKudger Clawson, of the Council of the Twelve.  One was dated October 28, 1937; the other, March 30, 1940.  Both letters concerned the ‘time of holding Priesthood meetings,’ with respect to Sunday School.

Instead of republishing those two letters in this issue of The Instructor, it has been deemed necessary to re-state the substance in another form, so that there shall be no uncertainty concerning the point.

1.  Priesthood meetings should not be held at the same time as the Sunday School in any ward or branch in the Church.

2.  Priesthood meetings should be held either before or after the Sunday School, the time to be chosen by the Bishopric and the Priesthood.

3.  If the Priesthood meeting is held before the Sunday School, it should be dismissed by 10:20, so as to allow those present to attend the classes in the School.

4.  In the event that the Priesthood meeting is held after the Sunday School, it is suggested that the School begin at 10:00 a.m., instead of at 10:30, so that the Priesthood may meet at 11:30, the meeting to cover fifty minutes or more, at the discretion of those presiding or attending.

5.  Segments of a Priesthood quorum, it is advised, should meet once a month, instead of every Sunday, the time and place to be approved by the Stake Presidency.

6.  ‘On the Fast Sunday of each month these weekly and monthly meetings will be suspended, and all members are urged to attend the Sunday School and the Fast meeting to follow, for which credit for Priesthood activity on that day will be given.’

Only two of these six items, however, concern directly the Sunday School.  They are the first and the sixth, that no Priesthood meeting may properly be held during Sunday School time and that all the Priesthood be urged to attend the Sunday School classes.

This order was made and issued under the authority of the Council of Twelve, and, as stated above, the letters were signed by the President of that quorum.”  (Instructor 76(6):292-293, 1 Jun., 1941)

1 Jun.:  Enlistment work correlates with AP extension plan

“The Presiding Bishopric has announced that the Aaronic Priesthood extension plan will soon be perfected in every ward of the Church.  The purpose of the extension plan is to correlate and stimulate the enlistment efforts of all Church organizations in bringing inactive boys of the ages 12-20 back into Church activity.

Nature of the Aaronic Priesthood Plan:

Under the plan an Aaronic Priesthood correlation committee will be set up in each ward and will consist of the following:

The bishop, who will act as Chairman, bishop’s counselors, the ward clerk, and all teachers of boys 12-20 in Priesthood, Sunday School, M.I.A. and Seminary.  (In the Sunday School this will include the enlistment director and Secretary and will include women teachers as well as men.)

The correlation Committee will meet once a month, at which time the names of boys inactive for more than three months will be brought to the attention of the committee and plans for bringing various individuals into activity discussed.  At these meetings each teacher will be assigned two boys to work with during the following month in an effort to restore them to activity.  These efforts will be reported at the next meeting and written reports filed.

How the Sunday School Enlistment Plan is Affected:

The Aaronic Priesthood extension plan is hailed with joy by the Sunday Schools of the Church which should grow as the result of such work.  The General Sunday School Board has pledged the support of the Sunday Schools of the Church in furtherance of the plan.

The Aaronic Priesthood plan does not lessen the need of the Sunday School enlistment program and this work will continue as heretofore with these exceptions:

1.  Wherever a ward Aaronic Priesthood correlation committee is organized and is functioning, the actual missionary contacts of boys 12 to 20 years of age, who have been inactive for more than three months, will be made under the direction of the Aaronic Priesthood correlation committee, rather than by the Sunday School enlistment committees.  Boys of these ages, who have been inactive for less than three months will still be contacted by the Sunday School enlistment committees.

When contacts with inactive boys are made by the Aaronic Priesthood correlation committee and boys are called to re-enter the Sunday School, the Sunday School enlistment workers will be responsible for welcoming them and keeping them active.  On the Sunday School enlistment records such a boy should be accounted for as having been brought into activity by the enlistment program.

2.  Sunday School teachers of boys 12 to 20 (men or women) together with the Sunday School enlistment director and enlistment secretary will be members of the ward Aaronic Priesthood correlation committee and will be required to meet with that committee once a month and each will be required to do active missionary work with two inactive boys in the ward.

The presence of the Sunday School enlistment director and secretary on the correlation committee will enable the Sunday School to co-operate fully in this matter and will provide the Sunday School with a record of boys actually contacted.

The enlistment work must not lag.  We must go forward.  Sunday School efforts should be doubled, rather than lessened; encouraged by the fact that the entire Church is awakening to the seriousness of our problems and coming in a measure to our aid.

The Enlistment Committee.”

(Instructor 76(6):293, 1 Jun., 1941)

1 Jul.:  Questions concerning Priesthood & Administration.

“The ten questions submitted by Elder John A. Widtsoe were partially answered by members of the Council of the Twelve as follows:

1. What is the difference between an office in the Priesthood and an administrative office in the Church?

A. A man who has received an office in the Priesthood may use the power and authority of the office in his personal affairs; but not for Church affairs, in Church administration, except when he is called upon to do so by the proper authority.

2. Why cannot High Priests officiate as Seventies, when they may officiate as Elders, and in all Aaronic Priesthood officers?  (See D&C 107:10; also Gospel Doctrine, pp. 148, 149)

A. All holders of the Melchizedek Priesthood may perform any of the duties under that Priesthood, when called upon to do so.

Elders, Seventy and High Priests, for ** example, may ordain men to any office in the Melchizedek or Aaronic Priesthood when properly authorized to do so.

The restrictions placed in practice, upon the various offices by the authority of the First Presidency, is to preserve an order among the holders of the Priesthood.

The special functions or callings of these offices are those set forth in the Doctrine and Covenants.

3. Is there a Priesthood office higher than that of High Priest?  (See D&C 107:12)

A. The office of Apostle is higher than the office of High Priest.  It is the highest office in the Priesthood.

4. In what respect does the office of Apostle differ from other offices in the Melchizedek Priesthood?  (Note duties of Priests)

A. The office of Apostle includes all the powers and authority of all the other lesser offices in the Priesthood; in short, it includes all the power and authority needed for the perfection of the Church in these days.

5. When the Twelve ordain Bishops, is it by their own authority or delegated authority?  (See D&C 68:14, 15, 19; 107:17)

A. The Twelve ordain Bishops by delegated authority.  Others could be delegated to do so.

6. Why are the duties of the Twelve and of the Seventy almost identical in wording?  (See D&C 107:33, 34; Gospel Doctrine, p. 183)

A. The duties of the Twelve and the Seventy are the same with respect to the promulgation of the Gospel.

7. Do the members of the First Council of the Seventy have Priesthood authority above the body of the Seventy?  (Note History of the Church, Vol. II, pp. 417, 418)

A. Members of the First Council of Seventy hold the same office in the Priesthood as any Seventy; but as members of the administrative council, they have greater authority than the body of the Seventy.

8. Why have men been ordained apostles without being made members of the Council of the Twelve?  (Note, Paul?, Joseph and Oliver, J. M. Grant, Daniel H. Wells, John W. Young, Brigham Young, Jr., Joseph F. Smith, Sylvester Q. Cannon, etc.)

A. Men have been ordained apostles without being made members of the Council of Twelve.  This implies that those who authorized the ordinations conceived the apostleship to be an office in the Priesthood, the highest which might become an administrative Church office by calling the holder into the Council of Twelve.

Joseph Smith and Oliver Cowdery were not, as far as the records show, ordained apostles in the Church.

9. Why were Seventies allowed to assist in Nauvoo Temple ceremonies?

A. The Seventy labored in the Nauvoo Temple on a par with all other holders of the Priesthood, called to serve there.

10. What provision has the Lord made for the supervision of a Church increasing in membership?

A. The Lord has provided for the supervision of a Church increasing in membership by the use of

a.  Existing revelations and authorized practices

b.  New and continuous revelations.”

(“Questions Concerning Priesthood and Church Administration,” 1 Jul., 1941; LDS Archives, Pq M251.3 I88 195-?; xerox)

21 Aug.:  Advancing men in the Melchizedek Priesthood.

“For a long time the General Authorities of the Church have felt that there has not been enough care in advancing and ordaining men to offices in the Priesthood.  There are in the Church today thousands of men holding the Melchizedek Priesthood who are inactive.  Many of these men never understood the full significance of the meaning of Priesthood and what the oblication is upon them to magnify their callings when ordained.  The Lord has made very clear in several revelations, notably sections 20:38-66, 84:32-42, and the entire revelation known as section 107, the importance of faithfulness and cleanliness of life on the part of those who are ordained to the Priesthood.

This laxness has resulted in many men who have received the Priesthood, and who are not really worthy, returning to their evil habits and indifference, if these were ever forsaken.  Because of this, it has been deemed wise to ask care and diligence on the part of presiding officers in the Wards and Stakes, in seeing that men who are candidates for ordination are men of faith, living in full accord with the principles of the Gospel and the doctrines of the Church.  Moreover these presiding officers should faithfully impress upon all candidates for ordination the seriousness and responsibility which ordination to the Priesthood entails, and the dreadful consequences of disobedience or the violation of the covenants which are received when offices in the Priesthood are accepted.  (See D&C 84:32-42.)

The candidate will first be notified to meet with and be interviewed by the Stake President, or a counselor in the Stake Presidency, who will question carefully the candidate and require him to fill in the questions on the back of the certificate.  The endorsement of the Bishop of the Ward in which the candidate lives and that of the President of the quorum to which he belongs, are required, as also the approval of the High Council before the name is presented to the Priesthood of the Stake for approval.

The new ‘Recommendation for ordination in the Priesthood’ is to replace all other forms and each candidate is required to answer all the questions in person and sign the recommendation as indicated on its back.”  (First Presidency Circular Letter, 21 Aug., 1941.  In Clark, Messages of the First Presidency 6:128-129; also in IE 44(10):616, Oct., 1941)

Sep.:  Quorum rehabilitation projects.

“It is an objective of the Church Welfare Plan that every Priesthood quorum in the Church have a quorum project.

The main purposes of projects are to develop group participation, promote unity and the spirit of cooperation, provide jobs, and rehabilitate quorum members.

The term ‘project’ is commonly applied to many activities in Priesthood quorums.  The following types of activities are most commonly undertaken:

1. Budget assignments made by the region and the stake.  These assignments are intended to produce necessary food and clothing for the members of the Church who need assistance.  Quorums which fill their budget assignments are doing a good and necessary work but they are not fulfilling their entire duty unless they have a quorum make-work or rehabilitation project.

2. Activities which grow out of our regular Church work.  Ward teaching, visiting the sick, temple excursions, cottage meetings, increasing attendance at Church and socials, Word of Wisdom, increasing payment of tithing and monthly payment of fast offerings.  These activities are essential but are generally not considered as ‘projects’ in fulfilling the objective of the Church to have a project in every quorum.

3. Make-work and rehabilitation projects.  A quorum should report only this type of project when reports are called for as to whether or not the quorum has a project in operation.

In order to facilitate the selection of a project and stimulate group thinking, the Northern Utah Region prepared an outline of approximately thirty make-work and rehabilitation projects that could be undertaken by a quorum.  This list has been made available to all stakes.  The list includes building projects for churches and private homes, beautification projects, furniture and household equipment manufacture and repair, gardening projects, and projects to develop new industries or save existing industries.  Educational projects include training in efficient money management and also training in how to find and hold a job.

Quorums are not limited to projects included on this list.  Resourcefulness, initiative, common sense, and good judgment are to be exercised by all.  There is a tremendous power that comes from organized group thinking.  It is the duty of quorum officers to harness that power and turn it into productive channels. . . .

The project is supervised by quorum officers and the chairman of the Personal Welfare committee.  Supervision should be constant and dependable.  The advice and assistance of the ward bishopric and the Ward Welfare committee should be given, if necessary.

The progress of the project is reported at each weekly meeting of the Ward Welfare committee.  We encourage this committee to have each meeting well planned with a definite order of business.  Rather than merely reporting how bad conditions are, we suggest that the meetings be constructive in nature.  We recommend that it also be a regular work meeting and be held on a separate night rather than at the end of some other meeting.”  (“The Selection, Organization, and Supervision of a Quorum Rehabilitation Project,” IE 44(9):535, Sep., 1941)

Nov.:  New Priesthood Ordination Forms.

“In August of the present year, a new form of recommendation for ordination in the Melchizedek Priesthood was issued with the approval and at the suggestion of the First Presidency.  This form is to supersede other forms which previously have been in use.  On the twenty-first day of the same month the First Presidency sent a letter of instructions to all stake presidencies declaring the reason for this new form and asking that it be strictly complied with in recommending men for ordination.

Since that time numerous questions have been received asking for further instruction in relation to the proper procedure in recommending and ordaining candidates for the several offices in the Melchizedek Priesthood.  It is, therefore, necessary to make the following explanations:


Recommendations for advancement from the Aaronic Priesthood to the Melchizedek Priesthood, will, of necessity, originate with the bishoprics of the wards.  As soon as it can conveniently be prepared a proper form of recommendation for this purpose will be placed in the hands of the bishoprics throughout the Church.


Recommendations for ordination from the office of Elder to Seventy will not originate with the bishop of the ward, but with the president of the stake, since the stake president presides over the Melchizedek Priesthood in the ward.  The usual endorsement of the First Council of Seventy will also be obtained as in the past in addition to the regular requirements of the recommendation form.


Recommendations for Elders or Seventies to become High Priests will also originate with the president of the stake, not with the bishops.

These recommendation blanks should be kept by the stake clerk, in the office of the presidency of the stake.  Blanks should not be torn from the books and given to bishops to fill in for recommendations.


It is the duty of the president of the stake, or a counselor in the stake presidency, to interview each canditate for ordination, separately, and have the candidate fill in the questions upon the back and sign his name as provided.  If the answers are unfavorable, then the matter need go no further than the president of the stake and the candidate will be denied ordination.  If the answers on the back of the recommendations are all favorable, then it will be necessary for the president of the stake to obtain the endorsement of the bishop of the ward to which the candidate belongs and also the endorsement of his quorum president.  After this the name will be presented to the High Council for approval before it is presented to the Priesthood meeting or the conference of the stake.  The Lord has said:

No person is to be ordained to any office in this Church, where there is a regularly organized branch of the same, without the vote of the Church.  It has been interpreted that a vote of the Priesthood of the stake answers this requirement as well as the vote of the conference of the stake.

It shoulid be carefully noted that this ‘recommendation for ordination in the Priesthood,’ is not a certificate of ordination.  A certificate of ordination will be issued and signed by the president and the secretary of the quorum into which the candidate will go after ordination.  In the case of the ordination of Seventies, certificates of ordination will be issued from the office of the First Council of the Seventy, as heretofore.”  (“Melchizedek Priesthood,” IE 44(11):683-684, Nov., 1941)