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Prince’s Research Excerpts: Priesthood & Mormonism – 1969

Below you will find Prince’s research excerpts titled, “Priesthood, 1969.” You can view other years here.

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1969:      Mar.:  Calling of stake executive secretary.

“Following is a copy of a letter addressed by the First Presidency to all stake and mission presidents under date of January 22, 1969, regarding the appointment of an executive secretary to serve the stake priesthood executive committee:

In a recent meeting of the First Presidency and Quorum of the Twelve approval was given to call an Executive Secretary to the Stake Priesthood Executive Committee.

The Executive Secretary (not to be a high councilor) will assume those responsibilities for Priesthood Home Teaching previously assigned to a member of the stake high council.

In addition he has been designated as the adviser to the stake presidency on missionary plans, educational opportunities, and military relations.  Further information on these responsibilities will be given to you at regional meetings, in Priesthood Bulletins, and in other Church publications.

The Executive Secretary will meet regularly with the Stake Priesthood Executive Committee and the Stake Council and may be assigned to prepare the agenda for these meetings.

We are pleased to make this announcement and suggest you give immediate consideration to the call of a worthy priesthood holder with executive ability to this important new position.

Immediate steps should be taken to select and call this executive secretary to the stake priesthood executive committee.  In addition to his major responsibilities for home teaching and other duties outlined in the above letter, he should attend regional meetings, where he will join with other stake and ward leaders in the priesthood sessions.”  (“The Priesthood Bulletin,” 5(1):1-2, Mar., 1969)

Mar.:  Calling of the Ward Executive Secretary.

“The office of ward executive secretary, who serves the ward priesthood executive committee and the ward council, should be listed on page 74 of the General Handbook of Instructions, No. 20, under ‘Priesthood Ordinations and Appointments of Church officers. . . .

In addition to his major responsibilities for home teaching, the ward executive secretary now will become an adviser to the bishopric in counseling youth in three important areas–educational opportunities, military relations, and preparation for full-time missions.”  (“The Priesthood Bulletin,” 5(1):2, Mar., 1969)

Mar.:  Conferring MP in the mission field.

“Many mission presidents are short of leadership and are desirous of ordaining men to the office of elder when they have been members of the Church for only a few months.  Although they have been members but a short time, many men have strong testimonies and have demonstrated leadership qualities which are much in demand.  Mission presidents are at liberty to confer the Melchizedek Priesthood upon recent adult male converts when, after a careful, searching interview, they are found to be prepared and worthy.  They do not need to wait for a year to elapse before making such ordinations.”  (“The Priesthood Bulletin,” 5(1):12, Mar., 1969)

5 Apr.:  Creation of “Stake Executive Secretary.”

“A recent letter from the First Presidency instructed stake presidents to call an executive secretary to the stake priesthood executive committee.  His major responsibility is home teaching.  He is likewise the adviser to the stake presidency on military relations.  Through home teaching reports he remains constantly alert to the needs of men in the military service and those preparing to go.

He keeps the stake presidency alerted.  As their ‘intelligence officer,’ he keeps them up against their job.  They, through the stake priesthood executive committee and the stake council, may then take action to benefit their servicemen.”  (Boyd K. Packer, 5 Apr., 1969; CR Apr., 1969, pp. 105-106)

5 Apr.:  Purpose of Home Teaching.

“Some of the things that can be done through home teaching–and this is really the purpose of this talk tonight–to inspire obedience to the commandment to teach the gospel in the home, and particularly to hold the home evening as directed, are as follows:

To the stake presidents:

1. That under the leadership of the stake president, there be in every stake an evening–other than Sunday–designated and exclusively reserved as home evening.  I recently heard a former stake president who said the bishops in the stake he had presided over did not even answer the telephone on this evening.  When it rang, one of the children would gently say, ‘We are holding home evening.  Are you?’

2. Let each stake president see to it that he himself regularly conducts a weekly home evening with his own family, and that he inspires each of his counselors, clerks, high councilors, and all members of his stake council to do likewise.

I had written in these remarks: It will be in order for Representatives of the Twelve to emphasize this matter in their regions.  I was very happy day before yesterday to hear President Tanner tell these Regional Representatives directly to hold their own home evenings and then take it up with their stake presidents.

3. That in their monthly oral evaluations, stake presidents motivate bishops and branch presidents to implement the family home evening program in their own homes and in their wards and branches.

Now to the bishops:

4. Let every bishop and branch president not only conduct a weekly home evening with his own family, but also so teach, exhort, and inspire his counselors, clerks, and ward council members that they follow his example.

5. That in their monthly oral evaluations with their priesthood leaders, bishops and branch presidents accomplish three things: One, inspire these leaders to conduct home evenings with their own families.  Two, motivate them to inspire home teachers to hold home evenings with their own families, and to encourage the families they visit to hold home evenings.  Three, bishops should, at these interviews, receive a report from each priesthood leader on the status of home teaching in the families for whom he is responsible.

6. Let every home teacher (a) regularly conduct with his own family the kind of a home evening he would be proud to have the families he visits use as an example, and (b) carry into the homes of the families he is assigned to visit such teaching, encouragement, and spirit as will inspire them to observe home evening.  The home teacher should also render a complete report on each of his families to his priesthood leader each month in their interviews.”  (Marion G. Romney, 5 Apr., 1969; CR Apr., 1969, pp. 109-110)

1 May:  Can non-Priesthood be in SS presidency?

“We have been advised that as far as possible administrative positions in the Sunday School should be held by members of the Priesthood.  Where this is not convenient, it is permissible to have nonbearers of the priesthood serving as assistants.”  (Instructor 104(5):173, 1 May, 1969)

3 Oct.:  70s assistance to missionaries.

“Several years ago, the body of seventies of the Church undertook to assist the young men and women in foreign lands.  From among the seventies was raised a sum of money to assist these prospective missionaries.  On the basis of the missionary and his family’s doing all they are able to do, the seventies give assistance for the remainder.

I am happy to report to the seventies this afternoon that to date the number of missionaries assisted has been more than 600 in number.  Currently the number in the field is 275.  In no mission has a worthy applicant been refused.  We have had assistance from elders quorums, high priests quorums, and from individuals not attached to any quorum.  One of the large contributions comes from a man not a Church member.  We should like to let all these people know that their contributions are of material assistance in the project.

It is difficult for many seventies to personally go on fulltime missions.  They are rearing families and must support them.  By supporting these young men and women in the missions, they in a sense project themselves into the mission field and thus discharge a part of their responsibility.

Now in lands all over the earth our young men and women look forward to being able to become missionaries.  On their return home they become the leaders in branches and districts.  They are our future investment in stake presidents and bishops for stakes yet unborn.

The quorums of seventy with a comparatively small membership of 23,000 may know that they are not laboring in vain.  They are building a house to the Lord, and the fruits of their effort will continue to rain down blessings on their heads.”  (S. Dilworth Young, 3 Oct., 1969; CR Oct., 1969, pp. 41-42)