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Prince’s Research Excerpts: Priesthood & Mormonism – 1984

Below you will find Prince’s research excerpts titled, “Priesthood, 1984.” You can view other years here.

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1984:    Jan.:  HT PPIs should be monthly, not quarterly.

“Effective 1 January 1984, the frequency of interviews between home teachers and Melchizedek Priesthood quorum and group leaders and between quorum leaders and the bishop may be monthly rather than quarterly.  Interviews should be brief so that priesthood leaders and home teachers are not unduly separated from their own families.”  (“Bulletin,” No. 3, Jan., 1984)

Mar.:  Melchizedek Priesthood Handbook.

Stake Presidency interviews with MP leaders:

“The stake presidency conducts a personal interview at least quarterly [1975 handbook said “regularly”, but specified no interval] with each quorum president and group leader and ensures that each is taught the duties of his calling.”  (p. 2)

Room in each ward for MP leaders.

“A room in the ward meetinghouse should be provided for the use of Melchizedek Priesthood quorum presidencies and group leaders.  It should include a locking filing cabinet, desk, and telephone (optional).  The room should not be used exclusively by quorum leaders but may be used for classroom purposes as well.”  (p. 6)

Quorum leader visits to homes:

“Elders quorum presidents and high priests and seventies group leaders should personally visit their members and get to know their strengths and needs.  Quorum leaders should coordinate these visits with home teachers.

Melchizedek Priesthood quorum and group leaders should interview their quorum members at least annually.  For those brethren serving as home teachers, the interview could take place during a regular home teaching interview.  For brethren not serving as home teachers, a special interview should be scheduled.

Interviews should center around priesthood and family duties, avoiding any areas of worthiness or confidentiality that should be discussed only with the bishop.”  (p. 7)

Prospective Elders needn’t be deacons & teachers first.

“If prospective elders are not already priests, they should be ordained priests as soon as they are worthy.  It is not necessary to ordain them deacons or teachers first.  They may be advanced to the office of elder in the Melchizedek Priesthood when they have gained sufficient understanding of the gospel and are worthy.”  (p. 11)

No specific waiting period for ordination to MP.

“Recently baptized adult male members may be ordained to the office of elder in the Melchizedek Priesthood after they have served as priests and have demonstrated their worthiness.  No specific time as a member is required.”  (p. 24)

Ordination to the office of Seventy.

“Worthy brethren are ordained to the office of seventy by or under the direction of the stake president.  The high council approves each candidate, and each candidate is sustained in a general session of stake conference or stake general priesthood meeting before being ordained.”  (p. 24)

Ordination to the office of High Priest.

“Brethren are ordained high priests when they are called to the stake presidency, high council, or bishopric (bishop’s counselors in student wards need not be ordained high priests) and when other circumstances warrant.”  (p. 24)

Guidelines for performing ordinances.

“The one performing the ordinance should have prepared himself to be guided by the Holy Spirit.  The ordinance must–

1.  Be authorized by the presiding authority who holds the proper keys and priesthood, if the ordinance is one that is recorded on the records of the Church.  Priesthood holders need no prior authorization to perform ordinances that are not recorded on the records of the Church, such as consecrating oil, administering to the sick, and giving father’s blessings.

. . . .

When many brethren take part in performing an ordinance or blessing, each one places his right hand on the person receiving the ordinance and his left hand on the shoulder of the brother to his left.

. . . .

When ordinances are performed by or for deaf members, arrangements should be made to enable all concerned to understand the ordinances.

Brethren may perform ordinances outside their own wards when they are known to be worthy and qualified members of the Church.  Unless they are so known, they must have a temple recommend or a Recommend to Perform an Ordinance.”  (p. 27)

(Melchizedek Priesthood Handbook, 1984; PBCT0044, 3/84)

7 Apr.:  Limited tenure for new members of 1st Quor. of 70

“As you know, there are two vacancies in the Council of the Twelve Apostles, incident to the passing of Elder LeGrand Richards and Elder Mark E. Petersen.  We shal take action to fill these vacancies this morning, and we shall also add to the First Quorum of the Seventy.

In the case of the Seventy, we are putting into effect the practice long generally followed and accepted in the Church with reference to other offices.  Members of the First Quorum of the Seventy are General Authorities in every sense: in calling, in responsibility, in power and authority.  Theirs have been permanent appointments, and those presently serving will continue so to serve.  However, tenure of appointment is not important insofar as the work is concerned.  Calls to serve as bishop, stake president, Regional Representative, mission president, temple president, and president of the auxiliary organizations are for a period of years.  The individual is then honorably released and others are afforded the opportunity of service.  After much prayerful consideration, we have called six men, mature and tested through long years of service, to become members of the First Quorum of the Seventy, to serve for periods of three to five years, just as a mission president or temple president would do, and then to be released with honor and appreciation.  While they so serve, they will be General Authorities with every right, power, and authority necessary to function.  They will be expected to give their full time to this work while they are in office.  This procedure, we feel, will provide a constant infusion of new talent and a much widened opportunity for men of ability and faith to serve in these offices.”  (Gordon B. Hinckley, 7 Apr., 1984; CR Apr., 1984, pp. 3-4)

Apr.:  MP study guides will be reprints from past ones.

“In an effort to stabilize Church curriculum and to curtail ever-increasing costs of producing curriculum items, some of the best materials of the past are being reprinted.  As part of this plan, several of the Melchizedek Priesthood personal study guides are going to be reprinted in future years.  For example, the 1982 Melchizedek Priesthood personal study guide, Put On Thy Strength, O Zion, is being reprinted for Melchizedek Priesthood study in 1986.  Since only minor changes will probably be made in future reprintings, brethren are encouraged to save all their study guides for future use.”  (“Bulletin,” No. 6, Apr., 1984)