All It Takes for a Home Primary—A Home

    “All It Takes for a Home Primary—A Home,” Ensign, Jan. 1975, 72–73

    All It Takes for a Home Primary—A Home

    “Where distance makes it impossible for children to attend a ward or branch Primary, the president should recommend to the bishop that a home Primary be organized.” (Guide for Ward and Branch Primary Presidents.)

    In 1965 a newly baptized couple in the Germany North Mission wanted their four-year-old son to have the blessing of Primary lessons, but their branch had no Primary. A mission Primary leader counseled the young mother, however, in the organization of a home Primary, and supplied lessons and other materials. Playmates of the little boy from nonmember homes were invited to attend.

    By 1970 this small group had become the nucleus of a branch Primary that is still growing, and since then the mother has served as branch and district Primary president.

    In an isolated mining community in Queensland, Australia, a faithful young Latter-day Saint mother, a convert to the Church whose husband was not a member, began to hold home Primary for her children. On a visit to the area, Elder Thomas S. Monson of the Council of the Twelve encouraged her in teaching the gospel to her children. He also told her that if she were always kind to her husband, he would note the sweet spirit the gospel brought to their home and might, in time, join the Church. Five years later, in 1972, her faithfulness was rewarded as her husband and their youngest son were baptized. Home Primary had helped bring the spirit of the gospel into their home.

    From all parts of the world come testimonies of the value of home Primaries. There are now more than 1,000 such Primaries in the Church, and their implementation is encouraged in all areas where families are isolated from ward or branch Primaries, or where illness will keep a child away for longer than six months.

    “It is the responsibility of stake, mission, and district Primary leaders to encourage the organization of home Primaries where distance makes it impossible for children to attend a ward or branch Primary,” counseled Sister LaVern W. Parmley, formerly general president of Primary. “Stake (or district) Primary leaders must give ward (or branch) Primary presidencies a clear understanding of their duties with regard to organizing and nurturing home Primaries.”

    The ward (or branch) Primary presidency should make every effort to find out which children cannot attend Primary and recommend to the local priesthood authority a mother who could conduct Primary in her home. The mother is called to her position by proper authority and a setting-apart blessing may be arranged.

    A well-organized Home Primary can be a delightful experience for the children involved. It should include prelude music, opening and closing prayers, a three-minute reverence presentation, singing, and a lesson. A regular meeting time each week is recommended. Appropriate training for the teacher-mother, lesson manuals, reverence presentations, and music materials should be made available, and ward or branch leaders may visit the home to share their time and talents.

    “A mother’s love for her children and her sincere desire to teach them the gospel will qualify her to receive the blessings of her Father in heaven in becoming a successful home Primary leader,” Sister Parmley counseled.