Policies and Announcements

    “Policies and Announcements,” Ensign, Nov. 1981, 111–12

    Policies and Announcements

    The following items were printed in the Bulletin, September 1981.

    Touring and Performing Groups. An increasing number of touring and performing groups, directly or indirectly associated with Church organizations, are attempting to schedule tours to various parts of the world. Some of these groups apparently are soliciting support from priesthood leaders and members in the areas they would like to visit. Occasionally they ask members to arrange housing and other accommodations for them.

    Touring and performing groups should not solicit support and tour accommodations from priesthood leaders and members. Local leaders should feel no obligation to respond to such requests.

    Ancestral File. Many families have submitted their four-generation records to the Genealogical Department for placement in the Ancestral File. Those who have not submitted their records are encouraged to do so. Local leaders should encourage newly-converted families to learn about the genealogical program of the Church and to submit records of their progenitors to the Ancestral File if other family members have not already done so.

    All members are encouraged to expand their genealogical research beyond four generations. To avoid duplication, it would be helpful if records were submitted through family organizations. A family organization might consist of a couple and their children. It may be expanded to include grandchildren. Ancestral family organizations may also be developed from descendants of any common ancestral couple. They can coordinate genealogical activity on common ancestral lines and provide resource material from which families can draw to complete family histories.

    The family organization should coordinate family research and submit additional records to the Ancestral File. Families should follow the same guidelines for accuracy, verification, and documentation that were used in submitting four-generation records. (See “Policies and Announcements; The Four-Generation Program,” Ensign, March 1981, p. 78.)

    The Ensign and Melchizedek Priesthood Members. It has been suggested that the monthly First Presidency Message in the Ensign magazine be considered as a home teaching message. All Melchizedek Priesthood quorum and group leaders should encourage their members to subscribe to the Ensign during the annual magazine campaign and at other times when encouragement is needed. Leaders may consider assisting quorum members who are financially unable to subscribe.

    Ward Choirs. Every ward and branch should have a choir. Ward choirs continue to be essential in the Church program. Choir members may be called or invited to sing. Priesthood leaders should arrange for the best possible time and place for choir rehearsals, which may be held before or after the Sunday meetings, or at other times to fit local circumstances. Choirs should perform often—at least twice a month would be appropriate. By singing appropriate hymns and simple anthems, choirs can sing well, perform often, and broaden participation while keeping rehearsal time to a minimum.

    Member Support of Deseret Industries. The mission of Deseret Industries is to provide employment and work training for handicapped members. A vital factor in fulfilling this mission is an adequate supply of usable items that can be repaired, refurbished, and sold. In areas where Deseret Industries stores are located, local leaders should encourage members to donate liberally their surplus goods that otherwise might be discarded or disposed of at garage or rummage sales, swap meets, or similar exchanges. Stake and ward organizations in these areas should not conduct fundraising activities that divert goods from the Deseret Industries program.

    Picture for the Young Women. A meetinghouse library picture of a young woman and the Savior (VVOQ5531, $.30 each) is available at the Salt Lake Distribution Center. The pictures are available for purchase by individuals and meetinghouse libraries.

    In letters dated 17 August, 25 August, and 10 September 1981, respectively, and all signed by President Ezra Taft Benson, the following items were addressed.

    Administrative Meetings. “Ward and stake leaders should hold administrative meetings either on Sunday, at times that interfere least with family and home-centered activities, or during the week at times that require the least travel.

    “If meetings are held on Sunday, the schedule should (1) preserve an adequate block of family and individual time for gospel study, personal spiritual development, gospel teaching in the home, and appropriate service; and (2) allow leaders, as often as possible, to travel with their wives and children to and from Sunday meetings.”

    1982 Stake Quarterly Leadership Meetings. “Effective January 1, 1982, regional meetings will be discontinued. Quarterly stake leadership meetings will take the place of regional meetings as a time for training and inspiring local leaders. The first three quarterly meetings will be priesthood leadership meetings; the fourth quarterly meeting will be an auxiliary leadership meeting. You will receive information on the supporting resource materials for these meetings.”

    Family Home Evening. “The First Presidency frequently emphasizes the importance of weekly family home evenings as a prime opportunity for parents to teach and strengthen their families. In addition to family gospel study on Sundays, Monday nights are reserved for family home evening, which may include instruction in gospel principles, love, and harmony, and may include other family activities. The Family Home Evening manual should be available for every family.

    “Priesthood leaders should emphasize the importance of family home evening in sacrament, leadership, and quorum meetings and should set the example by holding a weekly family home evening.”