And another Announcement!

Not an April Fool’s Day joke.

Home and Visiting teaching are no longer.

Priesthood, RS and YW will now do Ministering.

No prepared lessons from the Ensign. No visiting in every home. Visits done will include and be supplemented by phone, email, etc. No visit number reporting every month. The Church cares that we minister and care for others, not so much in how we do it.

The Church will email more details out to every member they have an email address for.

Also, details will soon be available at


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About rameumptom

Gerald (Rameumptom) Smith is a student of the gospel. Joining the Church of Jesus Christ when he was 16, he served a mission in Santa Cruz Bolivia (1978=1980). He is married to Ramona, has 3 stepchildren and 7 grandchildren. Retired Air Force (Aim High!). He has been on the Internet since 1986 when only colleges and military were online. Gerald has defended the gospel since the 1980s, and was on the first Latter-Day Saint email lists, including the late Bill Hamblin's Morm-Ant. Gerald has worked with FairMormon, More Good Foundation, LDS.Net and other pro-LDS online groups. He has blogged on the scriptures for over a decade at his site: Joel's Monastery ( He has the following degrees: AAS Computer Management, BS Resource Mgmt, MA Teaching/History. Gerald was the leader for the Tuskegee Alabama group, prior to it becoming a branch. He opened the door for missionary work to African Americans in Montgomery Alabama in the 1980s. He's served in two bishoprics, stake clerk, high council, HP group leader and several other callings over the years. While on his mission, he served as a counselor in a branch Relief Society presidency.

20 thoughts on “And another Announcement!

  1. how do adults serve with the 14-17 year olds while visiting? it is still pairing an adult with a minor.

  2. cj, Young men have been serving with the older men for many years. This change (among other things) formally extends that sort of service to young women.

    And seven temples. We were screaming.

  3. just like Genealogy became Family History. A name change is good for a rebooted program.

  4. Yes, it is huge. And an unnamed major city in Russia? Let the speculations begin…!

  5. CJ — in theory the young men (14 and up) should have been paired with their dads as home teaching companions. I hope that they will continue to recommend that, and also to pair the young women with their mothers.

  6. Joyce, in theory the YM were paired with their fathers if the father was a faithful home teacher, if not, the YM was to be paired with a faithful home teacher, so as not to perpetuate bad practice. Theory. I was companion to my father for maybe a year, as a youth. My father probably never missed (unless he was out of the country for an entire month, which happened rarely), and neither did I – I had less faithful Sr companions that I was asked to jump start. A challenge for a 15 year old. But then, I was called on my first Stake Mission at the age of 13. Another story………..

  7. I can envision wives and husbands being paired as well, since Elders Quorum Presidencies and Relief Society Presidencies will apparently be collaborating on the assignments.

  8. The reason I ask is because now no teacher if either sex may teach primary alone and of course two deep adult leadership is mandated. The use of minors for ministering with an adult seems to fly in the face of existing policy.

  9. cj,

    I’m sure whatever policies are explained will comply with the need to protect youth from predators.

    As to husband-wife ministering, we’ve been doing that for years when necessary. For example, when my husband needed to give blessings of comfort to single sisters and couldn’t locate a male to go with.

  10. In similar fashion, my husband has taken our daughters along as companions when he needed to home teach and didn’t have a companion handy. I have also taken my daughters along when I was visiting teaching. I also know how I’ve been awed and inspired by the dedication of younger people to caring for the individuals they worked with, finding rides for those without cars and boldly going into situations where I might not have felt inclined to venture.

    Similarly, I have been inspired by the dedication of older individuals, who have not been as casual in their ministery as I felt I was being.

    Good times.

  11. The ‘teachers’ in the Teachers Quorum have been paired up with adult partners as long as I remember, and not necessarily with their fathers. My most recent Home Teahers are a young man with an active father and a HP great grand father unrelated to him. I’ve been taught by husband-wife pairs as well as other combinations. In some cultures it is problematical for single sisters to be taught by men and could lead to prurient gossip. Some wards have too few ‘Teachers’ to take advantage of the traditional pairing of youth with experience in every case.
    The emphasis on ministering as opposed to teaching is important. Several years ago temple workers were told that ‘supervisors’ would be called ‘coordinators’ which carries a significant change in tone. It implies the work of planning and assignment of tasks as opposed to overseeing performance. If we conceive of ourselves as ministering to the needs of those in our stewardship it puts the emphsis on service as opposed to informing and possibly correcting. Let’s face it, there was real redundancy in having a message to teach to someone who had just finished giving the same message to several other people. In the best cases the message was a springboard to meaningful discussions, but in some cases haste resulted in a rote reading of the message before a brief generic prayer. Our visiting teaching recently has been more vibrant as we followed the new policy to seek the Spirit in choosing our message instead of relying on a set lesson. This is particularly true when active sisters visit active sisters.

  12. I often wonder what effect this will have on part member families. I’ve gone literally years with no visiting or home teachers. Almost 2 years ago our ward boundaries changed and we didn’t see a home teacher until last month. I was pretty excited to see them. Now I wonder when we’ll be ministered to… I have health/ambulation issues and my husband isn’t a member, but I’m endowed and a full tithe payer. I wonder if anyone notices when I don’t attend for months.

  13. I think the shift to ministering will make it easier for members to reach out to families that previously didn’t seem to “fit” the traditional model.

    And of course you are missed when you are not able to attend formal meetings for months!

  14. A ward is a community. Members of a community actively participate with each other — that’s how they come to know each other and support each other and so forth. After a period of time of cooperative participation, they will notice if someone is missing, and maybe they’ll have the time and other resources to inquire after the missing person. Or maybe not — there are many variables.

    We’re not perfect.

  15. I have been very fortunate by almost always having functioning visiting and home teachers. Some of them have been true ministers, but even when the relationship was tenuous, I always felt free to call on them in case of need. A few times I’ve been assigned to someone whose zeal for service seemed a bit like stalking. On the other hand when mortals fail I am thrown back on reliance on my Savior.

  16. Minjae Lee,

    Under the FAQ that the Church Emailed out after the conference, Question 20. says regarding “Ministering Interviews”

    “A married couple ministering together can meet with either elders quorum or Relief Society leaders or both.”

    As Meg noted, this is just making formal what has happed informally for years (I remember growing up that our Home Teacher always brought his wife).

    A few other interesting points.
    1. People can be assigned as many ministering brothers and sisters as they may need, provided that every family have at least one priesthood holder and every sister have another sister. But it could be as many as needed.

    2. I don’t think that companionships have to be static. I could be assigned with my wife to minister to a family, and then be assigned to minister with another brother for another family.

    3. Visits don’t have to be coordinated now. One of the biggest frustrations with Home Teaching for me was that we had to figure out at time that worked for me, AND my companion AND the families we would be visiting. Now my companion and I will be able to reach out together and independently as needed and appropriate.

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