I’ve been active on a couple of Young Women facebook groups for a while now, and it’s apparent to me that most young women leaders don’t study the Church Handbook of Instructions. It’s a huge mistake that’s easy to fix. If you don’t read the handbook, you’re missing out on important information such as:
- Sunday lesson instruction is the responsibility of the Young Women president and her counselors. Advisers are not the main Sunday teachers of young women. (10.3.2, 10.3.4)
- Class presidencies plan New Beginnings with the help of the Young Women presidency. (10.8.3)
- Adult leaders plan Young Women in Excellence with the help of young women. (10.8.4)
- Funds for camp are generated by fund-raiser only when funds from participants are not enough. (10.8.9)
- Personal Progress is the explicit responsibility of the Young Women presidency, secretary, and advisers. (10.3)
- The BYC schedules, plans, and reviews combined mutual activities (10.8.1)
Leaders can read the handbook (and personal progress manual) to find most of the answers to their questions. If we were regularly studying the handbook, we’d be able to continually refine our programs to fit with the vision of the general church leadership.
Young Women leaders should not limit themselves to section 10 of the handbook. There’s lots more great stuff in the handbook! Sections 1 and 2 are intended for all members. Sections 3-5 apply to most members with callings. Section 13 gives great counsel for planning activities. Section 18 talks about the meetings of the church, and its simple purpose statements can help you determine what contributions you can make during meetings like ward council or BYC.
Leaders who read the handbook will find questions answered. They’ll see their jobs becoming easier. They’ll see how the young women program integrates with the overall church system. They’ll learn better organization and leadership skills they can teach to others. They’ll be better leaders, and testimonies will be strengthened as the program becomes more orderly.
Don’t make the mistake so many young women leaders make! Read the handbook!