Whether you're serving as a Relief Society president, a stake high councilor, a young single adult adviser in your ward, or a bishop in a dedicated young single adult ward, you have the responsibility to assist young single adults in their journey back to the presence of our Heavenly Father. Their return is of such importance that the First Presidency has requested recently and repeatedly that Church leaders "identify, locate, and assume shepherding responsibility for all young single adults" residing in their units" (First Presidency letter, April 10, 2009; see also First Presidency letter, October 3, 2006). This site is devoted to help you fulfill this call from the Lord's servants.
Handbook 2: Administering the Church provides information on how you can work with others in your ward and stake to best serve young single adults as you find (identify and locate) them and minister to them.
- For information on stake callings, see Handbook 2: 16.3.1 and 16.3.2.
- For information on ward callings, see Handbook 2: 16.3.3 and 16.3.4.
- For information on callings in young single adult wards, see Handbook 2: 16.4 and 16.5.
Develop a Personal Relationship with Each Individual
During this time in their lives, young single adults often make their most important life decisions, including marriage, education, career, friendships, Church activity, and their relationships with Heavenly Father and the Savior. Become acquainted with the circumstances of the young single adults in your area, and then minister to the individuals one by one-just as the Savior does.
- Learn more about strengthening individuals through personal relationships in Handbook 2: 1.4.3 and 3.2.3.
Involve Each Young Single Adult in Meaningful Service
The young single adults should have opportunities to serve. As they lose themselves in service and help others come unto Christ, they are more likely to be converted themselves. Julie B. Beck, the Relief Society general president, has taught, "As you look outward, the Spirit will be with you to guide you in all the life-changing decisions you are making because the Spirit always accompanies righteous service" ("Unlocking the Door to the Blessings of Abraham," [Church Educational System fireside for young adults, March 2, 2008], ldsces.org). As you consider ways you can involve young single adults in meaningful service, pay particular attention to ideas that allow men and women to associate together.
- Learn ways to involve young single adults in service activities in Handbook 2: 16.3.5 and 16.3.6.
- Learn how young single adults can serve one another through Church callings in Handbook 2: 3.3.3, 16.3.3, and 16.4.
- Consider other opportunities for young single adults to serve, such as full-time missionary service, temple service, indexing and family history work, and home and visiting teaching.
Help Young Single Adults Become Self-Reliant in Spiritual, Social, and Temporal Matters
Young single adults in the Church should develop spiritual, social, and temporal self-reliance. They need to find in the scriptures answers to their questions and to the needs and questions of those they are called to serve. They need the opportunity to work in councils, associate with one another, and exercise leadership. They also need skills training to provide financially for themselves.
Serving and learning together can help young single adults develop themselves. When the young single adults are taught principles about how to receive spiritual guidance, work in unity and harmony together, and take responsibility for temporal concerns, they will learn to do all they can for themselves (see Acts 3:1-7).
- Learn how to delegate and ensure accountability in ways that develop self-reliance in Handbook 2: 3.3.4.
- Learn how to assess the needs of young single adults in Handbook 2: 16.3.3 and 16.3.4. Consider each young single adult's current situation and goals, personal religious practices, progress in making sacred covenants, current feelings about the gospel and the Church, friends, dating status, interest and experience in serving in and out of the Church, employment status, financial needs, level of education, and career interests.
- Turn to Church resources as needed to help you and the young single adults you serve; consider the following: institute classes related to self-reliance (such as financial management, marriage preparation, and doctrinal classes to develop spiritual self-reliance), career workshop training provided by LDS Employment Services, True to the Faith: A Gospel Reference (each young single adult should have a copy; see Handbook 2: 16.2), Church Educational System fireside talks by General Authorities and general officers of the Church (especially talks by Elder Richard G. Scott in 2010, Elder Earl C. Tingey in 2004, and Julie B. Beck in 2008), and the Perpetual Education Fund.
Provide a Variety of Opportunities to Associate Together
Young single adults should be involved in a variety of social, service, and gospel learning activities, "a central purpose of [which] is to help young single adults find marriage partners and prepare to marry in the temple and raise righteous families" (see Handbook 2: 16.2).
As you plan social gatherings, include a variety of activities that will bring participants together. Consider activities where young single adults can develop and share talents, participate in cultural programs, enjoy sports and games, improve fitness, share music, dance, and participate in choirs.
- Find activity ideas in Handbook 2: 16.3.5, 16.3.6, and 16.3.8.
- Learn about budget allocation for activities in Handbook 2: 16.3.7.
- See how to organize stake, multistake, and area activities in Handbook 2: 13.3.1.
Find and Invite Less-Active Young Single Adults to Return to Full Activity
Young single adults may wander from the Church as they struggle with the demands of transitioning into adulthood. It is crucial to reach out to them during this time to keep them safely in the fold of the Good Shepherd. Leaders of young single adults should coordinate efforts to help less-active members return to full activity in the Church. Young single adults are often the most effective at fellowshipping and involving their peers. In most situations, it is wise to begin by strengthening and getting to know the young single adults who are attending Church meetings; you can then organize them to find the less-active young single adults and minister to them.
- Learn ways to organize, find, and invite less-active members to return to full activity in Handbook 2: 16.3.5.
- Learn how ward and stake members should work together in these efforts in Handbook 2: 16.3.3 and 16.3.4.
- Learn how quarterly reports from Relief Society and elders quorum leaders can help the ward council minister to young single adults in Handbook 2: 4.
- Learn how to use a quarterly report in ward council in "Accountability for Young Single Adults" (Priesthood Department notice, November 15, 2009).
- Learn how activities can bless the lives of less-active members in Handbook 2: 16.3.5.
- Learn how centers for young adults can assist in activation efforts in Handbook 2: 16.3.8.
- Learn how using quarterly reports can help you minister to young single adults in "Using the Quarterly Report."
Video: "Help Them on Their Way Home"
"Our Heavenly Father wants and needs our help to bring His spirit children home to Him again. I speak today of young people already within His true Church and so are started on the strait and narrow way to return to their heavenly home. He wants them to gain early the spiritual strength to stay on the path. And He needs our help to get them back to the path quickly should they begin to wander" (Henry B. Eyring, in Conference Report, Apr. 2010, 20; or Ensign, May 2010, 22).