Policies and Programs


The policies and programs of the Church are instituted for the purpose of helping members of the Church live harmoniously within Church procedures. Many of these official guidelines are sent to priesthood and auxiliary leaders in a newsletter called the Priesthood Bulletin (PB), from which most of the following items are quoted. Items of general interest from other sources are also included on occasion.

New Publication Helps Genealogists

“The Genealogical Society Observer (GSO), monthly newsletter of the Genealogical Society of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, Inc., is now being sent monthly to each meetinghouse library, and members should be encouraged to use it as an aid in genealogical research. Branch genealogy libraries also receive the GSO.” —PB

Young Members to Maintain Church Standards

“Young members of the Church are frequently invited to participate in conferences, outings, and other activities sponsored by non-Church groups (Boy Scouts … ,schools, and local and national civic groups). The participation of these young people can be of great missionary value if they are prepared adequately. They need to be informed that many of the standards to which they have been accustomed will not prevail among non-Church groups.” Parents should “counsel the young people who will attend gatherings not sponsored by the Church to strengthen their determination to maintain Church standards.”—PB

Prescribed Courses of Study Are Encouraged

Church members should “avoid permitting any Church organization to be used by individuals or groups to advance political, social, or philosophical concepts not embodied within the prescribed courses of study published and distributed by the Church. Leaders should not permit individuals or groups to use Church meetings or the organizations of the Church to encourage the study of books or pamphlets which advance such concepts.

“Church leaders are cautioned to avoid sponsoring or authorizing fund raising projects involving the distribution of political literature or … other activities which leave the Church open to charges of partisan bias.”—PB

Hypnosis and Similar Studies to Be Avoided

“Reports have been received of unfortunate results to persons engaging in group hypnosis demonstrations or in popular mind control courses of study. … Leaders should advise members of the Church against participating in such activities. Certainly, they should not be sponsored or encouraged by leaders of the Church.”—PB

Young Marrieds Help with Fellowshiping

“The Young Marrieds program consists of educational, recreational, and spiritual endeavors to aid priesthood leaders in helping groups of married couples strengthen the ties among themselves; stabilize and enrich their marriages; and increase their devotion to their families and the Church. The bishop and elders quorum president are advisers to the MIA executives and Young Marrieds leaders who plan and carry out activities that meet the needs of married couples. The Young Marrieds program can be especially helpful as a vehicle for continuous fellowshiping through participation in informal activities.”—PB

Lines of Responsibility in Genealogy Work

“It is the responsibility of members of the Church to seek out their direct-line ancestors (progenitors), complete the family units of such direct ancestors, and submit to the Genealogical Society the genealogical data to be processed for temple ordinance work. Temple work may be requested for persons who are collaterally related to the member of the Church, but this is an area of privilege and not an area of responsibility.

“A line of responsibility may be changed if a special sealing has taken place involving a given individual during his lifetime. The special sealing could have been the result of multiple (i.e. second or subsequent) marriage, a divorce situation, or an adoption. Problems with changed lines of responsibility should be referred to the Genealogical Society, which has received instructions from the First Presidency on how to handle such situations.”—PB