Handbook 2:
Administering the Church

 

11.5 Primary Programs, Activities, and Events

 11.5.1

Faith in God Program

The Faith in God program helps boys and girls ages 8 through 11 live gospel principles, develop testimonies, and prepare to be righteous Aaronic Priesthood holders and righteous young women. This program also encourages children to memorize the Articles of Faith.

The ward Primary president ensures that each child who reaches age 8 receives a copy of Faith in God for Girls or Faith in God for Boys. She helps parents understand that they can use these guidebooks as resources for activities with individual children and with the entire family.

 11.5.2

Activity Days

Where practical, the Primary may hold activity days for boys and girls ages 8 through 11. Leaders and teachers use the Faith in God guidebooks as resources for activity days, supporting the work children and parents do at home to fulfill Faith in God requirements.

Activity days are held no more than twice each month. They may be held at the meetinghouse or in a home. As leaders determine the frequency and location of activity days, they consider the time constraints of the children’s families, travel distance and costs, children’s safety, and other local circumstances. Leaders ensure that activity days follow the guidelines in 11.8.1 and in chapter 13.

The children’s Primary teachers conduct activity days unless the bishopric calls separate activity days leaders.

 11.5.3

Scouting Activities

Where Scouting is authorized by the Church, Scout activities take the place of activity days for boys ages 8 through 11. To maintain a gospel focus in Scout activities, leaders use the Faith in God for Boys guidebook as one of their resources. As boys fulfill requirements in the guidebook, they also qualify for religious awards in Scouting.

The children’s Primary teachers may serve as Scout leaders, or the bishopric may call others to serve as Scout leaders. Leaders ensure that Scouting activities follow the guidelines in 11.8.1 and in chapter 13.

The Primary presidency ensures that all boys ages 8 through 11 are registered in the Scout program and that all Scout leaders are registered and receive proper training. For more information about Scouting, including guidelines for planning annual day camps, see the Church’s Scouting Handbook and the Day Camp Guide for Eleven-Year-Old Scouts.

The Church has not adopted the Tiger Cub program (in the United States) or the Beaver program (in Canada) for Primary-age boys.

 11.5.4

Children’s Sacrament Meeting Presentation

The annual children’s sacrament meeting presentation gives children an opportunity to share what they have learned in Primary. It is normally presented during the fourth quarter of the year.

The Primary presidency and music leader(s) prepare the presentation under the direction of the bishopric. They follow the guidelines in the current outline for sharing time, adapting it as needed to fit the circumstances of the children.

In the sacrament meeting, the presentation comes after the administration of the sacrament and may take all or part of the remaining time. All Primary children ages 3 through 11 sing songs they have learned in sharing time. Children may also participate by reading or reciting scripture passages, giving talks, singing in small groups, and sharing their testimonies. An adult leader in Primary may also share a brief message.

In keeping with the sacredness of sacrament meeting, the presentation should not include visuals, costumes, or media presentations.

 11.5.5

Temple and Priesthood Preparation

Each year, the Primary presidency, under the direction of the bishopric, prepares a meeting called Temple and Priesthood Preparation. The meeting is held for 11-year-old boys and girls together. Their parents are also invited. The purpose of this meeting is to help these children understand the blessings of temple service, priesthood service, and making and keeping sacred covenants.

Possible topics for the meeting include:

  • Teaching about priesthood purposes, responsibilities, ordinances, and blessings.

  • Helping boys strengthen their commitment to prepare to receive the priesthood.

  • Helping boys and girls understand their opportunities to participate in the work of salvation.

  • Encouraging children to prepare to receive a limited-use temple recommend when they turn 12 and to participate worthily in proxy baptisms as their circumstances allow.

A member of the bishopric conducts the meeting, and at least one member of the Primary presidency attends. Other leaders who may attend include members of the deacons quorum presidency, Beehive class presidency, and Young Men and Young Women presidencies.

If a ward has very few 11-year-olds, the meeting may be held, under the direction of the stake presidency, with other wards or with the entire stake. According to local needs, it may be held on a Sunday evening, as part of a Primary meeting on Sunday, or at another time.