Handbook 2:
Administering the Church

 

4.5 The Work of the Ward Council

 4.5.1

Help Each Individual Progress

Members of the ward council do most of their work outside of ward council meetings. They work with their counselors and with home teachers, visiting teachers, and others in reaching out and ministering to those in their organizations and others who need assistance.

Ward council members strive to stay informed about the needs, well-being, and spiritual progress of members in their organizations. They also stay informed about members who face special challenges or changing circumstances. This information allows them to strengthen those who most need their help. At the same time, they respect individual and family privacy. Only the bishop deals with matters of personal worthiness.

The following resources can help ward council members be aware of the progress of members and investigators:

  1. 1.

    Reports on member participation, such as the ward’s Quarterly Report. These reports are prepared by the ward clerk. They provide information about Church activity, ordinance status, and trends for individuals, age-groups, and the entire ward. In wards that use Church record-keeping software, the clerk can also provide other reports that have helpful information.

  2. 2.

    Reports from home teachers and visiting teachers.

  3. 3.

    New and Returning Member Progress form. Ward council members use this form to plan specific ways to teach and strengthen new members from the time of their baptism and confirmation until they receive the temple endowment. Ward council members may also use this form to plan how to help less-active members prepare to receive the ordinances that are appropriate for their age, including temple ordinances.

  4. 4.

    Progress Record. Full-time missionaries use this form to record each investigator’s progress. Missionaries share this information with the ward mission leader, who shares it with the ward council.

 4.5.2

Help Strengthen the Ward

Members of the ward council work together to build spiritual strength and unity in the ward. The ward council also oversees the planning of activities for the ward. Activities should be planned to fulfill gospel-centered purposes. For more information about activities, see chapter 13.