How to Serve in Priesthood Callings

From an April 1987 general conference address.


Thomas S. Monson

Have you ever pondered the worth of a human soul? Have you ever wondered concerning the potential which lies within each of us?

I once attended a stake conference where my former stake president Paul C. Child turned to Doctrine and Covenants 18 and began to read: “Remember the worth of souls is great in the sight of God” (verse 10).

President Child then asked, “What is the worth of a human soul?” He avoided calling on a bishop, stake president, or high councilor for a response. Instead, he selected the president of an elders quorum.

The startled man remained silent for what seemed like an eternity and then declared, “The worth of a human soul is its capacity to become as God.”

All present pondered that reply. President Child proceeded with his message, but I continued to reflect on that inspired response.

To reach, to teach, to touch the precious souls whom our Father has prepared for His message is a monumental task. Success is rarely simple. Generally it is preceded by tears, trials, trust, and testimony.

Servants of God take comfort from the Master’s assurance: “I am with you alway” (Matthew 28:20). This magnificent promise sustains you brethren of the Aaronic Priesthood who are called to positions of leadership in the quorums of deacons, teachers, and priests. It encourages you in your preparations to serve in the mission field. It comforts you during those moments of discouragement, which come to all.

“Wherefore, be not weary in well-doing,” says the Lord, “for ye are laying the foundation of a great work. And out of small things proceedeth that which is great.

“Behold, the Lord requireth the heart and a willing mind” (D&C 64:33–34). An abiding faith, a constant trust, and a fervent desire have always characterized those who serve the Lord with all their hearts.

If any brethren within the sound of my voice feel unprepared, even incapable of responding to a call to serve, to sacrifice, to bless the lives of others, remember the truth: “Whom God calls, God qualifies.”

young men blessing sacrament

Photo illustration by Robert Casey © IRI

How Have You Applied This?

“Knowing the Lord is on my side helps me remember why I’m going on a mission: to serve the Lord and bring others to our Savior, Jesus Christ. I know He won’t put me through anything I can’t handle while I’m on my mission.”

Dilan M., Utah, USA

“I try to remember that through home teaching, I can help others get a more complete understanding of the gospel.”

Devon K., Utah, USA

Share Your Experiences

Share your experiences about priesthood callings and read the experiences of other youth by going to lds.org/go/43J.