Church Releases Letter, FAQs About Church Schedule Change

The following is a copy of part of the letter the Church released to answer questions members might have about the new home-centered focus the Church announced in Saturday morning general conference. Read the full letter here:

The Council of the First Presidency and Quorum of the Twelve Apostles has approved a significant step in achieving a new balance between gospel instruction in the home and in the Church. . . .

Informally, and as organized by those who so desire, young single adults, single adults, single parents, part-member families, new members, and others can gather to enjoy sociality and to strengthen one another through gospel study.

A new resource, "Come, Follow Me — For Individuals and Families," will be provided to support gospel study at home.

Additional information is available at Sabbath.lds.org and in the questions and answers below.

1. How will we enhance gospel learning and living at home and in our personal lives?

Church leaders encourage all to participate on the Sabbath day — and throughout the week—in gospel study, family councils, home evening, family history and temple work, ministering, personal worship, and joyful family time.

Gospel study at home deepens conversion to Heavenly Father and the Lord Jesus Christ and strengthens our families. A study of the scriptures, supported by the new resource Come, Follow Me—for Individuals and Families," is the suggested course of gospel study at home. This rich resource provides a variety of study options for individual and family adaptation and aligns Sunday School and Primary curriculum with home study.

Individuals and families, however, seek inspiration as they choose to study what will best meet their needs. They prayerfully consider options such as the Book of Mormon and other standard works, general conference messages, Church magazines, information available on lds.org, and other materials suggested by general or local leaders. There is no expectation that members will study all, or even most, of these resources at any one time.

2. What is the format for sacrament meetings?

Sacrament meetings last 60 minutes and are focused on deepening conversion to Heavenly Father and the Lord Jesus Christ and strengthening faith in Them. Allowing the ordinance of the sacrament to be the sacred center of members’ worship on the Sabbath requires careful planning, including minimal announcements and consideration of speakers, hymns, and musical numbers. Ward choirs may participate as local circumstances allow. Sacrament meetings begin and end with a hymn and prayer. A hymn also precedes the blessing of the sacrament.

Sacrament meeting will be followed by 10 minutes to transition to classes.

3. How will members know what meetings will be held and what topics will be studied on Sunday?

During the week, leaders are encouraged to invite members to worship together on Sunday. They can send an invitation via email, text, social media, or other means, reminding members of the meeting schedule for the next Sunday, including topics for discussion. This reminder might be as simple as “This week we will hold Sunday School. We will study Luke 2 and Matthew 2.”

In Sunday School, quorums, Relief Society, and Young Women, leaders and teachers will remind class members of the "Come, Follow Me — For Individuals and Families" materials and associated scriptures they might study at home. This simple reminder can be shared in writing, verbally, or both.

Lead image by Spenser Heaps, Deseret News
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