Home teaching: 'Sacred calling' is an opportunity to nurture and inspire others

For faithful Mormon priesthood holders, the New Year's resolution to become a more effective, caring home teacher likely fits somewhere on their list between dropping a few pounds, spending more time at the temple and daily scripture study.

Indeed, as President Ezra Taft Benson taught, home teaching is not just another program. "It is the priesthood way of watching over the Saints and accomplishing the mission of the Church. Home teaching is not just an assignment. It is a sacred calling" (April 1987 general conference).

No such sacred calling is held by more men — and young men — across the globe. Almost all observant Melchizedek Priesthood holders, along with teachers and priests in the Aaronic Priesthood, are serving as home teachers in their wards and branches. Perhaps because of the pervasiveness of the call throughout the Church, it's tempting to undertake home teaching casually. It seems a small matter to, say, skip the occasional monthly visit or to make such visits without much thought or preparation.

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