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LDSVALLEY

Should I speak up or shut up?

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A big one is Home Teaching of course, but it's hard to really know which Elders need private encouragement or what the issues are when over 1/2 are part of a EQ-HP team and thus report to the HPG. We don't even get the numbers to see how our Elders are doing going out. We only have 3 EQ-EQ teams, 3 EQ-wife, 2 EQ-Youth teams. It's hard to talk up effort when it is so scattered and the numbers we have don't honestly reflect the EQ effort since 1/2 of our members don't show on our reports.

Another is the Many EQ who even if they show for sacrament don't stick around for class in the third hour or don't show up at all. Our secretary can track attendance in class but has a hard time getting sacrament info from the Ward Clerk to see who is at least attending service. We are trying to figure out a way to make contact with those Brothers. The logical manner would be asking Home Teachers to make contact and to get feed back from them on how they are doing. But again with the blended Home Teaching list that doesn't work. High Priest Home Teachers don't know when Elders are not present and reports go through HPGL. Since the HPG does not manage even quarterly PPI we can't get information through proper channels.

This is one of fixing the system to be in the Lords manner or try and invent a work around like a contact committee etc. We are looking into the work around concept even though it is further away from how it should be. The issue then becomes finding some Elders willing and reliable enough to take it on long term. And trying to tie it into the blended system we have without it becoming a Priesthood committee.

Yet a third is that the HPG is supposed to insure newly baptized members are assigned a HP who helps nurture them through getting the Priesthood. While Ward Mission Leader I spent two years trying to get the HPG and Bishopric to understand the importance of this step. In 2006 we baptized 4 potential Priesthood after the Aaronic Interview 3 went inactive because they were scared off by the idea of getting it. Currently we have 2 youth who advanced to EQ and two new members all still hold the Aaronic 1 doesn't understand the priesthood enough, 2 are afraid of it and the last doesn't care if they get it.

While I'm not suggesting they would all have it if a HP had been assigned to walk them through the Priesthood I have to believe the numbers who advanced would be far higher. So we spent half an hour debating how to work around the HP responsibility and do it ourselves.

Then there is Missionary work our Group should be doing but yet again the lack of information from Home Teachers, and other auxiliary leaders especially the Ward Missionary Group makes this hard to figure out what to do. Correlation used to be used for RS,HP, EQ and the Missionary Group to develop joint plans to care for those coming into or newly baptized in the Gospel. The President said that stuff is not discussed anymore so it makes it hard to know what to do.

Really the biggest issue we have is the lack of unity in our EQ. There is no pride or sense of companionship in ours. Due to lack of space we are forced to hold class in the Chapel most members sit by themselves at most two might sit together. Even trying to move them into a couple of pews meets with grumbling. Of course how do you bond as a unit when you only spend 3 30-40 minute classes together and 30-40% of the active EQ members are elsewhere with callings in YM or Bishopric staff. Also over half the time our President gets hauled out by a visiting Stake representative or the Bishop or HPGL.

Most of us don't Home Teach together, most don't have EQ home teachers, the first Sunday lesson which should be the opportunity for getting the Elders involved directly is combined with the YM and HP so we only teach it 1 in 3 and it is generic Priesthood. The few EQ activities that had been planned over the last couple of years always get turned into Priesthood ones. Service projects are the same.

We don't hold teacher development meetings each quarter as we are instructed to do because of time and we only have two teachers one is me the other is our Ward Clerk who doesn't have time to attend one anyway.

As I mentioned we planned a Home Teaching seminar to get EQ members involved and create a ownership but with the list being mixed it's hard to EQ members to feel united when they are part of the HP reporting not their group. And the stake announced plans to ignore the strong members and get the weak ones in, if we don't have time to Home Teach the strong ones after that then that is fine. This would sabotage most of what we wanted the seminar to achieve.

I know our President is frustrated by it all, I know I am, I worry about our new secretary since he is newly baptized. I don't know how the President is supposed to be responsible for the EQ when he has to tie everything he does into the Bishop and HPG. I know if I was interviewed for the calling the Stake Representative would get a list of conditions to put the EQ back as a separate auxiliary under the Bishop that the Bishopric would have to agree to before I'd accept.

Some people will think that is wrong of me but I refuse to be responsible for something to the Lord that I am not allowed to be responsible for by the local Leadership.

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Guest mormonmusic

The biggest stumbling block I read here is that your EQ members are reporting to an HPGL. Why is this so? And why can't you just take reports from the companionships under your stewardship and nurture that? (I'm not challenging here, these are just questions for me to try to understand better).

Also, is there any way your HPGL could provide you with his report, so you could assimilate it into your own EQ report?

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The few EQ groups that are under EQ do report to the EQ and we have that. At present that constitutes 2 of the EQ Presidentcy (I'm actually now in a mixed HP-EQ companionship as well but made it clear as an EQ Councilor I needed to report to the EQ so they made an exception and put us under EQ not HP.) Our other Councilor is reporting to HP. 1 secretary and 3 EQ members. That's it the rest are blended with HP and report to HP.

We are trying to nurture those we can but we can't easily even find out if our EQ assigned to HP companionship's are even going out or not. The list changes almost every month so even the historical info can't be relied on to indicate if a specific person carried out their teaching or not because other then MLS which only tracks based on current companionships, we have no record of past companionships and how well they did.

The President could most likely get permission from the Bishop for the HP report, they have gotten very tight about what they release, but since the assigned Home Teachers don't report to their Quorum we don't get hard information.

The HPGL is active in his calling but doesn't worry about paperwork. Things like PPI's etc are low on his priority. His focus has mostly been on the Family History side. The temple is his priority which is wonderful but it makes it hard for us to focus on stuff that he has the control of information over.

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Guest mormonmusic

Well, if it's impossible to get the report on how the EQ members are doing with HT, and it's not your business, so to speak, why not just focus on the companionships in your stewardship? Don't worry about what you can't control....and it'll be much simpler.

Also, as you know from my previous posts, I found the whole HT a nightmare to administer. I had greater happiness and success as a leader by focusing on making the other programs good -- regular service projects, good lessons, socials, -- all driven by quorum input. Also, holding regular PPI's with the people who are willing to have them, and actually going to their homes to meet them if they would have me. If they avoid PPI's or don't want them, then leave them and just check in now and then, say annually.

The home teaching program has never been an efffective program in any Ward I've been in, except one, and it was good in that one ward due to the character of the people, and nothing to do with administration. Somewhere along the line the brethren in that one Ward decided it was important to do home teaching, and they JUST DID IT.

I find that if the brethren aren't committed to home teaching, then I've never had anyone suddenly step up and get supercharged about the home teaching program due to my own encouragement. Maybe I just wasn't effective, but most people are tired of the harping on that program, and I think calls to repentence and stern talk never has much impact; it just creates withdrawals in the relationship.

I did have success in offloading the sudden calls for service from people who had inactive home teachers. Call the guys who won't go and ask them to take care of that blessing that means an hour and a half drive, or that need by that elderly person who needs something fixed or moved. There's something about an immediate need that speaks fo relevance....and its poetic that they should pick up that kind of work in the quorum rather than their leaders, since the reluctant home teachers need to pick up the slack.

Edited by mormonmusic

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