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So... here is my story. I hope to get your feedback...

Im a relatively new convert and fairly new Elders Quorum President. The quorum has a history of inactivity ( 50-60 % inactivity ) and not much in the way of organization by previous elders quorum presidents. Home Teaching is in the single digits. Service is nearly non-existent. Finding someone to accept an invitation to serve others is very hard. To say we have challenges in finding motivated individuals is an understatement. I struggled to fill my Presidency for many months. I have this crazy idea that what this quorum needs is leadership, focused efforts and lots of Gospel influence. As much as I believe the Lord does not call the qualified... he qualifies the called... I still feel the need to get feedback from others on my Elders Quorum Presidency Agenda form PRIOR to introducing it to my Presidency. If you would review my Elders Quorum Presidency meeting agenda I would appreciate it. I plan on using my keys to implement this agenda, slowly but steadily, in an effort to benefit the all the brethren. Thank you for your time and effort should you choose to leave me some feedback..
 

Elders Quorum Presidency Meeting
Monthly Agenda Items

 

Recurring Monthly Agenda Assignments

 

Opening Prayer— EQ President (EQ P)

Inspirational Scripture— EQ 1st Counselor (EQ 1)

Spiritual Thought— EQ 2nd Counselor (EQ 2)

Record Presidency Meeting Minutes-EQ Secretary (EQ S)

Elders Quorum Member Assignment (EQ A)

MONTHLY AGENDA ITEMS

 

Report from other Meetings (EQP, 1, 2, S)

  • PEC Meeting (EQ P)

  • Ward Member Welfare Concerns (EQ P, 1, 2, S)

  • Ward Council Meeting (EQ P)

  • Ward Missionary Work  (EQ P, 1, 2, S, A)

  • Stake Meetings (EQ P, 1, 2, S)

 

Proclaiming the Gospel-(EQP, 1, 2, S, A)

  • Missionary Moments/Opportunity

  • New Member Discussions

  • New Member Fellowshipping & Retention (EQP, 1, 2, S, A)

  • Feeding The Missionaries

 

Redeeming the Dead-(EQP, 1, 2, S, A)

  • Temple Trip w/ Youth

  • Ward Temple Day

  • Elders Quorum Temple Outing

 

Perfecting the Saints-(EQP, 1, 2, S, A)

  • Prospective Elders Update

  • Home Teaching

  • Service Projects

  • Sunday Lessons

  • Quorum Committee Activity Reports

  • Agenda for 1st Sunday Quorum Meeting

 

Discussion Items-(EQP, 1, 2, S, A)

  • Open Callings

  • Family Search Project (Indexing)

  • Teaching In The Savior's Way
     

Emergency Preparedness-(EQP, 1, 2, S, A)

  • Emergency Preparedness Update

  • Emergency Equipment Discussion

  • Preparedness Information


C.A.M.S. Calendar/Assignments/Missionary/Service—(EQP, 1, 2, S, A)

 

C Calendar/Assignments/Missionary/Service Reminders To Be Addressed With Quorum:

  •  
  • Set Apart Bro Smith as Instructor (EQ P)

  •  
  •  

  • Release Bro Smith As Instructor & Hold A Vote Of Thanks (EQ 1,2)

  •  
  •  
  • Call Additional Instructor (EQ P)

  •  
  •  
  • Schedule Personal Priesthood Interviews (EQ S)

  •  
  •  

  • Address Home Teaching Concerns/Companionships/Assignments (EQ P,1,2,S)

  •  
  •  
  • Identify Individuals Of Concern for EQP/Bishopric Visits (EQ P,1,2,S,A)



 

Review of Previous C.A.M.S.—(EQ S)

 

Schedule Next Meeting/Send Out C.A.M.S. Reminder—(EQ S)

 

Closing prayer—(EQ P)

Edited by HelamansArmy

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and yes, I know there are a lot of typo's. My apologies to any and all who have the type of mind that automatically recognizes them. I do plan on fixing them and some of the quirky formatting inconsistencies. 

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You have your bases covered, which is awesome.  It does strike me as a lot to get through in one meeting, and you run the risk of burning your counselors out with too many marathon meetings.  I would try to do as much of this outside the meeting as possible (e.g. reporting on other meetings--why not just do that via email?); and consider what topics might be able to be addressed quarterly rather than monthly.  Be sure you have a clear idea of what specifics need to come up under any given subheading, and don't bring something up just to be able to say you brought it up.  

Your counselors should leave the meeting with a clear vision of what you want to accomplish generally (note:  statistics, even good ones, are not a vision!) and what they each need to do specifically to bring that vision to pass.

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Thank you for your reply and candid opinions. I agree this is quite a lot to accomplish, I intentionally created an agenda with the angels share of topics and subtopics; So many in fact it may seem like a daunting task to address half of them in one sitting. I like to set the bar high. I only expect to address a handful at first. We will begin by prioritising, based on the needs of the quorum. This agenda will be released in phases, some may only be addressed quarterly as you suggested, each predicated on the success of my clarion call to serve. I will need to be diligent yet practical with making assignments, soliciting volunteers and inviting all to accept invitations to serve. 

I also agree with your noteworthy advice on clarity, both in vision and in action. While this "running agenda" is being phased in piece by piece, the EQ Presidency will have a unanimous vision and clearly defined goals and objectives. I also agree that our time and efforts will be better utilized outside our monthly Presidency meeting time. I have some fairly sharp counselors who already embrace technology based solutions like using email, web meetings, group txt messages.. or my new personal favorite, collaborating on Google docs.

Once again, I appreciate your reply. Your response carries the weight and wisdom of your experience. I appreciate your thoughtfulness.

Edited by HelamansArmy

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written before HA's second post showed up - 

I agree with JAG about it being a lot to cover in one meeting.  Aside from your agenda, a couple thoughts that came to my (female) mind:

- Would it be possible to give each pres member a specific role to be over (ie pres - relieve poor, 1c - redeem dead, 2c - proclaim gospel, etc).  That way it all gets attention and everyone feels they have a focus so-to-speak.

- It sounds like you first need to build the quorum and have some social activities (a variety to cover more interests).  People are more willing to ht and serve when there's more of a relationship.

- You may also want to consider expanding their thoughts on how ht can be done.  For instance, a letter may not be ideal but it's better than nothing. (from chi 7.4.1 -  Home teachers may also find other meaningful ways to watch over and strengthen the families they are assigned. For example, they may render service to the families or contact family members by mail or telephone.)

Edited by my two cents

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10 hours ago, HelamansArmy said:

and yes, I know there are a lot of typo's. My apologies to any and all who have the type of mind that automatically recognizes them. I do plan on fixing them and some of the quirky formatting inconsistencies. 

You know, I admire you so much bro. In your place, I'd give up and just not do anything. You are awesome to care so much about these people and they are so, so lucky to have you. They should be grateful. 
 

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Wow.  Your ward is one lucky ward!

I just have one mini suggestion - I'm a woman so I am cluess about EQ.  I just noticed the Proclaiming the Gospel part and that's the same agenda we had in our Ward Mission meetings.  I used to be a Ward missionary and the Ward Mission Leader would call a meeting once a week with the full time missionaries and the ward missionaries and talk about all the bullet points you had there on your Proclaiming the Gospel heading.

So anyway, in those meetings we come up with action items we need from the EQ and RS and send it to the Presidencies so they can assign/complete those action items.  Basically, the Ward Mission Leader spearheaded those things.  Just thought I'd bring it up so you can coordinate with your Ward Mission Leader.

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5 hours ago, my two cents said:

written before HA's second post showed up - 

I agree with JAG about it being a lot to cover in one meeting.  Aside from your agenda, a couple thoughts that came to my (female) mind:

- Would it be possible to give each pres member a specific role to be over (ie pres - relieve poor, 1c - redeem dead, 2c - proclaim gospel, etc).  That way it all gets attention and everyone feels they have a focus so-to-speak.

- It sounds like you first need to build the quorum and have some social activities (a variety to cover more interests).  People are more willing to ht and serve when there's more of a relationship.

- You may also want to consider expanding their thoughts on how ht can be done.  For instance, a letter may not be ideal but it's better than nothing. (from chi 7.4.1 -  Home teachers may also find other meaningful ways to watch over and strengthen the families they are assigned. For example, they may render service to the families or contact family members by mail or telephone.)

Im so glad you decided to give me "your two cents". Your suggestions are very well received. Thank you for taking the time to give me your feedback. I agree with your suggestion to divide the efforts among members of the Presidency. The work I would like to accomplish is a tall order. Giving individuals in the Presidency ownership of certain agenda items will allow us to all work on certain parts simultaneously. You are right, I need have a laser focus on building or rebuilding the relationships between quorum members to make HomeTeaching efforts more successful. I also appreciate your insight on collaborating and "expanding" our efforts by soliciting input from others on how we can best serve and implement each task..  THANK YOU!  

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29 minutes ago, anatess2 said:

Wow.  Your ward is one lucky ward!

I just have one mini suggestion - I'm a woman so I am cluess about EQ.  I just noticed the Proclaiming the Gospel part and that's the same agenda we had in our Ward Mission meetings.  I used to be a Ward missionary and the Ward Mission Leader would call a meeting once a week with the full time missionaries and the ward missionaries and talk about all the bullet points you had there on your Proclaiming the Gospel heading.

So anyway, in those meetings we come up with action items we need from the EQ and RS and send it to the Presidencies so they can assign/complete those action items.  Basically, the Ward Mission Leader spearheaded those things.  Just thought I'd bring it up so you can coordinate with your Ward Mission Leader.

GREAT IDEAS! I am in close contact with the Ward Mission Leader and our full time missionaries. I agree with your suggestions. I will make sure to include them in my efforts and utilize the resources they can bring to the table. THANKS A LOT!

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49 minutes ago, MormonGator said:

You know, I admire you so much bro. In your place, I'd give up and just not do anything. You are awesome to care so much about these people and they are so, so lucky to have you. They should be grateful. 
 

I appreciate your willingness to be forthright with your opinions. There is much work to be done. I do take my stewardship over the members of my quorum to heart. THANKS!

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1 hour ago, HelamansArmy said:

I appreciate your willingness to be forthright with your opinions. There is much work to be done. I do take my stewardship over the members of my quorum to heart. THANKS!

Anytime. 

One important thing to remember: Make the meetings laid back and fun. Being super serious and severe to people who are already highly inactive won't get you far. I'm not saying treat the meetings like stand up comedy (keep that to sacrament meeting) but happy people generally work harder and are more fun to be around than unhappy people. 

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Just a few suggestions:

1. Less meetings (more meetings do not necessarily equal effectiveness,I find generally speaking we seem to have meetings to plan another meetings, etc).

2. Service, service and service activities! (We do great in the golden answer category but I find we could do a better job at practical activities that can help those in need).

3. Listen to your counselors, I mean, really do. (They have a lot of knowledge to provide you and some great ideas too).

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A couple of comments from someone who has to go to a lot of meeting every Sunday.

1. You're the EQ president you shouldn't be preparing the agenda your secretary should. Task him with preparing the agenda and taking notes during the meeting so that he can prepare the subsequent one.  Better yet make him conduct the meeting since he prepared the agenda and you will be in a better position to be thoughtful and more in tune with the spirit during the meeting.

2. I think I saw a post that said that you are going to phase this in little by little,  that is good, but keep your agendas to one page otherwise they just go in the round file because you'll never get to it all

3.  You say your EQ struggles pick one or two items and work on those until you do them really well, until they become automatic only then move on to your next item.

4. Don't kill them with meetings, I suggest once a month at MOST twice and keep them short 45-1hr MAX. 

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5 hours ago, MormonGator said:

Anytime. 

One important thing to remember: Make the meetings laid back and fun. Being super serious and severe to people who are already highly inactive won't get you far. I'm not saying treat the meetings like stand up comedy (keep that to sacrament meeting) but happy people generally work harder and are more fun to be around than unhappy people. 

I second this. As someone from a similar ward, we are all sick of being given ' a good talking to'. The people who show up have been bearing the burdens for a long time. Yell at us, overburden us and we will stop coming (well I won't! But most others will based on past experience). You will get a lot farther by being warm and loving than by cracking the whip. It is tempting to whip people into shape- don't! You will only end up with fewer slaves to boss around. If I could plead for sanity -cut the non essentials. Once every person has a calling, call it a day! Enough already!

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On 2/13/2017 at 0:49 PM, Suzie said:

Just a few suggestions:

1. Less meetings (more meetings do not necessarily equal effectiveness,I find generally speaking we seem to have meetings to plan another meetings, etc).

2. Service, service and service activities! (We do great in the golden answer category but I find we could do a better job at practical activities that can help those in need).

3. Listen to your counselors, I mean, really do. (They have a lot of knowledge to provide you and some great ideas too).

Less is more (esp. when it comes to meetings). Focus on serving others. Receive council. Got it!

ty for your counsel  =)

Edited by HelamansArmy
edited due my lack of proper english

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6 hours ago, omegaseamaster75 said:

A couple of comments from someone who has to go to a lot of meeting every Sunday.

1. You're the EQ president you shouldn't be preparing the agenda your secretary should. Task him with preparing the agenda and taking notes during the meeting so that he can prepare the subsequent one.  Better yet make him conduct the meeting since he prepared the agenda and you will be in a better position to be thoughtful and more in tune with the spirit during the meeting.

2. I think I saw a post that said that you are going to phase this in little by little,  that is good, but keep your agendas to one page otherwise they just go in the round file because you'll never get to it all

3.  You say your EQ struggles pick one or two items and work on those until you do them really well, until they become automatic only then move on to your next item.

4. Don't kill them with meetings, I suggest once a month at MOST twice and keep them short 45-1hr MAX. 

1. my sec is recently reactivated, working thru some family issues. I don't want to lean on him too much and risk secretary burnout! I need a right hand man! The agenda will eventually be his to manage with collaboration and input from Myself., my 1st & 2nd counselors and/or any other councils  (Teacher councils, Ward Council, etc).

2. Keep it short and simple.

3. Yes, Great idea, I agree.. I am focused on prioritizing specific efforts and have lead them in those efforts to take action. (for example, stewardship.. we are going out as companions on visits  this Thursday to assess the welfare of less active members and members who are struggling.. as well as members new to the ward who just need fellowshipping.

4. meetings.. our meeting takes place once a month while they are all there during activity nights for their kids, <1 hour. 

Thanks for sharing your thoughts.. much appreciated! 

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4 hours ago, Sunday21 said:

I second this. As someone from a similar ward, we are all sick of being given ' a good talking to'. The people who show up have been bearing the burdens for a long time. Yell at us, overburden us and we will stop coming (well I won't! But most others will based on past experience). You will get a lot farther by being warm and loving than by cracking the whip. It is tempting to whip people into shape- don't! You will only end up with fewer slaves to boss around. If I could plead for sanity -cut the non essentials. Once every person has a calling, call it a day! Enough already!

I got it. Dont "preach" to them, Minister dont administer them. Ya get more bee's with honey. Dont kick over tables and whip folks, keep it relevant..

I have fewer than 5 elders .. including the Presidency... on some sundays. participation is a challenge, so is filling callings.. thanks for chiming in and adding your feedback. I appreciate the straight talk..

 

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@HelamansArmy - I just want to echo what's been said previously - your ward is quite fortunate to have you and I hope they will see that!.  I'm quite impressed with your willingness to dive in as well as listen/consider the suggestions made here. Here's to your success!

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9 hours ago, HelamansArmy said:

I got it. Dont "preach" to them, Minister dont administer them. Ya get more bee's with honey. Dont kick over tables and whip folks, keep it relevant..

I have fewer than 5 elders .. including the Presidency... on some sundays. participation is a challenge, so is filling callings.. thanks for chiming in and adding your feedback. I appreciate the straight talk..

 

How many total Elders on the records?

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On 2/14/2017 at 8:45 AM, omegaseamaster75 said:

How many total Elders on the records?

we have 50+ Elders total

 

 

Edited by HelamansArmy

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THANK YOU ALL FOR YOUR INPUT... THIS FORUM WAS INCREDIBLY HELPFUL... MORESO THAN I IMAGINED... MUCH OBLIGED...

 

UPDATE..03/28/2017 

It has been about a month since the "grand daddy" of all quorum meeting agendas has been implemented. Things are going well.

This meeting agenda was met with fair amount of resistance.. "what is this?"... "Its too detailed"... "its too much to do" ... "how can we do all this" ... were the responses from my Presidency.. I assured them I understood their reservations and that I valued their counsel. Indeed, it is a daunting task to attempt to implement such a drastic change. Especially since the previous Presidency had no agenda at all... 

I pressed forward. It must have seemed like going from a dead stop to warp speed. I can almost hear Scotty calling out "Captain, we need more POWER!" Resistance to change is part of being human. We are creatures of habit.. sometimes change is difficult... 

And still.. I pressed forward.. reassuring them it is a "catch all" agenda.. it is supposed to be very detailed.. we CAN phase this in slowly based on the needs and priorities of our Quorum. It is, by design, a means to work towards an end goal.. it was place to begin.. The resistance began to fade as they learned my goals and expectations were not going to be compromised just because they seemed difficult..

I began by assigning ONE monthly agenda item to each member of the Presidency. Just one item per member of the EQ Presidency seemed like a good way to kick off this initiative. I asked my counselors and secretary to have ownership over that item, and focus their efforts on that one item... I assured them I would be here to help and support them in their efforts, all I asked for in return was to have some efforts to support.

And... guess what... we made some progress.. its not as hard as they first thought it would be.. 

One of my counselors has taken over "Perfecting the Saints" ... and has made good efforts in doing so...

One of my counselors has taken over "Proclaiming the Gospel" ... he too has made good efforts on that item...

My Secretary has also stepped up his game and has assumed more responsibility for the reporting and administration functions... as well as supporting myself and the counselors in their efforts... I am working on calling an assistant secretary for him..

It turns out there is a light at the end of the tunnel.... it is not a train coming at us... to run us down... after all...

It is the light of Christ... and it shines bright...



 

Edited by HelamansArmy
needed to expand a little.. and fix typos =)

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That's quite an agenda you've got there. I'm glad you've found a way to make it work with your presidency meetings. A couple of things stuck out to me as I was reading your thoughts.

Firstly, regarding meeting frequency. I'm obviously not familiar with your ward, but I would suggest that you be open to meeting more often than monthly. Nobody likes long meetings, but a 20-30 minute mid-month meeting could let all of you follow-up and touch bases on those agenda items. Might help with productivity. Partway into my time as EQ pres I had weekly meetings that I scheduled immediately preceding sacrament meeting, so we had a fixed end time. But things went much better all around when we had shorter, more frequent meetings. Just a thought.

Second is regular PPIs. (Or home teaching interviews, or one-on-ones, or whatever you want to call them.) Your activity and home teaching levels make me think this would help. It's not a time to just check on home teaching, or to chastise, but it's an opportunity to get a sense of how they are personally, learn of challenges or sucesses, provide encouragement and training, and show love. *You can delegate some of these to your counselors. You have keys that give you that right.* Seek training from the bishop or your high councilor if you need to. Train your counselors if you need to.

Maybe you already know all this and you can just ignore me. I just wish I'd had this pounded into my head a bit more when I started the calling. I can tell you're making a valiant effort with your service, keep it up!

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On 5/2/2017 at 0:31 PM, jerrop said:

"That's quite an agenda you've got there." .... I know. I tried to leave no stone unturned.

"Firstly, regarding meeting frequency."... we tried weekly outside of church, prior to member visits, changed to sunday quick meeting during 2nd hour.

"Second is regular PPIs."...  all good advice. thank you. we are assigning PPI interviews before/after sacrament to active brethren, during third hour, 15 minute intervals. Less active members are also reached out to and invited to accept an invitation, in or out of the Church for a PPI.

"Maybe you already know all this and you can just ignore me." Maybe... but I kinda like your style, honesty, wisdom and council... thanks for your 2 cents.. really appreciate it. 

 

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I'm on board with whoever said it was a lot to cover and would make for a lengthy meeting.

That said it is stuff that needs to be done so just do baby steps. If you dump it all on theSeptember snowflakes all at once they will melt.

As for long meetings, I was involved an a scouting position in my stake and the sp was a guy who was there most times and made it a point to let us all know he holds lengthy meetings. He was right except most the time nothing was accomplished. I whined about it a bit and was given the too bad so sad response. I stopped going after a whilevel. It is a given that he is the sp and he or one of his folks can hold a marathon meeting if they wish,  it the whole lack of respect for peoplesale time and not accomplishing much is a no go.

Just make sure to respect people's time and be efficient. For those who choose not to cooperate and be a team player....dump them.

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On 2/13/2017 at 4:03 PM, omegaseamaster75 said:

A couple of comments from someone who has to go to a lot of meeting every Sunday.

1. You're the EQ president you shouldn't be preparing the agenda your secretary should. Task him with preparing the agenda and taking notes during the meeting so that he can prepare the subsequent one.  Better yet make him conduct the meeting since he prepared the agenda and you will be in a better position to be thoughtful and more in tune with the spirit during the meeting.

2. I think I saw a post that said that you are going to phase this in little by little,  that is good, but keep your agendas to one page otherwise they just go in the round file because you'll never get to it all

3.  You say your EQ struggles pick one or two items and work on those until you do them really well, until they become automatic only then move on to your next item.

4. Don't kill them with meetings, I suggest once a month at MOST twice and keep them short 45-1hr MAX. 

I seem often to find myself at loggerheads with omegaseamaster, so it's only right that I point out when I think he hit a bull's-eye. I heartily agree with all four of his points. They are both relevant and important. Well done, omega.

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