Sunday, June 13, 2010

Boys and girls: Access to authority

Organizational leaders in the Mormon church get extra-special bonus meetings* on top of the meeting load that comes simply with being an active member of the church. Two of these are “priesthood executive committee” and “ward council”.

Priesthood executive committee is a meeting that includes the bishopric, those holding a couple of administrative positions, and the heads of priesthood groups.** Ward council is a more expansive group, including the priesthood executive committee plus the heads of the “auxiliary organizations”—things like the primary and relief society organizations, the young women’s organization, the Sunday school, and so on.

This means that the head of the young men’s organization attends both priesthood executive committee*** and ward council meetings, while the head of the young young women’s organization attends only ward council, thereby giving the young women’s organization less access to the bishop—and, probably more crucially, fewer opportunities to schedule things—in such settings, and only in a situation where the access is much more diluted. I’ve seen this lead to miscommunications before (never anything major, happily, but it certainly happens).

Of course, you could always do what a bishop i knew some years ago did, and say that since ward council includes everyone in priesthood executive committee, they’d be combined into a single ward council meeting. With our religion’s love of meetings upon meetings upon meetings upon meetings, though, i figure that many would consider that a heretical solution to the problem.

* Yeah, great joy and stuff.

** I seem to recall reading once that church leadership had said that the head of the relief society organization could be included in this group at the option of the bishop, but i’ve never known that to actually happen. Anyone know if that’s just a Mormon urban legend, or if it actually is an official option?

*** Ostensibly as the person in charge of the Aaronic priesthood-age boys, but the bishop is actually the head of the Aaronic priesthood in the ward (according to canon), so i’m not sure exactly what’s going on there.

1 comment:

Heather the Mama Duk said...

I think our ward includes RS in PEC. Most *women* seem to prefer *fewer* meetings. It seems to be the men who want lots of meetings. So most women are perfectly fine with fewer meetings for them.