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Thursday, December 5, 2013

Handbook of Instructions (1940): What Constitutes a Visit

by Seattle Jon:

My youngest brother gifted me a Handbook of Instructions from 1940 signed by first presidency members Heber J. Grant, J. Reuben Clark, Jr. and David O. McKay. At 170 pages, the handbook is much shorter then our current versions (Handbook 1 alone is 186 pages) yet contains some interesting rules and regulations - and language - which I'll share over time.

What Constitutes a Visit

To accomplish the objective contemplated by ward teaching, actual visits in the home are essential. No substitute for such visits is permissible and the actual personal visit in the home is the basis upon which credit for ward teaching will be given, except when a family is quarantined on account of contagious disease. Any personal contact with a family member of the family under these conditions, during which the teacher fulfills his responsibility as fully as possible, may be counted as a visit. Telephone conversations, meetings on the street, conversations in Church or at socials are not to be counted as ward teaching, nor will any number of calls at a home when people are absent receive credit as a visit. Families inaccessible for any reason are not to be counted as visited, unless a visit has actually been made. The only way to actually do ward teaching is to enter the homes of the people and get close to them with a pleasant attitude and interesting message.

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Seattle Jon is a family man, little league coach, urban farmer and businessman living in Seattle. He currently gets up early with the markets to trade bonds for a living. In his spare time he enjoys movies, thrifting and is an avid reader. He is a graduate of Brigham Young University and the Japan Fukuoka mission field. He has one wife, four kids and five chickens.
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