[Scanned into electronic format for convience only, first version 1/23/1999,

does NOT contain charts, and only the chapter headings are hyper linked.]

Church Handbook

of Instructions

Book 1

Stake Presidencies and Bishoprics

Published by

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

Salt Lake City, Utah

1998 by Intellectual Reserve, Inc.

All rights reserved

Printed in the United States of America

English approval: 9/98


1. General, Area, and Regional Administration
2. Stake Administration
3. Ward Administration
4. Interviews and Counseling
5. Ordinances and Blessings
6. Callings and Releases
7. Meetings
8. Temples and Marriage
9. Missionary Service
10. Church Discipline
11. Single Members and Students
12. Church Educational System
13. Military Relations
14. Records and Reports
15. Finances
16. Physical Facilities
17. Creating, Changing, or Naming Church Units
18. Church Policies


The Lord admonished, "Wherefore, now let every man learn his duty, and to act in the office in which he is appointed, in all diligence" (D&C 107:99; see also D&C 105:10).

Church leaders should seek personal revelation to help them learn and fulfill the duties of their callings.

Studying the scriptures and the teachings of latter-day prophets will also help leaders learn their duties. The Lord has admonished leaders to treasure up in their minds continually the words of God so they will be receptive to the influence of the Spirit (see D&C 84:85).

Leaders also learn their duties by studying the instructions in Church handbooks. These instructions can facilitate revelation if they are used to provide an understanding of principles, policies, and procedures to apply when seeking the guidance of the Spirit.

Introduction to the Church Handbook of Instructions

To reduce and simplify information on Church administration, most handbooks and other instructions have been consolidated into the Church Handbook of Instructions, which consists of two books:

As of 1 January 1999, the Church Handbook of Instructions supersedes the following publications, which should be discarded: Although the information in Providing in the Lord's Way: A Leader's Guide to Welfare is included in the Church Handbook of Instructions, it will continue to be published as a separate document.

Updates and Supplements to Instructions

Occasionally the information in the Church Handbook of Instructions will be updated or supplemented through the Bulletin, Notices, and other correspondence from the First Presidency, Quorum of the Twelve, and Presiding Bishopric. When this occurs, leaders should write the change in their copies of the handbooks. Leaders should keep handbooks and these supplementary materials together.

Questions about Instructions

Leaders who have questions about information in the Church Handbook of Instructions, or about issues that are not addressed, should direct the questions to their immediate presiding authority.

Application in Branches, Districts, and Missions

Unless the context shows otherwise, the terms bishop and bishopric in the Church Handbook of Instructions refer also to branch presidents and branch presidencies. The terms stake president and stake presidency refer also to district presidents and district presidencies. References to wards and stakes usually apply also to branches, districts, and missions.

Branch, district, and mission presidents should follow these instructions as far as they are applicable. A mission president should have the approval of his Area Presidency if he believes he needs to modify the application of these instructions in his mission.

Distribution of Book 1

Book 1: Stake Presidencies and Bishoprics should be distributed as follows:

When Church officers who have a copy of Book 1 are released, they should give the copy promptly to their successor or to their presiding authority.

List of Items Referenced

The Church Handbook of Instructions refers to many other Church-produced materials, such as forms, manuals, and certificates. An alphabetical list of the materials that are referenced in this handbook is provided below. If item numbers have been assigned, they are provided below rather than in the text of this handbook. Most of these materials are available through Church distribution centers.

1.General, Area, and Regional Administration 1