Young Women Secretary – Tips and FAQ

The Young Women secretary has the following responsibilities:

  • She consults with the Young Women presidency to prepare agendas for presidency meetings.
  • She attends presidency meetings, takes notes, and keeps track of assignments.
  • She instructs class secretaries and oversees their work in keeping attendance records.
  • At least quarterly, she compiles attendance information, reviews it with the Young Women president, and submits it to the ward clerk.
  • She ensures that the bishopric and the Young Women presidency are aware of young women who are not attending meetings regularly and young women who will soon advance to another Young Women class.
  • She uses the Young Women Personal Progress Tracking Sheet for Leaders to record the progress of individual young women as they participate in Personal Progress and other activities and as they fulfill leadership callings. When a young woman is scheduled to have an interview with a member of the bishopric, the secretary may give him a copy of the young woman’s tracking sheet.
  • She helps the Young Women presidency prepare an annual budget and account for expenses.

Additional Ways for the Young Women Secretary to Help the President

I, Jenny, have served as the Young Women Secretary in two units, now. Here are some of the additional things I did:

  • Take a roll of students for each class
  • Prepare an agenda for use by the Laurel class president during Sunday opening exercises
  • Take minutes at YW Presidency meetings
  • Provide list of birthdays of the Young Women to each member of the presidency
  • Acquire a list of girls who are graduating from Primary during the next six months to give the Beehive counselor
  • Create and maintain a “scrabble board” to help YW/YM keep their assignments straight on mutual night
  • Work with the ward clerk to order Personal Progress items, posters, etc., from http://www.ldscatalog.com/
  • Maintain a lesson schedule for the president and counselors, including who is going to teach combined YW each month
  • Attended mutual at the president’s request
  • Since we didn’t have enough ward members to have YW advisors, I attended our largest class (Beehives) to assist the second counselor.
  • Acted as a substitute teacher when needed

Now I’m the Young Women president, and my amazing secretary does the following additional items:

  • Keeps the calendar at lds.org updated with upcoming presidency meetings
  • Notes the date that upcoming Beehives will attend Young Women for the first time on the calendar so we don’t miss it.
  • Cleans out the young women closet
  • Maintains an inventory of items in the young women closet, like Personal Progress ribbons, medallions, etc.
  • Makes a set of birthday balloons for each young woman on her birthday
  • Contacts the ward executive secretary at the end of each month to find out which young women have had their semiannual bishopric interviews

Are Young Women Secretaries required to conduct meetings or teach lessons?

No. Secretaries are technically not part of a presidency — teaching or conducting meetings are not part of their normal duties, nor do secretaries sit up front during meetings.  Secretaries may be called on to substitute, but the regular duties of a secretary do not include teaching.

Please note that since they are not part of the presidency, secretaries are not automatically released when a new presidency is called.   Keeping secretaries in tact is one way to keep things running smoothly when leadership changes.  This is important to remember when calling class presidencies, as well.  There are lots of a reasons why calling a secretary may be necessary with a leadership change, but just remember it is not done automatically.

Is the Young Women Secretary required to attend Mutual?

Mutual attendance is not listed among the duties of the young women secretary in the handbook. The secretary does not have any regular responsibility that occurs on mutual night.

That said, there’s no prohibition against secretaries attending mutual in the handbook either. When I was serving as YW secretary, my president asked me to attend Mutual as an extra hand, and I did.  Secretaries attending mutual is an appropriate local adaptation when needed and approved by the bishop.

How Do We Hold Presidency Meetings?

Young Women presidency meetings should:

  • Be held regularly.
  • Not be too long.
  • Begin on time.
  • Be led by the president, who uses an agenda.
  • Provide an opportunity for all members of the presidency to counsel and work together in love and unity. (Source LDS.org YW FAQ)

Where Are Presidency Meetings Held?

Young Women presidency meetings can be held at the church building before or after Sunday meetings or at another time and place. (Source LDS.org YW FAQ)

I’ve held presidency meetings in the coat closet at church, at member’s homes, at restaurants, before mutual, and after church meetings.  The presidency meeting schedule is planned well in advance so that the presidency and young women secretary can attend.  When I am first called, I like to meet twice a week.  Now that things are running well, my presidency meets once per month, and we stay in frequent contact by group text.

Who writes Presidency Meeting agendas?

The first listed responsibility for the young women secretary in the handbook is “She consults with the Young Women presidency to prepare agendas for presidency meetings.”  Young Women presidents should take care not to take this responsibility from the secretary by making agendas themselves.  It takes coordination to work with your secretary to make an agenda, but having done it both ways (I did the agenda vs having the secretary do the agenda) I’ve found it’s worth the extra effort.  I have better meetings when I plan agendas ahead, and my secretary often remembers to follow up on things that I’ve forgotten.

What does a YW Presidency Meeting include?

Here’s a sample agenda from LDS.org:

Young Women Presidency Meeting Agenda

Conducting:

Opening prayer:

Discussion Items:

      • Review of scripture or part of a handbook
      • Report on assignments
      • Discuss counsel from priesthood leaders
      • Counsel together about how to bless individual young women

Plan:

        • Give new assignments:

Closing prayer:

Sample Presidency Meeting

This sample meeting is posted at lds.org. It’s actually of a Relief Society meeting, but the principles apply to Young Women leaders as well.

From the Handbook

Ward Young Women Presidency Meeting

The Young Women presidency holds a presidency meeting regularly. The president presides at the meeting and conducts it. The secretary attends, takes notes, and keeps track of assignments. The agenda may include the following items:

        1. Evaluate how the young women in each class are accomplishing the objectives [of the young women organization (below)]. Plan ways to help individual young women accomplish those objectives more completely.
        2. Read and discuss scripture passages and instructions from Church leaders that relate to their callings.
        3. Make plans to instruct class presidencies in their duties.
        4. Discuss the effectiveness of Young Women activities. Discuss ways to include young women in planning activities that help them incorporate the Young Women values in their lives.
        5. Discuss gospel instruction in Sunday classes and plan ways to improve.
        6. Review attendance records. Plan ways to help new members and less-active young women participate.
        7. Review the Young Women budget and expenditures.

The Young Women presidency may invite advisers and specialists to attend these meetings as needed.

Purpose and Objectives of the Young Women Organization

The purpose of the Young Women organization is to help each young woman be worthy to make and keep sacred covenants and receive the ordinances of the temple. To accomplish this purpose, Young Women leaders guide each young woman in accomplishing the following objectives:

        1. Strengthen her faith in and testimony of Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ.
        2. Understand her identity as a daughter of God.
        3. Be worthy by obeying the commandments and living gospel standards.
        4. Receive, recognize, and rely on the promptings of the Holy Ghost.
        5. Prepare for her divine roles as a daughter, wife, mother, and leader.
        6. Understand and keep her baptismal covenants

updated 11-14-2010, with new Church Handbook of Instructions information

Revised 09-26-2017

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