I’m a Mormon, So…

I’m a Mormon, so I attend church each Sunday* as part of a ward; the wards (or branches) are grouped into stakes (or districts), then areas. There is a man called to preside over each level, leading up to the president of the entire Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (currently President Russell M. Nelson).

Like school boundaries, an LDS ward or branch (if there aren’t enough church-goers to form a full ward) is a geographical area drawn to include 150 to 500 members. That group is assigned a building and a time to meet each Sunday. A man is called to be the bishop; he, in turn, calls two counselors and a secretary. Those three men are known as the bishopric.

The bishop holds the priesthood keys to lead the work of the Church in the ward (see 3.4.1). He and his counselors form a bishopric. They receive guidance from the stake presidency. They care for ward members with love, helping them become true followers of Jesus Christ (see Moroni 7:48).

LDS General Handbook, “The Bishopric

The bishop is like a pastor, rabbi, or priest. None of the bishopric is paid, however, and each is usually married.

The bishoprics in a stake are presided over by a stake presidency, which also has a president and counselors. They are also not paid and are usually married.

Stake presidencies are presided over by an area president and counselors. Again, unpaid. Again, usually married.

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has many, many councils, counselors, presiding members, general authorities, presidents of specific levels and groups, members of the Seventies, etc. above the local level of leadership. For an explanation, read the General Handbook on “Serving in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.” Above it all is the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles. The head of the LDS Church and the Twelve is President Russell M. Nelson, the current president of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

Unlike the majority of callings in the LDS Church, those filling the positions in upper management levels do receive a monetary stipend. In 2000, the pay of one of the members of the Quorum of the Twelve was estimated at $89,325.05.

General Authorities, as these upper-level leaders are referred to, serve full-time as their only job. They often travel. They oversee operations all over the world.

General Authorities leave their careers when they are called into full time Church service. When they do so, they focus all of their time on serving the Church, and are given a living allowance. The living allowance is uniform for all General Authorities. None of the funds for this living allowance come from the tithing of Church members, but instead from proceeds of the Church’s financial investments.

Eric Hawkins, reported in “MormonLeaks web page posts documents about ‘living allowance’ of LDS general authorities

©2022 Chel Owens


We Mormons are officially members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and are to drop any name but that. Since many recognize the nickname of ‘Mormon’ and it works with the alliteration so well, however, I will use the term.

My other note is that I will keep to official doctrinal practices. I will add my own application of them, especially in response to comments.

My final note is that I LOVE discussing anything I write. Don’t be rude, obviously, but any and all queries or responses are welcome.

My final note beyond the final note is that I do not seek to convert anyone. I am motivated by forming connections, answering curiosity, and straightening pictures. So, you’re safe.