Comments about ‘Ask Angela: My LDS singles ward is one big mutual activity’

Return to article »

Published: Monday, Aug. 11 2014 12:35 p.m. MDT

  • Oldest first
  • Newest first
  • Most recommended
Deep Space 9, Ut

To "Gettin’ old I guess" the problem is not with the ward. The problem is with you. You said that the lessons and activities are not up to your level. I hate to tell you this, but in the future you may be called to be in the Primary, where the lessons and activities will never be the level you are looking for. However, the problem with being uplifted at church doesn't reside in the material that is presented, but in your preparedness to receive enlightenment. In Primary you can gain great spiritual insights if you are prepared for them. In the activities, it isn't about how they can entertain you, but how you can contribute to the activities.

If you want to make your time more enjoyable at the YSA ward, come to the lessons spiritually prepared, ask questions and actively participate. I have seen terrible lessons turned around by a few good comments. In the activities go with the goal of meeting new people, don't worry about what is planned. You can have fun even if the activity is just sitting around with paper and crayons. It is all in YOUR attitude.

Cinci Man

I wish wish you the best, but your assessment of your YSA Ward may either be subjective to your perception or may be true if those who plan your activities are younger. Our YSA Ward has the most impressive activities, devotionals, classes, and council (leaders). My experience, as the bishop, is among the most humbling experiences of my life. These young people have energy of youth, but the maturity of adults. Service projects, game nights, excursions, temple trips, movie nights,are always accompanied by incredible devotionals that that far exceed what you would get in seminary. The age mix results in the younger ones growing up fast. No more 2 1/2 minute talks, or reading a clever quote. We have deep discussions, provocative comments, and sincere reflection on great principles. You can be the person that elevates every event you mention. Best of luck to you.

Layton, UT

Here's a simple solution. Just don't go. Problem solved. Works great for me.

Magna, UT


Gettin old never said anything about the activities and lessens not being up to her level, you assumed that is what was meant but I read it completely different. Your reply has a sting that is not necessary.

I am a 59 year old clerk assigned to a YSA ward and I understand the feelings very well. The age disparity is very wide and the maturity disparity is often wider. I also have a 32 year old Un-married daughter who faithfully served in a YSA ward but often felt the same way Gettin old feels. She now attends a family ward and serves in YW.

The problem as you so coarsely state being that of Gettin old is not at all true. I have often felt the same way in my HP quorum.

I believe, for the most part, the tone of a ward is set by the bishop and the expectations he has of the ward members and how they buy into those expectations. There are members, such as Gettin old who have expectations of the leadership of the ward and rightly so. It goes both ways.

Michael Hunt
Murray, UT

I concur with CWJ. Replacing three + hours a week of my life with outdoor activities or reading has been simply invaluable. The author is of course welcome to continue seeking what she won't find, but kicking against the pricks certainly a tired animal makes.

Magna, UT

Too often in some wards, the YM and YW have been entertained to death and they expect it to continue in the YSA ward and sometimes it does continue for various reasons.

My advise to Gettin old is to visit with your bishop and or counselors and or the RS president and in a kind way, express your feelings. Let them know how you feel but be prepared to not see much change in the very short term but with planning and prayer and positive action, the expectations of most of the YSA's and the leaders in the ward will be raised.

Good luck to you and the whole ward.

Newport Beach, CA

"However, the problem with being uplifted at church doesn't reside in the material that is presented, but in your preparedness to receive enlightenment. "

Insert the word "sometimes" after the word "church," and you have a reasonable point.

Deep Space 9, Ut

To "JDL" actually she did say they were not up to her level. She said that the lessons felt like everything was "like they are created for a much younger age group. Most of our ward gatherings feel like mutual activities. I'd like to attend my assigned ward, but I'm 27 years old and I need to worship in a more mature and intellectually stimulating way."

That sure sounds like everything is not up to her desired level. The sting is necessary people need to hear the truth using clear language. Many people within the church do not realize the damage they do to themselves by ignoring the simple truths that can be found in even the most mundane a simplistic lessons. Some of the greatest spiritual lessons come from Primary where you never get "to worship in a more mature and intellectually stimulating way." What will happen to her in 15 years when she is one of the older ladies in RS, and a 23 year old is teaching, will she want that person released so that she can have a more intellectual and mature lesson?

Why let intellect trump spirit?

Springfield, VA

To those who say stop going to church is the solution, I counter that going to church brings me great spiritual and social fulfillment.

Providence, UT

Service! Stop talking about following the Savior and get to work. Please encourage those that plan activities to add genuine service activities to the mix. Then you'll have a lot more for ward members to talk about and discuss during lessons.

Deep Space 9, Ut

To "TheProudDuck" no, I wouldn't say sometimes. All the time your ability to receive enlightenment depends on your preparedness to receive. Just look at the scriptures, even when the best message has been given it is only the people that are spiritually prepared that get the enlightenment.

Please name an instance when somebody wasn't prepared spiritually was able to receive spiritual enlightenment regardless of the material presented.

Newport Beach, CA

"Why let intellect trump spirit?"

Better yet, why not have both?

Salt Lake City, UT

I think that the entire Church has a problem with thinking the gospel can be fully explained in elementary and puerile terms. As a Church body, we are massively undereducated in the scriptures. Only personal study can overcome this. So study well "Gettin Old," because this juvenile understanding of the gospel may never change in the Church as a whole.

However, as a single person who is "getting old" in a YSA ward I say I must concur with the writer here in some regard. The activities have become ridiculously juvenile at times. With the gamut of "FHE" and slip n slides, I feel like I am playing with a bunch of kids. Wait, I am. I have been pretty much totally inactive in any "FHE," "Ward Prayer," or ward activities for a year now. And I have never felt better. Use the time to instead go to the temple, write a personal history, study the scriptures, visit you own actual family (grandparents, parents, siblings...)

Bountiful, UT

You are not happy in your ward because the maturity level of those there is different than yours, you are at a different level. yet you are 'supposed' to go to the one where you live.

Tell me, what will doing what you are supposed to do, + $5 get you?

If you want to try a different ward, try a different ward.

Salt Lake City, UT

For those of you who solve the "problem" by not going-yes, you have gained 3 hours per week of time, but if you are a Church member, you are choosing to forego partaking of the sacrament, renewing your covenants, and hopefully enjoying the peace of forgiveness. Is your alternative worth it?

Sierra Madre, CA

I know how she feels. I am older than her; I go to a family ward. It's a bit sad that there aren't available men my age. I understand why it might make people not want to go to church, but I enjoy going. It's about a sense of community.

Salt Lake City, UT

I found the same things when I got in my upper 20s, I left the singles ward when I was 27 and it was the right time for me. There is a reason you leave after 30, its not for you anymore, and for some, that time comes sooner.

Norman, OK

Unfortunately there are far too many who go to church just for the social aspect, the "Greetings in the marketplace" dare I say.

Like Vladhagen says, I would totally recommend feeling zero obligation to attend anything outside of the 3 hour block. You clearly desire to attend church, so this should not be an issue. But again, do not be guilt tripped into going to some puerile (Great word Vladhagen!) activity. Make your own self better. Be an active Christian. Participate in personal worship. Let them do as they please. All you can do is become better yourself. No one besides you can take you there.

Sandy, UT

Though I'm 39 and "honorably released" from my YSA ward almost a decade ago, as a single woman in the church I wish I could say it gets easier but it doesn't. What this writer is saying is that an LDS singles ward is one big meat market with no dating or courtship that leads to temple marriage because there just aren't enough worthy priesthood holders to go around. The scars from hitting each other over the head with our trays of freshly baked cookies in order to snag one of those righteous elders with more than "some college" not addicted to porn or gay and capable of seeing beyond his X-box to support his future family, make being single in this church very discouraging. I moved into the family ward my married sister attends so I'd have someone to sit with in sacrament meeting. That helped but...the loneliness of rejection and failure to catch a husband never goes away. It is our burden to bear and I wish single women in the church had the same network of support and encouragement as certain other LDS groups hogging the limelight over marriage and priesthood rights.

Maryville, MO

cjb and others decide that if you don't like your ward, go to another one. A YSA ward is not a requirement for anyone to join or go to. It is an option open to YSA but not a requirement. they if they wish may stay in their home ward but there are drawbacks to both as mentioned above and secondly feeling a bit overwhelmed with the fact you are considerably younger than most adults in your ward. You are married so it puts you in a bad spot. Many activities seem too immature but guess what most YSA are doing in College. Partying and basically misbehaving. What does that add up to, very immature and destroys the spirit?

So the solution is up to you the person. What attitude you take to each meeting is based on that. If even High Priest Quorums are a problem then it is the attitude of the individual, not the individuals in the class. If you don't go spiritually prepared then you will probably never be satisfied. Nothing is perfect in this world except the Church organization. It is perfect but operated by imperfect people. Except it and move forward.

to comment

DeseretNews.com encourages a civil dialogue among its readers. We welcome your thoughtful comments.
About comments