A mother, President Packer and an LDS convert: A look at the lives, sacrifices of seminary teachers

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  • antodav TAMPA, FL
    June 25, 2014 1:14 p.m.

    I would love to be a seminary and/or institute teacher, but it’s unlikely to happen, given the rigorous process involved. Nevertheless, it is still something I would like to try for one day, perhaps. I also wish that there were still high schools run by the Church, not just in Utah, but all over the country. Other denominations have them; there’s no reason why we shouldn’t as well. We need them, to provide LDS parents (and even non-LDS ones) a place where their children can be taught strong discipline and good moral values with a firm spiritual foundation. Public schools certainly are not the place for that anymore.

  • laVerl 09 St Johns, AZ
    June 6, 2014 1:34 p.m.

    President Packer was my hero, so much so that I even taught 5 years of Seminary before I learned to individualize teaching and learning in a life-long career as a counseling psychologist. It's amazing how individual we are in our learning and how much our Heavenly Father loves us as He provides the guidance to learn what we need to know and apply to be able to inherit ALL that He has.
    And Pres. Packer didn't let me down. When my wife and I were newly married, he called us to his side on the stand at a Stake Conference and delivered a 45 minute talk on temple marriage to us.
    Later, when our two oldest sons were 8 and 10, Pres. Packer called them to his side on the stand, complimented them on their coats and ties and proceeded to give a talk to them on preparing to go on missions.
    The interesting thing about this is that both of these instances were when we were visiting my parents in a Stake not our own.

  • Kay Hunt Celebration, FL
    June 6, 2014 9:20 a.m.

    I was an early morning seminary teacher for 9 years. I loved doing it. I loved being able to help young people find the answers to their questions in the scriptures. Last year I moved so had to give it up. Loved my students.

  • Idahotransplant West Jordan, UT
    June 6, 2014 9:08 a.m.

    I admire the dedication and sacrifices the spouses of many of these CES professional seminary teachers make. I know of a few circumstances where spouses would not support this.

  • The Wraith Kaysville, UT
    June 5, 2014 3:13 p.m.

    In what states can teaching seminary be a profession now? Utah would obviously house the greatest number of full time seminary and institute teachers. I grew up here and even graduated seminary before leaving the church. I would guess now there would be full time seminary teachers in Idaho, Arizona, California, and perhaps Washington.

    Not taking anything away from those who teach seminary for a living the volunteers do sacrifice much. I know on my mission it was all volunteer and early morning. I was always impressed, and remain impressed (even if I don't believe the doctrine) by the dedication these men and women put in to teaching. Not to mention the dedication of those kids getting up early every day.

  • brotherJonathan SLC, UT
    June 5, 2014 12:10 p.m.

    Joseph Smith-Quotes on Freedom, America, Constitution, Liberty,
    And then you would have “further truths from the teachings of the Prophet [Joseph Smith].” … And he taught us relating to the Kingdom of God, as it would become organized upon the earth through “all nations learning war no more,” and all adopting the God-given constitution of the United States as a Paladium [sic] of Liberty and Equal Rights.
    ( Source: Johnson 5-6 )

  • Michigander Westland, MI
    June 5, 2014 11:00 a.m.

    All ordained teachers, as well as all other officers both ordained and elected in The Church of Jesus Christ (WHQ: Monongahela, Pennsylvania), receive no monetary compensation when they instruct their classes on various gospel topics as commanded in both the KJV BIble and the Book of Mormon.

  • procuradorfiscal Tooele, UT
    June 5, 2014 10:22 a.m.

    Re: "Those people ["volunteer" seminary teachers] do make church history."

    As a 4-year graduate of released-time seminary, as well as one of "those people," I can attest to the fact that as much -- or more, considering the numbers -- church history is made at 6:30 a.m. in ward meeting-house Relief Society rooms, in teachers' homes, and in military chapel annexes; as in the nicest, best appointed released-time buildings in the inter-mountain Mormon corridor.

    Notwithstanding the often-painful interaction with paid "professional" [priestcraft?] CES employees, "volunteer" [called, not volunteers, in the true sense] seminary teachers nearly universally cherish our opportunities to learn and serve, as well as those quite common, though strikingly poignant, "aha!" moments -- when kids first understand that Book of Mormon stories are about real people, that pioneer lives of sacrifice really do speak to our current conditions, that the Savior's message is to real, though flawed, people, and that their buddies, teammates, and friends also have real testimonies.

    Even more poignant? Seeing former students at the temples, in church, or in Church News articles.

    Worth it? You bet!

  • flatlander Omaha, NE
    June 5, 2014 9:47 a.m.

    I appreciate your efforts to recognize the seminary educators but I think you put too much emphasis on separating "professionals" from "volunteers". Many of the "volunteers " are also professional educators at the high school and college level. My wife puts in hours each day preparing lessons, working with students individually and handling administrative matters.