There are many ways in which we are asked to serve in The Church, and it is usually done through specific callings. Whether working with children, the youth, through music, teaching doctrine, Temple work, missionary work, etc., which calling has been your favorite? Which one changed you the most? Which one pushed you out of your comfort zone and helped you develop talents you didn’t know you had?
My favorite calling was YW Secretary. Being YW Pres. probably changed me the most and my calling as Enrichment Counselor right now is definitely the one pushing me out of my comfort zone!
For years I was always put into the R.S. homemaking not enrichment committee and I loved doing that because I am an artist craftswoman. To be honest I didn’t ever want to be in any other calling. 16 months ago we moved to a small town in southern Arizona and my husband and I were called to be the Ward Cannery Reps. Not the calling I would have ever chosen for myself…. It was right up there with R.S. president as callings I would NEVER want. I has seen through all my life (I am a life time member of the church) that the cannery was thought of as the worst job in the ward, and I have seen many faithful saints crumble against the disinterest of the other Ward members. We were also told that who ever had the calling before us had pretty much given up on getting orders and so they didn’t try any more.
When we were called to the bishops’ office that Sunday I had wonderful visions of teaching the woman in a new ward all the wonderful things I had perfected over the years of being in the enrichment. When Bishop told us the calling we were being called to my heart almost sank. I say ALMOST because several things had happened to me since the last ward I had held a calling in. I had met a wonderful nonmember man and we had married, he joined the Church in the first year and was learning all the ins’ & outs’ of church callings. The first Ward we lived in I had gone to the local cannery and worked, brought home the few things we had ordered and hoped my husband would start learning the ‘home storage’ ideas. He was a bit at a loss.
I had come into the marriage with some of my own food storage, but nothing of what it should be for even one person. Bit by bit over time he was learning, hearing and absorbing the information. But with this new calling, instead of dread my heart and soul was joyous. I knew that if he was ½ the man I had married he would give the calling his all and be able to learn the true meaning and purposes of Home Storage. He is that man I married and did give it his all, even when people drug their feet, avoided us, and then slowly started to catch the spirit of being prepared again.
With tons of help from the Lord and the junky economy crashing we were able to start members of the ward consistently thinking and doing things about preparedness again. We only took the orders, called in the orders, made the announcements and went to the cannery once a month. The Lord and the economy did the rest.
What a wonderful blessing this calling has been for me, I was able to do it WITH my husband, I was able to watch him grow, we have a great start on our storage now and it has helped me grow spiritually too. Now we are leaving the calling and the town. We are moving to Missouri, closer to kids & grandkids. This last Saturday was our last cannery run in this Ward/stake. There is sadness about leaving it. Not many couples get to hold callings together. We have grown closer for it. But also a sadness because the bishop told us we might be leaving it without someone to take over. The people he first called to fill the job said “NO WAY”. My heart goes out to them for the blessings they might loose by saying no. of course I don’t know why they said no nor do I know who it was, so I will not judge them. I just fill sad about someone not excepting the blessing we have gotten over the last 16 months.
I am excited to say that… “up to now, my favorite church calling was cannery rep.”
Right now, I teach Adults in the Sunday School. At first I was very intimidated because there are probably 75 people who regularly attend the class and some of them have been gospel scholars for a good part of their lives.
I admit to having sweat rings under my armpits for a good 3 months of teaching.
But the calling has helped me do two things.
1. Help me appreciate that our church has a lay clergy. That means all the members take turns fufilling the roles of the church. Now I teach Sunday School, next year I could be in charge of throwing parties, and then the next year I could be in charge of watching and caring for toddlers. Everyone in my class understood that we all take turns and gave me a chance to improve. The best person for the job isn’t always available, and so they get me. And they still attend!
2. Teaching in the Sunday School forces you to prepare lessons and study the gospel regularly. One great way to learn any subject matter is to pretend you will be teaching it the next day, that helps you sort out major themes and topics of the greatest importance in the study material.
I have loved all my callings. Some were hard, others were easy but all have improved my relationship with Christ through service.