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HANDBOOK INSTRUCTIONS-Sacrament Meeting

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HANDBOOK INSTRUCTIONS - Maybe this will help clarify a few things that have been brought up. In Book I of the Church Handbook of Instructions, p. 56 (this is the one your Bishop has) we read: "audiovisual material such as prerecorded music, videocassettes, filmstrips, and slides should not be used in sacrament meeting. An exception may be made to use appropriate recorded accompaniment if a piano, organ or accompanist is not available." On page 55 we read: "Bishoprics may not turn sacrament meetings over to auxiliaries or outside musical groups. However auxiliaries may be invited to participate in the meeting under the bishopric's direction." (See how important it is to clear our presentation with the Bishop?) On page 154, we read: "Pictures and other artwork may be placed in appropriate locations in the meetinghouse. However, they may not be placed in the chapel or near the baptismal font....Decorations....may be placed temporarily in the foyer or cultural hall of a meetinghouse...With the exception of flowers, decorations may not be placed in the chapel area of the meetinghouse." Details of these Church policies and guidelines are up to the discretion of the local priesthood leadership. Some priesthood leaders have interpreted this to mean no visual aids whatsoever. The reasoning behind this is that most of the congregation can't see the visuals anyway, so why use them! In some cases they distract from the message. We have to be careful to avoid making our sacrament meeting presentation into a sort of dramatic play or program. As far as what is appropriate for a Primary presentation, the yearly outline contains some wonderful ideas and I have found them to be very helpful.

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