Visiting Teaching Message (Jun ’12)

Visiting Teaching—a Sacred Assignment, Ensign/Liahona, June 2012

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Prayerfully study this material and, as appropriate, discuss it with the sisters you visit. Use the questions to help you strengthen your sisters and to make Relief Society an active part of your own life.

Visiting Teaching—a Sacred Assignment

As visiting teachers, we have an important spiritual mission to fulfill. “The bishop, who is the ordained shepherd of the ward, cannot possibly watch over all of the Lord’s sheep at one time. He is dependent on inspired visiting teachers to help him.”1 Seeking and receiving revelation as to who should be assigned to watch over each sister is essential.

Inspiration begins as members of the Relief Society presidency prayerfully discuss the needs of individuals and families. Then, with the bishop’s approval, the Relief Society presidency gives the assignment in a way that helps sisters understand that visiting teaching is an important spiritual responsibility.2

Visiting teachers sincerely come to know and love each sister, help her strengthen her faith, and give service when needed. They seek personal inspiration to know how to respond to the spiritual and temporal needs of each sister they visit.3

“Visiting teaching becomes the Lord’s work when our focus is on people rather than percentages. In reality, visiting teaching is never finished. It is more a way of life than a task.”4

From the Scriptures

Matthew 22:36–40;
36 Master, which is the great commandment in the law?
37 Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind.
38 This is the first and great commandment.
39 And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself.
40 On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets.
John 13:34–35;
34 A new commandment I give unto you, That ye love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another. 35 By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another.
Alma 37:6–7
6 Now ye may suppose that this is foolishness in me; but behold I say unto you, that by small and simple things are great things brought to pass; and small means in many instances doth confound the wise.
7 And the Lord God doth work by means to bring about his great and eternal purposes; and by very small means the Lord doth confound the wise and bringeth about the salvation of many souls.

From Our History

Eliza R. Snow, the second Relief Society general president taught, “I consider the office of a teacher a high and holy office.” She counseled visiting teachers “to be filled with the Spirit of God, of wisdom, of humility, of love” before they visited homes so they would be able to ascertain and meet spiritual needs as well as temporal ones. She said, “You may feel to talk words of peace and comfort, and if you find a sister feeling cold, take her to your heart as you would a child to your bosom and warm [her] up.”5

As we go forth in faith as the early Relief Society sisters did, we will have the Holy Ghost with us and be inspired to know how to help each sister we visit. “Let [us] seek for wisdom instead of power,” said Sister Snow, “and [we] will have all the power [we] have wisdom to exercise.”6

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What Can I Do?

  1. How can I improve in my ability to fulfill my important responsibility as a visiting teacher?

  2. As a visiting teacher, how can I help other sisters fulfill their responsibility as visiting teachers?


  1. Julie B. Beck, “Relief Society: A Sacred Work,” Liahona and Ensign, Nov. 2009, 114.

  2. See Handbook 2: Administering the Church (2010), 9.5; 9.5.2.

  3. See Handbook 2, 9.5.1.

  4. Julie B. Beck, “Relief Society: A Sacred Work,” Liahona and Ensign, Nov. 2009, 114.

  5. Eliza R. Snow, in Daughters in My Kingdom: The History and Work of Relief Society (2011), 108.

  6. Eliza R. Snow, in Daughters in My Kingdom, 45–46.

1 comment

  1. Jenna SummerhaysJune 14, 2012 at 5:05 AM

    My Visiting Teaching this month was going nowhere because most of the sisters are on vacation for the summmer, so I prayed to know how to fulfill my Visiting Teaching assignment. My prayer was answered by a thought of service, I could clean the windows of each of my sisters and leave a note with a thought "May the powers of Heaven shine through your bright clean windows and give you the blessings you need".