How Many Hours Does It Take To Run A Ward For A Week?

I want to quantify, or at least illustrate, just how much sacrifice people put into their church communities.  I hope for this to be an opportunity for us to realize just how much we serve each other, and rely on each other.  Let us each remember that we’re not the only ones out there trying to make the world a better place by giving a little of ourselves.  Let this be a celebration of consecration.

Below, I’ve attempted to answer the question posed in the title of this post: How many hours does it take to run a ward for a week?  The answer, obviously, is an educated guess at best.  I’m not shooting for an ideal amount, or those hours put in by people I’ve known, but based on my experience and understanding of the practical operations of all church units with which I’ve ever been familiar in any way, I’m trying to estimate what a realistic average is.  I’m not counting attending Sunday meetings unless a calling involves work during that time, nor am I counting things like family home evening, temple attendance, or home teaching.  I don’t want to artificially pump up numbers to be more impressive; I think they’ll be impressive enough as it is. 

The biggest factor holding this back from being more accurate is that beyond major leadership, the roster of callings and how they’re implemented in sundry church units varies remarkably.  Just as with the hours themselves, I can only give my best estimates.  Perhaps someone with more experience from a higher position in the church could refine my roster and numbers.  But please don’t say, “Hey!  I have that calling and I put in a lot more time than that!”  It’s meant to be an average.

Here are my estimates:

CALLING–AVERAGE HOURS PER WEEK:

Bishop–20

Bishopric counselors–14 (x2)

Relief Society President–12

RS Counselors–10 (x2)

High Priest Group Leader–10

HP Assistants–5 (x2)

Elders Quorum President–10

EQ Counselors–5 (x2)

Primary President–6

Primary Counselors–4 (x2)

Young Men’s President–6

Young Men’s Counselors–4 (x2)

Young Women’s President–6

Young Women’s Counselors–4 (x2)

Sunday School President–2

SS Counselors–1.5 (x2)

Executive Secretary–8

Asst. Executive Secretary–4

Ward/Membership Clerk–3

Finance Clerk–3

Adult auxiliary secretaries–1.5 (x7)

Primary teachers–3 (x8)

SS teachers–1.5 (x6)

Other auxiliary teachers–.5 (x6)

Scoutmaster–3

Scout Committee Chair–1.5

Scout Committee–.5 (x3)

Nursery Leader–3.5

Nursery workers–2 (x3)

YM (Asst.) Advisors–2 (x3)

YW (Asst.) Advisors–2 (x3)

Cubmaster–1

Cub Scout Den & Asst. Leaders–2 (x6)

Activity/Achievement Day Leaders & Assts.–2 (x4)

Home Teaching/Visiting Teaching Supervisors–0.2 (x6)

Ward Librarian–2

Asst. Librarian-1

Newsletter/Bulletin Specialist–1

Ward Music Chair–.5

Ward Pianist/Organist–2.5 (x2)

Music Chorister–1 (x2)

Ward Choir President/Leader–2

Singles Representative–.5

Ward Mission Leader–6

Ward Missionaries–2 (x4)

YW Presidency Members (Laurels/Mia Maids/Beehives)–.5 (x9)

YM Presidency Members (Priests/Teachers/Deacons)–.5 (x8)

Activities Committee Chair–2

Activities Committee Members–.5 (x4)

Physical Facilities Chair–1

Emergency Preparedness Specialist (Provident Living Specialist)–.5

Ward Employment Specialist–.5

RS Enrichment Committee–.5 (x4)

Family History Specialist–.5

Primary Pianist–2.5

Primary Chorister–2

RS Pianist–1

RS Chorister–.5

RS Compassionate Service Leader–3

YW Personal Progress Leader–.5

Asst. Scoutmaster/Records–1

Blazer Scout Leaders–2 (x2)

I’ve left off callings that either don’t put in a measurable time of service weekly, may not be implemented widely across the church in general, or callings that I simply forgot.  If I forgot yours, please don’t be offended. 

TOTAL HOURS TO RUN A WARD FOR A WEEK:  361.2

Please check my arithmetic, but if correct, that would suggest that we volunteer enough time to staff nine full-time positions each week.  With 141 people as listed above, this would indicate that the average Latter-day Saint is giving over 2.5 hours to church service each week.

5 comments on “How Many Hours Does It Take To Run A Ward For A Week?

  1. Really interesting post. I hadn’t thought of it that way. Since March I’ve had a Stake calling which has me visiting other wards in our Stake and I have to admit I’ve been really impressed with how dedicated the members of each ward are in not only fulfilling their callings, but in serving each other. It has strengthened my testimony.

  2. I’m a seminary teacher. Does that count? Or is it left out because it’s only a lay calling in the “mission field” (that is, not “implemented widely across the church in general”)?

  3. Floyd, imagine what my total would shoot up to if we did include home teaching, stake callings, seminary teachers, or any number of other things! With that in mind, my total comes across as very low…

  4. Only three hours for the Scoutmaster? The weekly meetings will take longer than that. Think 90 minutes per, four or five each month. And don’t forget about overnight trips each month. Perhaps this is averaged with the guys who send the scouts into the rec hall to play roundball. (I wonder if this is why we are ditching the BSA?)

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