Today, the First Presidency released the new General Handbook: Serving in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. It is available in English in the Gospel Library app in the section Handbooks and Callings and online at handbook.ChurchofJesusChrist.org. Over time, it will be translated and published in an additional 51 languages. Also see the Handbooks and Callings page to see the handbook, frequently asked questions, and other related resources.
The new handbook is available for anyone to read.
The new General Handbook replaces Handbook 1: Stake Presidents and Bishops and Handbook 2: Administering the Church with a single volume. Key elements include:
- Continuing an emphasis on helping all come unto Christ.
- Organizing content around Heavenly Father’s work of salvation and exaltation.
- Providing greater flexibility to simplify programs and adapt to local needs.
- Making all content available to everyone.
- Providing instructional videos and helpful links to other Church resources.
Nine chapters of the General Handbook are new or updated.:
- Chapter 1: “God’s Plan and Your Role in the Work of Salvation and Exaltation”
- Chapter 2: “Supporting Individuals and Families in the Work of Salvation and Exaltation”
- Chapter 3: “Priesthood Principles”
- Chapter 4: “Leadership in the Church of Jesus Christ”
- Chapter 15: “Seminaries and Institutes of Religion”
- Chapter 18: “Priesthood Ordinances and Blessings”
- Chapter 32: “Repentance and Church Membership Councils” (as well as policies that support this chapter in 38.6, “Policies on Moral Issues”)
- Chapter 36: “Creating, Changing, and Naming New Units”
- Chapter 37: “Specialized Stakes, Wards, and Branches”
Chapter 38, “Church Policies and Guidelines,” include policies and procedures on a variety of moral issues. Some policies are new, some have been updated, and some may be updated in the future. These moral policies include abortion, abuse, artificial insemination, birth control, child pornography, incest, in vitro fertilization, same-sex marriages, sex education, sexual abuse, single expectant parents, sperm donation, suicide, surgical sterilization, surrogate motherhood, and a new entry on transgender individuals. In connection with this, content from the Mormon and Gay website has moved to the Life Help section of ChurchofJesusChrist.org. A section in Life Help for transgender individuals has also been published.
Other chapters contain minor revisions from Handbook 1 and Handbook 2. Updated versions of these chapters will be published as they become available. It is expected that the entire handbook will be updated by the end of 2021.
In English, printed copies of Handbook 1 and Handbook 2 are obsolete and should be discarded. In other languages, Handbook 1 and Handbook 2 should continue to be used until the new General Handbook is available. The copies should be discarded at that time. A downloadable and printable PDF of the new General Handbook will be available in about 3 weeks.
For more information:
- General Handbook Frequently Asked Questions. Gives an overview of the content in the updated chapters.
- First Presidency letter announcing the handbook
- A Look Inside the New General Handbook for Church Leaders and Members. Includes video interviews with leaders explaining the new handbook.
- “Church Releases Implementation and Training Video for Using and Finding Content in the New General Handbook.” Learn about new search function in the handbook.
How can you obtain a general handbokk
It is no longer printed, but available free in the Gospel Library or online at https://www.churchofjesuschrist.org/study/manual/general-handbook/title-page?lang=eng