From my understanding, women play a huge role in the LDS church, e.g. The Relief Society (which was established in 1842 and has about 6 million members). Even though they don't have the priesthood and as such don't serve as Bishops, Stake Presidents, etc., they still give talks and say prayers in Sacrament Meetings and are in charge of Primary, Young Women's, etc. But I don't understand why LDS women are not able to be Sunday School Presidents. They can be teachers, but not the presidents? What is the LDS doctrine behind that? Why must a Sunday School President be a priesthood holder if they are not overseeing priesthood ordinances? When anyone receives a calling in the LDS Church, they can receive inspiration for their stewards -- regardless of what their gender is, so I don't know why must a Sunday School President be a male, especially if priesthood activities are not involved. Is is mainly based on tradition? Or is their doctrine behind this?

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    Maybe the real question isn't "why they can't be", but why they aren't called to be. It's possible women could be perfectly capable, but God doesn't see the need to have them serve in that capacity.
    – JBaczuk
    Commented Jul 30, 2016 at 14:40

1 Answer 1


To preface my answer, not all Church policy is shaped by doctrine. Some policies are practical. For example --- and this is just speculation --- it could be to relieve some burden from the women who, in many congregations, already have their hands full with taking care of families/children and their Relief Society, primary, young women's, and other responsibilities or organizations they are called to.

That said, I don't know the official reason why this is the case, but the handbook does say:

13.2.2. Sunday School President

The bishop calls and sets apart a Melchizedek Priesthood holder to be the ward Sunday School president.

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    The only potential issue I see with this answer is the sentence you omitted in 12.2.2: "Where possible, the president holds the Melchizedek Priesthood." Considering that setting apart is generally considered a Melchizedek Priesthood role, this weakens your potential reasoning as to why.
    – Daniel
    Commented Aug 4, 2016 at 18:13
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    Note the full text of that paragraph of 12.2.1: "The bishop calls and sets apart the Sunday School president. He also oversees the calling and setting apart of other Sunday School workers. He may assign his counselors to call and set them apart." It seems much more natural for the "He" of your second quote to be referring to the Bishop, not the Sunday School president. Commented Aug 30, 2017 at 18:55
  • @Nathanielisprotesting The new handbook clarifies that by removing pronouns, and I've updated the answer.
    – Matt
    Commented May 15 at 22:39
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    @Matt I've read many of your posts, it's nice to see you on the site! Commented May 16 at 4:08

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