The ecclesiastical organization of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is primarily administered by presidencies. From the highest governing body in the Church, the First Presidency, to local congregations, each of these presidencies is composed of a president and two counselors. One exception to this format is found in local wards, where the lay leader is called the bishop. The two men who assist him are still referred to as counselors.

Regardless of the administrative level, the purpose of counselors is to provide help and support to the president or bishop. The counselors perform various spiritual and administrative duties as assigned by the president or bishop and fill in when the president or bishop is unavailable. Depending on the organization, these counselors can be men or women of all ages. For example, the counselors in a stake presidency are adult men, while the counselors in a deacons quorum are boys between the ages of 12 and 13. Along the same lines, the counselors in a Relief Society presidency are adult women, while the counselors in a young women’s class are teenage girls between the ages of 12 and 18.

Style Guide Note:When reporting about The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, please use the complete name of the Church in the first reference. For more information on the use of the name of the Church, go to our online Style Guide.

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