Home Campus What's it like to be a bishop in Rexburg?

What’s it like to be a bishop in Rexburg?

With 128 young single adult wards and 39 married student wards across campus, there are a lot of bishops in Rexburg. But what does it really mean to be a bishop here?

Darnell Weekes, bishop of the Rexburg YSA 16th Ward, shared that being a bishop is a gratifying experience.

“It’s a very rewarding calling,” Weekes said. “It’s very busy, but it’s very rewarding in getting to know your ward members and to work with them and see them change and grow in the gospel. I enjoy getting to know the students and their challenges and being able to have relationships with them that last forever.”

Bishop (First Name Here) Weekes.  Image credit: (First Name Here) Weekes
Bishop Paul Weekes. Image credit: Paul Weekes

Paul Dye, bishop of the Hibbard 3rd Ward in Rexburg, enjoys getting to know the members of his ward. “The calling of a bishop allows you to have an increase in the gift of love for other people,” Dye shared. “The time you spend with them, whether in tithing settlement, interviews, church meetings and activities, you just grow to really love this huge family.”

Bishop Paul Dye.  Image credit: Virginia Dye
Bishop Paul Dye. Image credit: Virginia Dye

However, being a bishop in a Rexburg ward can be challenging.

“I think the biggest challenge is trying to engage a community that has so many members of the Church, and so few people who are not members of the Church,” Dye said. “So you have a high population of people who know about the Church, and you may have higher activity rates, but you still have the challenge of trying to do missionary work with people who are surrounded on every side by members of the Church, instead of just the opposite for most other wards.”

Not only is being the bishop of a local Rexburg ward different from being a bishop elsewhere, but the calling of a bishop is also unique in each ward the bishop is called to serve in.

Bishop Dye explained that one of the biggest differences between being the bishop of a local family ward and being the bishop of a YSA ward are the challenges that each bishop faces when working with his ward.

“In a YSA ward, you work with late teenagers and early young adults, whereas, in a family ward, you’ve got Primary,” Dye said. “We’ve got 95 kids in our Primary. We’ve got 84 or 85 teenagers in our youth programs. A YSA bishop deals with the single adult population and their challenges, while a family ward bishop deals with families and their growth and their challenges, disappointments, divorce, children with needs and trying to get retired couples out on missions.”

Each bishop has learned to work through the distinctive challenges each ward faces with friendship and love for each ward member.

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