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Excerpt from Oral History Interview with Patience Dadzie, October 21, 2001. Interview R-0156. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007) See Entire Interview >>

Callings for women in the Mormon Church

Dadzie discusses her calling to serve as a young woman's teacher and as a visiting teacher in the Mormon Church when she first moved to North Carolina. In describing these types of callings for women, Dadzie emphasizes the importance of family togetherness and direct participation in the Mormon Church.

Citing this Excerpt

Oral History Interview with Patience Dadzie, October 21, 2001. Interview R-0156. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007) in the Southern Oral History Program Collection, Southern Historical Collection, Wilson Library, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

Full Text of the Excerpt

So have you ever been called to do a specific function in the church here? Like I understand that the men they're called into the priesthood and women have different types of calling. Were you ever called?
PATIENCE DADZIE:
Yeah, I used to be the young woman's teacher. I was teaching young women.
BARBARA COPELAND:
And usually how long do those callings last. [Recorder is turned off and then back on.] So yeah how long was the calling again? Is it like for a year when they call you in the church to do a specific function? Is it for a year's time or—
PATIENCE DADZIE:
Normally it's like six months to a year or three months to a year.
BARBARA COPELAND:
Then after that if you were to decide that you wanted to continue in that function, could you then just say to them I want to continue doing this or do they vote on it or how is that normally done?
PATIENCE DADZIE:
I think that they always try to give everybody a chance to participate. So normally when it's time, they move you to another calling somebody else takes over. This way everybody gets a chance yeah to do something.
BARBARA COPELAND:
Do you, have you ever known wherein maybe someone maybe the bishop had said to someone this is your calling and we want you to do this particular function? Maybe someone would say well this is not what I want to do. How is that? Like for example if someone has like a time conflict or they can't fulfill that calling, how do they negotiate that?
PATIENCE DADZIE:
With that I don't know how you call it. Something like that happened it is between the bishop and whomever. So I don't think anybody else would know what is going on something like that. But I know give an example with me, I used to go to a visiting teacher. Before they gave me the visiting teaching the relief society president asked me whether I would like to go to visiting teaching, and I told her oh yeah sure I would do it. So I was going to visiting teaching, and my son was going to school, I told them with all my school work and job too it was hard for me to be going visiting teaching. So I want them to relieve me so that they can replace me. They said that's fine and they did.
BARBARA COPELAND:
Right.
PATIENCE DADZIE:
somebody else.
BARBARA COPELAND:
Right. Right. So what is visiting teaching? What kind of calling is that?
PATIENCE DADZIE:
It's like they assign in the woman's relief society they assign everybody like four people to visit. It's like they are like your family in case of an emergency. So every once in a month you make an appointment and go to the house visit whatever visiting teacher and ask, give them scripture and say whatever is going on, find out how they are doing, if they need some help with housework or taking care of whatever they need and say how are you doing and everything. At the end of the month you give the report to the relief society president.
BARBARA COPELAND:
Oh you have to give a report of what you're visits were like.
PATIENCE DADZIE:
Yeah. That's the only way we can get to know each other's families because if we don't do that, we don't know—
BARBARA COPELAND:
You don't know your church members.
PATIENCE DADZIE:
Know members. Yeah. So everybody is assigned to one.
BARBARA COPELAND:
So it's sort of like a support system.
PATIENCE DADZIE:
Support system yeah. We go every month and give them a scripture and talk about how they are doing and if they need help or anything and whatever they need you can pass it on to this needs something. So if anybody can just stop by or something like that especially when somebody has a baby and you know that you try to make something. I know having a baby is not easy in the first week.
BARBARA COPELAND:
Right. Exactly.
PATIENCE DADZIE:
So we try to visit and give her some the first week.
BARBARA COPELAND:
A little extra. What would you say about the Mormon church? What are some of the things that you like about the Mormon church that remind you about home and how you were brought up?
PATIENCE DADZIE:
I have to say everything. They are just like a family to me. Surely for me when I am far away from home. It's like a family to me. When I first came here, I didn't know anybody but as soon as I started going to church. They are always coming, visiting me, calling me to see how I was doing. I was trying to offer to help me with job and all this stuff.
BARBARA COPELAND:
So did they help you get familiar with being in the country here and helped you with finding jobs and that sort of thing.
PATIENCE DADZIE:
Yes, they did. Yes they did all those sort of—yeah.
BARBARA COPELAND:
That's good. That's good. So they're sort of like an outreach would you say.
PATIENCE DADZIE:
Yes. Something like that.