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“The bishop or branch president oversees the conferral of the Aaronic Priesthood and ordinations to the offices of deacon, teacher, and priest. Before a person is ordained to an office in the Aaronic Priesthood, he must be interviewed by the bishop or branch president and found worthy. Also, he must be sustained in a sacrament meeting. With the authorization of the bishop or branch president, a priest may confer the Aaronic Priesthood upon another person and ordain him to an Aaronic Priesthood office. 

The stake or mission president oversees the conferral of the Melchizedek Priesthood and ordination to the offices of elder and high priest.

To confer the priesthood or ordain a person to a priesthood office, one or more men who hold the required priesthood and who have been authorized by the presiding authority place their hands lightly on the person’s head.” (quoted directly from the Family-Guidebook on lds.org) See the 3 x 5 card below for the rest of the instructions.

If the priesthood is being received for the first time then you have to give that person the priesthood. This is what we mean when we “confer” the priesthood. So a new Deacon has the Aaronic Priesthood conferred upon him, then he is ordained to one of the offices within that priesthood – in this case Deacon. When the Deacon is made a Teacher he is just ordained to the office of Teacher within the Aaronic Priesthood. There is no need to confer the Aaronic Priesthood on him again, since he already has it. This same pattern is followed when the Aaronic Priesthood holder moves up to the Melchizedek Priesthood. The Melchizedek Priesthood is conferred on the one being given the Melchizedek Priesthood then they are ordained to the office of Elder within that priesthood.

Below is a 3 x 5 card you can print on heavy paper or card stock and cut out to take with you as a reference. The steps listed on the card are word for word from the Church’s website. 


Confer Priesthood