“Policies and Announcements,” Ensign, June 1992, 77–79
The following items were among those appearing in 1992–1 Bulletin:
Family Home Evening
In addition to the Family Home Evening Resource Book (31106), an excellent resource for family home evening lessons is Gospel Principles (31110). This manual contains forty-seven chapters of easily understood material outlining the basic principles of the gospel. It is ideally suited to the teaching of young children and is equally valuable for youth and adults. Using this manual is a very effective means of studying the gospel.
Church Policy Regarding Islam
As the Church grows around the world, Latter-day Saints find themselves in increasingly frequent contact with members of the Islamic faith. Islam teaches much that is inspiring, noble, and worthy of the highest respect. Missionaries and other Church members must be sensitive and respectful toward the deeply held beliefs of Muslims and endeavor to avoid offending them. Latter-day Saints must be ever mindful of the need to obey, honor, and sustain the law in whatever country they find themselves, including those where the laws may prohibit proselyting activities.
Services Available for Members with Disabilities
The Church can provide limited materials to serve members who have a disability or a handicap. The Church has prepared recorded materials that can be used on equipment provided by the Library of Congress in the United States and the National Canadian Government in Canada. Members of the Church in the United States and Canada who are visually impaired or physically handicapped may receive this equipment on loan for as long as they need it.
Any person in the United States diagnosed by a physician as legally blind, physically disabled, learning disabled, or dyslexic is eligible to receive a slow-speed audiocassette player. Citizens of Canada who have visual impairments may also receive a slow-speed machine.
Special materials that accommodate the slow-speed machines with half-speed, four-track audiocassettes are available for most Church materials. Those members in the United States who are eligible for machines are also eligible to borrow gospel literature from the Utah State Library.
Lists of materials for the visually impaired and physically disabled, the learning disabled, and the hearing impaired and deaf are provided by request to the address listed below. Also, the Salt Lake Distribution Center Catalog (92001) contains sections listing the available materials for each of the above disabilities. These catalogs should be in every meetinghouse library or every bishop’s or branch president’s office. This information should be made available to all members of ward councils.
For more information, contact:
Attention: Douglas L. Hind
50 East North Temple Street, Floor 24
Salt Lake City, UT 84150
Telephone: 1-800-453-3860, ext. 2477
Brides’ Dresses for Temple Marriages
A marriage ceremony in the temple is a sacred and happy occasion for which careful preparation should be made. Church leaders have a responsibility to counsel those who are to be married regarding these preparations.
Some brides have brought inappropriate wedding dresses to the temple for the marriage ceremony. Brides and their parents or guardians should understand the requirements clearly before they make or purchase the wedding dress. They should also be aware that lovely and tasteful wedding dresses are available at the temple for use during the endowment and marriage ceremonies.
All dresses worn in the temple should be white, have long sleeves, be modest in design and fabric, and be free of elaborate ornamentation. Sheer fabric should be lined. Women’s pants are not permitted in the temple. The dress should not have a train unless it is removable so that it will not be encumbering during the temple ceremonies, though it could be worn for photographs following the marriage or at a later reception.
Dress for Those Attending Temple Marriages
Members of the Church being married in the temple should not request that all their wedding guests be dressed in white. Those who come to a wedding directly from an endowment session may wear their ordinance clothing, and white clothing must be worn in cases where the sealing room must be entered from the Celestial Room.
Reuse of Manuals
Adult members should be aware that current study guides for the Relief Society and the Melchizedek Priesthood are scheduled for reuse and are coordinated with the scripture study in the Sunday School Gospel Doctrine classes. Members may wish to retain these manuals for reference books and for future reuse.
Lay Hold upon the Word of God
To Make Thee a Minister and a Witness
Come unto the Father in the Name of Jesus
Book of Mormon
Strengthen Thy Brethren
Doctrine and Covenants
Learn of Me
Come unto Me
Book of Mormon
Doctrine and Covenants
Referrals should be forwarded to the missionaries only if the nonmembers have explicitly agreed to be visited. The most productive referrals are from nonmembers who have expressed a willingness to have the missionaries visit them. When a nonmember has not expressed this willingness, the missionaries are rarely able to teach the gospel. (This procedure does not change policies on friendshipping or on tracting and other types of normal missionary contacts.)
The Council of the First Presidency and the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles issued the following statement:
“Recent symposia sponsored and attended by some members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints have included some presentations relating to the House of the Lord, the holy temples, that are offensive. We deplore the bad taste and insensitivity of these public discussions of things we hold sacred. We are especially saddened at the participation of our own members, especially those who hold Church or other positions that give them stature among Latter-day Saints and who have allowed their stature to be used to promote such presentations.
“We have a different concern about some of the other topics at these symposia. Some of the presentations by persons whom we believe to be faithful members of the Church have included matters that were seized upon and publicized in such a way as to injure the Church or its members or to jeopardize the effectiveness or safety of our missionaries. We appreciate the search for knowledge and the discussion of gospel subjects. However, we believe that Latter-day Saints who are committed to the mission of their Church and the well-being of their fellow members will strive to be sensitive to those matters that are more appropriate for private conferring and correction than for public debate. Jesus taught that when a person has trespassed against us, we should ‘go and tell him his fault between thee and him alone,’ and if he will ‘neglect to hear’ this private communication we should ‘tell it unto the church’ (Matt. 18:15, 17). Modern revelation tells us that this last step ‘shall be done in a meeting, and that not before the world’ (Doctrine and Covenants 42:89). There are times when public discussion of sacred or personal matters is inappropriate. [D&C 42:89]
“Some of our faithful members have doubtless participated in these symposia because they were invited to state or to defend the Church’s position on a particular topic. There are times when it is better to have the Church without representation than to have implications of Church participation used to promote a program that contains some (though admittedly not all) presentations that result in ridiculing sacred things or injuring The Church of Jesus Christ, detracting from its mission, or jeopardizing the well-being of its members.”
The following letter, signed by the First Presidency, has been sent to all general and local priesthood leaders:
“We occasionally receive reports from some areas about the activities of people who engage in ritualistic practices including forms of so-called Satan worship.
“We express love and concern to innocent victims who have been subjected to these practices by conspiring men and women. We are sensitive to their suffering and assure them that help is available through the mercy and love of our Savior, Jesus Christ.
“We caution all members of the Church not to affiliate in any way with the occult or those mysterious powers it espouses. Such activities are among the works of darkness spoken of in the scriptures. They are designed to destroy one’s faith in Christ, and will jeopardize the salvation of those who knowingly promote this wickedness. These things should not be pursued as games, be topics in Church meetings, or be delved into in private, personal conversations.
“If bishops and branch presidents encounter such activities and feel that they need assistance, we ask that they seek counsel from their stake or mission leaders. Stake and mission presidents can seek guidance from their Area Presidencies.”