Two Days in the Temple

    “Two Days in the Temple,” Ensign, Apr. 2000, 60

    Two Days in the Temple

    “It was like holding stake conference at the temple!” says stake president John R. Thomas, describing the Slidell Louisiana Stake family temple trip to the Atlanta Georgia Temple, the temple they were assigned to at the time. More than 400 members—families and singles—attended the temple together as a stake on 24–25 July 1995. Many young children and teens came along to be sealed to their parents, so arrangements were made to keep them busily engaged in a variety of prepared activities to be held in the stake center behind the temple when they were not involved in the sealings. Several families in the stake cleared the names of some of their ancestors through TempleReady so they could have ward and stake members help them perform the temple ordinances.

    Members commented on the joy of seeing the faces of stake members everywhere in the temple and the feeling it created of togetherness; it felt like the stake was a family. Several who had been members for less than a year performed baptisms for the dead, looking forward to the day when they would be able to come to the temple for their own endowments. A number of others who had been members for more than one year were able to do ordinances for themselves and then for their ancestors. Several of these families were also sealed together.

    The Primary children and teens who had come to be sealed to their parents took a tour of the temple grounds, then met briefly with the youth who had just left the baptistry. The teens said to the children, “You’ll be able to do this some day” and “It felt good doing something so meaningful for other people.” The Primary children sang “I Love to See the Temple” (Children’s Songbook, 95).

    That evening, stake members met for a fireside in the meetinghouse behind the temple. As leaders spoke and members bore their testimonies, the Spirit filled the chapel as they enjoyed the unity and love that brought them closer together as a result of their temple attendance.—J. Thomas Cearley, Slidell First Ward, Slidell Louisiana Stake

    Members in Sandy, Utah (right), helped Karen Merkley (back row) with temple and family history work. (Photo by Don Merkley.) Church members perform ordinances for deceased family members in temples such as the Atlanta Temple (far right). (Temple photo by Jed Clark.)

    Below: Photos courtesy of LDS Church Archives; electronic composition by Charles M. Baird

    Performing baptisms for the dead provides members with the opportunity to experience the peace and joy of temple work. (Above, center: Temple photo © by Intellectual Reserve, Inc., all rights reserved; Left: photo courtesy of Ronald Petersen.)