To the writer, I want you to know that I have been exactly where you are. Almost
to a T. I spoke with my bishop and he told me that civil marriage is not a sin.
I think it is important to acknowledge that. He also emphasized that marriage is
a GOOD THING! It is a step in the right direction. Long engagements are
dangerous and often times counterproductive. Setting firm temple goals and then
doing what it takes to obtain them is a demonstration of faith. As for my
personal situation, my husband and I had been dating for four years. He had been
in the Navy for 3 of those years, and only got to visit me a few times a year.
In our case, we felt that getting married civilly was the best decision, as we
were unable to temple marry at that time. We set firm goals and were sealed on
our anniversary one year later. I don't feel like I am a worse person than
anybody else because of my marriage. I hope you make the right choice, and hope
you know that you have support with either choice you make.
@Legal immigrant,The rate of temple divorces is FAR lower than the
rate of divorces of civil marriage. But it all depends on the willingness of the
partners to keep the covenants they make. Baptisms should be allowed
at the age of accountability, which doctrinally is 8 years old. Nothing about
that ought to change absent any new revelation from the Lord. Parents ought to
make sure however that their children have a better understanding of the
importance of the covenants their children are making at baptism, and they
should not force them into it, respecting their right to free agency and
allowing them to make the decision to get baptized at their own pace.
Honestly I feel it's better to get married civilly and wait a year before
getting sealed. That's what my wife and I did and I feel like it prepared
us better to be able to make those eternally binding covenants once we were
ready and properly prepared for it. We did not know each other very long before
getting civilly married so in a way our civil marriage was kind of like a
rehearsal for what was to come--something that many non-LDS couples do by living
in sin, "shacking up" without any real commitment. The difference is we
were able to live together and enjoy all the benefits of marriage while
remaining temple worthy and growing in love and commitment to each other. Angela is right: she should give her mother the benefit of the doubt.
But ultimately her and her fiance's decision is between them and the Lord.
Ironically this situation is the opposite of what many converts face (my family
was unhappy about not being able to attend our sealing), but it's an
increasingly common one. I feel they're making the right decision. If the
Lord agrees, go for it.
Before we met my husband wasn't worthy of a temple marriage but I was. Our
original plan was to wait until he was worthy to be sealed. We prayed and felt
strongly we needed to be married civilly then work toward the temple together.
After praying we talked to our bishops who gave us the same counsel. Sometimes
that is the best and most sure way that a couple will make it to the temple
because of the greater bond between husband and wife. My parents were a bit
discouraged but to them it seemed they had failed. We need to be understanding
of their feelings as well. It was much easier to communicate our plans with them
once they realized we had included The Lord and our bishops in our decision and
not relying on our own desires. However, I also saw the effort my husband was
putting in to be worthy from the day we started dating. He now has a calling and
magnifies it. We will finally be getting sealed in the next few months after a
year of marriage. Not all marriages that start off civilly end up in the temple
but some do!
Talk it over with your Bishop!If you are having chastity issues,
then you may not be in love as much as you think. Chastity issues cloud your
judgment.Getting married won't make the chastity issues go
away. Only talking it over with your Bishop will. Marriage is so
very important. Do it right, which ever way, temple or civil, you are
contemplating. Come into marriage clean, whether temple or civil. Your
Bishop's job is not to punish you, but to help you get things right with
God and protect you from the adversary.God loves you and wants you
to be ultimately happy.
I love the fact that "wifey" has been honest with her mother. I
sometimes wonder about couples -- and I've known a handful -- who lie about
their worthiness to their bishops and parents and then enter the temple.
Whatever her choices beforehand, this bride-to-be chose honesty in that most
important area. I hope the choices she makes from this point on will be
beneficial to all. I have a relative who put the cart before the horse -- became
pregnant, eloped, had a lovely baby shower, waited a year, were happily sealed
with their baby -- THEN had the big party they missed at their wedding, and are
now moving forward. I applaud their maturity "after the fact". NO ONE
says you have to have a "biggie" wedding now -- send announcements
instead of invitations -- hold off for the big party the day of the sealing.
Many hopes and prayers for wifey-and-boyfriend and their future choices.
"In my experience as a father, a bishop and a sealer the highest aspiration
an active Mormon parent has for a child from the moment of their birth until
their wedding day is to be with a worthy child in a temple sealing room with an
about to be eternal companion the child knows they are to be married to forever.
A child who settles for anything less, for whatever reason is cheating their
parent(s) of the one thing their mom and dad have hoped for, worked for and
prayed for since the day of their birth."This same aspiration is
felt by the nonmember parent who wants to see their child marry. Save the
sealing for the temple but marry so all can participate. They are cheating their
parents who can not see the wedding. This isn't a problem in other
countries. The year rule and shame attached isn't there. It's like
eloping to the nonmember parent, where the other side may attend.
My beautiful LDS wife and I have been very happily married for over thirty
years. I am atheist, so obviously we were not married in the Temple. I know she
would like to be sealed, but more important to her than rote compliance with
Church commands, traditions and rituals is the integrity of our relationship and
the mutual love and respect we share. We love each other for who we are, not for
our memberships, nor "worthiness" as assessed by a sterile, formal
interview by an essential stranger. IMHO, Too many LDS put too much emphasis on
these ecclesiastical formalities (and keeping up appearances) rather than truly
and genuinely learning to love and know another human being. If you want advice,
listen to your own heart and reason, and try to ignore the opinions of formal
authorities and those being confused by them.
My husband and I went through the SAME experience. First, it's wonderful u
get the sacredness of the Temple! Ur not fudging ur interview for ur
family's sake, and u WILL be blessed for that. Second it was wrong for ur
mother to say u'll "probably never" if u don't now. She should
have said she's worried how long u may delay it.My husband and
I eloped, had good intentions but fell away from the church, and our delay was 5
years before we became active and sealed. It was a long difficult 5 years filled
with constant fighting, and a 6 month separation... So how could 2 people so in
love have such a difficult marriage? We realized that we needed the blessings of
a Temple marriage. The temple holds amazing priesthood power, and when we hold
that power righteously we can get through anything. Our marriage is not perfect,
but it is a night and day difference. Our situations are very similar, and I
really can relate. Please email me if you need someone to talk to about it.
Congratulations on your marriage date. :)
Why settle for less than what you need to do anyway? I know it is not in their
frame of reference. Her mother has tried hard to help her get herself married
in the right place at the right time. Becoming worthy is a journey they would
not regret doing before hand (in a temple marriage). It will mean so much more
to both of them and bond them to work toward that worthy goal now. How great
shall be their joy if they bring their own souls to the alter in the temple.
It sounds a bit selfish to do it the other way, frankly. If they
are not ready to make that commitment to each other for eternity now will they
I think if these were my children, AND assuming that they are both good people
(everyone thinks that they are "good" but that is not actually true), I
would rather that they got married in the Temple, but I would be grateful that
1). they wanted to get married and 2). that they were honest. So,
without knowing more, I think that if I were the parents I would support this
marriage. But there is a lot unsaid in this post and we are ONLY
hearing one side of the story.
nothing to the heartbreak and upset when after being married in the temple a
couple eventually want a divorce, force, manipulation, rush rush rush - who
wants it. Not the Lord. Go with your heart Angela, your eventual temple joining
will be a celebration on both sides of the veil.
We don't know enough, nor should we judge in these matters, I would say go
to your bishop, be totally honest with him and ask him what he thinks you should
do. He is the spiritual leader in the ward and can give you some good advice.
I believe this young woman has good intentions and feels that she will work with
her future husband to become worthy to be married in the temple. Young woman,
if you read this comment, know that there is no guarantee that your husband will
have the same intentions. My sister has been married twice to men who were
baptized into the church, she married them in civil ceremonies, and both times
the men were unwilling to work to become temple worthy. They wanted the
marriage and did what they had to to get it, promised up and down they were
committed to a temple marriage, especially the second one who had been told
about how the first one didn't come through, and neither of them kept their
promise. How committed is a person who is willing to break the law of chastity?
Thank goodness for the atonement. If a temple marriage is your real goal, you
will both stop breaking the commandments, go through the process of repentance,
and if that young man is so dedicated to you and the gospel he will be there
alongside you and at the temple on your first wedding day.
gary2635Placentia, CAI agree that each situation is different,
and that it is your decision. One thing that you should be aware of is what
President Harold B. Lee taught, "We have many requests from young couples
who want to have a civil marriage first for some reason—perhaps someone in
one of the families is not a member of the Church—and then they want to
have a temple marriage immediately thereafter. When we say no and that a sealing
following a civil marriage is not a temple marriage but a sealing after
marriage, they frequently ask, “Why isn’t such a subsequent sealing
just as valid as a temple marriage in the first place?” The simple answer
has to be, “Because a temple marriage is the Lord’s way by his
command.” Any other way than that lacks some of the blessings that could
have been enjoyed if the Lord’s way had been chosen."KJKLike what? I can't think of anything.
What's the fun in religion if we can't tell other people we're
better than they are?
There are so many short-lived temple marriages that it does make sense to put
off a sealing until your marriage passes at least a small test of time, and
especially to put off having children for a few years, especially especially if
you've married under age 25. Thousands of members have to deal with the
confusion of having one of their biological parents play only a minor role in
their lives while the step mom or dad of their hearts has no eternal
relationship with them. A wonderful potential of the priesthood is that, to a
currently very limited degree, you can choose your family. I hope we can expand
that to allow more freedom of choice. And yes, regardless of biological gender.
Whether to marry civilly first and then be sealed in the Temple later depends
solely on the level of commitment of the couple. If they are 110% committed to
each other ("come heck or high water," as Grandma used to say), they
will make their marriage a success no matter what. If the couple are
simply "in love" the way our culture defines it (the attraction is
primarily supported by natural pleasure-inducing body chemicals) then they
likely won't make it either way, unless they make a conscious decision to
keep their commitment when internal chemistry falls off (which it always does,
anytime from 2 months to 2 years post-marriage, or pre-marriage co-habitation
for that matter). When "internal chemistry love" is
converted consciously by the couple to mature love, then they will make their
marriage and relationship a success no matter what. - J Collins
Meek, PhD, South Jordan, Utah, USA, August 27, 2014
RE: GeoMan Paul said it is better to marry than to burn.Paul in 1
Cor 7, it is not wrong to get married, but that it is better if a Christian can
stay single. (The reason is that a married man’s attention is
“divided” between pleasing the Lord and pleasing his wife; a single
man is free to be more focused on the Lord’s work, verses 32-34.) “I
wish that all men were [unmarried] as I am. But each man has his own gift from
God; one has this gift, another has that” (verse 7). Paul is careful to
state that this is “a concession, not . . . a command” (verse 6).
The ability to stay single and serve God apart from marriage is a gift. Paul and
some others had this gift, but not everyone.“The gift of
celibacy,” “Since there is so much immorality, each man should have
his own wife, and each woman her own husband” (1 Cor 7:2). Sex within
marriage between one man and one woman or celibate singleness—these are
the only two options for Christians.
Millions of people have great marriages outside the temple. Don't let the
temple scare you out of getting married.
Unless this girl is planning to live the covenants she makes in the temple, it
won't do any good to get married there just for show or to make her parents
happy. Work toward it and do it because you genuinely want to change your life
It's unfortunate at times that "parents" don't understand
personal revelation and the promptings that help guide us when we're
young.Follow your heart and you'll be just fine. The temple can
I agree that each situation is different, and that it is your decision. One
thing that you should be aware of is what President Harold B. Lee taught,
"We have many requests from young couples who want to have a civil marriage
first for some reason—perhaps someone in one of the families is not a
member of the Church—and then they want to have a temple marriage
immediately thereafter. When we say no and that a sealing following a civil
marriage is not a temple marriage but a sealing after marriage, they frequently
ask, “Why isn’t such a subsequent sealing just as valid as a temple
marriage in the first place?” The simple answer has to be, “Because
a temple marriage is the Lord’s way by his command.” Any other way
than that lacks some of the blessings that could have been enjoyed if the
Lord’s way had been chosen."
I think more and more, if someone doesn't see the temple for what it is,
that don't deserve the blessings it offers.
This whole thing is backwards. If you have a covenant minded life then you
wouldn't think of doing this in this order. You could wait for the
worthiness but then again you probably wouldn't need to. If you are not of
the mindset God first, family, self, work etc. that is fine it is how you have
set your life. But you will not be very likely to go from a boyfriend, self,
god, family now to a God, Husband, Self, Work in the future. I'm not trying
to be rude or disrespectful I just think that it isn't a Worthy unworthy
issue, I think it is a priorities issue at least from what I have read. Consider that the priorities are the conflict between mom and daughter.
When your priorities change beware of regret.
My parents drove me away from the church because they were embarassed that their
return missionary would marry a less than active member. I eventually came back
to the church after much turmoil with my family. I eventually got divorced...
My dad truly regrets the way he handled the situation to this day. My mom has
passed on, but she regretted the situation as well.My recommendation
is to her parents. Be supportive and then everything else will fall in place.
The problem we have in our LDS culture is that we are striving for perfection.
We aren't perfect! That is why we have repentance. We also need to be
less judgmental so that we welcome members and non members alike. I have been
down this road and I understand the stress this puts on the couple. Again to
her parents, love her and support her and one day your dream of walking through
the temple with your daughter and son-in-law may come true. Patience and love
and not worrying about what others think is the best gift you can give your
daughter at this time. I pray that this will all work out.
I'm a little disgusted at the judgment spread on this thread--because the
couple sinned they are not worthy for marriage at all? That's ridiculous.
Good people sin. People who love each other fall into temptation. Couples who
are ready for marriage make mistakes. It is far more telling of their maturity
and readiness for marriage that they came clean about the mistake than any
indication their "sin" may give they are not ready for marriage. If they
were not ready for marriage they would have lied and gone through the temple
anyway just to avoid embarrassment. They did not do that. Speak with your
mother. Marry if you wish. Many many couples have succumbed to temptations and
later gone on to be sealed, it certainly does not indicate immaturity or bad
character. Best of luck to the couple in their civil marriage and process to the
Just reading thru the comments made me go wow. I am made to understand that any
marriages done outside the temple are not "True" marriages. That only
marriages done in the temple are the ones that really count. Is this really the
LDS point of view of marriage?
Oh come on people. Just let this couple marry the way they feel is right for
them. I myself married outside of the temple because I was a newish member and
I was still struggling to understand and accept many of the concepts of the
gospel. My fiance's parents were upset, but too bad. There were people
who assumed we had morality issues, which we did not, and so shame on them for
thinking the worst. Once my testimony had developed to the appropriate stage, we
went to the temple and were sealed. We have now been happily married for nearly
40 years, and have led an active life in the church serving in many leadership
and other callings. We are devout members. This can all work out just fine,
but for heaven's sakes, let this couple follow their own conscious and
I was married civilly first then sealed in the temple 365 days later, but not
one year. Because his dad was in the hospital and we wanted him to be there. Anyway the warning I have for Future Wifey is be careful the year you are
working on going to the temple. Satan will be working harder on you than you
ever thought. You can do it. The closer to the Sealing date he will find every
little thing to try to stop you from going. I don't know about couples who
wait and work on going the first time. But I bet he will be working hard on you
either way.Good luck on your future, My marriage lasted for 28 years and
28 days when he passed away. We were very happy that we were able to do it.
It is good to see an honest LDS couple. Do you know how many LDS couples I know
that were unworthy to get sealed in the temple but lied and got sealed for
appearance? it will not suprise most LDS readers on here that its definatley
My fiance wasn't ready to get married in the Temple. He promised if we got
married civilly, he would be ready to be sealed to me the following year. 29
years later he still hasn't followed through on that promise. I have three
grown wonderful children with strong testimonies of the Gospel of Jesus Christ
who I will probably never be sealed to. I cannot begin to describe to you how
terrible that feels. Please wait until you are both worthy.
One of the questions not asked is why you would need to marry now instead of
waiting until you are ready to go through the temple. My gf and I are wanting to
go through the temple and have to wait until her annulment is finished. But
after that we have discussed civil marriage so non-member friends can come and
so we can get it done so she can then immigrate to Canada. Our end decision is
that it is best to wait until we can go through the temple, even though we are
looking at likely two more years. We value the temple marriage as we value the
gospel. We are not waiting because church leaders have counselled that but
because we love the gospel and want the added advantage of the covenant we make
in the temple.
In the temple we make covenants that are sacred. Until a person (or a couple)
is willing to live those covenants, they should not make them. An "eternal
marriage" means that we stop being selfish. When we are willing to
sacrifice passions, then we should consider entering the temple. Mocking God is
serious. Until we are ready to fully live His commandments, we should not
pretend.When you are willing to live His commandments, then you
should consider entering the temple. Until then it would be better to learn
about and to ponder on the purpose of life. Are we here to satisfy our passions
or are our passions part of a larger plan?
So I have read through all of the comments now. This is my reaction to some of
what I read there.1) Paul said it is better to marry than to burn. That
seems to apply here.2) Temple, versus civil, versus marriage to non-member
statistics do not give simple formulas to success. They are general indicators
of underlying attitudes that get expressed in the statistics. Being truly
Temple worthy and continuing to live according to the covenants made there will
result in a lower divorce rate overall. Simply going through the steps
(honestly or dishonestly) to be sealed in the Temple will not produce any
different divorce statistics and any other type of marriage ceremony.3)
Parental counsel and parental interference are two very different things. The
words of the letter do not indicate interference to me.4) When two people
that want to get married, and are considering Temple marriage at some point, are
simultaneous not Temple worthy, a violation of the Law of Chastity is the likely
reason for the unworthiness. In the context of readers being invited to comment
on a brief letter, assuming that the Law of Chastity is the issue is not
I think the important thing to remember is that a temple sealing will be just as
important and special in one year as it will be right now. A civil marriage
doesn't change the importance and the sacred nature of the temple
sealing.Here's an interesting fact - in many countries you HAVE
to have a civil marriage BEFORE you are sealed in the temple. I served in Brasil
and that is the way it works down there. It doesn't matter if you are a
member in good standing or an investigator who is ready to join the church - in
Brasil you are married civilly before the temple sealing. And believe me, the
temple sealing is just as beautiful, special, and spiritual as if they had been
married there first.There is nothing wrong with a civil marriage.
Unfortunately, I think many member's mindset has become civil marriage =
something evil. Don't forget, it's what the early members did before
there was a temple, and there was nothing wrong with it then.
VikingDad:If you were to make that same statement on Fast Sunday,
you would get a standing ovation. (At least from some)
This young couple needs to meet with their Church leaders - individually and
together and completely confess all infractions that would prevent them from
entering the temple. No matter the reason. They need to fast and pray
individually to gain a witness of their eternal relationship - they have a right
to that. As a Melchizedek Priesthood holder, he needs to know and understand his
oath and covenant that he has made. If he has broken those covenants, he needs
to face the consequences. Marriage won't "fix" it. Confession -
fasting - prayer - study - alone time with the Savior. (Remember he went to the
Garden alone.) Become converted - not convinced - that you truly want the
blessings of Eternal Marriage. No for show. Not to make someone else happy.
Except you be converted... My heart goes out to you both. Been there. Waited.
Even took a break from each other and in the end, we were ready to commit to the
Covenant that is our birthright. Don't even allow the adversary a tiny
opportunity of "oh, it'll all work out." Don't let him win -
@TaylorOrem, Utah"At any rate, divorce rates are much
higher than the Lord would like, I'm sure."Again the
age-old problem of mere mortals deciding what the Lord would like. Actually
Taylor, you have no idea what the Lord would like, even though you claim to be
sure. I should think it would be better for this couple to work out their
situation with the Lord.
I continue to be impressed by Angela. The big chunk of wisdom in her response
is the advice to assume that the mother's motives are not selfish and
prideful. It is never productive to dismiss another person's counsel by
attributing an ulterior motive to the person. Better to assess counsel at face
value. It can only tip the scales in the direction of a better decision and
preserve relationships.To the woman writing in I would mostly say
that people are not as clueless as she implies that she thinks they are. Her
parents and/or many of her friends have probably had at least an inkling of her
activities that result in a Temple marriage not being an immediate option. She
faces a tough decision, but life is full of tough decisions.Regardless of her final choice in this matter, I sincerely hope that she and
her fiance are truly on the same page regarding goals and priorities. She needs
to focus more on that and less on what other people think.
Wow, we Mormons certainly have a gift for making difficult things even harder.
We don't want perfection; we want perfection accomplishd *in the right
way.* Geez. It's no wonder we're all on Prozac. The bottom line is
that this woman knows herself better than any of us might, and that she can go
about getting her temple marriage accomplished in the best way she sees fit.
Good grief. Leave the poor woman alone. And congratulations to the soon-to-be
When comparing divorce stats, are we comparing apples to apples? We've
noted that generally, the rate of marriage among latter-day saints is
significantly higher than the rate of marriage outside of the Church. Further,
the age of marriage among LDS is generally significantly lower than outside the
Church. Sorry, can't cite the studies; maybe someone could find studies on
these 2 trends and enlighten us. Both of these trends leads to an
apparent elevated divorce rate among LDS compared to non-Temple marriages. If
breakups among cohabitating couples were included, wouldn't the rate of
separation be much higher than among Temple sealed couples? And, when couples
marry at a later stage in life, they are probably more stable than 21-year olds
marrying, and have fewer life changes and fewer years to divorce.At
any rate, divorce rates are much higher than the Lord would like, I'm sure.
And personally, I think the happiness and celebration if the couple wait to seal
in the Temple will be much greater than hurrying to marriage. The wait will be a
test, but may strengthen the resolve to stay together later. I'd wait and
go to the Temple.
In my experience as a father, a bishop and a sealer the highest aspiration an
active Mormon parent has for a child from the moment of their birth until their
wedding day is to be with a worthy child in a temple sealing room with an about
to be eternal companion the child knows they are to be married to forever. A
child who settles for anything less, for whatever reason is cheating their
parent(s) of the one thing their mom and dad have hoped for, worked for and
prayed for since the day of their birth. Unfortunately that unworthy daughter
won't be able to fully understand that until she has a child for whom she
has the same aspiration. Unfortunately also, a sealing after a civil marriage
does not fully fulfill that aspiration. The daughter should at least
try to understand that's where her mom is coming from and at least let her
mom know she's trying to understand her disappointment and will do her best
to relieve it. I also believe the daughter and her fiancé
would be very wise to postpone their marriage until they are worthy of the
Whatever the worthiness issue is is between FW and her intended and their
leaders. To me, that's not a clincher where I need to speculate. I do care,
however, that Future Wifey has a support network that can help she and her
intended get to the proper goal. If that means they get married now and stick to
things with the rock hard commitment to be worthy of sealing in a year, then do
that. Ideally, yes, the Mom would be supportive of the daughter wanting to get
married in the temple, even if it takes time. I'm cautious with her saying
to wait and have a long engagement as that is dangerous, but again- there are so
few details here that I don't know if the Mom is being fussy or if the
daughter is being bratty or if the situation is as written. There may not be a
right side here, but whatever the case, there needs to be increased LOVE.
Other's judgement is not of consequence and needs to be ignored in the case
of what is best for the family and for the potential of the future family.
I wholeheartedly agree with KJKirkham and ProudDuck. I don't know
what the "worthiness" issue is in this case but supposing it is sexual
in nature, my counsel (and counsel I have given before) would be to get married
civilly now and work toward temple sealing. A desire to be intimate is a part of
love that is natural and God-given. Just because passions get the best of them
before marriage does not mean that true love isn't present. True, a civil
marriage is not the best choice, but if the couple has chastity issues, but are
truly devoted to each other, and can honestly say that their relationship is
LOVE and not LUST, then it is the best choice under the circumstances. Otherwise
waiting until both are temple worthy before getting married is high risk.
Of course, most Mormons believe getting married in the temple is the right thing
to do, but I feel that some make the wrong decision in the name of doing the
right thing. One fault we have is that we often do not account for the enormous
pressure we place on our young people. We expect them to make decisions with
everlasting consequences, at a very young age and with very little experience,
and then they live for decades wondering if (or knowing that) they made a
mistake.I wish we would remove the stigma of civil marriages in
favor of allowing a few years to come to know for sure the right decision has
been made before signing an eternal contract in gold ink. I also wish we would
do away with the notion that having gone to the temple means you're selling
your soul to the devil if you ever fall a millimeter short of the demands made
I used to think that the ideal for a couple would be to make sure the man served
a mission, that both have graduated college and that they both remain worthy
until they could marry in the temple. But there are times when that
doesn't work. I have seen so many young people do exactly that because it
was the thing to do. Then, even as soon as a few months later they fall into
the worst kind of sins. They find out there is so much more to life then temple
marriage because they were not mature enough to make that kind of commitment in
the first place. Some end up losing their temple recommends and sometimes even
the Church. Others have children who are caught up in divorce because one or
the other parent didn't have the maturity to stay in the marriage. Temple
marriage is a sacred and holy thing and it should only happen when two people
are mature enough to commit to each other and whatever family they are blessed
with for time and all eternity. It's only between God and the couple and
parents should have no influence over their decision.
I say to go ahead and get married now (the sooner the better!). Once the
"marriage" issue is behind you, then work on the temple worthiness
issues that slow you down. You will be amazed at the kind and helpful things
your ward members will do to help you reach your temple goals. Oh, and by the
way, IT IS WORTH EVERY EFFORT TO GET THERE!
To "Frozen Fractals" umm...do you often give out advice based on a very
incomplete picture of what is going on? When people ask me for advice I usually
like to know the details so that I can give them best advice I have. Otherwise
they might as well consult a magic 8 ball.
Always amusing to watch kids who never give their parents much credit. Goes to
show how immature they really are and basically lack any of life experience.
Give it a few years and there will be plenty of bumps an bruises and then their
kids will do the same to them, then they will be wondering why.
Thanks Shane333I have a hard believing the Divorce rate is around 6%
now. Maybe it was 33 years ago. But in my experience with friends and family its
a lot higher then 6%. It would be interesting to see this poll being done again.
This is a pretty hot topic isn't it. I know what I would do, but
that's for me. You have to decide with your partner what is going to be
best for both of you in your lives, and then make the decision and stick with
it. I wouldn't worry about what your parents think, if they are decent
parents they will love and support your regardless. Their loyalty should be to
you, not what their neighbors might think.
I think future children should play into the decision too. Do you want your
children born in the covenant or sealed later to you? I know someone who
couldn't marry into the temple so she and her husband waited until they
could. Yes it took time but they both are glad they did, but it is something
between you your future husband and the Lord.
The best advise I ever got about making decisions was this:1) consider
your options2) Chose one you think is best3) Pray, asking if it is
right.If you feel a stupor of thought, go back to the beginning. If you
feel peace, that's your choice Then, remain prayerful as you move
toward your goal, being alert to course corrections when prompted by the
Spirit.My husband and I married a month after he was baptized and went to
the temple about 18 months later. It's all good. Part of being an adult is
making your decisions and taking responsibility.As my children became
adults, I learned to be tentative about advice and my opinions, they know their
path, or they have to find their path. The answers are between them and the
Lord.I think hearing other people's ideas can help you recognize your
truth - but you are the boss of you!
Definitely do the civil wedding first and don't worry about it.
"If you are not living the commandments now, why do you think it will get
easier just because you are married?"There is one particular
commandment that gets a heckuva lot easier to follow when married.
It is better to marry than to burn.I would not listen to old men
whose "natural force is abated" lecture young people that they ought to
wait to get married until they can do it in the temple. The risk that a couple
married in a church may not later be sealed in the temple, must be weighed
against the risk that a couple in love may be intimate before marriage.
Realistically, the latter risk is greater than the first. Given the
state of marriage in modern Western culture, I would not ever counsel a couple
who wants to get married not to get married. Any marriage, temple or civil, is
a step in the right direction.
This story is actually frightening. How do the intendeds really feel about each
other? Take away the suspected intimacy and what is left? Marriage is a
serious commitment not to be taken lightly and frequently is hard work. How
does she feel about the fellow being the father to her children, knowing what
she does? How does he feel about her being the mother of his children? Are
they really ready to make a go of it? Are they up to the life-long commitment?
Temple marriage adds to the commitment levels. If they are really
ready for marriage, then do it now and plan the temple wedding 1 year down the
road. If not, then wait. It could be that even though they had shared a
(presumed) intimacy, they may not be ready for that long-term commitment or even
really like each other that much.
RoyceN,I apologize but I'm having trouble providing sources
because DN automatically blocks messages containing URL's.If
you go to the LDS dot org website and search for "LDS Rank High in Marriage,
Low in Divorce" you will find an article that mentions “Nontemple
marriages are about five times more likely to end in divorce than temple
marriages.”The article and its data are dated, but it
wouldn't surprise me if the trends were still similar today.
I'll address 2 scenarios - If their sin in question was sexual
in nature, they should be married now. If they don't, they are making a
double or nothing type of bet. If they are unable to keep their hands off of
each other, their chance of successfully repenting enough to get to the temple
drops dramatically should they choose to wait. This means that they'll
likely end up marrying civilly anyway and it can also mean that they never make
it to the temple if the repentance process for multiple transgressions seems to
be too tough. Marrying now removes further sexual sin and makes repentance and
a temple sealing more likely.If their sin is not sexual, they should
wait. There is no reason to marry now. If one partner can't/won't
repent, then they both will be able to evaluate whether they really want to get
married when one wants to live righteously and the other doesn't.
I wholeheartedly disagree with Angela's well-intended counsel. The
mother's motivation for interfering in their relationship is a secondary
issue. The primary issue is the mother trying to interfere in this couple's
relationship. For this couple to allow a parent to dictate what must and must
not happen in their marriage is setting a dangerous precedent. A man and wife
cleave to each other, and to none else. Letting the mother decide when and where
they marry will only open the doors for the mother to force her will on any
future decisions that she may choose to interfere with in this relationship.
This couple must stand up for what they feel is right for their relationship,
regardless of what any outsider (even parents!) may think.
I had 2 of my 7 children marry last year. My only daughter was married in the
temple, while my older son was not. Both were celebrations! My son is the only
grandchild out of 40 grandchildren on my side of the family to be married
outside the temple. He married a wonderful young woman who is not a member.
She took the discussions and was ready to be baptized, but my son ask her to
wait and be "re-baptized" with him. She waited. Big mistake. He was
motivated to change his life and be worthy to marry in the temple, but once they
were married all that ended..it just became too hard. It was easier to fall
into old habits once again, and now they are expecting their first child,
jobless, and life is "too hard". I love both my son and my
daughter who married equally. I was not embarrassed that he married in a
ceremony in my home, but Satan works on anyone he can, and he will try to do all
he can to keep you from making sacred covenants in the House of The Lord.Your mom wants to see you succeed. Pray about your decision...
Getting married now will take away the temptation and chance of falling again.
That is ok. God has told us if our right arm offend us cut it off. Just
because you get married civilly first does not mean you won't get sealed in
the temple later. This I know from experience. No one should judge you. Think
about what Christ would ask of you. He may say go and sin no more. Which
might mean that it would be better to marry now not later. Either way you will
be waiting a year to be sealed. Best of luck.
@Redshirt" I would ask that Angela ask a few clarifying questions to
understand why they are not worthy and how long until they will be worthy to be
married in the temple."While it does make it harder to respond,
I don't think the particulars of it are any of our business and the letter
writer probably doesn't want to include them.
RoyceN: According to research cited in a 2000 article in the Los Angeles Times,
“in an era of divorce, Mormon temple weddings are built to last,”
with only a 6 percent divorce rate. Another study, published in 1993 in
Demography Magazine, concluded that members of The Church of Jesus Christ of
Latter-day Saints who marry in one of the Church's temples are the least
likely of all Americans to divorce.
While a temple marriage is ideal and the hoped-for goal among Latter-day Saints,
I would rather my children got married outside of the temple and were sealed
later than go to the temple unworthily.
It seems like Angela is picking the letters with the fewest details.The letter writer says that there is a worthiness issue. What is that issue?
Is it that they are out there smoking or have they committed some other sin? If
they have to wait, how long? Do they have to wait 3 months, 6 moths, a year, 2
years?Angela and most of the commenters are giving advice based on a
lot of assumptions. I would ask that Angela ask a few clarifying questions to
understand why they are not worthy and how long until they will be worthy to be
married in the temple.
@ BJR - Duchesne, UT - "They are in love and need to be married at this
time."I don't mean to be confrontational or rude, but these
2 are not "in love". If they truly "loved" each other they
would not have done the thing(s) they did to disqualify themselves from being
worthy to be married in the temple.Sorry, but the proof is in the
pudding.Lest anyone think I am merely throwing stones I will say
that my wife and I got married in a somewhat similar set of events and I did not
"love" my wife...initially I "lusted" after her, instead. That
lack of discipline, and especially that lack of respect, both for myself and for
her as my wife, was lacking and caused massive, massive problems for many
years.Repent/fix the problem now. Your mom is right. There is no
marriage like an eternal marriage and IF that is really, truly what you want,
you won't settle for anything less.Good luck.
I like Angela's advice here. I caution against anyone assuming they know
anyone else's intentions. Given that, make your decision
depending on what you want individually and what you think will get you there.
If Temple Marriage is your ultimate goal, make your plans to get you there. If
it's not, set that expectation up front with your parents. I would say the
most important thing at this point is to do all you can to make sure you and
your boyfriend have the same goals. That will ultimately ensure the success of
your marriage - in the Temple or not.I can tell you I have many
friends outside and inside the Church who have wonderful marriages and the
reason they do is they are aligned and respectful of one another's wishes.
There are many great blessings of a Temple Marriage and I encourage you to learn
all you can about them and see if these are things you both want to have.
Shane333,Do you have a source for the data on LDS divorce rates? I
have always heard temple married couples have basically the same divorce rate.
When I look at my siblings and in-laws divorce rate. There have been
more divorces that started from a temple marriage then civil. But that is a
inertia is Newton first rule in his theory, things move in a straight line till
a force equal to or greater than diverts it. May be your mom 's thinking is
trying to make a divine intervention. I don't. But I hope you've met
My personal advice is for both of you to take this before the Lord in prayer.
He can tell you what's best as far as how to deal with this very important
decision. You two very well may be meant to be together and a civil marriage
might be a better choice in keeping you together until a Temple marriage is
possible. If you both feel it's the Lord's suggestion to get married
now, then I'd highly suggest doing so, even if your individual families
don't agree with it. He knows far more what you two should do than anyone
else. I've been asked by Him (Through the Holy Spirit) to do things
other's didn't agree with and in doing what He suggested I never
regretted it. I truly hope things work out for the best for the two of you!
From a study commissioned by the church in the 1990's (data recounted to me
by a friend who was part of the study team): Of those who get married civilly
first with the intention of being sealed in the temple later, less than 5%
actually do it.In other words, wait, resolve your issues, and get
married in the temple.
The problem with a lot of the comments I feel is they leave out one of the
partners in a marriage. They forget that Marriage especially inregards to our
theology involves a third partner and that is the Lord. The first Marriage
invovled three Adam, Eve and the lord and even when our first parents left the
garden of eden they had to renew a covenant between the two of them and the lord
of whose counsel they would hearken to. Don't forget to the lord he is
creating a eternal family unit. Something the rest of the world cannot do.
Don't forget that the children you will have are his first and foremost and
as their mortal gaurdians so to speak he is taking a risk on you and your
willingness to keep your covenants and his commandments. It is admirable to seek
a temple marriage after making a worthiness mistake. However, unless a necessity
looking from the lords perspective it would be better to become worthy first do
it the way he has established other wise it seems to show a lack of humility
more of my will not thine be done.
Temple divorces are not real common. Getting a civil marriage is just fine and
the ward Bishop can do it if you wish. Our son did that. I agree that
engagements lasting years are not so good. A few months is ok
Some of the commentators on this topic have assumed that this woman and her
boyfriend aren't "chaste" or have committed sexual sin.Why the assumption they are "sinning?" Perhaps there are some
doctrines of the LDS church they don't agree with or perhaps they
can't answer yes or no to some of the questions on the temple recommend
that would make them "worthy" to enter the temple. Why do some of you
assume that they aren't chaste?Maybe they can't or
don't want to pay tithing. Maybe they don't sustain the prophet or
maybe there is some other issue they have. I ask that we not prejudge them when
we know so little. Their worthiness is a matter between themselves and God and
not the rest of the world.
A wise and mature decision, how many "Temple marriages" end up in
divorce?Ditto for LDS baptisms, they should be delayed as well until age
A wise and mature decision, exactly how many 'temple marriages" end up
in divorce?Ditto for LDS baptisms, they should be delayed until age 18!
Future Wifey,I don't know you personally nor do I know what
specifically is keeping you from the temple. I just want to offer thoughts that
I hope are helpful.First, a while back I read some data on LDS
divorce rates. LDS members who married each other outside the temple had higher
divorce rates than temple marriages or even members who marry non-LDS. I
don't say this to criticize any individual marriage or couple, but to
explain why parents may understandably be concerned about a non-temple
marriage.On the other hand, extra long engagements can face a lot of
temptation. My hope is that you work towards the temple sealing and pray to
know the wisest course to get there together. Whether that means waiting and
preparing, or marrying now and preparing, I hope that you make it to the temple
together and receive the blessings available there. Once you have your answer
from The Lord, share it with your parents and hopefully they will support you.
Does your mother love you only when you do what she wants?Didn't Christ say love one another? He didn't say, love one another
only when they do what you like or want.Getting married in the
temple later is always an option. Getting married now if you and your boyfriend
are committed to each other will be a great cause for celebration for all
friends and family in your life. Getting married outside the temple will allow
them to attend your wedding whereas getting married in the temple will likely
exclude some family and friends.
The writer's use of the words "boyfriend" and "wifey" here
should perhaps give her pause. Is she certain she desires to wed this man?
I wish people would know and understand the word "LOVE" it is an action
word , a verb, When you love some one, you don't do anything the hurt that
person, in fact you will even reject your own desires and bridle your passions,
because of the love you fill for them... STOP justifying immoral behavior by
saying, "We love each other"... people use the word love to justify
adultery, breaking up a family, are you kidding me? when you love some one,
you will deny your self anything to not hurt them.
If you are not living the commandments now, why do you think it will get easier
just because you are married? Do you realize the struggles involved in a
marriage to begin with but to begin with one that already has moral trust issues
is very hard. If you are working hard with the Bishop to prepare to get into
the Temple down the road then I say you are on the right track, if you are just
pretending to satisfy your mother then have the courage to tell your mom you
don’t intend to live the gospel laws and would rather live in the world.
Don't pretend with anyone, tell the truth and then do what is right. Please
work with your Bishop and whichever way you decide then you will be heading the
right direction but if you plan to skip this part a marriage without the
covenants and the church to support you is a very real and very hard thing.
It is commendable that you consider the temple sacred enough to wait to be
sealed until you are honestly worthy. Your chastity choices cannot be undone, so
you must determine what is the best way forward from where you are.Your mother is likely concerned about your chances for marital success if you
start your marriage on a faulty foundation. Her advice may not describe the best
path for you. But that could be difficult for you to discern in your present
condition, given that our judgment becomes clouded whenever we choose sin. Your
bishop can help you work through these issues. If you are not already working
with him, go to him now.You may also wish to consider professional
counseling. We are talking about a marriage here, not a social convenience. The
best way forward might not be the easiest from your current vantage point, but I
guarantee that it will be the easiest way in the long run.
There are a lot of assumptions by commentators who seem to believe this
couple's sin are sexual. Is that the only sin that causes a temple
recommend to be withheld?
Please look at the real reason that you aren't having a temple marriage
right now. It isn't because of your mom, it's because you and your
boyfriend are not ready for an eternal marriage. Having failed civil marriages
and one canceled sealing this is one I feel qualified to speak on. If you are
not ready for the temple marriage, that may mean you are not ready for an
eternal marriage with this person. If you are not ready for a temple marriage,
but a civil one is OK, that may mean you just aren't willing to wait and
work for the temple marriage. Do not have the temple marriage until you are
sure. But remember, what is important to you today may be so insignificant to
The temple is for sealing. Marrying and sealing are different. The
church seals dead people. Sounds to me the parents are focusing on
the couples flaw and not seeing their own flaws. This is exactly how
parents of converts feel when their child decides to marry and seal in the
temple in one go. In those cases parents are told, it's about the couple
and their choice. Why is it not their choice in this case? And the parents in
question here can appear at both events if they so chose. Would you rather they
lie about being able to be recommend worthy?
Since none of us know you or the circumstances and it's only your side of
the story. We really can't make a determination here.The
easiest thing would have been to avoid the sin altogether and been worthy to be
sealed to this man in the Temple. Clearly that is no longer the case, when you
committed a sin and were no longer worthy to enter.Personally, I
would wait. I would want to be a better person first. Then review my
relationship with the other person and see if they are truly committed. You
could be sealed this man, and he has zero intention of changing or as soon as
the ceremony is done decides he is finished with church. You didn't wait
the first time, why not wait this time and see how you both turn out?Really it's your decision. And you get the privilege to deal with the
consequences of your decisions and actions. You'll either become stronger
or bitter. It's up to you.
Getting married civilly doesn't automatically change your heart but if a
temple marriage isn't a current or near-term option and you are still
committed to getting married then getting married civilly first is a
demonstration of your commitment to do things right. Just because Latter-day
Saints view temple marriage as more permanent than a civil marriage doesn't
mean we should look at civil marriage as something unworthy - especially when
temple marriage isn't a present option. If missionaries teach the gospel to
a couple who is living together and they want to get baptized the missionaries
don't counsel them to separate, get baptized, wait a year, and then get
married in the temple. They counsel them to get married, get baptized and then
get sealed in a year.I don't know how soon a temple marriage
would be an option for Future Wifey but if it's not going to be an option
soon then I would consider it a good step forward for her and her fiance to get
a civil marriage as a demonstration of their commitment to each other and their
desire to keep the commandments.
It is reasonable for the Parents to voice their wishes and concerns but then
move on.How about this. "We feel strongly that you should wait
and be married in the temple. And for these reasons. However, we love you and
will wholeheartedly support whatever decision that you both make."The parents are being selfish. Religion is a personal thing.
Your mother could have so many reasons for her position, some not so nice.
Maybe she believes this guy is not a "nice" guy because of "what he
did to you." Moms can think like that.However, I suspect she
would agree that if you two are going to continue in your intimacy you should be
married.Tell her that you are going to get married (what many would
consider the "honorable thing" at this point,) and she can either have
it be a big thing with ward and friends or a small thing as she wishes. But you
are going to get married.Then let the discussion proceed from there.
The embarrassment a parent feels with their peers when a child disregards their
covenants is a real and understandable thing, but it is nothing compared to the
heartbreak and concern they feel towards their child's spiritual health and
wellbeing. This really isn't about the parent's embarrassment, but
about deep abiding love and concern for both God and their child.I
would suggest that if the child struggling with their covenants, especially
where chastity is involved, and isn't willing to wait, they should marry
just to avoid compounding the possibility of more serious consequences (like
unexpected pregnancy). Perhaps the once the child is frank and open about these
serious consequences, the parents will agree. If, however, the child
CAN wait, go through whatever repentance is necessary, and control oneself with
the one they love, then starting the marriage relationship pure and within the
House of God is DEFINITELY a much more beautiful thing. And as the family grows,
they can tell their children how they sought to put the Lord before themselves,
which will set a positive tone for their relationship that will endure.
They are in love and need to be married at this time. They can work together and
go to the temple in a year. It will be easier for them to become worthy
I'd get married now, and do the temple later. If you are sure that you two
are a good fit and are committed to a forever marriage, a long engagement
isn't helpful. If there are any niggling doubts, then waiting and making
sure marriage is right is wise. Nobody needs to be told why you choose to get
married outside of the temple.
If both are worthy or recommend best to get married there. Then again are they
concerned about the gossip if they are not? If not worthy work with priesthood
leaders so you can be worthy. President Kimball told of couple killed an hour
after wedding in Salt Lake that was not in Temple. Said do your own temple
work vicarious work is for those without opportunity.I would
encourage people to be worthy of going to the temple and if they are not work
with caring home teachers and priesthood leaders until you are.
You're being pretty harsh on your parents. By focusing on the perceived
weaknesses of others, we can avoid facing our own. I've been there.I assume you and your boyfriend had temple aspirations before but you
still didn't keep worthy. Why do you think you can get there this time? The
lack of temptation (because you are married) will not change your heart or your
commitment. Our behaviors are merely the outward expression of our desires.
Getting married merely legitimizes your behavior but it doesn't change your
hearts. To me, it appears you are trying to avoid true repentance.Does he truly love you? Then why would he compromise you to satisfy his own
lusts? And he should be asking the same question about you? I question the
wisdom of going into marriage with this hanging over your head.Consider the role of temple marriage in the plan of salvation. It is so much
more than a gold star on our foreheads to show what goods Saints we are.We all sin. That is not the issue. The issue is whether you will face it
or attempt to cover it in a cloak of legitimacy.