Medford Oregon Temple
Medford Oregon Temple
Frequently Asked Question

Frequently Asked Questions About
Temple and Family History Work

This article was written specifically for the members of the Medford Oregon Temple District,
but can be easily applied to everyone interested in the House of the Lord.

Hamilton New Zealand Temple
 Question:    Why do we have temples?

Answer:    When we think about temples, we think about families. Because of what we do in the temple, families can be together forever. In the temple we are married for time and all eternity. We receive all of the ordinances necessary for salvation, eternal life and exaltation. We enter into sacred covenants and receive the promise of wonderful blessings as we keep our covenants.

When we think about temples, we are reminded about the great love that our Heavenly Father and the Savior have for all of us and of their desire to bless us. In the temple we are shown the way to true and lasting happiness in this life and a fulness of joy in the eternities.

Taipei Taiwan Temple
 Question:    Why is the work performed in the temples so important?

Answer:    Our Heavenly Father loves all of his children. God is no respecter of persons (see Acts 10:34). The gospel of Jesus Christ is intended to bless everyone. Christ's atonement is infinite and all inclusive. God is perfectly just (Mosiah 29:12) and perfectly merciful (Alma 42:15). God's perfect plan of salvation has provided means, in and through Christ, wherein everyone will ultimately have a full opportunity to come to a knowledge of the truth (Romans 14:11).

Everyone has the right to exercise their moral agency and choose the course they will follow (22:25-28). The opportunity to exercise these choices will be provided either during our mortal life on earth, or in the world of the Spirits at sometime before final judgment (see I Peter 3:18-20 also see D&C 137 & 138). According to God's law, in order to be saved in the highest degree of glory (Celestial Kingdom), all who reach the age of accountability (8 years old), must receive the saving ordinances of baptism and confirmation (see D&C 68:25-29; John 3:5).

The ordinances of marriage and sealing are required in order to be exalted within the highest degree of the Celestial Kingdom (see D&C 131:1-4). The temple endowment & marriage for time & all eternity can only be performed in temples built & dedicated for that purpose (see D&C 124:28-43).

St. George Utah Temple
 Question:    What services are provided in the temple in behalf of deceased ancestors?

Answer:    Most of those who have lived on the earth never had the opportunity to hear the good news of the gospel of Jesus Christ. All worthy members of the Church, over age 12, can go into the temple and render wonderful service by being baptized and confirmed members of the Kingdom of God in behalf of their deceased ancestors (see D&C 128:12-18). Endowed adult members of the Church act in behalf of deceased ancestors by performing sealing ordinances that make it possible for husbands and wives, along with their children, to enjoy eternal family associations in the highest degree of glory within the Celestial Kingdom.

Stockholm Sweden Temple
 Question:    How important is it for me to become personally involved in this work?

Answer:    Prophets have declared that it is our responsibility to seek out our ancestors and those in our lineage and see that the necessary ordinances are provided (see D&C 128:24). Our personal eternal welfare and blessings depend on us doing their work for them. We have been told, that we can not be made perfect without them (see D&C 128:15). The keys of this important work were restored through the Prophet Joseph Smith in 1836 in the Kirtland Temple (see D&C 110:13-16).

Therefore, it is very important that each of us become personally involved in this great work in behalf of our deceased ancestors and that we capture the Spirit of Elijah spoken of in Malachi (see Malachi 4:5-6; & D&C 2), wherein the hearts of the children be turned to the promises made to the fathers lest the whole earth be smitten with a curse. Therefore, it becomes essential that we search out our ancestors and verify their names and other family data and prepare the information for work in the temple. Thus the need for and great emphasis on Family History.

London England Temple
 Question:    How are baptisms for deceased ancestors done?

Answer:    Worthy members 12 years of age and older, who have been recommended by their bishop, can go to the temple and perform baptisms in behalf of those who have passed through the veil of death and now live in the spirit world [the signature of the stake presidency is not required for a limited use recommend to do baptisms for those ages 12-17].

Those desiring to do this work need to call the temple and make an appointment. The ordinance of baptism by immersion is performed in the temple in a baptismal font prepared for that unique purpose. Those involved in this sacred ordinance are dressed in white clothing just like those in a regular baptism service. After the baptism, the person, acting as proxy, is then confirmed a member of the church in behalf of the deceased person.

Sao Paulo Brazil Temple
 Question:    Why is the baptismal font in the temple build below the surface of the ground and placed on the backs of 12 symbolic oxen?

Answer:    The font is built below the surface of the ground to symbolize the likeness of the grave and how through the ordinance of baptism in behalf of the dead, the dead are given power in the resurrection to come forth out of their graves into a newness of life (see D&C 128:12-13).

The 12 oxen that hold up the font are representative of the 12 tribes of Israel mentioned in the Old Testament. Members of the church today receive the birthright blessings given to the House of Israel anciently, indeed we are covenant Israel! (see Abraham 2:9-11; refer to D&C 124 & 128 for additional insights into temples work for the dead).

Atlanta Georgia Temple
 Question:    Why is the statue of the angel Moroni with a trumpet placed on most temples today?

Answer:    Most of the temples built in recent decades have a statue of the angel Moroni placed on the highest steeple. Such has not always been the case! Most of the temples built earlier did not have the angel Moroni statue (such as: St. George, Logan, Manti, London, Swiss, Oakland, Ogden, Provo, etc.). Some temples don't even have steeples (Mesa, Cardston, Hawaiian).

Nevertheless, in our day, the statue has become an appropriate symbol associated with temple and missionary work. John the Revelator saw the restoration of the gospel in the latter days by means of another angel flying in the midst of heaven, having the everlasting gospel to preach unto them that dwell on the earth (Revelation 14: 6-7; also see D&C 133:36). Our prophets have noted that the angel referred to in the Book of Revelation was Moroni.

Moroni, an ancient American prophet, was the custodian of the Nephite records from which the Book of Mormon was translated (see D&C 27:5; & D&C 20:6-9). The trumpet is a symbol of word of the Lord being heralded, as with a trumpet, to the whole world, that is, the sound of the good news of the gospel going forth to all people.

Guatemala City Guatemala Temple
 Question:    Can the general public ever enter the temple and take a tour?

Answer:    A temple Open House is held for several days, usually a week or two before the temple is actually dedicated. Everyone of all ages, members and nonmembers alike, are welcome, indeed, encouraged to come and tour the temple. Feel free to invite all of your friends, neighbors, and family to go with you as you enjoy the temple Open House.

Due to the wide community interest in such an event, tickets are usually issued to attend the open house on a particular day. The tickets will be distributed through the local wards. In this way everyone will be able to enjoy the beauty of the temple and the tour guides can take people through without long delays. Usually, brief video clips and other information is available to help people understand and appreciate the great blessings associated with having a temple in the area.

St. Louis Missouri Temple
 Question:    Why do we dedicate temples? What does it mean?

Answer:    To dedicate something means to bless or to set it apart for a special purpose. We dedicate temples by presenting it to the Lord, and by asking Him to accept our offering by making the temple holy, by sanctifying it, by protecting it, and by blessing and accepting the work that is performed within its walls. The temple is set apart as a special place where He can come and reside. It is one of His Houses indeed, it is The House of the Lord. Temples dedicated to the Lord are the only places on the earth where certain sacred ordinances, covenants and ceremonies can be performed and where special blessings are reserved for the faithful who come therein. Temples are dedicated by the President of the Church, or usually by another member of the 1st Presidency, if the Prophet's health is not sufficient.

Tokyo Japan Temple
 Question:    Who can attend the temple dedication?

Answer:    When the time for dedication arrives, there will be several different sessions held in order to enable all active, worthy members of the Church to participate. Adult members of the Church will be interviewed by their bishop and given a special recommend to attend a specific dedicatory session. Active youth eight years of age and older will also be interviewed and given tickets to enter the temple and take part in the dedication services.

Appropriate dress at the temple dedication will be Sunday best, which means suits, white shirts and ties for the brethren, and Sunday best dresses for the sisters. The dedication service usually lasts about an hour. After the temple is dedicated, only active, worthy members holding current temple recommends will be allowed to serve in the temple. However, in some temples, there is allowance for nonmember family members of a couple getting married in the temple to wait in the foyer for their loved ones.

 Question:    How can I prepare myself & my family for the dedication of the Medford Oregon Temple next spring?

Answer:    Here are a few suggestions:

Boise Idaho Temple
Questions & Answers by Douglas F. Baird. Prepared as a guide
for parents to help teach their families about family history &
temple work. Brother Baird is the president of the Medford
Oregon Stake and director of the Institute of Religion at
Ashland Oregon.

Return to Main Temple Page

Hosting by WebRing.