Policy adjustments aren’t anything new, but we seem to be experiencing them at an accelerated rate over the past year or so. Or maybe I’m just getting older. If I’m being honest, I must be way behind on my Vitamin supplement intake, because even I’m having a hard time keeping up. That’s being said, keep them coming. I love seeing revelation and inspiration in action and today’s official letter regarding temple works is no different.
In a letter dated March 1st, 2019, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints announced updates to temple worker policies, opening the doors for new people to serve, changing the nature of some assignments, and sort of caving to allow use of cell phones inside the temple for limited purposes. Here they are (verbatim):
- Mothers with dependent children and brethren serving in certain callings may now serve as ordinance workers. Members should review their circumstances and avoid placing undue burdens on themselves or their families as they consider these service opportunities.
- There will no longer be a veil worker calling. Accordingly, brethren who were previously designated to serve solely as veil workers will be released by the temple presidency. As their circumstances allow, these brethren may be called and set apart as ordinance workers and given a special assignment to serve at the veil.
- Cell phones and other electronic devices may be used in the temple office for printing Family Ordinance Requests and family name cards. Otherwise, cell phones and other electronic devices should be turned off and placed in a locker while workers and patrons are in the temple.
Many might be wondering, but what does this mean to me? These changes are meant to provide greater opportunities for members to receive the blessings of temple service, both as workers and as patrons. Increasing opportunities to serve within the Lord’s house can only serve to make us stronger as a people. They can also serve to strengthen our relationship with the Savior.
Veil workers have been a calling for a long time. Removing the calling perhaps makes sense, as the work at the veil is just as important as work elsewhere, and being called as a veil worker always felt a bit like Ordinance Worker Lite, sorta speak.
Allowing cell phones to print off ordinance cards is awesome, and it only makes sense that a day after a lengthy presentation about the importance of the FamilyTree app (the app version of FamilySearch), the Church would double down on that admonition and allow members to bring their phones to the administrative area to print cards for their ancestors. But make sure to go into airplane mode after that!
If you are not sure where to see these official letters from the Church, you can login into your LDS.org account. Once in, click on Leader and Clerk Resources, and then Applications. You will see an option for Official Communications Library. Here you can read all the communications from the First Presidency and presiding authorities to the Church for yourself.