I have been a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints since 1985, and I started sharing my testimony of the Church online in the early 2000s.
In those days people were more concerned about sharing certain aspects of the Church online, in part because it was still a new thing, and it was not yet clear what would be appropriate to share and what would not be. In general, most members of the Church were playing it safe, and they were restraining from sharing too much.
The main principle was, and still is, that sacred things should be treated with reverence. However, almost twenty years later, the internet has become the main vehicle for disseminating information, and even the official sites of the Church have started sharing more and more details about our faith.
I believe this to be extremely positive, because the increased sharing with the public is helping to demystify many false notions about the Church.
One of the areas of greater confusion and misinformation used to be about the Temples of the Church. This is why I have highly appreciated President Russell M. Nelson’s public announcement about the changes in the questions asked in the interview that all members of the Church need to do before obtaining a Temple recommend, that allows them to visit any temple of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. I like this increasing transparency.
A Church Newsroom article gives more information about the importance of a Temple Recommend for the Latter-day Saints:
The temple recommend permits Latter-day Saint to enter one of the faith’s temples. An adult member of the Church receives two interviews to receive a temple recommend—once by a member of their local bishopric, then by a member of their stake presidency (a regional leader). This recommend is valid for two years. A limited-use recommend for those 11 years of age and older is obtained through an interview with a local bishop. This allows Latter-day Saints, mostly young men and young women, to participate in temple baptisms. This recommend is valid for one year.
“The crowning jewel of the Restoration [the process of fully establishing the Church of Jesus Christ on earth] is the holy temple,” President Nelson said. “Individual worthiness to enter the Lord’s house requires much individual spiritual preparation. But with the Lord’s help, nothing is impossible. In some respects, it is easier to build a temple than it is to build a people prepared for a temple. Individual worthiness requires a total conversion of mind and heart to be more like the Lord, to be an honest citizen, to be a better example and to be a holier person.”
Temple Recommend Questions
The interview questions for temple recommends are below. Verbiage in 11 questions has been modified.
- Do you have faith in and a testimony of God, the Eternal Father; His Son, Jesus Christ; and the Holy Ghost?
- Do you have a testimony of the Atonement of Jesus Christ and of His role as your Savior and Redeemer?
- Do you have a testimony of the Restoration of the gospel of Jesus Christ?
- Do you sustain the President of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints as the prophet, seer, and revelator and as the only person on the earth authorized to exercise all priesthood keys?
Do you sustain the members of the First Presidency and the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles as prophets, seers, and revelators?
Do you sustain the other General Authorities and local leaders of the Church?
- The Lord has said that all things are to be “done in cleanliness” before Him (Doctrine and Covenants 42:41).
Do you strive for moral cleanliness in your thoughts and behavior?
Do you obey the law of chastity?
- Do you follow the teachings of the Church of Jesus Christ in your private and public behavior with members of your family and others?
- Do you support or promote any teachings, practices, or doctrine contrary to those of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints?
- Do you strive to keep the Sabbath day holy, both at home and at church; attend your meetings; prepare for and worthily partake of the sacrament; and live your life in harmony with the laws and commandments of the gospel?
- Do you strive to be honest in all that you do?
- Are you a full-tithe payer?
- Do you understand and obey the Word of Wisdom?
- Do you have any financial or other obligations to a former spouse or to children?
If yes, are you current in meeting those obligations?
- Do you keep the covenants that you made in the temple, including wearing the temple garment as instructed in the endowment?
- Are there serious sins in your life that need to be resolved with priesthood authorities as part of your repentance?
- Do you consider yourself worthy to enter the Lord’s house and participate in temple ordinances?
In his announcement, President Nelson explained one of the reasons for making public the new list of questions:
“Many friends not of our faith will participate in tours of those temples and will learn something about temple blessings. And some of those visitors will be moved upon to know more,” he said. “Some will sincerely ask how they might qualify for the blessings of the temple. As members of the Church, we will need to be prepared to answer their questions. We can explain that the blessings of the temple are available to any and all people who will prepare themselves.”