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Prince’s Research Excerpts: Temples & Mormonism – 1909

Below you will find Prince’s research excerpts titled, “Temples, 1909.” You can view other years here.

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TEMPLES, 1909.

1909:  16 Feb.:  2nd anointings reserved for the gathered.

“The general rule adopted by the First Presidency in regard to the second anointing, is in effect that those blessings should be confined to the faithful members of the Church who have gathered with the body of the Church, or who died on the way in an effort to do so.  Inasmuch therefore as you shall be able to satisfy yourself through the testimony of such men as Elders E. W. and Ralph Smith that their father, who died in Australia, where he is said to have gone for the purpose of making money to immigrate himself and family to Zion,–that he died in a state of worthiness, you may consider yourself at liberty to recommend him and his wife for second blessings.”  (Joseph F. Smith, John R. Winder, Anthon H. Lund to President Isaac Smith, Logan.  16 Feb., 1909.  Bergera collection.) 

18 Feb.:  Do not boast of 2nd anointings.

“We cannot speak too emphatically on this subject to our brethren who are on missions, by way of caution against the infraction of their covenants, and in condemnation of those who do this for the purpose of impressing others with their self-importance when they boast of having received ‘the highest blessings,’ conveying the idea that they are more advanced in those things than some of their fellow laborers.  ‘The secrets of the Lord adre with them that fear him,,’ and they who do not ‘fear him’ sufficiently to keep to themselves that which was only intended for them and which they are forbidden to make known to others, prove themselves unworthy to receive the fulfillment of the promise of God, to ‘crown them with honor, immortality, and eternal life.'”  (Charles W. Penrose, MS 71:105, 18 Feb., 1909) 

Feb.:  Went to temple only once in 40 years.

“About the end of October of this year 1868, I went with my wife through the Endowment House in S. L. City where my wife was sealed to me for time & Eternity.  This is the only time that I have been up to the present time (Feb. 1909) through the temple or recieved any other endowments.  I know not if I may have an opportunity yet ere I pass away, or not, of doing any of Temple work for myself or my kindred.  Perhaps I have been to[o] careless in this matter, but it is not because I have no faith in this work, I fully realized that it is of the greatest importance, it is a very important part of the great plan of Salvation for the human family, without which, that great plan is imperfect.  I am now in the late evening of life and I may not have the privelege of doing more of this work.  It is the one thing of all others that I regret in life, so far.  I have not even had my children, born before I went through the House, sealed to me–and when i arrive in the Spirit world and meet my mother & father and the hundreds & thousands of my kindred who have gone before me, and have to say to them that I have done nothing for them, I fear I must hang my head in shame & confusion.  Of course I could give reasons and make excuses, but they would not avail anything here.  I must however most earnestly urge this work upon my children & grandchildren, they will have, I trust, means & opportunities that has been denied to me to a great extent through life.  And I earnestly pray that they may have the Spirit of this work to rest upon them & that the way may be opened for them in all things to perform this work.  My grandsons, Bennie & John, Ray, George, Frank, Bert, also Ernest, and all of my children & grandchildren, I wish most earnestly to impress this work upon you, not any particular one of you, but upon you all, here is a great field of work for you, and help each other in doing it, and you shall be blessed & be able to do far more in this direction than you at present have any idea of.  God give to you the Spirit of this work and means in abundance is the prayer and blessing of your ancestor.  John Redington.”  (John Redington Journal, pp. 65-68)  [Note that Redington served as a missionary to England in 1895.  Also, he was ordained a High Priest in 1903, as attested below:]

“Manti, Utah, Dec. 5th 1905.

To whom it may concern,

This certifies that John Redington was ordained a High Priest May 2nd 1903 by Prest. Gustave A. Iverson, and was a faithful member of the High Priest Quorum of the South Sanpete Stake of Zion in good standing at the time he removed from here.  Jens P. Jensen, Prest. of the High Priest Quorum.”  (John Redington Journal, p. 88; Huntington Library)

24 Mar.:  Don’t recommend so many at once for 2nd anointings.

“March 24th, 1909

Prest. Don C. Walker,


Dear Brother’—

We regret to say that we could not possibly find time to give second blessings to the large number of brethren and sisters mentioned in yours of the 23rd inst., during the coming conference. The Logan Temple will re-open on the 12th of April, and it may be that Prest. Budge will be able to accomodate your people within the conference date, and we suggest that you write him on the subject.

Your brethren,

John R. Winder

Anthon H. Lund

On behalf of the First Presidency

P.S. There were no temple recommends enclosed in your letter. Of course you understand it to be in order that temple recommends should be issued to each man and his wife or wives, and sent here for the endorsement of the President before presenting them at the temple.

If you had consulted us beforehand we should have advised not giving recommends for second blessings to so many at the same time, as privacy and regard to this matter is strictly a required, and this you should charge them with, if they all come at one time especially.”

(Letter from First Presidency, 24 March 1909.  Bergera collection.)

May:  Why not baptize 100 at once?

“Another question also has been asked which further complicates the subject:  why cannot a person be baptized for a hundred people at once?  If there were a hundred names read off, why could not a living person officiate by one immersion for this or any other number? . . .

And now, why can’t one man be baptized for a hundred people at once?  Because this is an individual world; we must each have separate experiences, separate lives, and separate salvation, or condemnation.  No man can eat or sleep for another.  No man can baptize ten people at once in life, nor more can he do so in vicarious work.  The whole universe is epitomized in the individual.  All things are made and governed by law; and the law of life is single, individual and separate.  The soul lives in itself, apart and distinct from every other soul and substance.  We have, as it were, a world and all its forces in our own soul.  I can pronounce only one sound at a time, conceive one thought at a time, occupy one space at a time.  That is, in brief, the answer to this question.”  (Susa Young Gates, “Why Should Vicarious Work be Done,” YWJ 20:227-229, May, 1909)    

5 Oct.:  Not to marry before going through temple.

“[General Conference, Priesthood Session] Prest. [John] Winder said persons who can reasonably reach the temple should not be married before reaching the temple.”  (Anthony W. Ivins diary, 5 Oct., 1909)

18 Dec.:  Announcement of UGHM.

“Another matter of greatest importance to the Latter-day Saints, which was mentioned in our greeting of 1908, is the work in behalf of the dead.  The year past has been one of marked progress in this direction, many of the saints have been diligently securing the records of their dead and have performed ordinances in their behalf.  This is indeed gratifying and should be encouraged, for there is no greater work in all the gospel plan required for us.  

The Genealogical Society of Utah, which was organized for the purpose of securing genealogical records for the use of those interested in temple work, has secured many valuable records from Europe and New England during the present year.  We suggest that the Latter-day Saints join this society and give it their support that they may have better facilities for obtaining these important records of the dead.  In January, 1910, the Society will commence the publication of a genealogical and historical magazine, which will be devoted to the publication of genealogical information, pedigrees, and other items that will aid the people in securing their records and performing the work for their dead.”  (First Presidency Christmas Message, 18 Dec., 1909.  In Clark, Messages of the First Presidency 4:210-211)