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Prince’s Research Excerpts: Temples & Mormonism – 1917

Below you will find Prince’s research excerpts titled, “Temples, 1917.” You can view other years here.

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TEMPLES, 1917.

1917:  11 Jun.:  Program for indexing temple work completed.

“Not only does the [genealogical] society aid in obtaining genealogies but it is, at least to an extent, a clearing house of information as to temple work that has already been done in different family lines.  It is engaged in collecting what is called a line card index which shows the surname of the family for whose members temple work has been done in any temple, at whose instance it was done, and the name and address of the person now in charge of the work.

The purpose of this index is to aid in preventing the duplication of temple work; and no person should undertake to do extensive work in any surname without first consulting this card index and then communicating with persons now in charge of work that has been ir is being done in the same surname.  It is the duty of all temple workers to use due diligence to avoid repeating temple work, a proposition which will be further considered.

Any discussion of co-operation in any department of temple work–and genealogy is a most important department of it–necessarily involves a discussion of the duplication of ordinance work in the temple and of research work in genealogy.  There can be no question that a great deal of temple work is being duplicated, and I am personally convinced that in genealogical research work hundreds of Latter-day Saints are crossing each other’s trails, thereby duplicating labor and expense, and at the same time swelling the duplication of work in the temples.

The interest in temple work and the number of temple workers are rapidly increasing in many stakes of Zion.  It follows that the duplication of work is also increasing and that it will continue to increase until effective methods are adopted to check it.  This duplication of work cumbers the records of the temples, increases the congestion in them; adds to the burdens of the workers in them; is very expensive to temple workers, and if expressed in dollars and cents would amount to a large sum annually.”  (B. F. Cummings, address at the Granite Stake Genealogical Convention, 11 Jun., 1917; UGHM 8:135, Jul., 1917)

11 Jun.:  Temple work for suicides.

“It is important that a genealogy should contain full particulars of marriages, especially all marriages subsequent to the first, and when couples have been divorced, the genealogy should so state.  If any person has committed suicide, murder, or other serious crime, the genealogy should give the particulars.  In each case of suicide, it should be stated, if possible, whether the person was sane and morally responsible, or not.

Unless facts concerning marriage are given, especially marriages subsequent to the first, how can we be sure that we are uniting the right persons in sealing?  How can we be sure we are giving children to those who have the best claim on them?  If we have no record of crimes and suicides, how can we guard against doing work for the unworthy?  Obviously such data cannot be included in a temple record, yet it is of the highest importance that they be preserved.”  (B. F. Cummings, address at the Granite Stake Genealogical Convention, 11 Jun., 1917; UGHM 8:135, Jul., 1917)

6 Oct.:  Temple garment in context of Army service.

“[General Conference]  In the evening I attended Priesthood.  I spoke upon wearing the garment in the army and said that if not against the army regulation that they ought to wear them.  C. W. Penrose followed and touched on the same subject.  B. H. Roberts asked to speak and said that my statement should be considered in the light of Penrose’s modifying clause!  Prest Smith gave the same instruction as I had given and said there was really no conflict.  Bro. Roberts had said he did not look upon the Garment as a coat of mail.  Prest. Smith showed that it had been a protection to the wearer.”  (Anthon H. Lund diary, 6 Oct., 1917)