40. “Finding Joy in Temple and Family History Work”

While last week’s lesson (Gospel Doctrine lesson 39) looked at the purposes of temple work, this week looks at practices in our day and how temple work blesses lives.

“A Gathering Place: Russian Week at the Stockholm Sweden Temple,” John C. Thomas, BYU Studies, Vol. 39, no. 1
The Stockholm Sweden Temple (dedicated 1985) is well suited to assist Saints in the states of the former Soviet Union. This article tells the story of work in the 1990s for these Saints to attend the temple. It required careful negotiations with governments, making arrangements for travel, surmounting language barriers, and teaching the new converts the basics of temple procedures. Swedish and Finnish temple workers and hosts occasionally had hesitations about working with people who formerly had been enemies; the temple work had a healing effect as people became filled with love and forgiveness. This touching article shows the importance of temple work for Saints in all lands and cultures.

“Elijah’s Promise: An Oriental View,” Masakazu Watabe, BYU Studies, Vol. 44, no. 2
The author draws connections between Honor Your Ancestors Day, a Japanese day of remembrance held on the autumn equinox, and Moroni’s visit to Joseph Smith, also on the autumn equinox. On that date Moroni not only taught Joseph Smith about the gold plates with records of ancestors, but foretold that Elijah the prophet would return to turn the hearts of the children to the fathers.

“Establishing the Church Simply,” John P. Livingstone, BYU Studies, Vol. 39, no. 4
Featured in this article is the family of Lamenais Louis, who joined the Church in 1994 and was later sealed to his family in the Toronto Temple. In 1999, the Louis family attended the dedication of the Detroit Michigan Temple with their son Gregoire, who shortly afterward was one of the first to receive his endowment in that temple.