Ask Angela: I'm not getting married in the LDS temple, yet

By Angela Trusty, For the Deseret News

Published: Tue, Aug. 26, 2014, 5:00 a.m. MDT

 This Dec. 5, 2007, file photos shows the spires and Angel Moroni statue on the Salt Lake City Temple.

This Dec. 5, 2007, file photos shows the spires and Angel Moroni statue on the Salt Lake City Temple.

(Ravell Call, Deseret News archives)

Dear Angela,

My boyfriend and I have chosen to get married outside of the temple. Unbeknownst to our family and friends, we aren’t worthy for that step right now, but we feel that there is strength in working towards that eventual sealing together — and not by ourselves. Therefore, we’d like to get civilly married first and later sealed in the temple.

I shared this news with my parents and they are upset. My mother wants us to wait until we are both worthy to enter the temple and then to do things “the right way” by getting sealed there. She says it’s because she worries that if we don’t get sealed in the temple now, “we’ll probably never do it.” But I feel like her real motivation is that she doesn’t want her friends and family to know that her daughter has struggled with keeping the commandments. That would be embarrassing for her.

My boyfriend and I felt good about our decision to move forward with a civil marriage, but now these doubts are in our heads. Plus, I don’t want to do something that my mom isn’t on board with. I respect her opinion and I want her support. How can I best communicate to her that this is a good thing?


Future Wifey

Dear Future Wifey,

I would start by giving your mother the benefit of the doubt. Maybe her motives are selfish, maybe they aren’t, but choosing to believe that she has your best interest at heart will make it easier for the two of you to talk.

Next, I would come to terms with the fact that your mother may not get “on board” with your choice — and that’s OK. Getting sealed in the temple of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is a very personal decision. That decision requires personal dedication, personal worthiness and personal faith on the parts of the two getting sealed. You and your fiancé will want to earnestly pray about what’s right for the both of you, speak with your ecclesiastical leaders and then faithfully pursue that course.

Still, I understand the desire to have your mom’s support. Her concern is that you’ll never go to the temple, so talk to her about your plans to become temple worthy. Invite her to be involved in the process by planning a date and sharing what you’re learning through your gospel study. Our parents love us, they want our choices to be good and they want us to be happy.

Good luck on this journey and let us know how it goes!



Readers: Have you ever made a choice without the support of your loved ones? How did it turn out? Tweet your thoughts @ask_angecolumn #askangela and learn more about "Future Wifey'"on the Ask Angela Facebook page at facebook.com/askangelaslc.

Angela Trusty is a millennial writer who lives and writes about the young single adult Mormon experience. Twitter: askange_column

1. joe5
South Jordan, UT,
Aug. 26, 2014

You're being pretty harsh on your parents. By focusing on the perceived weaknesses of others, we can avoid facing our own. I've been there.

I assume you and your boyfriend had temple aspirations before but you still didn't keep worthy. Why do you think you can get there this time? The lack of temptation (because you are married) will not change your heart or your commitment. Our behaviors are merely the outward expression of our desires. Getting married merely legitimizes your behavior but it doesn't change your hearts. To me, it appears you are trying to avoid true repentance.

Does he truly love you? Then why would he compromise you to satisfy his own lusts? And he should be asking the same question about you? I question the wisdom of going into marriage with this hanging over your head.

Consider the role of temple marriage in the plan of salvation. It is so much more than a gold star on our foreheads to show what goods Saints we are.

We all sin. That is not the issue. The issue is whether you will face it or attempt to cover it in a cloak of legitimacy.

2. higv
Dietrich, ID,
Aug. 26, 2014

If both are worthy or recommend best to get married there. Then again are they concerned about the gossip if they are not? If not worthy work with priesthood leaders so you can be worthy. President Kimball told of couple killed an hour after wedding in Salt Lake that was not in Temple. Said do your own temple work vicarious work is for those without opportunity.

I would encourage people to be worthy of going to the temple and if they are not work with caring home teachers and priesthood leaders until you are.

3. Demisana
South Jordan, UT,
Aug. 26, 2014

I'd get married now, and do the temple later. If you are sure that you two are a good fit and are committed to a forever marriage, a long engagement isn't helpful. If there are any niggling doubts, then waiting and making sure marriage is right is wise. Nobody needs to be told why you choose to get married outside of the temple.

4. BJR
Duchesne, UT,
Aug. 26, 2014

They are in love and need to be married at this time. They can work together and go to the temple in a year. It will be easier for them to become worthy together.

5. raybies
Layton, UT,
Aug. 26, 2014

The embarrassment a parent feels with their peers when a child disregards their covenants is a real and understandable thing, but it is nothing compared to the heartbreak and concern they feel towards their child's spiritual health and wellbeing. This really isn't about the parent's embarrassment, but about deep abiding love and concern for both God and their child.

I would suggest that if the child struggling with their covenants, especially where chastity is involved, and isn't willing to wait, they should marry just to avoid compounding the possibility of more serious consequences (like unexpected pregnancy). Perhaps the once the child is frank and open about these serious consequences, the parents will agree.

If, however, the child CAN wait, go through whatever repentance is necessary, and control oneself with the one they love, then starting the marriage relationship pure and within the House of God is DEFINITELY a much more beautiful thing. And as the family grows, they can tell their children how they sought to put the Lord before themselves, which will set a positive tone for their relationship that will endure.