I can still remember when my parents took our family to the newly erected Swiss Temple, the first in Europe, to become a forever family. I was 16 then and the youngest of four children. We knelt together at the altar to be sealed on earth by the power of the priesthood, with a wonderful promise that we could be sealed for eternity. I will never forget this magnificent moment.
As a boy I was quite impressed that we crossed country borders to be sealed as a family. To me it symbolizes the way temple work crosses worldly boundaries to bring eternal blessings to all the inhabitants of the earth. The temples of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints are truly built for the benefit of all the world, irrespective of nationality, culture, or political orientation.
Temples are an unyielding witness that goodness will prevail. President George Q. Cannon (1827–1901), First Counselor in the First Presidency, once said, “Every foundation stone that is laid for a Temple, and every Temple completed … lessens the power of Satan on the earth, and increases the power of God and Godliness.”1
While each temple increases the influence of righteousness in the earth, the greatest blessings, of course, come to those who actually attend the temple. There we receive further light and knowledge and make solemn covenants that, if followed, help us walk in the path of discipleship. In short, the temple teaches us about the sacred purpose of life and helps us get our true physical and spiritual bearings.
We do not attend the temple for ourselves only, however. Each time we enter these sacred edifices, we play a role in the hallowed, redemptive work of salvation made available to all of God’s children as a result of the Atonement of the Only Begotten of the Father. This is a selfless and holy service and one that allows us as mortals to participate in the glorious work of becoming saviors on Mount Zion.
For those who cannot attend the temple now for whatever reason, I encourage you to do everything in your power to hold a current temple recommend. The temple recommend is a symbol of our faithfulness and determination to serve the Lord. It is a symbol of our love for the Lord, for as Jesus taught, “He that hath my commandments, and keepeth them, he it is that loveth me: and he that loveth me shall be loved of my Father, and I will love him, and will manifest myself to him” (John 14:21).
As the landscape of the world continues to become beautified with these sacred buildings consecrated to the Lord, it is my prayer that we will do our part in bringing heaven closer to earth by being worthy to hold a temple recommend and using it. As we do so, righteousness will surely increase not only in our lives and homes but in our communities and throughout the world.