Music for a baptismal service may include prelude music; an opening hymn; a musical selection, interlude music, or singing of well-known hymns and Primary songs while the people who participated in the baptism change into dry clothes; a closing hymn; and postlude music (see Handbook 2: Administering the Church, 20.3.3).
A wedding ceremony that is held in a home or Church building might include prelude music, hymns, special musical selections, and postlude music. Civil marriage ceremonies should be simple, conservative, and without pomp in the proceedings. When a wedding ceremony is held in a Church building, a wedding march is not appropriate.
Music for funerals might include prelude music, an opening hymn, special musical selections, a closing hymn, and postlude music. Simple hymns and other songs with gospel messages are most appropriate for these occasions. Opening and closing hymns are usually sung by the congregation.
The bishop considers the wishes of the family, but he ensures that the funeral is simple and dignified, with music and brief addresses and sermons centered on the gospel (see Handbook 2, 18.6.4).
Activities at the ward, stake, and multistake levels bring Church members together as “fellowcitizens with the saints” (Ephesians 2:19). In addition to providing fun and entertainment, activities should build testimonies, strengthen families, and foster unity and personal growth.
Church activities should be planned to fulfill gospel-centered purposes. One of these is developing talents and appreciation for cultural arts.
Those who plan activities strive to have participants be actively involved, since participating is usually more beneficial than just observing. One way to encourage participation is to have members use their gifts, skills, and talents in the activity. These activities, which could include talent shows or performances in dance, music, and drama, also nurture creativity, confidence, communication, and cooperation.
Although speakers and performers may be approved for activities, those who primarily entertain, with only casual reference to the gospel, would not be selected. Nor should speakers who would have to travel long distances be selected
Units may sponsor optional activities that are presented by Church-related entities. Such activities include Church university performance groups, special youth programs, and periodic major cultural events.
Some cultural and recreational music may be presented in the chapel on weekdays. However, the cultural hall is usually a more appropriate setting for such music. Local priesthood leaders resolve questions about what music is appropriate for the chapel. Applause is usually not appropriate in the chapel.
In all dances, lyrics and music should contribute to an atmosphere where the Spirit of the Lord can be present. The beat of the music, whether instrumental or vocal, should not overshadow the melody. The volume should be low enough to allow two people who are standing side by side to hear each other as they carry on a normal conversation.
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