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Why are temple ordinances important?

Temple ordinances lead to the greatest blessings available to Heavenly Father’s children. These ordinances prepare us to live forever with Heavenly Father and our families after this life. They bless us with spiritual power and direction during mortality. In the temple, we can also receive essential ordinances in behalf of ancestors who died without having the opportunity to receive these ordinances for themselves.

Prepare yourself spiritually

As you prepare, prayerfully study these scriptures and resources. What will inspire the young women to qualify for and participate in temple ordinances?

D&C 84:19–22 (The power of godliness is in the ordinances of the priesthood)

D&C 109 (Dedication of the Kirtland Temple)

D&C 131:1–4 (Celestial marriage is required in order to obtain the highest degree of glory)

Thomas S. Monson, “The Holy Temple—a Beacon to the World,” Ensign or Liahona, May 2011, 90–94; see also the video “Temples Are a Beacon”

Quentin L. Cook, “Roots and Branches,” Ensign or Liahona, May 2014

Richard G. Scott, “Temple Worship: The Source of Strength and Power in Times of Need,” Ensign or Liahona, May 2009, 43–45

Temples,” True to the Faith (2004), 170–74

Share experiences

At the beginning of each class, invite the young women to share, teach, and testify about the experiences they have had applying what they learned in the previous week’s lesson. This will encourage personal conversion and help the young women see the relevance of the gospel in their daily lives.

Introduce the doctrine

Choose from these ideas or think of your own to introduce this week’s lesson:

  • Invite the young women to think about a recent experience they had in the temple. What did they feel there? What blessings have they received for attending the temple? When have they felt that they received spiritual strength or direction in the temple?
  • Invite a young woman to hold up a picture of the temple. Ask her to name some of the ordinances of the temple and explain why they are important to her.

Learn together

Each of the activities below will help the young women understand why temple ordinances are important. Following the inspiration of the Spirit, select one or more that will work best for your class:

  • Show a picture of a married couple in front of a temple (see Gospel Art Book, 120). Invite the young women to read together Doctrine and Covenants 131:1–4 and look for the blessings promised to those who enter into the new and everlasting covenant of marriage. What blessings will be withheld from those who do not enter into this covenant? How is the Lord’s view of marriage different from the world’s view? Share your testimony with the young women about the blessings that are available to them and their future families as they participate in the ordinances of the temple.
  • Invite the young women to read the last 10 paragraphs of Elder Richard G. Scott’s talk “Temple Worship: The Source of Strength and Power in Times of Need.” Invite them to share how they feel Elder Scott’s experiences demonstrate the importance of temple ordinances. Share experiences from your own life, and invite the young women to do the same.
  • Show the video “Temples Are a Beacon” (or share the story of the Mou Tham family from President Thomas S. Monson’s talk “The Holy Temple—a Beacon to the World”) and ask the young women why they think the Mou Tham family was willing to make such great sacrifices to go to the temple. What sacrifices have they made or seen others make to attend the temple and receive its blessings?
  • Give each young woman a copy of Elder Richard G. Scott’s talk “Temple Worship: The Source of Strength and Power in Times of Need,” and ask the class to find the suggestions Elder Scott gives on how to benefit from temple attendance. Invite the young women to share what they find. Which of these suggestions do they feel apply best to them as young women? Invite them to select one or more that they will follow the next time they attend the temple.
  • Divide the class in half, and ask one half to imagine that they are the deceased ancestors of the other half. Invite them to imagine that they died without being baptized but have accepted the gospel in the spirit world. Ask them to write a message to their living descendants and give it to one of the young women in the other half of the class. Ask the class members to read the messages out loud. Write on the board the title of this lesson, and invite the young women to think about this question as they read the third and fourth paragraphs in the section titled “Family History Technology” in Elder Quentin L. Cook’s talk “Roots and Branches.” Ask them to share their thoughts.

Ask the young women to share what they learned today. Do they understand the importance of temple ordinances? What feelings or impressions do they have? Do they have any additional questions? Would it be worthwhile to spend more time on this doctrine?

Live what we are learning

Invite the young women to consider how they will live by what they have learned today. For example, they could:

  • Do baptisms for the dead as a class activity, taking their own family names if possible. They could also use what they learned today to encourage other young women to prepare to attend the temple with them.
  • Complete Virtue value experience 3 in Personal Progress.