I’m a Mormon, So…

I’m a Mormon, so I support the men who hold the power to administer the priesthood.

The word priesthood has two meanings. First, priesthood is the power and authority of God. It has always existed and will continue to exist without end (see Alma 13:7–8Doctrine and Covenants 84:17–18). Through the priesthood, God created and governs the heavens and the earth. Through this power, He exalts His obedient children, bringing to pass “the immortality and eternal life of man” (Moses 1:39; see also Doctrine and Covenants 84:35–38).
Second, in mortality, priesthood is the power and authority that God gives to man to act in all things necessary for the salvation of God’s children. The blessings of the priesthood are available to all who receive the gospel (“Priesthood Authority,” Handbook 2, Administering the Church).

LDS Gospel Topics, “Priesthood

The blessings of the priesthood include vital ordinances like baptizing, conferring the gift of the Holy Ghost, blessing and administering the Sacrament, healing the sick, receiving inspiration and guidance for those whom a member is responsible for (including his or her own family), conducting and participating in temple rituals, and giving Patriarchal Blessings.

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints received the priesthood and the ability to use it again when Joseph Smith applied for direction concerning performing ordinances. He was then blessed with the Aaronic Priesthood at the hand of John the Baptist; then the Melchizedek Priesthood at the hands of Peter, James, and John.

As noted, everyone benefits from the priesthood. In terms of receiving the special ability to directly apply priesthood power and authority, that is the sole responsibility of men.

There is a difference between the authority of the priesthood and the power of the priesthood. Priesthood authority comes from ordination. Power comes from personal righteousness.

LDS Gospel Topics, “Priesthood

Beginning in their twelfth year, young men may receive the Aaronic Priesthood and be called to the office of a deacon. At fourteen, they may receive more responsibilities as, and be ordained to the office of, teacher. Then, at sixteen, comes the opportunity to be a priest. The highest available ordination that is considered part of the Aaronic Priesthood is that of bishop, a man called to be the leader of an LDS ward or branch.

An important side note at this point is that all positions in the LDS church come from the membership. We are asked to volunteer in different roles, sometimes ones of authority, to help run the meetings, community events, or activities. Those called to higher leadership roles with more of a time commitment are paid a reasonable stipend for their labors.

Getting back to the Priesthood: the second tier of priesthood authority is referred to as the Melchizedek Priesthood. A man may be set apart as an Elder when he is eighteen. “The offices of the Melchizedek Priesthood are Apostle, Seventy, patriarch, high priest, and elder. The President of the High Priesthood is the President of the Church (see Doctrine and Covenants 107:64–66).” (LDS Gospel Topics, “Melchizedek Priesthood“).

Men in the Church must be worthy Melchizedek Priesthood holders in order to receive the temple endowment and be sealed to their families for eternity. They have the authority to administer to the sick and give special blessings to family members and others. With the authorization of presiding priesthood leaders, they can bestow the gift of the Holy Ghost and ordain other worthy men to offices in the Aaronic and Melchizedek Priesthoods.

LDS Gospel Topics, “Melchizedek Priesthood

Worthiness is essential where the priesthood is concerned, as mentioned in discussing revelation, baptism, and taking the Sacrament. A man may not exercise the priesthood properly if he is not worthy to do so, nor may a recipient of priesthood blessings fully benefit without a measure of faith.

©2022 Chel Owens

……

We Mormons are officially members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and are to drop any name but that. Since many still run with the nickname of ‘Mormon,’ however, I will keep pace.

My other note is that I will keep to official doctrinal practices. I will add my own application of them, especially in response to comments.

My final note is that I LOVE discussing anything I write. Don’t be rude, obviously, but any and all queries or responses are welcome.

My final note beyond the final note is that I do not seek to convert anyone. I ought to, but am motivated by forming connections, answering curiosity, and straightening pictures. So, you’re safe.

I’m a Mormon, So…

I’m a Mormon; so I agreed to be baptized into the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints shortly after my eighth birthday. After baptism, I received the gift of the Holy Ghost.

We LDS believe a person is accountable for his/her behavior beginning at eight years old. After a person reaches this ripe old age, s/he may choose to be baptized.

[Children] are not to be baptized until they reach the age of accountability, which the Lord has revealed to be eight years of age (see Doctrine and Covenants 68:27Joseph Smith Translation, Genesis 17:11).

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints Gospel Topics

Baptism involves being fully immersed in the water by a man who holds the appropriate priesthood authority (more on that, later). This is usually the person’s father. The process is symbolic; it’s a physical demonstration of one’s willingness to take Jesus’ name upon oneself -to behave as He would approve of. Baptism is also the first step to make one an official member of the LDS church.

The ceremony takes place most often in a baptistry font at a larger LDS meetinghouse we call a stake center. The person being baptized and the person baptizing wear all white, say a specific prayer, and perform the baptism while two witnesses watch and confirm whether all of the person went under the water.

Immersion is symbolic of the death of a person’s sinful life and the rebirth into a spiritual life, dedicated to the service of God and His children. It is also symbolic of death and resurrection. (See Romans 6:3–6.)

LDS Gospel Topics

After drying off and changing back to ‘church clothes,’ a man who holds the appropriate priesthood rests his hands upon the head of the newly-baptized person and says a prayer to grant that person membership and the gift of the Holy Ghost. Other men who have come to support the baptism and also hold the appropriate priesthood join the person saying the blessing, placing their right hands on the blessing-receiver’s head and their left hands on each other’s shoulders. This forms a circle in which the receiver is in the middle -usually seated.

I spoke about the Holy Ghost, before. He is a sacred gift and one that I use almost daily. He guides in times of trouble, comforts in times of need, and is the medium through which Heavenly Father aids us or provides revelation.

After baptism and confirmation, the person is a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Those Mormon missionaries all over the world work to teach and baptize those who wish to join the LDS church. Baptism is considered the first covenant we make in a series of covenants, and a first step toward a life dedicated to returning to our heavenly Father in the end.

Those who are baptized enter into a covenant with God to take upon themselves the name of Jesus Christ, keep His commandments, and serve Him to the end (see Mosiah 18:8–10Doctrine and Covenants 20:37). Church members renew this covenant each time they partake of the sacrament (see Doctrine and Covenants 20:77, 79).

LDS Gospel Topics

©2022 Chel Owens

……

We Mormons are officially members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and are to drop any name but that. Since many still run with the nickname of ‘Mormon,’ however, I will keep pace.

My other note is that I will keep to official doctrinal practices. I will add my own application of them, especially in response to comments.

My final note is that I LOVE discussing anything I write. Don’t be rude, obviously, but any and all queries or responses are welcome.

My final note beyond the final note is that I do not seek to convert anyone. I ought to, but am motivated by forming connections, answering curiosity, and straightening pictures. So, you’re safe.