Yes, there are now 129 temples in the world, with more being built all the time.
Are they the same as the buildings other churches build for their weekly worship services?
No. Mormon's have chapels for weekly church services. Church services for Mormons consist of 1) a sacrament meeting where members take the sacrament and renew their covenant to follow the Lord's commandments, to always remember him, and to have His Spirit with them. 2) Sunday School, about an hour long, where we have a person from the congregation study and teach directly from the scriptures, and 3) we divide into the women's organization, the Relief Society, and the men meet together in a meeting for priesthood holders.
Can anyone go into a Mormon temple?
When construction is finished on a temple, an open house is held so anyone wanting to see the inside is welcomed to come and see. After the open house, the temple is dedicated to the work of the Lord. After the dedication, only Mormon's who are keeping the commandments and following the Savior and his teachings qualify to enter the temple. Mormons who are not living the commandments, and those who are not members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (also called Mormons, Latter-day Saints and LDS) are not allowed to enter these dedicated temples.
Are there "secret" things that happen in the temple?
There are experiences in the temple that we consider sacred because of the covenants or promises we make to the Lord. We are asked, because of their sacred nature, not to talk about them outside of the temple. That may sound like the same thing as secret to some people, but to us they are precious and sacred.
So what happens in the temple.
1. Baptism's by proxy for the dead.
Jesus Christ said, "except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God." He was talking about being baptized by immersion. Even he was baptized by immersion and "came up out of the water" to show that all people, even he, needed to be baptized to return to God's presence.
Also, in 1 Corinthians 15: 29, it states, "Else what shall they do which are baptized for the dead, if the dead rise not at all? Why are they then baptized for the dead?" Members of the Church during Christ's day were also baptizing by proxy for those who had died.
So what does "by proxy" mean? It means that a person stands in the water in a baptismal font in the temple, and baptizes another person for a person who is dead. They use the dead person's name during the baptism.
Do we believe we are forcing baptism on every person who has died? No. We believe that every person has the ability to accept or reject the baptism done in their behalf. No one is ever forced to follow Jesus Christ. We are just following the Lord's direction to help all God's children.
2. Individuals make promises to follow Christ and the commandments, to help others and to dedicate their lives, time and efforts in helping others and following the Savior Jesus Christ.
3. Men and women are married for this life and "sealed" for eternity. Children born to them are included in this "forever family." Those who were not married in the temple and are worthy, can enter the temple and be sealed for eternity as husband and wife and have their children sealed to them.
Why is having a living prophet important?
Think of the issues that exist today that didn't exist when the bible was put together. All of those issues can be addressed by a living prophet.
Do you really think God stopped loving us and stopped talking to us as a result?
I don't think so.
Do you really think that God ran out of things to tell us?
I think there are probably at least 3 or 4 things left he might want to tell us.
What can a living prophet with authority from God do that a minister with only authority from a college or university do?
He can tell you what the Lord wants you to do, what to focus on, how to live. Things that are wrong today he might want to warn us about. Many, like the Internet didn't exist during bible times. Wouldn't you want to see what feelings God has about it?
What messages has the living prophet, one of 15 prophets who have led the Church since the restoration of the gospel after a personal visitation of God and Jesus Christ to Joseph Smith, spoken about in the last few years? - quotes from Thomas S. Monson
“The problems of our day loom ominously before us. Surrounded by the sophistication of modern living, we look heavenward for that unfailing sense of direction, that we might chart and follow a wise and proper course. He whom we call our Heavenly Father will not leave our sincere petition unanswered.”
"Send that note to the friend you’ve been neglecting; give your child a hug; give your parents a hug; say “I love you” more; always express your thanks. Never let a problem to be solved become more important than a person to be loved."
"Let us relish life as we live it, find joy in the journey, and share our love with friends and family. One day each of us will run out of tomorrows."
"He invites you and me to receive Him. “Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me.”
Who was this Man of sorrows, acquainted with grief? Who is the King of glory, this Lord of hosts? He is our Master. He is our Savior. He is the Son of God. He is the Author of our Salvation. He beckons, “Follow me.” He instructs, “Go, and do thou likewise.” He pleads, “Keep my commandments.”
Let us follow Him. Let us emulate His example. Let us obey His word. By so doing, we give to Him the divine gift of gratitude.Brothers and sisters, my sincere prayer is that we may adapt to the changes in our lives, that we may realize what is most important, that we may express our gratitude always and thus find joy in the journey."
"I know without question, my brothers and sisters, that God lives. I testify to you that this is His work. I testify as well that our Savior Jesus Christ is at the head of this Church, which bears His name. I know that the sweetest experience in all this life is to feel His promptings as He directs us in the furtherance of His work."
"In the private sanctuary of one’s own conscience lies that spirit, that determination to cast off the old person and to measure up to the stature of true potential. In this spirit, we again issue that heartfelt invitation: Come back. We reach out to you in the pure love of Christ and express our desire to assist you and to welcome you into full fellowship. To those who are wounded in spirit or who are struggling and fearful, we say, Let us lift you and cheer you and calm your fears. Take literally the Lord’s invitation, “Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.”
"I would encourage members of the Church wherever they may be to show kindness and respect for all people everywhere. The world in which we live is filled with diversity. We can and should demonstrate respect toward those whose beliefs differ from ours.
May we also demonstrate kindness and love within our own families. Our homes are to be more than sanctuaries; they should also be places where God’s Spirit can dwell, where the storm stops at the door, where love reigns and peace dwells.
The world can at times be a frightening place in which to live. The moral fabric of society seems to be unraveling at an alarming speed. None—whether young or old or in-between—is exempt from exposure to those things which have the potential to drag us down and destroy us. Our youth, our precious youth, in particular, face temptations we can scarcely comprehend. The adversary and his hosts seem to be working nonstop to cause our downfall.
We are waging a war with sin, my brothers and sisters, but we need not despair. It is a war we can and will win. Our Father in Heaven has given us the tools we need in order to do so. He is at the helm. We have nothing to fear. He is the God of light. He is the God of hope. I testify that He loves us—each one.
Mortality is a period of testing, a time to prove ourselves worthy to return to the presence of our Heavenly Father. In order to be tested, we must sometimes face challenges and difficulties. At times there appears to be no light at the tunnel’s end—no dawn to break the night’s darkness. We feel surrounded by the pain of broken hearts, the disappointment of shattered dreams, and the despair of vanished hopes. We join in uttering the biblical plea “Is there no balm in Gilead?” We are inclined to view our own personal misfortunes through the distorted prism of pessimism. We feel abandoned, heartbroken, alone. If you find yourself in such a situation, I plead with you to turn to our Heavenly Father in faith. He will lift you and guide you. He will not always take your afflictions from you, but He will comfort and lead you with love through whatever storm you face.
With all my heart and the fervency of my soul, I lift my voice in testimony today as a special witness and declare that God does live. Jesus is His Son, the Only Begotten of the Father in the flesh. He is our Redeemer; He is our Mediator with the Father. He loves us with a love we cannot fully comprehend, and because He loves us, He gave His life for us. My gratitude to Him is beyond expression."
God speaks today, through a prophet, just like he did during bible times. You can know what he wants you to do."
The work is real.
The Gospel of Jesus Christ is true.
There is a living prophet with words from God to you.
You can find out for yourself if it is true.
It is true.
Learn more about Mormons
Official Church Site - lds.org
Do I believe that there are 12 apostles on the earth today who help direct His Church?
Do I believe they received their authority through the Melchizedek priesthood to be in those positions?
Do I believe that they receive inspiration and revelation from God to direct The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints?
Do I believe you can get God's authority from a college or university to perform God's work?
No. The only way to get His authority is from someone who received it from Him or one of his prophets or apostles or other's who have received the priesthood from them. The living prophet and 12 apostles have received this authority in this way.
Do I think The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has God's priesthood authority.
Yes. It was restored to the earth when Joseph Smith received it from Peter, James, and John who appeared as resurrected beings and laid their hands on Joseph's head and ordained him with that authority. Between the time of Christ and the apostles' deaths and when Joseph received it again, the authority to pass on that priesthood authority was lost and had to be restored by those who had it.
Do I think The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is Christ's ONLY church on the earth today?
Yes. I believe that the authority of God through Jesus Christ was lost after he and the apostles died. After that, there was no leadership of the Church to pass along the authority and so it was lost. To direct his Church and perform his ordinances, you must have that authority.
Christ's Church and authority had to be restored. It was, through Joseph Smith, when God and Jesus appeared to Joseph in a vision and told him not to join any of the churches of the day. They told Joseph that they would restore the Church through him with all the authority it had at Christ's time.
Do I believe that no other church has the authority to act in his name?
Yes. I believe there are many good people on the earth and wonderful people in churches all over the world. There are leaders of churches that are great men and women. The problem is, they have no authority to act in God's name or perform baptisms or any other ordinance like the sacrament. Only one church has received that authority through a restoration of the priesthood authority.