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Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Is Now the Time to Take Out Her Endowments?

Dear Bro Jo,

Hey Bro Jo, It's Melody again.

So, I am ridiculously ecstatic to get my endowments, but after much fasting and prayer, I've concluded that I'm not going on a mission. Should I wait until I'm engaged?

I feel like a little kid on Christmas Eve, except instead of a day it's been years and might be more.

I'll be 19 before the year is out, so I don't know if I'm "too young" and should wait, or if it's like a patriarchal blessing where you just get it whenever you're ready. I've asked my parents, but they were super vague about it, saying something about crossing that bridge when we get to it, but I'm like "The bridge is here!

Now do I cross it, or sit and wait?

And if I wait, what for?"

 The only reason I'm not fasting and praying like crazy about it right now is because I won't live anywhere near a temple for a good while.

We move back to the States this summer, but I want to get my endowments while I'm at BYU (I start this fall). I just don't know when.

I don't know, I'm just the kind of person who is uncomfortable with not having a plan.

Slight tangent: there's a young man I've mentioned a few times to you.

He's nearing the halfway point in his mission.

We dated for a few years before he left and are definitely still writing, to say the least.

Anyway, after he got his endowments right before he left, and a few times since then, he told me how he can't wait to be there with me when I get mine.

Sweet as that is though, I don't know if I want to wait that long.

I have no qualms about waiting for him (and by wait, I mean wait and date), but I'm not so sure about waiting for my endowments.

Should I?

If I don't wait, I don't know how or when would be the best way to break it to him because I'm pretty sure he'll be a little hurt, not that that'll affect my decision.


- Melody  

Dear Melody,

I was taught that we don't take out our endowments unless there's a reason . . . like a pressing event, and the only two things that qualify for a Very Young Adult (which you are) is Missionary Service and Temple Marriage.

So coming from that perspective I think it's the wrong time for you.

But that's a decision that should be left to you, your Bishop and Stake President, and the Lord.

Until it is right, there are things you can do at the Temple, such as Baptisms for the Dead (many people your age have Baptismal Recommends for just that purpose and they go whenever they want / can). 

And, of course, there's always Family History work . . . you can never do too much of that!

You're only 18.

Don't be in too much of a hurry to grow up.

- Bro Jo

Dear Bro Jo,

Wow, that was remarkably fast. Like, ten minutes fast. Ah!

I never heard that, that's very interesting.

What with the sacredness of it all, I suppose it's just something my leaders and parents never addressed.

Thank you, this is why I e-mailed you!

It's not a hurry to grow up, I'm just constantly hungry for more/new gospel learning, I guess.

This may sound odd, but I read churchy things for…fun?

Manuals, old CES devotionals, books by apostles, even the Journal of Discourses…with caution and the Spirit, of course, because I know not all of it's inspired/correct.

I just love it all.

But yes, there is plenty of work to be done just within the baptistry and the FHC.

I'm just excited to live so close to a temple again!

Right now, the closest one is a six hour flight away.


Thank you again!


Dear Melody,

Melody, There's nothing wrong with being excited about the Gospel and the Temple!

God bless,

- Bro Jo


Anonymous said...

Hey Melody (and any others considering a similar dilemma),
New news! The First Presidency made an announcement about a year ago that sisters don't have to wait to be engaged or going on a mission to take out their endowments anymore. You may now take them out whenever you feel prepared and you have counseled with your bishop and stake president and they feel the same. Last Christmas, I felt like the time was right for me, so I went and talked to my bishop about it even though I was only 22 and wasn't going on a mission or getting engaged. Based on factors in my life (I was mature enough spiritually and in other aspects of my life such as school), he and the stake president agreed that it would be ok for my to take out my endowments. I have a fried who is my same age and also took hers out over Christmas break. It was a beautiful experience and I was so happy that I didn't have to wait! However, I do recommend that anyone else making the decision does so with fasting and prayer. It's not a decision that should be taken lightly. If there's any question about being ready or not, it's worth any wait that you have to put in to be prepared!!!

J-Dawg Fluffy said...

HB1 says that unless a YA is going on a mission or getting sealed, they should wait until they are in their mid 20s at least before considering endowments. I got my endowments even though neither was planned at the time. My bishop said he felt I was old enough and mature enough to receive them. I got married a year later, though. To be honest, I don't like the idea of very young people getting their endowments. I have a hard time believing anyone who is still a "teenager" is fully ready for it. I understand why, though. Just wish it didn't have to be that way.

Also, where does "take out" endowments even come from? That phrasing makes no sense, but I hear it all the time out west. Never heard it down south. KInda like saying moisture instead of saying rain/snow

Kristin said...

Bro Jo- hasn't the First Presidency removed the age restriction for the sisters? I know the old guide line was to wait for mission/marriage, but hasn't that changed recently? Now the sisters can get their endowment whenever they are ready and their bishop/stake president consider them ready as well, correct?

Melody- I am a 23 year old un-endowed sister with no plans of a mission and no current prospects of marriage. My stake president mentioned at our stake conference that sisters don't necessarily have to wait anymore to receive their endowment, and as I was thinking about it, I got a very clear "Not yet." I don't know why. It's great that you are eager and wanting to learn more about the temple and the gospel, but make sure that you do it the right way and in the Lord's time- even if that means waiting when you don't understand why. As for the young man you mentioned, while he may be disappointed to not be able to be there with you if you do decide to receive your endowment, remember that it's YOUR decision and YOUR covenant.

Best of luck in make this important decision! Fast, pray, and be willing to submit to the Lord's will no matter what that may be!

Rose said...

If the first presidency has come out with anything, it has been only in the last year. I personally haven't heard anything. I knew I was ready for a long time but was repeatedly told "no" because I wasn't 25 (I was 22). By the time I did finally get to go (just before marriage), I knew when I went that not only was it a good time for me to go, but I really had been ready in every way for over 2 years. I felt like no one, except my family and my best friend, believed me. The only thing really keeping me from going was the policy. If they've changed it, I'm glad. I went through a ton of heart ache over that policy. Yet at the same time, other bishops and stake presidents were making exceptions left and right, which made the heartache worse. Friends in other wards were getting to go - and they were YOUNGER than me and not going on a mission or getting married. My bishop and stake president told me they shouldn't be doing that and they really wished they wouldn't because it puts them in a tough spot.

So either there's either a lot of church leaders NOT following that part of the handbook, or there has been a very recent change only in the last year.

Anonymous said...

Rose the policy changed about may or june of last year 2014. I had been going through the same thing I was 22 and heartbroken that I wasn't going to be able to go through. At first I didn't ask because I knew the policy but then I thought asking couldn't hurt, I was wrong. Unlike you the policy changed 3 months after I asked and 3 months after that I got to go through.
Even though I would've wanted to be given an exception I do see how it makes it tough for bishops and stake presidents when so many others make exceptions seemingly randomly, they can't really give a good answer because they don't know what revelations thos bishops and stake presidents had, that is why the policy is in place so there is a standard. Most people I know who had been endowed despite not marrying or going on missions were given exceptions because they were being deployed or hoing somewhere very dangerous where dying would not be unlikely.