Tuesday, February 2, 2010
Baptism for the Dead
Tonight I had the privilege of going with the youth to help them while they did baptisms for the dead in the Oakland temple. When I was a youth, I also did baptisms for the dead. This is an ordinance that any worthy baptized member over the age of 12 can do, but for some reason, it is more commonly done by the youth of the church. As I watched them tonight, I felt again what a great privilege it is to help those who cannot help themselves. I also was reminded of the amount of work still needing to be done. The work of geneology still goes forward to find our ancestors so that they can receive the saving ordinances.
I was very impressed tonight with our virtuous youth who willingly took time out of their busy day to serve in this way. It is such a wonderfully spiritual experience for the youth to enter the holy temple and take part in this important ordinance. What a great opportunity for them to meditate upon eternal principles and the plan of salvation. Surely they come away with a better perspective of their relationship to God.
One of the wonderful things about being in the temple is that there is no distinction between us with regards to socio-economic status, or fame, or education. We are all dressed in white, and we are all serving together as brothers and sisters. Some of the youth in attendance tonight were from the Latino congregation. It was wonderful to listen to the ordinances being performed in spanish for them, and then in english for the youth from our congregation. Though the languages were different, we all felt the unity of the gospel.
The temple is one of the few places in this world where we can escape the evils of the world. In the temple, the holy spirit is felt in abundance, and we can feel that truly we are walking on hallowed ground. I hope that these youth will develop a life long practice of attending the temple, and worshipping there, for I know it will bring great blessings of peace to their lives.
Below is a picture of the baptismal font of the Oakland temple.