Mormon Garments: What to Expect When Receiving Your Temple Endowment (Part 3)

Todd Noall

Todd Noall

Source Expert

Todd Noall is an author and religious scholar at Mormonism Explained with a focus on the history and theology of religion.

Fact Checked by Kevin Prince

There are just two more things that I want to include in our discussion. First is a special prayer. You may have heard of putting a name on the prayer roll at the temple—this is where you can submit the names of family members or friends who face intense challenges to be prayed for at the temple. Prior to beginning the endowment session, a temple worker will gather names that have been submitted and place them in a small pouch. This pouch is placed on the altar at the front of the endowment room, and, towards the end of the endowment session, those who want to participate gather around the altar, and an ordinance worker offers a special prayer for those people whose names are in the pouch and others in need of heavenly blessings. This is a beautiful part of the endowment.

Then, at the end of the endowment ceremony, you will pass through the veil of the temple as you enter the celestial room, symbolic of coming into God’s presence. Again, remember the importance of symbolism. At Christ’s crucifixion, the veil of the temple was torn in two. In the New Testament, we are taught that the torn veil means that now all humanity can enter into God’s presence through “the blood of Jesus, by a new and living way . . . through the veil, that is to say, his flesh.” In other words, the temple veil represents Christ’s sacrificed body.

The parallels between the temple veil and the Mormon temple garments (with its “several simple marks”) help us see the garment as a powerful symbol of the Savior’s body, sacrificed for us. As Terryl and Fiona Givens write, “In our temples, as in the Jewish temple, the veil represents the portal into the divine presence. The temple veil, the emblem of Christ’s own flesh, was torn at the crucifixion, suggesting that only through the broken body of the atoning Savior was access into God’s presence possible for all.” Prior to entering the celestial room, everyone is asked some simple questions about what was presented in the endowment. You don’t need to worry about having all the answers—an ordinance worker will be there to help you. In fact, each time you go to the temple, there will always be a temple worker by your side to help you give the right answers. No need to stress.

As you go through the veil, you enter the celestial room, which represents the celestial kingdom, or life with our Heavenly Parents. Here, you can pray or ponder about important matters in your life. You can talk with other people in quiet and reverent tones (kind of like you would in a temple baptistry). It’s up to you how long you spend in the celestial room—it’s a beautiful room, a place to ponder and receive revelation.

This is where the presentation of the temple endowment ends. However, don’t forget that your quest to become endowed with heavenly power through living your covenants with God never ends—it is a lifelong pursuit, line upon line, throughout our entire lives and into the next until we receive a fullness of the blessings, promises, and power of the endowment.

After you leave the Celestial Room, you’ll go back to your private changing area, change back into the clothes that you walked into the temple wearing, and then you’ll leave the temple. And that’s a brief overview of receiving your temple endowment. Once you have received your endowment, you are eligible to participate in the ordinances of sealing husbands and wives and children to their parents. These ordinances are performed in sealing rooms in the temple. Like the endowment, the sealing ordinances can be received for yourself and in behalf of others. But that is a discussion for a different day.

I hope this explanation has been helpful for you as you prepare to receive your own endowment. The temple may feel a little bit different or mysterious at first. Maybe it’s supposed to! The temple and its ceremonies should transport us into higher and holier realms. It is not supposed to feel common or like everyday life. And it’s not all to be comprehended on your first visit or even on your hundredth visit. Before I conclude, a couple of final thoughts. First, something practical to consider. On the day you receive your endowment, the temple will want you to arrive early, and there will probably be some wait time between the different things you do. By the time you change out of your clothes and into the Mormon temple garments, receive the initiatory ordinances, talk with the temple leaders and receive your endowment, you’ll probably be in the temple for three or more hours. I mention this because if you’re hungry when you walk into the temple, you may not be able to fully focus on the endowment.

Some people want to fast before they receive their endowment, and I’m not saying you shouldn’t do that, but it’s possible hunger could distract you. In any event, if you’re not consciously fasting, consider eating some food before you go to the temple. If I could give one final piece of advice, it’s to stay focused on the big picture. Some people stress themselves out by trying to remember everything. Forget about that! Just focus on trying to feel the Spirit; feel the binding strength of your covenants. Don’t let any of the minutiae get in the way. Notice how Jesus Christ is the central figure in the temple endowment. His atoning sacrifice is the ultimate gift to each of us, and receiving your temple endowment will help you connect with Him. For more resources on preparing to receive your endowment, see the links in the description.

By Todd Noall, Source Expert

Todd Noall is an author and religious scholar at Mormonism Explained with a focus on the history and theology of religion.

Fact Checked by Mr. Kevin Prince, Source Expert

Kevin Prince is a religious scholar and host of the Gospel Learning Youtube channel. His channel has garnered over 41,000 subscribers and accumulated over 4.5 million views. Mr. Prince also created the Gospel Learning App, a reliable platform where individuals seeking truth can access trustworthy answers to religious questions from top educators worldwide.

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