"The world would be a better place if everyone grew brains." - Humble Master
Question #91785 posted on 11/01/2018 6:12 a.m.

Dear 100 Hour Board,

The church policy states that those couples reside where temple marriage is recognized by the government must wait a year should they choose a civil wedding. This policy has caused a lot of trouble in many converts' family relationships. However if I remember correctly, the church allows a stake president to petition for a First Presidency exemption on behalf of the couple. How difficult it would be to obtain such an exemption when the bride or groom is a convert? Have you heard of anyone went this route before?

Thank you!

-An Interested Party


Dear you,

According to the Church's website,

The general rule of the Church is that a person may not apply for a temple recommend until he has been a member of the Church for one year, unless he receives written permission from the First Presidency granting permission for his sealing and/or early endowment. This letter must be presented with the temple recommend. Also, if a couple are civilly married and then decide later that they wish to be sealed in the temple (in contrast to special conditions, such as those in New Zealand, as noted above in number five), the general rule of the Church is that they may not apply for a temple recommend until one year from the date of their civil marriage. Any exception must be in writing from the First Presidency granting permission for the sealing. Permission in both instances is received through priesthood channels that begin with the bishop. (source)

While it is possible, I've never heard of this happening and I don't think any of the other writers have heard anything either. I'd recommend talking to your bishop to see if it could be done in your situation.

If anyone knows anything more about this, please add a correction!

-guppy of doom

posted on 11/01/2018 1:09 p.m.
While not clear, I read this question to infer that the couple wanted to get married civilly first so that their families who were not members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints could attend the wedding. They would then get married in the temple immediately after. Your answer while correct, perhaps missed the bigger question. When I got married in the temple I had only one uncle and one friend attend.

This Ensign article talks about that.
posted on 11/01/2018 9:14 p.m.
I don’t know the details, but my cousin married a recent convert in October and is getting sealed in December. I don’t think there’s anything particularly special about this case that would merit UNUSUAL permissions that other recent converts couldn’t get. But like I said, I’m not looped in on all the details.

posted on 11/02/2018 1:29 p.m.
Two things:
1. It is also fairly common for a couple to do some sort of ring ceremony in between the temple sealing and the reception, especially if there are family members who cannot attend the sealing. This can help family/close friends who are not able to enter the temple still feel like they were a part of the wedding.

2. To further add to Zed's correction, Handbook 1 says the following concerning an exception to the wait one year policy. It says that the waiting period does not apply if a couple could not be sealed because they had not been members of the Church for one year (since one must wait a year after confirmation to go to the temple for your endowments/sealing). After they have been a member of the Church for more than one year they can get sealed anytime, even if they have been civilly married for less than one year.