Update January 19, 2021—Phase 3 Reopening Updates

January 19, 2021  - by 
a family poses for a picture outside a temple.

As the world recovers from the effects of the COVID-19 virus, some temples are moving into the third phase of the Church’s phased reopening process. Temples in phase 3 of reopening will be able to offer proxy ordinances on a limited basis. As temples enter phase 3, please be aware of the following:

  • You will need to make a reservation with the temple for specific ordinances before you go.
  • Because temple workers will be limited during phase 3, patrons are encouraged to invite family and friends who have current temple recommends to participate in the scheduled ordinances.
  • During phase 3, you will need to print your own family name cards before you go to the temple. No pre-printed cards will be available at the temple.  You can use Ordinances Ready to find these names, or you can select names from your reservations list.
  • Beginning in phase 3, the temple will no longer return cards when ordinances are completed.
  • You will receive a notification in FamilySearch.org that the ordinances have been completed and recorded.

Below are answers to common questions regarding this phase of reopening.

The kansas city temple

1. Why is the temple keeping my family name card after I complete an ordinance for an ancestor?

Leaving family name cards at the temple allows temple workers to ensure that ordinance work is not duplicated and that ordinances are recorded accurately. Also, you will not need to wait for cards after your temple visit.

2. Should I print a new family name card each time I visit the temple?

Yes. Remember that each reservation is only for a specific time and for one type of ordinance (baptism and confirmation, initiatory, endowment, or sealing). Before printing a card, select only the ordinances you will complete during your scheduled temple visit.

3. Can I perform more than one ordinance for an ancestor during the same visit?

Yes, if reservation times are available on the day you visit the temple, you can perform more than one ordinance. You will be allowed to schedule only one type of ordinance at a time, so you need to check the available times and plan accordingly. For example, you might choose an ancestor and then find a date to schedule baptism and confirmation ordinances at 8:00, initiatory at 9:00, and an endowment at 9:30 (see the example below).

a screenshot showing ordinances

You will use the same card throughout your visit. To ensure that all ordinances performed during your visit have been recorded properly, the card will remain in the temple after you complete the final ordinance you selected before printing. The completed ordinances list in FamilySearch.org will be your record of completed ordinances and will take the place of the completed paper card.

4. How will I know that an ordinance has been recorded?

If you submitted a family name or shared it with the temple, you will receive a notification on FamilySearch.org or in the Family Tree app (see the images below) when the ordinance has been recorded. You can also go to FamilySearch.org or use the Family Tree app to track the progress of ordinances completed for your ancestors.

A screenshot showing completed ordinances

More temples will be included in phase 3 as global and local situations permit. Keep an eye on the Church Newsroom page for announcements regarding temples in your area.

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  1. How is a person notified if they do not have a computer? Or some kind of device? I have worked with several people that are not online. Our nearest FHC is 35 miles away and barely open. when it is open. The closest functioning one is 50 miles away.

    1. I also had a card completed with the proper check marks. But not showing in the computer or FS as done. The marriage was done separately and was recorded properly. However, everything on the original card had to be redone anyway so I guess there are two sides to getting ordinances recorded. I think of the words in the hymn angels in heaven silent notes are taking.

      1. Hi Carol! Thank you for your feedback. The new process of the temples retaining the cards is to prevent the experience you have mentioned here. The recorder’s office will now have the time needed to ensure that all ordinances are properly recorded. The checkmarks on the cards is not what is recorded. The official scanning of the cards is what marks the ordinance as being officially completed. With this new process, the temple recorder’s office will be able to scan cards (without being rushed by waiting patrons). There is also a process for them to recheck all scanned cards. This is something that could not be accomplished when patrons were taking the cards back.

    2. Hi Carol! Thank you for your question and feedback. I suggest the person work with their local Temple and Family History Consultant. The consultant can use the Helper Resources functions and help the patron submit temple names and can also check their account for completed notifications.

  2. It would have been good to include the wise counsel for all members to do a fresh check on Family Search before they take a card to the Temple to do ordinancesfor possible recent duplicates with ordinances done. There should be a clear intruction to all members. Announce in meetings and bulletins, “Please do a fressh check on Family Search before you take an ordinance card to the temple to be assured that the ordinances were not previously done. Note-when an ordinance is done a second time for an individual it means that someone else was deprived of receiving that ordinance. So we need to make every effort to avoid this.

  3. Will we be able to use the temple cards we had already printed out before the temples shut down? Or do we need to print out new cards for those we had already printed, but were not able to complete because of the pandemic?

    1. Hi Jennie! Thank you for your question. Please check each of your previously printed cards against what is in your reservation list within FamilySearch to make sure the ordinances still need to be completed. If they are still available to do and you hold the reservation, then you can continue to use the cards you already have. If you no longer hold the reservation, please destroy the card(s) so that ordinances are not duplicated.

  4. Family search is spectacular in keeping the programs progressive in ancestral family’s trees and information
    I feel a great appreciation for the LDS for this and feel as they do this pandemic period takes toll on everyone
    For the thousands of individuals involved in Family Tree, thank you

  5. Thank everyone in making Family Search the success for the world to enjoy through ths period of Pandemicrisis

  6. Just prior to COVID a few Temples kept the Temple Cards after the one of the ordinances was completed, but other temples returned the cards. Are you now saying that all temples will be keeping the cards?

  7. My wife and I have had two different family name cards where a temple ordinance was performed “recorded” and stamped, one in the Dallas Temple and one in the Phoenix Temple. However, the ordinance never showed as being done in Family Search. The only proof we had was the stamped Family Name Card we received back from the temple in each case. Because we had the stamped Family Name Card, we were able to provide each temple with the stamped Family Name card and get the ordinance recorded. We lose that proof of an ordinance be performed but not “recorded” if we don’t get the stamped Family Name Card back from the temple.

    1. Hi Thomas! Thank you for your feedback. The new process of the temples retaining the cards is to prevent the experience you have mentioned here. The recorder’s office will now have the time needed to ensure that all ordinances are properly recorded.

      1. In support of Amy’s comment, a friend volunteers at the Payson, UT temple Recorders Office. He works in the evening, His task is to check each card from that day was properly recorded. And yes, he occasionally find a ordinance that was not properly recorded.

  8. This new temple ordinance card process needs to be covered in church wide message for everyone to see. Also I know lots of members that have printed cards that cover every ordinance on that card after confirmation and it can take them several visits to complete that card. Does that mean the card they have printed it the past be destroyed and they must reprint again?? For members on a very tight budget that would not be helpful. Some members in my temple district have a small box full of them.

    Looks like I am not the only one with this comment.

    I also think you should include in that church wide message that everyone should look at their list before going to temple also. A lot of time has been spent on FamilySearch merging records so that list we have may not be the same when we can go again.

  9. I also would appreciate the cards being returned. I have had more than one instance where I’ve had to prove the work, and the first thing they ask for is the completed card, which no one will have now. One was as far back as 1971, where I had to produce a family group sheet that had been stamped from the old system. We were actually the original participants in the ordinance, but the changeover in systems keeps dropping old ordinance dates. Oh, well. Such is progress

  10. I understand the value if this policy, but also concerned by it. Before Covid, we attended the temple weekly, and usually performed multiple ordinances for multiple people. Typically we we would perform 2-3 endowments and then go to the sealing room to seal them. A few times we even started in the baptistery and ended in the sealing room,

    1. Hi Ken! Thank you for your feedback. If you are scheduled to perform multiple ordinances for the same person on the same day, you will be able to notify the temple to move the ordinance card from one location to another. For example, under phase 3 if you make an appointment for an endowment and are also able to make an appointment for sealings on the same day, you will notify the temple workers prior to the endowment that you will need that ordinance card to be taken to the sealing office after you complete the endowment. Then once you arrive at the sealing office, they will have the card waiting for you. If you are unable to complete the sealing on the same day as the endowment, you will need to print a new card for the sealing for the subsequent day.

        1. And a related issue, not aimed to anyone In particular. Why do we refer performing temple ordinances for “NAMES”. These are PEOPL:E. When a person completes mortality, they don’t become NAMES, they are sill persons, living in a different sphere, but still persons.

  11. What does someone do if they do not have family information to bring? Are there other family names that can be worked on? We are so far back on our tree that the only way to really get new information is to go overseas and do some serious digging in the actual country archives – 🙁 I look forward to taking the names of other people who have had their information ready and waiting as my family line is complete as far back as I can go. 🙁 What am I to do?

    1. Hi Aonika! Thank you for your question. Please check out Ordinances Ready. Through this tool, you will receive ordinances from your own reservation list, from your tree, or from names already submitted to the temple. If you don’t have any of your own names reserved, the tool will find names that have already been submitted to the temple for you to print and bring with you. Check it out!

      1. Thank you so much for the advice! I will do that when we reopen, which I really hope is soon. I really miss serving in the temple.