How Often the Temple

How often can you realistically make it to the temple? Back when I was single I pulled off nearly six months of once a week. (I missed a week here or there) But that was ridiculously hard. Honestly once a month is pretty impressive IMO. Especially if you are married with kids. The problem is that, as I figure it, you have to put aside about a four hour block. And that doesn’t include the time to get ready. That’s hard.

My wife wanted to go weekly but I’m just not sure that’s realistic. I told her instead to try bi-weekly although even that is hard. (My goal is monthly)

I do think that realistically the only way to go consistently is to go individually rather than as a couple. I had some neighbors tell me this in the first year of our marriage. I didn’t believe them. Now I’ve become more of a believer.

So tell me – especially those of you with kids who are a handful – what’s the best way to schedule regular temple attendance? (It’d be so much easier if the temple had day-care…)

20 thoughts on “How Often the Temple

  1. Clark, my wife and I go once a month. We are lucky in that we have relatives nearby, so we leave the kids with them. But it takes a huge amount of planning — it seems like nobody is ever ready to babysit on the days we can go.

    The temple is about one and a half hours from our house, so the whole trip usually takes at least six to seven hours.

    Suggestion: if you have a Church play group with young kids, work out so that you take turns watching your friends’ kids so you can go to the temple on alternate days.

  2. Prior to leaving for the MTC, I attended the temple almost daily. My goal was to become an authorized veil worker before leaving, a goal that I easily obtained after going through multiple sessions. When I returned home from my mission, I attended at least once a month, and weekly when I was an ordinance worker.

    Now, I am lucky if my wife and I can attend monthly. We have relatives who can and will watch the kids, but it doesn’t always coincide with our ward’s temple night.

    Geoff, I really like your idea. Might have to try that.

  3. I lived in a Ward in Utah where the YM/YW would plan one night per month to group baby sit so that parents could have a temple night. They would open up the nursery, play Disney videos, and generally play with the kids for the few hours the parents were in their session.

    I’m surprised I haven’t come across a program like that since.

  4. Trading off kids won’t work easily for a variety of reasons. (Our kids are difficult to deal with – we can do that for an hour or two but not the full time of an endowment session)

    Jeremy, we actually tried that when I was in the EQ Presidency. I found that getting enough participation — especially volunteer sitters — was problematic.

  5. 4 hours would be nice. Our closest temple is about 2.5 hours away. We have been trying to go every other month. My husband is the Elders Quorum President, and we made a goal to have a temple day every other month. Several families go down and take turns going through a session and watching each other’s children at the ward building next door. I want him to increase to once a month though. This should definitely be a priority.

  6. Our closet Temple is 20 minutes away. In the years before Hong Mei we went at least once a month. Since we got her it has been harder to get to the Temple. She is headed off to Kindergarten this Fall. I plan on going at least once a month during the day and as a couple hopefully once a month as well.

  7. Our ward has an “available for temple babysitting” list with “times available” that seems to work pretty well. I think it works well because the temple is only about 20 minutes from here, though.

  8. When I returned home from my mission I went on the earliest Saturday morning session available, this allowed me plenty of time after the session to do whatever other activities I needed to do. I continued this habit after I married and was raising 5 children; usually when I arrived home they were just getting breakfast. Unfortunately for a period of time in my life I started going to the temple less often making excuses to myself why I no longer had the time to do this and the Lord understood ect. During this time my family practically came apart at the seams. during this time of family problems the Prophet testified that if we go to the temple more often we would have more peace in our family, the spirit testified strongly to me this was a true principal. I re-committed myself to going to the temple often and did receive the blessings of peace promised to my family and to myself. I am now 54 years old I still have that commitment; I know this has brought great blessings and extra peace to my life and my family’s life. It is like anything in the gospel if you want to know if a principal is true you have to do it. The key for me was when my family was young doing a session on Saturday as early as possible made it much easier (now that the remaining children are collage students, everyone is still fast asleep when I get home). You probably noticed a lot of I’s, my wife has never shared this commitment; I attended with her whenever she goes (usually ward temple night), but she never has felt a desire to catch the first session, but for me it is very invigorating.

  9. Allan, good to hear your story. I know we are blessed by greater temple attendance, and your story is a good example of how.

  10. This has been a challenge for us lately. We have a goal to go once a month but failed to get there in May — twice!. First our babysitter came down sick, and the other time I was still sick and my wife was particularly sick. I think we’re going to have to go separately to get there.

  11. I have the luxury of living in close distance to many temples. I’m sure proximity has a lot to do with frequency.

    When I was single there was a three year period where I went weekly. Most of the time I was going to school full time and working part time, though after I graduated I was working full time. I found no difficulty fitting it in my schedule at all. After getting married we kept up the habit of going weekly, though we tended to miss more weeks than I did when single.

    Since having our first child (three months ago) we’ve adjusted our goal to going monthly. We are also blessed with relatives who are happy to babysit, so it’s not hard to work it in our schedule.

    I believe it’s a very personal choice, as most spiritual related choices are. Although I’ve never typically ‘enjoyed’ attending the temple, I’ve seen my life be richly blessed while I was attending weekly. While I don’t know that the blessings are strictly related to the temple attendance, I strongly believe they are. Only God would know for sure.

  12. I live 2/5 hours from the Louisville temple, so when we go, we have to make it an all day event (5 hours for driving, alone). So, a weekly event is out of the question for us. We do try to go monthly, except when there is inclement winter weather. But it is a challenge, because everyone and everything wants all our Saturdays, and the temple is usually only open weeknights and Saturdays.

  13. Our temple attendance really fell apart at the seams with having a child. We live about 45 mins from temple on a good day (closer to an hour). And you can’t just barely miss a session because they are scheduled ahead of time and only every two hours. Our son nursed every three hours and refused a bottle and did so exclusively for basically the first year due to lots of feeding issues. How that is supposed to work with temple attendance is completely beyond me. I also never really figured out the attending when pregnant once my clothes stopped fitting because we go to a smaller temple where you bring your own clothes. I know I need to try harder, but for now between pregnancy and nursing it seems really hard to do.

  14. I just escorted a recent convert and realizing I need to go more often. Anon, I know what you mean by not “enjoying” going. I have a hard time sitting through a lot of sacrament meetings too. For some reason putting gas in the car came to mind. I don’t like having to actually do it…but it is such a good feeling leaving the station with a full tank. Those with two hour drives and more…I’m impressed. (And those who are nursing don’t need to try harder!)

  15. When I was single I lived nearer to the temple and went every week. I loved it, and needed it too. Shortly after we married we moved away from the temple and into outer darkness, honestly it really does feel like that for me. We are about 3 hours away now. Now we have children too but no family nearby that will babysit regularly. There have been times, actually years when we have gone only a couple of times a year, and then not together. We have tried going with friends and babysitting each others’ kids but then it is such a long day, 6 hours of driving and expecting the kids to survive for 2 sessions too. More often than not we go separetly and maybe once a year get to go together. This is not ideal but doing what and when you can is better than not at all. I have more of a need to go than my husband and he usually is o.k. about my disappearing for a Saturday each month. For me temple attendance is so important it frustates me to find it so hard. I would love to be there every week again as I really need it. I cannot stress enough how much I have this need. I envy those that are in a position to do this, times and seasons I know.

  16. We have been going to the temple every Saturday (as workers) for about 7 years. This year we cut back to every other week, the combination with early morning seminary was a bit much.
    A few suggestions from an old gal…
    For those who drive a few hours, you might try taking the kids with you. Especially for small temples with appointments and sessions every 2 hours, one of you take a session, all go out to lunch, the other go for a session after. The kids will know that the temple is important, they will be part of the experience and will have a whole day with the folks and a little road trip to boot. Try libraries or sight seeing to keep them occupied.
    If you are pregnant and your clothes don’t fit, the small temples should have some clothing to lend you.
    If you need a real boost, attend an initiatory session. Listen to the blessings.
    Do the best you can and don’t beat yourself up. But do the very best you can. :)

  17. My goal is once a month – which is better than I’ve done the past 5 years. If I can consistently do that for 6 months I may up it a bit. Maybe every three weeks. Part of my problem is also I’m running two businesses, one that’s very labor intensive. I think getting to the temple at opening is the only way I’ll do it. I just can’t see it happening in the evening. This will line up with my goal to start biking to work every day so as to get back to my other pre-marriage state: high exercise. (I used to do 2 -3 hours of heavy exercise a night)

  18. I make a goal to attend once a month. I live 20 minutes from the temple and I usually go on Wed or Thurs at 10 am. It’s about a 3 hour block required including travel and changing clothes. I usually attend myself and then my wife attends at least one a month by herself. My wife and I also do sealings once a year around our anniversary but usually we go separately and we watch the kids (ages 2 and 4) while the other spouse attends.

  19. I live in Hawaii and the temple (Laie) is 40 minutes away. In 2008, my wife and I set a goal of attending once a week, usually the first session (5:30 a.m.) on Saturdays. We’re older (early 50s) and all the kids are grown, so no problem with babysitting. We’re recent converts (baptized in Jan 06) and received our endowments in Dec 07. As of Jan 09, the temple has been closed for renovations (for 18 months), so the closest one is on another island (Kona) which means a 40 minute plane ride (and plane fare of ~$200 for the RT for both of us). We’ve yet to attend the temple in ’09 but we were diligent in reaching our weekly goal in 2008. My wife is teaching a lesson tommorow in Relief Society using Elder Scott’s talk at the April 09 GC and I’m helping her prepare. I came here to find out what people define as “regular temple attendance.” Elder Scott says that we should “Set specific goals, considering [our] circumstances, of when [we] can and will participate in temple ordinances.” For some, the goal may be once a month. For others, once a week. For others, such as us in our current circumstances, it may be once a year.

  20. Kaneohe1st, I was in Honolulu in January and went to Laie and was disappointed to find the temple under renovation. I have yet to go to Kona, and I know it’s an expensive flight to get there from Honolulu. In addition to the plane fare, you might even have to stay overnight depending on when you went and the plane schedule. But I’m sure the Laie temple will look great after the renovation.

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