120 years ago today - Jul 31, 1902

[First Presidency letter]

We learn from your communication of 29 inst. that in your stake there are children who have been baptized before they were quite 8 years of age; the time varying from a few days to a month. You ask 'should such baptisms be considered valid, or shall they be set aside and the ordinance repeated?' In reply we will say that it has been decided by the General Authorities of the Church that such baptisms are valid; but we advise that all children should be baptized as near as possible when they are 8 years old. ... Some children are more advanced, both mentally and bodily, even at seven than others are at 8 years old, consequently, in our opinion a few days either before or after the 8th birthday makes but little, if any, difference. ...

[Joseph F. Smith, John R. Winder, and Anthon H. Lund, Letter to George C. Parkinson, as quoted in Minutes of the Apostles of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, 1835-1951, Electronic Edition, 2015]

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