120 years ago today - Thursday, Dec 18, 1902

[Rudger Clawson]

The clerk read a letter from Aunt Lucy Walker Smith addressed to Pres. Smith, the gist of which was some reflections upon the work for the dead suggested to her mind in the temple. The question with her was this: were not her great grandparents, who died without a knowledge of the gospel, entitled to receive their second anointings. Pres. Smith added, and the further question is, how far back shall we go with this ordinance? The rule heretofore has been that none (whether living or dead) should be privileged to receive this blessing, unless they could be recommended from personal knowledge to be good and worthy.

Pres. Lund felt that the second anointings should be given as a reward of faithfulness. "If this rule were departed from," said he, "where could we stop?"

Pres. Smith said that the rule laid down by Pres. Young had been more or less departed from. At that time no two brethren could receive their 2nd anointings at the same meeting. In each case prayer and the signs were offered at the altar. Brother Geo. A. Smith remarked to the Prophet Joseph upon one occasion that, if the said ordinance were administered in that manner, the millennium would hardly be sufficient time to get through with it. He answered in the affirmative. Pres. Smith expressed the opinion that this work for the dead would be accomplished in the millennium.

... Apostle Merrill felt that ... the Lord would reveal to Aunt Lucy, or any woman, those of the dead, or any of the dead, for second anointings. This right belonged to the president of the church.

Pres. Smith said that all such matters should be decided here and by us, and it should be understood that it is not the privilege of individuals to ask for this ordinance. In relation to giving 2nd anointings to the dead, he thought, any man who had received the gospel and priesthood in the flesh and was faithful, and also had someone sealed to him, would be entitled to it. There might, however, be exceptions to that. As to the remote dead, who died without the gospel, they may be endowed for and sealed and be safely left there—at least until we get further light.

...Pres. Smith in his remarks [in a Stake Conference] said that the names, "Prophet, Seer, and Revelator," and "Apostle" were too sacred to be used as it is commonly done. The brethren should address each other as "Elder."

Apostles Teasdale and Smoot attended the Sevier Stake Conference. The subjects treated were appropriate to the prevailing conditions. Apostle Woodruff attended a ward reunion at Centerville last Saturday and in company with Pres. Lund attended the Morgan Stake Conference Sunday and Monday

[Stan Larson (editor), A Ministry of Meetings: The Apostolic diaries of Rudger Clawson, Signature Books in association with Smith Research Associates, Salt Lake City, 1993, http://bit.ly/rudgerclawson]

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