Subject: Rebaptism for members
Message: Dear Gramps,
I’m LDS since 1987, but have been most of the time inactive and not lived up to the moral standards of the church. Is it possible to start from the bginning and have a rebaptism? Although I’m already a member on paper I really feel the need to be rebaptised and have a fresh start.
The most important thing for you is too return to the Savior’s fold.
A talk given by Elder Ballard and printed in the Church News expresses the desire of the First Presidency, Quorum of the Twelve, as well as all members of the Church, is for all those who have gone inactive or astray for whatever reason to return. He said, “To you who have not yet returned, who may still be struggling with the hurt and haven’t yet felt the healing: please allow yourself to feel the love that the Lord, his presiding authorities, and your friends in the Church feel for you. We are aware of your pain, and we pray for your healing and your return.
As the First Presidency has said, “We are confident that many have longed to return, but have felt awkward about doing so. We assure you that you will find open arms to receive you and willing hands to assist you. …
“We know there are many who carry heavy burdens of guilt and bitterness. To such we say, ‘Set them aside and give heed to the words of the Savior: “Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.”
‘“Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls.”
‘“For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.” (Matt. 11:28–30.)’
“We plead with you. We pray for you. We invite and welcome you with love and appreciation.” (Church News, 22 Dec. 1985, p. 3.)
I would strongly encourage you to get down on your knees and let the Lord know of your desire to return to His fold, letting Him know how you feel. Also sit down with your Bishop and tell him all that has happened. Together you can determine what steps you need to take to repent and return into full fellowship. Remember that all of us are praying for your return and to welcome you with open arms. This is where you will find true happiness.
Currently there are only two times when a person is rebaptized. One is when they have been excommunciated and have been found to be fully repentant and are worthy to return to full fellowship and the other time would be if their records have been lost. Otherwise, there is no need to be rebaptized. When we partake of the sacrament worthily, we renew our baptismal covenants.