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Gramps,

A young man was made a priest the other day. His father did the ordination and stated it was performed by the authority of the Melchizedek priesthood and then stated as is customary,which we hold. Now my question is:  We had another priest in his quorum in the circle. I have never seen this practiced until this ward. Is there any stance on this? I know they can ordain a new priest also, but when stating that it’s performed under the Melchizedek priesthood, is there any reason to have the priest in the circle more than practice? I just don’t know if I’m used to what I grew up with or is there possibly something wrong in this practice? Thanks for your comments.

Just curious

 

Answer

Just curious

It seems like the father in question acted out of habit, and those with the keys in such matters let it go (or didn’t catch it themselves). The technically correct wording would be ‘by the authority of the priesthood’ in the cases where a priest joins. I have see this be corrected in the past by those that had the keys to do so. In this case those that held the keys found it to be good enough, and so it is good enough.

As for the priest standing in the circle we read in D&C 20:46-48:

46 The priest’s duty is to preach, teach, expound, exhort, and baptize, and administer the sacrament,

47 And visit the house of each member, and exhort them to pray vocally and in secret and attend to all family duties.

48 And he may also ordain other priests, teachers, and deacons.

This is expanded upon in the Church Handbook of Instructions 20.7.1:

The bishop (or someone under his direction) may ordain the person to the office of deacon, teacher, or priest. Only priests and Melchizedek Priesthood holders may act as voice or stand in the circle.

To participate in an ordination, a person must (1) be a priest or Melchizedek Priesthood holder and (2) have equal or higher priesthood authority than is to be given in the ordinance.

You are correct in thinking that having the priest in the circle is for practice. It could be done without him. However I think you are underestimating just how important practice and being part of the ordinance can be. The Aaronic Priesthood is a preparatory priesthood. Its entire purpose is to prepare men to hold the Melchizedek Priesthood. But how can one prepare if they are not allowed to take part in what they can do? The local leadership saw correctly that the ordination of this young man opened up a chance for the other priest to also exercise his priesthood.

 

Gramps

 

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