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Question

 

Gramps,

Has the Church’s policy on cremation changed recently?

Beverlee

 

Answer

 

Hi Beverlee,

Thank you for your question. The Church’s policy regarding cremation could be found in Handbook 2: Administering the Church(obsolete)  and currently in the new Handbook.

In 2019 it was announced that the Church would no longer be printing hard copies of Handbook 2 for distribution to its membership. Rather Church leaders, members and anyone with access to the internet could instead now view Handbook 2, in real time, online. With an increase to policy modifications and the use of digital devices becoming ever more prevalent, the Church decided to part ways with the traditional printed version. This is to say, anyone can access the new Handbook and view the most accurate current policy wording as it pertains to specific topics, even cremation.

On 12/22/19 the old online digital version of Handbook 2 stated the following:

21.3.2   Cremation

The Church does not normally encourage cremation. The family of the deceased must decide whether the body should be cremated, taking into account any laws governing burial or cremation. In some countries, the law requires cremation. Where possible, the body of a deceased member who has been endowed should be dressed in temple clothing when it is cremated. A funeral service may be held (see 18.6).

The digital wording is exactly the same wording as it was found in the, now retired, 2010 printed copy of Handbook 2.

As of 2/25/20, the newly released Handbook states:

38.7.2 The Church does not normally encourage cremation. The family of the deceased must decide whether the body should be cremated, taking into account any laws governing burial or cremation. In some countries, the law requires cremation. Where possible, the body of a deceased member who has been endowed should be dressed in temple clothing when it is cremated. A funeral service may be held (see 29.6).

It would appear that there have not been any recently published changes to the policy on cremation. As questions arise regarding ‘current’ Church policies, members and non-members alike can see and study for themselves using the Church’s website or Gospel Library app.

Thank you again for your question.

 

Gramps

 

 

 

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