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Hi Gramps,

Why does the Church keep me sealed to my divorced wife and child even after she married (seven years now) a non-member. If we were sealed by the Holy Spirit of Promise, and there was definitely a breakdown in the “promise” and in our faith in each other, why should the document remain active? It truly is nothing more than paper now. I realize I can request a Release from Sealing, but I can only initiate that process after I get newly engaged. My divorced wife can request a Cancellation of Sealing, but has not done so due to a her low degree of activity. Since our divorce, I have never felt comfortable entering the Temple because of the bitter-sweet memories of our sealing and the fact that it is still on the records there. Thanks very much for your consideration in this matter. Sincerely,

David, from Indiana


Dear David,

There a couple of things that you might consider. The sealing in the temple is designed to unite couples for eternity in exaltation in the celestial kingdom. If the covenants are broken the sealing is not valid. Thus, in such a case you don’t need a formal cancellation of sealing, it is already canceled. However, the Holy Spirit may again confirm the sealing if both parties repent and again qualify for the blessings of the Lord.

I believe that the Brethren do not treat the cancellation of sealings as the world treats divorces because there is always the chance that the offending party may repent, have their sins forgiven, and qualify again for the blessings of eternal companionship. So, I wouldn’t worry if there has been no formal action to annul the promised blessings. If the person doesn’t repent, they are annulled anyway. And although you may feel that the chances are low that your former companion may repent and qualify for your eternal companionship, nevertheless, it is possible and it could happen. Why burn bridges?

We are commanded to forgive those who trespass against us. The Lord said,

I, the Lord, will forgive whom I will forgive, but of you it is required to forgive all men (D&C 64:10).

Perhaps if you were to return to the temple and attend frequently it would help to ease the possible negative feelings that you may harbor with respect to your former wife.


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