Temple President and Matron
Author: Yarn, Marilyn S.
Author: Yarn, David H., Jr.
Temple presidents and their wives, who serve as matrons, are appointed to specific LDS temples by the First Presidency of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, usually for three years. Their principal responsibilities are to set the spiritual tone of the temple, to supervise the performance of sacred ceremonies and ordinances therein, and to oversee the physical facility. Although instructions and ordinances are the same in all LDS temples, the size of the temple and the number of patrons using it alter the procedures from temple to temple.
On a typical day in a fully operating temple, the president meets with the male supervisors and ordinance workers and the matron meets with the female supervisors and ordinance workers in prayer meeting before beginning each of the several daily shifts. They may also greet patrons, give preparatory instructions and guidance to those coming for the first time, and coordinate the performance of the ordinances. The president and matron may also answer personal inquiries of patrons and resolve procedural questions, by phone or correspondence, from bishops, stake presidents, Relief Society presidents, and other Church and community leaders within the temple district. Time is also spent consulting with counselors in the temple presidency, assistants to the president, and supervisors. In addition, the president and matron meet regularly with the temple executive council to resolve matters pertaining to the functioning of the temple.
The work in the temple is conducted prayerfully as befits the "House of the Lord." The phrase "Holiness to the Lord" appears prominently on the outside of each temple and symbolizes the spirit of temple worship (cf. Psalm 93:5). Although the temple ordinances are performed repetitiously, participating in them can be continuously revelatory and inspiring because of their rich symbolism and multiple applications. The temple president and matron are responsible for enhancing this spirit that all may "worship the Lord in the beauty of holiness" (Psalm 29). DAVID H. YARN, JR. MARILYN S. YARN