Cover image via Gospel Media Library.

A letter from the First Presidency of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, dated May 24, 2021, announced the discontinuation of time-only marriages performed in Latter-day Saint temples. The text of the full letter is available for any member of the Church to view in the Letters and Notices section of their individual account. It reads:

Below is an excellent explanation of time-only marriages from Aleah Ingram at LDSDaily:

What Were Time-Only Marriages?

Time-only marriages have their roots in early Church history. As the sealing ordinance was first being unfolded, some couples were sealed to spouses for their earthly lives and then sealed to someone else for eternity.  In modern times, time-only marriages were rare. The General Handbook stated that time-only marriages could take place in the temple only under the following circumstances:

  • The man and the woman are each already sealed to a spouse who is deceased.
  • The man and the woman each have a valid temple recommend and a recommend for living ordinances.
  • Temple marriages are legal marriages in the country where the temple is located.
  • The couple has a valid marriage license.

Thus, time-only marriages acted as a form of civil marriage ceremony inside the temple and required First Presidency approval.