Galatians617

New here. Wanting to return to the Church

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Hello everyone.  I have been away from the Church for about 18 years.  I officially resigned my membership about 9 years ago.  Lately I have felt the pull towards the Church again.  I want to come back, but I don't feel like I can.  Well, maybe I can, but I am hoping someone here can answer a couple of questions for me.  Please bear with me while I give a brief account of my story.

I was married in the Temple to my first wife.  We have been divorced for fifteen years.  There has been nothing done regarding our Temple sealing.  I am since remarried, and so is she.  In order for me to come back to the Church, would something have to be done regarding that earlier sealing?  If so, what?  I will under no circumstances contact my former spouse, nor will I permit anyone else to contact her regarding me.

Can anyone help me with this? What is the process for someone wanting to return regarding a former Temple marriage.  Thank you in advance for any help you can provide.

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Welcome Galatians617..

The answer depends on exactly how far you want to go... and the circumstance surrounding your removal.  Details we do not have (and you do not need to give us)

So lets talk about the levels you can do. (Please note the Levels designations are arbitrary assignments by me for this conversation)  On the outside of every church building is the Sign "Visitors Welcome"  Any one can go and sit down and attend the services. Hopefully your local ward will not make that sign a lie... but if they do then that shows their weaknesses and really has nothing to do with you.  If we are willing to let total strangers join us... why would we not allow a potentially returning prodigal?

At this level you do not really have to share anything.  You are a non member and we are just happy that you are there for as much or as little as you want.  Come Join with us and have a seat.  This is level 1

Now... assuming you want to become a member again.. that involves talking to the Bishop.  That involves having Faith in Christ... A Testimony of Joseph Smith and the Restored Church.. That involves the Bishop requesting your old records and getting resolved any unresolved issues of Church discipline (assuming you have any).  If you had some issues and they involved your marriage.. then yeah that might need to happen.  With out more details (Which you do not have to give us) we can't answer it for this level.  It may or may not be need.  This is level 2

Assuming you get your membership back...  without any need to contact your former spouse then the next level would be if you want to be Sealed to your current spouse.  (Which means they need to be a member and desire it as well)  There would be no avoiding it here.  To clear you for a second Sealing they would need to know what happened with the first.  And that means reaching out to your ex and giving them a chance to respond. This would be level 3

 

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Glad to have you here!  You will always be welcome to start attending church again.  You should be able to find the right meetinghouse and time for your ward online here.

https://www.churchofjesuschrist.org/maps/meetinghouses/

When you go, you can introduce yourself to the bishop (if he doesn't introduce himself first).  He will be the one to help guide you back and answer those types of questions.  

I wish you the best!

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