And they pitched their tents round about the temple… Mosiah 2:6

And they pitched their tents round about the temple… Mosiah 2:6

More than one hundred Young Single Adults from around the South East of England came to the London Temple for a weekend to perform baptisms, endowments and sealings. Organised by the Britannia YSA Ward of the Hyde Park Stake, and coming from places like Canterbury and Cambridge, YSA from the England London Mission brought their own names to perform 800 baptisms and 44 endowments and 36 sealings between August 26th and 27th. Listening to the call of Book of Mormon and modern prophets, and bringing their own tents to stay overnight, they resolved to quite literally follow in the steps of those who “pitched their tents round about the temple”.

Many were at the temple for the first time, and new converts were able to do temple work for their own ancestors – performing ordinances for those ancestors that they could no longer do for themselves. Leyddy, who took part in their first sealing on this visit, said, “I understood and felt what 'families can be together forever' meant… I know those spirits are grateful about the work we did that weekend, and that happiness stayed within me for days.” Young Single Adults sat as witnesses, performed ordinances, and acted as proxy. At times, Chinese nationals baptised and confirmed Brazilian youth for passed Italians, Britons and Chinese ancestors.

Arriving on Friday night, most of the YSA camped not far from the temple, while others stayed in the Accommodation Centre. That night everyone enjoyed “s’mores” melted over a camping grill. Twenty YSA were also able to perform baptisms before the night was over.

The morning brought everyone together on the front steps of the temple for a pancake breakfast, and a devotional by President Ricciardi, a counsellor in the Hyde Park Stake. The temple grounds were beautiful – a wonderful place to receive spiritual experiences as the YSA prepared to help those who had passed on.

Three additional baptism sessions were held that day. Young adults from Italy, France, China, and Brazil joined their brothers and sisters from the United Kingdom in performing these saving ordinances.

The YSA temple trip also included a devotional from Temple President Kenneth Johnson, a testimony meeting, a BBQ and games like Frisbee football in a nearby hay field.

One of the YSA named David recalled, “I really enjoyed the temple trip... It was great to serve my fellow brothers and sisters and to perform sacred ordinances for those who have passed beyond the veil. It was a great atmosphere of service and love.”

Elizabeth, another YSA, said, “As we gathered together to attend the London Temple, we were blessed not only by being in that sacred space but by being there together—as sisters and brothers in Zion. That is what Zion is—it is a community—and by coming together, we developed bonds that drew us closer to each other and closer to God.”