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Statement on Marriage, circa August 1835

SECTION CI.
MARRIAGE.
1 According to the custom of all civilized nations, marriage  is regulated by laws and ceremonies: therefore we believe,  that all marriages in this church of Christ of Latter Day Saints,  should be solemnized in a public meeting, or feast, prepared  for that purpose: and that the solemnization should be perfor med by a presiding high priest, high priest, bishop, elder, or  priest, not even prohibiting those persons who are desirous to  get married, of being married by other authority. We believe  that it is not right to prohibit members of this church from  marrying out of the church, if it be their determination so to  do, but such persons will be considered weak in the faith of  our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.
2 Marriage should be celebrated with prayer and thanksgiv ing; and at the solemnization, the persons to be married, stand ing together, the man on the right, and the woman on the  left, shall be addressed, by the person officiating, as he shall be  directed by the holy Spirit; and if there be no legal objections,  he shall say, calling each by their names: “You both mutual ly agree to be each other’s companion, husband and wife, ob serving the legal rights belonging to this condition; that is,  keeping yourselves wholly for each other, and from all others,  during your lives.” And when they have answered “Yes,”  he shall pronounce them “husband and wife” in the name of  the Lord Jesus Christ, and by virtue of the laws of the coun try and authority vested in him: “may God add his blessings  and keep you to fulfill your covenants from henceforth and  forever. Amen.”
3 The clerk of every church should keep a record of all mar riages, solemnized in his branch.
4 All legal contracts of marriage made before a person is bap tized into this church, should be held sacred and fulfilled. In asmuch as this church of Christ has been reproached with  the crime of fornication, and polygamy: we declare that we be lieve, that one man should have one wife; and one woman,  but one husband, except in case of death, when either is at  liberty to marry again. It is not right to persuade a woman  to be baptized contrary to the will of her husband, neither is it  lawful to influence her to leave her husband. All children are  bound by law to obey their parents; and to influence them to  embrace any religious faith, or be baptized, or leave their pa rents without their consent, is unlawful and unjust. We be lieve that all persons who exercise control over their fellow [p. 251]
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Statement on Marriage, Kirtland, OH, ca. Aug. 1835; in Doctrine and Covenants, 1835 ed., pp. 251–252.

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