The Prophet Joseph often spoke to Relief Society sisters at their meetings. With the Nauvoo Temple under construction, the Prophet instructed the sisters in doctrine, preparing them to receive more knowledge through temple ordinances. In 1842 he said to Mercy Fielding Thompson that the endowment “will bring you out of darkness into marvelous light.”
An estimated 6,000 Latter-day Saints received temple ordinances before the exodus from Nauvoo. President Brigham Young (1801–77) said, “Such has been the anxiety manifested by the saints to receive the ordinances [of the temple], and such the anxiety on our part to administer to them, that I have given myself up entirely to the work of the Lord in the Temple night and day, not taking more than four hours sleep, upon an average, per day, and going home but once a week.” The strength and power of temple covenants fortified the Saints as they left their city and temple for a journey into the unknown.
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