Two new online tools have been created and released to facilitate submitting, gathering, preserving, and sharing patriarchal blessings. A new online submission tool helps leaders create patriarchal blessing recommends and submit the official blessings to the Church, and a new online request tool allows members to request a digital copy of their own blessing and then view the copy online. Both tools are accessible via LDS Account login on a new landing page at LDS.org.
The online submission tool is accessible to priesthood leaders and patriarchs. Bishops and branch presidents submit recommendations online where patriarchs can see who has requested a blessing. After giving the blessing, the patriarch submits the blessing text with header information to the Church History Library via the online tool. Blessings are stored in the library’s digital preservation system in multiple formats and storage locations, including the Granite Mountain Records Vault. In January 2015, the tool was released to more than 50 percent of stakes in English, Spanish, and Portuguese. In coming months, the tool will be made available to every stake and will be available in 14 languages.
With the online request tool, users can request a copy of both personal and ancestral blessings. Personal blessings will be made available online via LDS.org. Blessings of deceased direct-line ancestors will be sent via postal or electronic mail. Because of the sacred nature of patriarchal blessings, every request is carefully researched and verified by a staff member at the Church History Library. Personal blessing requests that have been fulfilled since 2011 are already available through LDS.org.
The new landing page serves as the starting point for member requests and ecclesiastical submissions, presents information about the significance of patriarchal blessings, and provides user support and answers to frequently asked questions. The landing page is available in 14 languages and is designed for desktop and mobile devices (iOS and Android).
Frequently Asked Questions about Patriarchal Blessings
- What is a patriarchal blessing?
- How can I obtain a copy of my patriarchal blessing?
- May I share my blessing with others?
- Whose blessing may I request?
- What is a direct-line ancestor?
- Why can I not request the blessings of my spouse, children, or grandchildren?
- May I request the blessings of my children if they are on a mission or in the military?
- Where do I find my membership record number so that I can set up an LDS Account?
- May I request a copy of my blessing if I do not know my membership record number?
- Will my personal information from my LDS Account or LDS friend account be used for any purpose other than verifying my patriarchal blessing request?
- How quickly will I receive the requested copy of my personal blessing?
- How quickly will I receive the requested copy of my deceased direct-line ancestor’s blessing?
- Why was my personal blessing or ancestral blessing not found?
Q: What is a patriarchal blessing?
A: “Every worthy, baptized member is entitled to and should receive a patriarchal blessing, which provides inspired direction from the Lord” (Handbook 2: Administering the Church , 20.12.1). Patriarchal blessings include a declaration of a person’s lineage in the house of Israel and contain personal counsel from the Lord. As a person studies his or her patriarchal blessing and follows the counsel it contains, it will provide guidance, comfort, and protection. (Learn more on the LDS Gospel Topics page.)
Q: How can I obtain a copy of my patriarchal blessing?
A: Handbook 2: Administering the Church states: “A person who has received a patriarchal blessing should carefully safeguard the copy he or she receives. However, if this copy is lost or destroyed, another one may be obtained from the patriarch if he still has the original in his binder of blessings. If the original has been sent to Church headquarters, a copy may be obtained” (20.12.3). The Church History Library can provide a copy of a patriarchal blessing that has been submitted by your patriarch.
To obtain copies of patriarchal blessings for yourself or for deceased direct-line ancestors, you will need:
- Your Church membership record number. (If you do not have it, please see your ward membership clerk.)
- The blessing recipient’s current name.
- The blessing recipient’s name at the time the blessing was given.
- Names of the blessing recipient’s parents, including the mother’s maiden name.
- The birth date of the blessing recipient.
- The approximate year the blessing was given, if known.
- The patriarch’s name, if known.
- Your relationship to the recipient (for ancestor blessing requests).
- Your mailing address, including apartment number or PO Box number.
- Your email address.
You may request copies of patriarchal blessings in three ways:
- Online: Go to LDS.org. In the top right corner of the screen, click My Account and Ward, and then select Patriarchal Blessing. In the new window, click Get Started and then sign in to your LDS Account or friend account. Follow the instructions on the left to verify personal information. To request a blessing, click the personal request icon or the ancestral request icon, and provide all of the required information. Upon verification by library staff, personal blessings will be delivered online via your LDS Account, and ancestral blessings will be sent via postal mail. Internet Explorer is not a supported web browser.
- By Mail: Mail your request containing the above information to the Church History Library. Responses will be mailed through the postal service to the return address provided.
Church History Library
ATTN: Patriarchal Blessings
15 East North Temple Street
Salt Lake City, Utah 84150-1600
- In Person: Individuals may request a copy of their personal blessing at the Church History Library during regular hours Monday through Friday. A valid photo ID is required.
For information, please call 1-801-240-3500.
A: Handbook 2 states: “Each patriarchal blessing is sacred, confidential, and personal.” Further, “Church members should not compare blessings and should not share them except with close family members. Patriarchal blessings should not be read in Church meetings or other public gatherings” (20.12.2). They should not be distributed or shared through electronic means such as FamilySearch, social media, websites, or blogs.
Q: Whose blessing may I request?
A: You may request a copy of your own blessing or that of a deceased direct-line ancestor, deceased child, or deceased spouse.
Q: What is a direct-line ancestor?
A: A direct-line ancestor is an individual within your direct ancestral bloodline, such as a parent, grandparent, or great-grandparent. This does not include siblings, aunts or uncles, cousins, foster parents, or in-laws.
Q: Why can I not request the blessings of my spouse, children, or grandchildren?
A: Patriarchal blessings provide inspired direction to individuals. The decision to share a blessing rests with the recipient. We invite Church members to create an LDS Account and request their own blessing.
Q: May I request the blessings of my children if they are on a mission or in the military?
A: We invite Church members to create an LDS Account and request their own blessing. The blessing will be delivered through the requester’s LDS Account and become accessible wherever he or she may be serving or stationed.
Q: Where do I find my membership record number so that I can set up an LDS Account?
A: You can find your membership record number on your temple recommend or through your ward clerk.
Q: May I request a copy of my blessing if I do not know my membership record number?
A: Yes. You may create an LDS friend account, which will allow you to submit your request.
Q: Will my personal information from my LDS Account or LDS friend account be used for any purpose other than verifying my patriarchal blessing request?
A: No. All information remains confidential and will only be used to verify your patriarchal blessing request.
Q: How quickly will I receive the requested copy of my personal blessing?
A: Because of the sacred nature of patriarchal blessings, every blessing request is carefully researched and verified by a member of the staff at the Church History Library. Information on your membership record is cross-checked with the information in the blessing’s header. Depending on the circumstances in which the blessing was given and recorded, significant research may be required. We will contact you if we have questions or concerns. We prioritize the fulfillment of requests for personal blessings. The time frame for fulfilling your request may be several days to several weeks, depending on the circumstances. The request page in your LDS Account will be updated periodically with notifications. We appreciate your patience as we seek to honor your request.
Q: How quickly will I receive the requested copy of my deceased direct-line ancestor’s blessing?
A: Because of the sacred nature of patriarchal blessings, every blessing request is carefully researched and verified by a member of the staff at the Church History Library. The information on the request is cross-checked with the information in the blessing’s header. Depending on the circumstances in which the blessing was given and recorded, significant research may be required. We will contact you if we have questions or concerns. The request page in your LDS Account will be updated periodically with notifications. Requests for copies of deceased direct-line ancestral blessings will be processed in the order received and may take substantially longer to fulfill.
Q: Why was my personal blessing or ancestral blessing not found?
A: It may be that your blessing has not yet been submitted to the Church History Library. If you have received your blessing within the last two years, please check with the patriarch. With respect to ancestral blessings, the Church History Library preserves copies of more than 4.3 million blessings. However, depending on the circumstances in which the blessing was given and recorded, a copy of the blessing may not be in our collection. Patriarchal blessings were first recorded in the United States in 1833 and in England and Scandinavia after 1837 and 1849, respectively. In our process of careful research and verification, we will make every effort to locate a copy of the blessing you requested.