Taking Photos in Chapel after Meeting

Some discussions just don't fit into a well defined box. Use this forum to discuss general topics and issues revolving around the Church and the technology offerings we use and share.
Post Reply
richardcshipp
New Member
Posts: 2
Joined: Sat May 27, 2017 7:24 am

Taking Photos in Chapel after Meeting

#1

Post by richardcshipp »

After a Sacrament Service including a Returning Missionary of our Family, before family members left the chapel, I took pictures of various family members, so I could share them with the Missionary's Parents, who are out of the country themselves on a Mission. I felt it would be wonderful for them to see who in the family was there for the "report." The handbook, as worded, seems to say that "under no circumstances" are photos to be taken in the Chapel, before, during, or after a meeting. There appear to be no exceptions. Does that mean that a Chapel is like the Temple? No photos in the Chapel because it is "sacred space" as much as is the Temple? Is there a "spirit of the law" in this policy? I can stand in the foyer and take pictures of the Chapel. It seems to me that the INTENT of the policy is really saying: No photos are to be taken in the Chapel during a meeting."

It seems to me that no photographs in the Chapel at any time is an extreme interpretation of the stated policy.

By the way, I am the Ward Historian. I've taken photos of our lovely Chapel interior for our Ward History. What would a history be like that didn't include photos of where our Ward events happen! The Chapel itself is an important part of our history: hence, photos.

Who is in charge of the policies in the Handbook? How do you contact them?
russellhltn
Community Administrator
Posts: 31982
Joined: Sat Jan 20, 2007 2:53 pm
Location: U.S.

Re: Taking Photos in Chapel after Meeting

#2

Post by russellhltn »

I'll refer you to 0.3 of the Handbook:
Questions about Instructions
Leaders who have questions about information in the handbooks or about issues that are not addressed should direct the questions to their immediate presiding authority.
Have you searched the Help Center? Try doing a Google search and adding "site:churchofjesuschrist.org/help" to the search criteria.

So we can better help you, please edit your Profile to include your general location.
BrianEdwards
Member
Posts: 374
Joined: Sun Oct 30, 2016 10:42 pm
Location: Michigan

Re: Taking Photos in Chapel after Meeting

#3

Post by BrianEdwards »

Hmmm. I know I've taken pics in the chapel and uploaded them into FIR to show which light was burned out, or the exact location of a scratch on a pew. And never gotten any pushback about that. But I would be interested in seeing if you get any more info from your leader(s), if they know anything more than we do :)
User avatar
sbradshaw
Community Moderators
Posts: 5657
Joined: Mon Sep 26, 2011 9:42 pm
Location: Utah
Contact:

Re: Taking Photos in Chapel after Meeting

#4

Post by sbradshaw »

In case it's helpful for future visitors who land on this topic, section 35 of the General Handbook that had this policy was updated yesterday.

This is the previous text:
35.4.15
Photographs, Video Recordings, and Broadcasts in Chapels
Because chapels are sacred, taking photographs or making video recordings in chapels is not permitted. For information about streaming meetings and other events that are held in the chapel, see 29.7.
Now the equivalent section says this:
35.5.10
Photographs and Video Recordings during Sacrament Meeting
Sacrament meetings are sacred. For this reason, photographing or recording sacrament meetings is not allowed.
For information about broadcasting or streaming sacrament and other meetings, see 29.7.
So, there is no longer a general policy against photos and videos in the chapel, as long as it's not during sacrament meeting.
Samuel Bradshaw • If you desire to serve God, you are called to the work.
russellhltn
Community Administrator
Posts: 31982
Joined: Sat Jan 20, 2007 2:53 pm
Location: U.S.

Re: Taking Photos in Chapel after Meeting

#5

Post by russellhltn »

So, it's OK for the membership to take photos of the GA speaking during stake conference? :roll:

The new policy seems a tad narrow.
Have you searched the Help Center? Try doing a Google search and adding "site:churchofjesuschrist.org/help" to the search criteria.

So we can better help you, please edit your Profile to include your general location.
User avatar
sbradshaw
Community Moderators
Posts: 5657
Joined: Mon Sep 26, 2011 9:42 pm
Location: Utah
Contact:

Re: Taking Photos in Chapel after Meeting

#6

Post by sbradshaw »

38.8.4 (taking photos of general authorities in the chapel) and 38.2.2 (taking photos or videos of ordinances) are also relevant. It would be nice if they were linked or all in the same section to make them easier to find.
Samuel Bradshaw • If you desire to serve God, you are called to the work.
russellhltn
Community Administrator
Posts: 31982
Joined: Sat Jan 20, 2007 2:53 pm
Location: U.S.

Re: Taking Photos in Chapel after Meeting

#7

Post by russellhltn »

Unless I'm missing something, chapel weddings are now an attractive option for those who can't do temple weddings.
Have you searched the Help Center? Try doing a Google search and adding "site:churchofjesuschrist.org/help" to the search criteria.

So we can better help you, please edit your Profile to include your general location.
User avatar
sbradshaw
Community Moderators
Posts: 5657
Joined: Mon Sep 26, 2011 9:42 pm
Location: Utah
Contact:

Re: Taking Photos in Chapel after Meeting

#8

Post by sbradshaw »

russellhltn wrote: Thu Dec 16, 2021 12:19 pm Unless I'm missing something, chapel weddings are now an attractive option for those who can't do temple weddings.
In addition to photography, applause is no longer discouraged in the chapel. 19.9.1 used to say "Some cultural and recreational music may be presented in the chapel on weekdays. However, the cultural hall is usually a more appropriate setting for such music. … Applause is not usually appropriate in the chapel." Now, 19.3.5 says: "The chapel may occasionally be used for cultural arts events that include secular music, such as concerts, recitals, and other presentations. While applause is discouraged in worship services, it may be appropriate for these events." Chapter 19 is the chapter on music, but the change seems to describe use of the chapel in general.
Samuel Bradshaw • If you desire to serve God, you are called to the work.
User avatar
Mikerowaved
Community Moderators
Posts: 4508
Joined: Sun Dec 23, 2007 12:56 am
Location: Layton, UT

Re: Taking Photos in Chapel after Meeting

#9

Post by Mikerowaved »

Our nondenominational community choir just finished performing our Christmas program in two stake center chapels, with the approval of the associated stake presidents. Polite applause was also approved. Our usual Christmas venues include the Assembly Hall on Temple Square and the Kaysville Tabernacle, both of which are undergoing renovations. It was a great blessing to have places to perform! In one of the stake centers, video and audio recordings were made for the choir's YouTube channel. I'm very grateful this type of thing is now aligned with the direction spelled out in the handbook.
So we can better help you, please edit your Profile to include your general location.
BrianEdwards
Member
Posts: 374
Joined: Sun Oct 30, 2016 10:42 pm
Location: Michigan

Re: Taking Photos in Chapel after Meeting

#10

Post by BrianEdwards »

In addition to photography, applause is no longer discouraged in the chapel
sbradshaw, I really appreciate these responses where you help us understand the "before-and-after" effect of Handbook changes. I understand it might just be too overwhelming (especially when they have re-written the entire handbook in two years), for the release notes to list each-and-every change. I know many of us have had leaders who (correctly) were very specific about do's and don'ts in the chapel, and it's good to have this clarity on what the Handbook now states (as of 11:56pm EST on 12/22/21... ;) )

Reading 35.5.10 and 35.5.15, it does indeed seem like recording a wedding ceremony in the chapel is now okay. Livestreaming the ceremony requires the permission of the Bishop, but nothing specific about recording the event for personal remembrance (Bishop permission is likely a good thing, but doesn't appear to be required).

I also don't think we'll ever have a handbook change that accounts for those excited families who record their children during sacrament meeting in the Primary Program, or when they give their first talk, etc. Generally by the time the Bishop notices they're recording, the meeting is well in progress, and how are you gonna stop that? :D
Post Reply

Return to “General Discussions”