Patriarchal blessings are gifts from God that can help us reach our potential as his children.
Living the principles found in the scriptures leads to eternal life, but the Lord offers each of us extra help in the form of a patriarchal blessing. Our patriarchal blessings are like personal maps that lead us back to our Heavenly Father.
In the Encyclopedia of Mormonism entry “Patriarchal Blessings,” William James Mortimer discusses some common elements and benefits of a patriarchal blessing.
Elements of patriarchal blessings:
- Family lineage. We can know what branch of Abraham’s family is the dominant line in our ancestry. “Whether this is a pronouncement of blood inheritance or of adoption does not matter,” says Mortimer.
- Things to come. Patriarchal blessings often include admonitions, promises, and assurances of what will happen in our lives as we live the gospel.
- Things that are. We might learn some of our own characteristics, talents, and weaknesses.
- Things to become. As a roadmap to eternal life, our patriarchal blessing will likely describe our potential, our spiritual gifts, or information about our future family.
Benefits of patriarchal blessings:
- Increased self-awareness. Patriarchal blessings can help us better understand our strengths and weaknesses.
- Motivation to accomplish our mission. We will be given a glimpse of a more eternal perspective.
- Comfort and strength to face challenges. Our blessings are manifestations of the Lord’s love for us.
The blessings and promises of a patriarchal blessing are conditional on our faithfulness and obedience. As we trust in the Lord’s plan for us, the promises in our patriarchal blessings will be fulfilled.
Source: Encyclopedia of Mormonism
—Jennifer Johnson, Mormon Insights
Find more insights
Read and watch more about what Latter-day Saint prophets and apostles have said about patriarchal blessings in the Gospel Topics essay “Patriarchal Blessings.”
Read and watch President Thomas S. Monson’s remarks about patriarchal blessings in his 1986 general conference talk “Your Patriarchal Blessing: A Liahona of Light.”
Read about one woman’s experience preparing to receive her patriarchal blessing.