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Dear MMB


Dear MMB,

I just have a question and wanted to know your thoughts. I have had two miscarriages, each a few years ago. One of them was at 6 weeks and the other about 8 weeks. Will these babies go directly to the Celestial kingdom and will I get to raise them in the millennium?

a hopeful mother

Dear Hopeful,

Based on personal experience, all of us at MMB know that this subject is tender and sensitive. To some extent it is better suited for soft voices in a private setting, instead of the fairly impersonal, public format of a blog . But, we have to use the resources at hand. Please know that each of our hearts go out to you. We sincerely hope that this information is helpful and provides hope.

Unfortunately, we couldn’t find a definitive, clear-cut answer about miscarriages. Most of the information we found was specifically about either stillborn children, or babies who die in infancy. The difficulty with this question is that the answer ultimately depends on when a spirit enters a body once and for all, and this has never been authoritatively established.

The Plan of Salvation teaches us that every spirit needs the chance to get a body—but we don’t know what counts as having a body. Whether several weeks inside the womb fills that requirement, or if it only happens after birth is something that has not been revealed.

While we couldn’t find an authoritative, final answer about miscarriages, we did find some quotes that we think shed some light on the subject. These quotes refer to stillborn children and young children who die, but we think that, taken together, they suggest a larger principal that might be applicable.

Incidentally, much of this material comes from an Ensign article, I Have a Question, and a talk by Elder McConkie, The Salvation of Little Children.

We encourage you to look at these resources.

First of all, is the idea that these things are not accidental. Elder Bruce R. McConkie said,

"President Joseph Fielding Smith once told me that we must assume that the Lord knows and arranges beforehand who shall be taken in infancy and who shall remain on earth to undergo whatever tests are needed in their cases.

-Bruce R. McConkie “The Salvation of Little Children,” Ensign, Apr 1977, 3

Regarding the relationship of stillborn children and parents in the millennium or beyond, Joseph Fielding Smith said,


"there is no information given by revelation in regard to the status of stillborn children. However, I will express my personal opinion that we should have hope that these little ones will receive a resurrection and then belong to us.”

-Doctrines of Salvation, 2:280


The Prophet Joseph Smith was painfully familiar with the loss of children and he said the following:


“A question may be asked—‘Will mothers have their children in eternity?’ Yes! Yes! Mothers, you shall have your children; for they shall have eternal life, for their debt is paid”
-Teachings of Presidents of the Church: Joseph Smith, 177

And, Joseph Fielding Smith recalled that:


"Joseph Smith taught the doctrine that the infant child that was laid away in death would come up in the ressurection as a child; and, pointing to the mother of a lifeless child, he said to her, ‘You will have the joy, the pleasure and satisfaction of nurturing this child, after it’s resurrection, until it reaches the full stature of its spirit….”
-Teachings of Presidents of the Church: Joseph Smith, 177

Although these quotes don’t address the issue of miscarriage directly, we think that they demonstrate a few important principles. The Lord knows that this is a heartbreaking issue. He understands that mothers love and yearn for the spirits that they work to bring into the world, even if their association is only for a short time. His plan is called the Plan of Happiness, and He understands that part of happiness for a mother involves the well-being of her children.

Jesus said: “Are not two sparrows sold for a farthing? And one of them shall not fall on the ground without your Father. But the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Fear ye not therefore, ye are of more value than many sparrows” (Matt 10:29-31).

If a sparrow can’t fall to the ground without His notice, and if the Lord knows the number of hairs on our heads, surely something as eternally significant as this will not be overlooked or left to chance. There may not be any definitive answers now, but our Heavenly Father is infinitely merciful, and infinitely wise. He loves all of His spirit children, and will use those qualities to ensure that all things work together for our experience, and ultimately, our good (D&C 122:7).

 
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