Garth, When you refer to “civil unions”, I am assuming you mean civil marriages between a man and a woman that has been performed by an individual authorized by the local government. You don't need a temple recommend, and a local bishop at any Mormon church can officiate your wedding. The marriage is a covenant made between the couple and God. You may refer to the General Handbook Section 38.3 for more direction in planning your civil ceremony. There is a process for having this covenant and its accompanying ordinance canceled. (RNS) — A preliminary perusal of the 2020 LDS Handbook that was released on Wednesday (Feb. 19), weighing in at 806 pages, reveals some … If you take this route or have a civil ceremony, you may be able to have a Temple Wedding later (after you've begun following Mormon precepts) to seal the marriage for eternity. What is LDS Church policy regarding civil unions? This article, which was published in October 2019, has been removed as a result of further direction being given in the new Church Handbook released in February 2020. Garth. In countries such as England, or Brazil, where they do not recognize an LDS marriage in a temple as governmental, the church has to follow the laws of the land and thus the couple have that civil marriage and then go to the temple for the sealing without waiting a year. Although any LDS marriage sealed in a holy temple is intended to last for eternity, it sometimes does not. Reply The Church recognizes these marriages as binding. The process is governed entirely by Church policy and procedure. Handbook 1 states that "members who are performing a civil marriage may invite any of the following presiding officers of their church units to perform the marriage ceremony if civil law authorizes them to do so: stake president, mission president, bishop, or branch president. An LDS military chaplain on active duty may also perform the ceremony."