Mormon Newsroom
News Release

The Latest News on Temple Reopenings

Church leaders express gratitude and emphasize caution, safety and wisdom in the phased reopening process

Update on November 30, 2020: Beginning December 7, 2020, two temples will begin Phase 1 of reopening, one temple will begin Phase 2 and five temples will move from Phase 2 to Phase 1. By that day, 29 of the Church’s 168 operating temples will be in Phase 1 and 115 will be in Phase 2. Another 14 temples have paused operations because of local COVID-19 restrictions. Two temples have yet to reopen since the beginning of the pandemic and another eight are being renovated.

See a full list of temples and their status

Temples continue to reopen in a cautious, careful way, in four phases. Temples in Phase 1 and Phase 2 are operating on a limited basis, and with key precautions in place for temple workers and patrons, including: masks worn at all times, very limited numbers of patrons in the temple at a time, minimal staff in the temple, sanitization after each temple ceremony, careful social distancing and seating arrangements, and temperature checks at the entrance (for Phase 2).

The reopening of each temple is based on local circumstances and governmental restrictions related to the COVID-19 pandemic. With 13 Utah temples already in Phase 2, it is important to note that temples in Utah are anticipated to be very busy. Priority will be given first to living persons who are to be sealed, next to missionaries currently serving in the field, and then to missionaries who are preparing to depart, based on their departure date.

First Presidency Letter on Temple Reopenings

In a letter sent May 7, 2020, to all Church members, the First Presidency of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints expressed their gratitude for the efforts of all those who have worked to address the global COVID-19 pandemic.

“With profound gratitude to our Heavenly Father that He has heard our prayers, we rejoice in announcing a careful, phased reopening of temples,” the First Presidency said. “Beginning Monday, May 11, 2020, living husband-and-wife sealing ordinances will be performed in selected temples for members who have been previously endowed.”

Sealings at Selected Temples

In the first phase of temple reopening, temple ordinances will be limited to husband-and-wife living sealings (marriages) for members who are already endowed. This will begin at selected temples in Idaho and Utah (USA) and Germany and Sweden (see list of temples opening at the end of this article). The current status of individual temples can be viewed on each individual temple’s page on Temples.ChurchofJesusChrist.org.

These sealings will take place Monday through Saturday by appointment only and initially will be limited to one sealing ceremony or family at a time in the temple. When the appointment is made, staff will verify that the couple lives within the approved geographic area for receiving ordinances in that temple. All government and public health directives will be observed, including restrictions related to travel and crossing of state or other regional borders, and the use of safety equipment such as masks.

For these living sealing ordinances, temples will have a very limited number of staff in the temple—as few as two or three people. Each bride, groom and their limited number of guests will be greeted at the door of the temple and escorted to the sealing room. The bride and groom are invited to come to the temple dressed in the customary white trousers, shirt and tie (for men) and dresses (for women). They will then dress in ceremonial temple clothing within the temple.

The number of participants in each sealing will be restricted to the bride, groom and a limited number of guests per instructions provided at the time of scheduling. Only those who are in good health and have no symptoms of COVID-19 should come to the temple. The sealing and other rooms in the temple will be thoroughly cleaned and sanitized following each ceremony.

Phased reopening

The reopening of temples will proceed in a cautious and carefully planned and coordinated manner based on local government restrictions and as authorized by the Temple Department. The four phases of opening are designed to reduce risk, accommodate the demand and capacity of the temple, and observe any relevant health restrictions in the temple district.

Phase 1: Living husband-and-wife sealings by appointment

  • Perform living sealings only for previously endowed members under strict guidelines and safety precautions

Phase 2: Open for all living ordinances only with restrictions

  • Perform all temple ordinances for living individuals, with priority given for those who will be sealed. The next priority will be endowments for in-field missionaries (who left home prior to receiving their endowment), then followed by those departing for missionary service in the near future. These priorities will be addressed according to the capacity and scheduling ability of each temple.
  • Maintain closure of patron housing, clothing, and cafeteria operations

Phase 3: Open for all ordinances with restrictions

  • Continue performing ordinances for living individuals
  • Perform limited proxy ordinances
  • Open patron housing, clothing, and cafeteria operations as needed

Phase 4: Open for full operations

  • Resume regular temple operations

See a full list of temples and their current status

As directed by the Temple Department, other temples will be reopened based on local government and public health directives. They will follow this same phased approach in reopening, beginning with husband-and-wife sealings by appointment.

Ordinance Priority

For currently scheduled living ordinances, members will be contacted by temple staff to confirm their appointment or to reschedule. Priority for scheduling ordinances will then be given to members who had their appointments canceled because of temple closures. Members in this circumstance should call the temple to schedule an ordinance. Final priority will then be given to new appointments.

Information About Specific Temples

Members can see the opening status of their specific temple and any restrictions by going to this temple list PDF or to Temples.ChurchofJesusChrist.org. Temple presidents will also work with Area Seventies to share information on the reopening status of their assigned temple.

Safety

In addition to the processes outlined above, each temple presidency will take extra precautions to help protect temple workers and patrons. This will include allowing patrons to wear their own masks and gloves, providing hand sanitizer at several locations in the temple, and encouraging frequent handwashing and appropriate social distancing. All those who serve in the temple will do so on a volunteer basis. Adjustments to temple operating schedules, seating arrangements and temple facilities will also be made to further increase safety.

The First Presidency concluded their letter with an expression of hope and a request: “We ask for your continued faith and prayers that this pandemic and its lingering effects may pass. We look forward to the day that we can resume full operation of our temples, congregations and missionary service.”

Temple Status 

The following two temples will begin Phase 1 of reopening on December 7, 2020. A total of 29 temples are in Phase 1:

  • Barranquilla Colombia Temple
  • Caracas Venezuela Temple

The following temple will begin Phase 2 of reopening on December 7, 2020. A total of 115 temples are in Phase 2:

  • Guatemala City Guatemala

The following five temples will move from from Phase 2 to Phase 1 on December 7, 2020:

  • Calgary Alberta Temple
  • Cardston Alberta Temple
  • Edmonton Alberta Temple
  • Regina Saskatchewan Temple
  • Vancouver British Columbia Temple

The following 14 temples have paused operations due to local COVID-19 restrictions:

  • Adelaide Australia Temple
  • Ciudad Juárez Mexico Temple
  • Colonia Juárez Chihuahua Mexico Temple
  • Fresno California Temple
  • Halifax Nova Scotia Temple
  • London England Temple
  • Los Angeles California Temple
  • Newport Beach California Temple
  • Oakland California Temple
  • Philadelphia Pennsylvania Temple
  • Preston England Temple
  • Redlands California Temple
  • Sacramento California Temple
  • San Diego California Temple

See a full list of temples and their status

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