News Release

McAllen Texas Temple Opens to Public for Free Tours

The open house runs from August 25 through September 9, 2023

The newest temple of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Texas is opening for public tours.

Beginning today, August 21, 2023, media and invited guests will be welcomed into the sacred building for special tours. They will be hosted by members of the Area Presidency of the North America Southwest region — Elder Jose L. Alonso and Elder Michael A. Dunn — and Elder Adeyinka A. Ojediran, a General Authority Seventy and member of the Temple Department Executive Committee.

For the next three days, the doors will be opened to other invited guests. Immediately following, a public open house will be held for two weeks. It will run from Friday, August 25, through Saturday, September 9, 2023, excluding Sundays. All are invited to attend.

Downloadable Media Kit PDF 

Elder Dieter F. Uchtdorf of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles will dedicate the temple on Sunday, October 8, 2023, in two sessions (10 a.m. and 1:30 p.m. CDT).

Media Day

At a news conference on Monday, August 21, near the McAllen Texas Temple, several community members shared their impressions of this house of the Lord. The speakers were Cathy Garcia, pastor of the Freedom of Life Church; Marsha Terry, founder and CEO of Village in the Valley, an organization dedicated to enriching relationships among the Black community in the Rio Grande Valley; Ellie Torres, commissioner of Hidalgo County Precinct 4; and Elder Ojediran.

“What a magnificent temple that has been built right here in our community, right here in the Rio Grande Valley,” Garcia said. “The detail, the labor of love, (and the) commitment to excellence that has been placed in the establishment of this extraordinary house of hope is quite apparent.”

She continued, “We are blessed here in the Rio Grande Valley with many vibrant ministries that maintain the foundational value of supporting the less fortunate and who are committed to helping, serving and defending the hurt and broken. So, to welcome another addition to link arms and collaborate with is really an exciting occasion.”

Media and other invited guests gather for a news conference for the McAllen Texas Temple on August 21, 2023.© 2023 by Intellectual Reserve, Inc. All rights reserved.
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Terry then shared her experience while touring the McAllen Texas Temple.

“One of the things that stood out to me as we were touring the temple is how it was mentioned that people will come from various parts of the world to be here,” Terry said. “And I think it’s an important thing to recognize what that really means to people that are not from the area — when you come to some place that you’re not familiar with, that you feel a place of safety. And I truly see how this temple is definitely going to be a place of safety for others.”

Next to speak was Torres, who attended in lieu of McAllen Mayor Javier Villalobos. Torres said, “The opening of this facility is not merely a physical structure — it is a testament to the unwavering spirit of love and devotion that binds us together as one community. This facility is not just about the structure itself. It’s about the vibrant life that will pulse through its walls. It’s about the spiritual conversations that will echo in its halls, the prayers it will send and the hands that will extend in friendship and support within its premises.”

Torres concluded her address by saying, “The inauguration of this facility, in a moment of immense joy and gratitude, is a reminder of the blessings that have been bestowed and a call to live up to the values of faith. Let us work together to make this a place that radiates light, spreads love and welcomes all who seek solace and connection.”

Elder Ojediran was the final speaker of the press conference. He said that all in attendance are children of God, regardless of the labels and titles the world uses to separate us.

“We’re happy to spend this time with you because you are our brothers and sisters and we all are children of God,” he said. “We are one as a body and as sons and daughters of God.”

Elder Adeyinka A. Ojediran, a General Authority Seventy and member of the Temple Department Executive Committee of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, speaks during a news conference for the McAllen Texas Temple on August 21, 2023.© 2023 by Intellectual Reserve, Inc. All rights reserved.
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Elder Ojediran explained that temples are considered houses of the Lord Jesus Christ.

“That is why on every temple, you see written ‘Holiness to the Lord. House of the Lord.’ And that is where we have our highest sacraments of our faith,” he said.

Media and invited guests then heard about the history of the Latter-day Saint faith in the McAllen area, which began as early as the 1920s.

Elder Ojediran tied it all back to the new temple in McAllen.

“We value our relationships with those of other faiths and leaders in the McAllen area,” he said. “In fact, we feel this temple is not just for those of our faith. We built it in such a way that it will reflect the aesthetics and ideals of the community and to be embraced as a symbol of hope and a place of tranquility and peace. This is why we welcome the opportunity to open the temple and invite the entire community to visit before it is dedicated.”

Elder Ojediran concluded his message by quoting President Russell M. Nelson.

“Because Jesus Christ is at the center of everything we do in the temple, as you think more about the temple, you will be thinking more about Him.”


The McAllen Texas Temple, announced by President Russell M. Nelson in October 2019, is built of structural steel with a precast exterior. It incorporates art glass as well as fences and walkways made of concrete and fabricated pavers.

The single-story building encompasses 27,897 square feet and sits on a 10.61-acre site, along with a new meetinghouse. From the base of the temple to the top of the dome, it measures 98 feet, with the spire adding an additional 10 feet.

The front side of the McAllen Texas Temple.© 2023 by Intellectual Reserve, Inc. All rights reserved.
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The design of the temple is inspired by citrus crops grown in and around McAllen, as well as Spanish colonial architecture found in the area. Among the patterns featured are citrus blossoms, barbed quatrefoils, scrolls and ribbons.


Inside the temple, soft-gold broadloom carpet is used in the general areas and instruction rooms, with wall-to-wall wool rugs featured in the celestial and sealing rooms. Area rugs are filled with vibrant blues, golds and greens — reminiscent of bluebonnets, the state flower of Texas; the nearby Gulf of Mexico; and other landscape elements in the state.

The bride's room in the McAllen Texas Temple.2023 by Intellectual Reserve, Inc. All rights reserved.
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On the ceilings of ordinance spaces, the bride’s room, hallways, the entryway, waiting areas and the celestial room, decorative painting patterns are featured.

The doors into the celestial room, sealing rooms, baptistry and confirmation room, in addition to a large viewing window into the baptistry font area, are adorned with art glass.

The doors of the temple are made of mahogany and the door hardware is bronze with an antique bronze finish.

The Church of Jesus Christ in Texas

The McAllen Texas Temple is the 183rd operating temple of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and is the fifth temple completed in Texas, including locations in Dallas, Houston, Lubbock and San Antonio. Three additional temples are planned or under construction in Austin, Fort Worth and Prosper.

The temple in McAllen is the first in the Rio Grande Valley, which saw Spanish-speaking Latter-day Saint missionaries in the area as early as the 1920s.

Elizabeth Rodriguez de Anda, a local Church member, said of the temple, “I felt tremendous joy in my heart. Tears fell from my eyes as I realized our Heavenly Father has been listening to the fervent prayers of countless [Church] members for many years. I thought about the faithful families in the Rio Grande Valley and members who live in Northern Mexico. This temple will be a great blessing and a great privilege for many families. I am grateful to our Heavenly Father for this modern-day miracle.”

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