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Temple Building Accelerates in 2018

Temple building for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints accelerated in 2018 under the leadership of a new First Presidency. President Russell M. Nelson announced the construction of 19 new temples during the Church’s two general conferences. Two new temples were dedicated, and ground was broken for another one. Two temples were rededicated following renovation, and another was closed for upgrades.

In late March, the First Presidency provided additional information concerning the dedication dates of the Rome Italy Temple. The free public open house begins in late January 2019 and runs through mid-February. The temple will be dedicated in March.

In all, 201 temples throughout the world are either announced, under construction or in operation.

19 New Temples Announced

As the final session of the Church’s 188th annual general conference in April came to a close, President Nelson announced plans to build seven new temples. These temples will be in the following locations: Salta, Argentina; Bengaluru, India; Managua, Nicaragua; Cagayan de Oro, Philippines; Layton, Utah; Richmond, Virginia; and a major city yet to be determined in Russia.

                            

At the end of general conference in October, President Nelson announced plans to build 12 new temples, a record number in any one announcement.

                              

The new temples will be built in Mendoza, Argentina; Salvador, Brazil; Yuba City, California; Phnom Penh, Cambodia; Praia, Cape Verde; Yigo, Guam; Puebla, Mexico; Auckland, New Zealand; Lagos, Nigeria; Davao, Philippines; San Juan, Puerto Rico; and Washington County, Utah.

It was also announced that pioneer-generation temples would be closed for renovation and updating, including the Salt Lake Temple. “Details on these projects will be shared as they are developed,” said President Nelson.

Temple Dedications

At the end of October, President Nelson dedicated the Concepción Chile Temple, the culmination of his South America ministry tour. A youth devotional was held the evening before the dedication. More than 83,000 people attended the public open house.

                         

In December, the Barranquilla Colombia Temple, the country’s second temple, was formally dedicated by President Dallin H. Oaks, first counselor in the First Presidency. The dedication was preceded by a youth devotional. Nearly 35,000 people attended an open house in November.

Temple Rededications

President M. Russell Ballard, acting president of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, rededicated the Houston Texas Temple in April. The temple was closed for repairs after floodwaters damaged the interior when Hurricane Harvey hit the region in late August 2017.

In May, President Henry B. Eyring, second counselor in the First Presidency, rededicated the Jordan River Utah Temple. During the two-year closure, the temple’s interior was extensively renovated.

                       

“Everything about the temple and the renovations of temples is to make certain that the experience the patron has is the best experience possible,” said Bishop Dean M. Davies, first counselor in the Presiding Bishopric.

                     

Other Temple News

The Hamilton New Zealand Temple closed for extensive renovation in August. The project is expected to be completed in 2021. It is one of a dozen temples around the world currently closed for renovation.

In early September, an artistic rendering of the Pocatello Idaho Temple was released. Construction on the temple is expected to begin in 2019 and will take between two and three years to complete. It will be Idaho’s sixth temple.

In early October, the First Presidency announced open house and dedication dates for the Kinshasa Democratic Republic of the Congo Temple in Africa. The free public open house will be held in March 2019. Dedicatory services will be held Sunday, April 14, and a youth devotional is planned for the previous day. It will be the fourth operating temple in Africa.

In early November, Elder Neil L. Andersen of the Quorum of Twelve Apostles presided at the groundbreaking ceremony of the Abidjan Cȏte d’Ivoire Temple, which will be the Church’s 10th temple announced or operating in Africa. Also in November, the First Presidency announced dates for the open house, youth devotional and dedication for the Port-au-Prince Haiti Temple. The temple will be dedicated in May 2019.

In the meantime, the Church announced in November that the two official groundbreaking ceremonies will be held in Asia in January 2019. The ceremony for the Urdaneta Philippines Temple will be held January 16, while the groundbreaking for the Bangkok Thailand Temple will be held January 26. A rendering of the Bangkok Temple was released in March.

             

Temples are considered the Church’s most sacred buildings, where Jesus Christ’s teachings are reaffirmed through marriage, baptism and other ordinances that unite families for eternity.

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