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Friday, January 25, 2019

BREAKING TEMPLE NEWS: St. George Utah Temple to Close in November

Hello again, everyone! Breaking temple news was reported earlier this morning, but due to some ongoing health issues, I was not able to report it before now. The First Presidency has announced that the St. George Utah Temple will be closing for extensive renovations on November 4 of this year. These will mostly be seismic and systemic updates, with exterior and interior refreshments being planned. The renovation process is anticipated to conclude for that temple at some point in 2022, and, based on the fact that this is an older temple, I am estimating that process will take almost a full three years to complete, which puts that general estimate at mid-to-late 2022.

The St. George Temple, as I have mentioned previously, holds a place close to my heart. St. George is where my dad grew up, and both his parents and my parents were married there. There was a short period of time in my years growing up where I said that when I got married, I would want it to be in that temple as well, but that was before I had the opportunity to serve at the Mount Timpanogos Utah Temple, which truly became "my temple" when I met the woman I would later marry there.

The Church News has also produced this article about the anticipated process. I would just add that the St. George Utah Temple was originally privately dedicated in January 1877 by Wilford Woodruff, Erastus Snow, and Brigham Young, then publicly dedicated in April of that same year by Daniel H. Wells, who was a counselor to Brigham Young in the First Presidency by that time. The temple was subsequently rededicated in November 1975 by Spencer W. Kimball following its' first renovation.

Because it has been previously renovated, I am not ruling out the prospect that this temple could be completed sooner than I have estimated here. But I know that for older temples, even those previously renovated, new processes have almost always taken longer than anticipated, so I have felt it best to be more conservative in my estimates in this regard.

I am also anticipating that this is only the first temple renovation we will hear about this year, and that some of the temples closing for renovation later this year may have that scheduled to occur prior to the closure of the St. George Temple. This whole scenario will be something to watch for sure, and I will bring you word of any developments I hear of ASAP.

That does it for this post. Any and all comments are, as always, welcome and appreciated, on any post at any time, as long as such comments are made in accordance with the established guidelines. Thank you for the privilege of your time. If you enjoyed what you read here and would like to stay informed of newly added content, please feel free to subscribe. Until my next post, I wish each one oof you all the best and pray that the Lord will bless you all in everything you do.

List of Potential Locations Which Could Have a Temple Announced During the April 2019 General Conference

Hello again, everyone! I am back with the third (and final) post to try and generate more discussion on my April 2019 General Conference predictions. This post will share the list of potential locations I feel are most likely to have a temple announced during the upcoming April General Conference. I just want to reiterate something I have said here previously:

The 19 temples announced by President Nelson last year may have been his way of starting slowly. We have seen more statements of apostles and other leaders lately indicating that President Nelson's legacy as the foremost temple-building prophet may outpace and overshadow what we saw under President Hinckley's inspired smaller temple-building program, during which the number of temples more than doubled in the period of roughly 3-4 years.

If the most recent statements on President Nelson's plan are taken at face value, we will be looking at a tenfold increase of some kind. So it is likely that several new temples will be announced during this next General Conference. Africa has 2 areas of the Church in which the growth is steady or phenomenal in its' scope. And in Latin America, the Church has 5 areas, all of which are likewise strongholds for the Church. I am anticipating that these two regions of the world will see quite a few new temples announced over the next several years and beyond.

While only the Lord, as revealed to the Church President through the Spirit, can determine where temples are built, I hope that the data I have compiled about the prospects is illuminating and enlightening to all who read it. That list of locations follows below, along with extensive notes explaining my rationale behind each selection, including pertinent information regarding each of the Church's geographical areas which are listed.

In order to not disturb the flow of that information, I will end here and now as I always do. That does it for this post. Any and all comments are, as always, welcome and appreciated, on any post at any time, as long as such comments are made in accordance with the established guidelines. Thank you for the privilege of your time. If you enjoyed what you read here and would like to stay informed of newly-added content, please feel free to subscribe. Until my next post, I wish each one of you all the best and pray that the Lord will bless you all in everything you do.


Temple Predictions: 3+ temples announced in any of the locations below[1]

Africa Southeast[2]: Antananarivo Madagascar[3]; Maputo Mozambique[4]; Lubumbashi DR Congo[5]; Cape Town South Africa[6]; Kampala Uganda[7]
Africa West[8]: Freetown Sierra Leone[9]; Kumasi Ghana[10]; Monrovia Liberia[11]; Yamoussoukro Ivory Coast[12]; Benin City Nigeria[13]
Asia[14]: Ulaanbaatar Mongolia[15]; Jakarta Indonesia[16]; Taichung Taiwan[17]
Brazil[18]: Belo Horizonte[19]; Florianopolis[20]; Sao Paulo area (2nd temple)[21]
Caribbean: Kingston Jamaica[22]
Central America: Guatemala City (2nd temple)[23]; San Pedro Sula Honduras[24]
Europe[25]: Budapest Hungary[26]; Edinburgh Scotland[27]; Vienna Austria[28]; Oslo Norway[29]
Mexico[30]: Queretaro Mexico[31]
Pacific: Port Moresby Papua New Guinea[32]; Tarawa Kiribati[33]; Pago Pago American Samoa[34]; Neiafu Vava'u Tonga[35]; Savaii Samoa[36]
Philippines: Bacolod Philippines[37]
South America Northwest[38]: Santa Cruz[39]/La Paz[40] Bolivia; Iquitos Peru[41]; Cali[42]/Medellin[43] Colombia; Maracaibo Venezuela[44]
South America South[45]: Antofagasta[46]/Valparaiso[47] Chile; Neuquen[48]/Rosario[49] Argentina; Ciudad del Este Paraguay[50]

North America[51] (including the United States and Canada):
Idaho: Preston Idaho[52]
North America Central: Missoula Montana[53]; Lethbridge Alberta[54]; Wichita Kansas[55]; Green Bay Wisconsin[56]; Des Moines Iowa[57]; Pueblo Colorado[58]; Rapid City South Dakota[59]
North America Northeast: Augusta Maine[60]; Morristown/East Brunswick New Jersey[61]; Concord New Hampshire[62] Cincinnati Ohio[63]; Pittsburgh Pennsylvania[64]; Montpelier Vermont[65]
North America Northwest: Fairbanks Alaska[66]; Victoria British Columbia[67]
North America Southeast: Jackson Mississippi[68]; Shreveport Louisiana[69]; Jacksonville Florida[70]; Knoxville Tennessee[71]; Savannah Georgia[72]
North America Southwest: Bentonville Arkansas[73]; Elko[74]/Ely[75] Nevada; Fort Worth Texas[76]; Las Cruces New Mexico[77]; Flagstaff Arizona[78]
Utah[79]: Herriman Utah[80]; Heber City Utah[81]; Tooele Utah[82]; Evanston Wyoming[83] Washington County Utah (Third temple)[84]

Result:


[1]Preliminary note on this section: With 19 new temples announced last year alone (which resulted in an existing current backlog of 30 announced temples), many have felt that no new temples might be announced during this General Conference. While I understand the rationale behind that opinion, Church leaders have frequently referenced President Nelson’s great enthusiasm for the topic of temples, and have noted that President Nelson’s legacy as the foremost temple-building prophet is likely to outpace and overshadow what we previously saw occur under President Hinckley’s smaller temple design. Previous prophets have established a 200-mile minimum distance within which every Church member should be from their assigned temples. So if President Nelson’s plans involve halving or quartering that distance, or doubling or tripling the number of operating temples in a few years’ time, no location may be off the table. And while it used to be standard for the Church not to announce other temples when there has either been a backlog on temples under construction or announced, or when one or more temples are in various phases of construction in any given area of the Church or nation in which the Church is established, President Nelson has broken typical trends in that regard too. After extensive personal research and requesting feedback from the readers of my blog, the resulting list of locations was put together, with potential temple locations first grouped by the geographical area under which they fall, then by imminent likelihood within those areas.
[2]The entire African continent has experienced significant growth, and that is also true of this area. With only one temple currently operating to serve the Saints in Southeastern Africa, a second (in Kinshasa DR Congo) will be dedicated the Sunday following this General Conference, with another (in Durban South Africa) anticipated to be dedicated before the end of 2019. In the meantime, the Saints in Nairobi Kenya have been told that a site has been selected for their temple, with a dedication anticipated to occur sometime during 2021 (as it will be a smaller temple), and President Nelson spent some of his time in Harare Zimbabwe looking at options for the temple site there. Within the next year or two (but certainly less time than that, if all goes well), both of those temples could be under construction. Therefore, it seems more likely than not that other temples could be announced for this area during this General Conference.
[3]Madagascar currently comes in as the 7th of the top 10 nations with the strongest Church presence that do not have a temple in any phase, and it is an island nation not connected to the rest of the African continent. For that reason alone, Madagascar seems to me to be the second-most-likely African city to get a temple (with the most likely location described below in note #16). Saints in the capital city of Antananarivo currently travel 1,338 miles to worship at the Johannesburg South Africa Temple. That distance will be cut to 1,282 miles once the Durban South Africa Temple is dedicated, and will only be cut to 1,082 miles once the Harare Zimbabwe Temple is constructed and dedicated. Since no other currently-announced temples will be any closer than that, it seems logical to assume that a temple for this city will be announced sooner rather than later.
[4]On the top ten list of nations first referenced in note #10 above, Mozambique comes in as the 9th. The Saints in that area currently do not have too arduous a journey (341.5 miles) to travel to Johannesburg, but since that distance is still above the 200-mile goal set by previous Church presidents, a temple in Maputo may just be a matter of time, especially if the minimum mileage is halved or quartered. 
[5]Although the Church has, for the most part, opted to ascertain how busy one temple might be in any given nation or area before announcing a temple elsewhere in that nation or area, that precedent was broken last year, when two temples were announced for Argentina. With that in mind, given the growth of the Church in the DR Congo, a second temple there may simply be a matter of time. As to the particular merits of Lubumbashi, Saints in that city currently travel 1,332 miles to get to Johannesburg, and they would travel even further to reach the Kinshasa temple. The distance from Lubumbashi to Johannesburg will not be cut further until the Harare Zimbabwe Temple is built and dedicated, at which point the Saints will be 657.6 miles away. Since that is still well above the 200-mile distance previously referenced, a second temple in DR Congo seems to be just a matter of time. And although Elder Neil L. Andersen publicly proposed a temple for the Kasai region, my research indicates that Lubumbashi is more likely to be chosen for the location of the second temple in DR Congo.
[6]The Saints in Cape Town currently travel 868.5 miles to get to their assigned temple in Johannesburg. Since no other temple currently under construction or announced (including the one in Durban, which will be dedicated at some point in 2019) will be closer than that, a third temple in South Africa makes sense. While some have offered their opinions that the city of George would be a better option for the third South African temple, my research (and my mother’s personal knowledge of the Church’s situation in that nation) has led me to conclude that a temple in Cape Town is more likely and may simply be a matter of time. 
[7]Uganda currently ranks as 5th on the list of the top ten nations previously referenced. The Saints in that nation currently travel a distance of roughly 2,456.5 miles to get to the Johannesburg temple. That distance will have its’ most significant cut once the temple in Nairobi Kenya is built and dedicated, at which point the Saints in Kampala will only have to journey roughly 403 miles. But since that is still twice as far as the 200-mile goal, it seems more likely than not that a temple will be announced in Kampala sooner rather than later.
[8]The Church in the Africa West Area has also experienced massive and rapid growth. The Church Growth Blog recently reported that, if current growth trends in the Africa West Area continue as they have been lately, the Church could go from the 2 operating temples (with one more under construction) to 13 in operation by sometime during 2030. With that in mind, several temples may dot this area in the near future, and the locations in this section seem to me to be the most imminently likely prospects. 
[9]Sierra Leone (to which I referred in note #10 above) is my top African pick for a temple, and is now the second of the top ten nations that have the strongest Church presence but do not yet have a temple in any phase. With the recent expanded growth in Sierra Leone (particularly with so many districts that have been upgraded to stakes), a temple there may simply be a matter of time. The Saints in Freetown currently journey roughly 1,246 miles to the Accra Ghana temple, a distance which will not be cut until the temple in Abidjan Ivory Coast is built and dedicated, at which point the Freetown Saints will be roughly 914 miles away from that temple. Since that is still far greater than the 200-mile distance, whether or not that mileage goal is lowered, Sierra Leone is very likely to get a temple soon.
[10]Since the dedication of the Accra Ghana temple in January 2004, Ghana has seen sufficient enough growth (in my opinion) to potentially get a second temple. And Kumasi has emerged as the most likely city for such a temple. Although the Saints in Kumasi currently only have to travel 154.4 miles to the Accra temple, if the minimum mileage is lowered, then a temple in Kumasi may just be a matter of time.
[11]Liberia currently ranks sixth on the previously-mentioned list of the top ten nations with the strongest Church presence that do not have a temple in any phase. The Saints in Liberia currently travel 946.5 miles to worship in the Accra Ghana Temple. Once the Abidjan Ivory Coast Temple is built and dedicated, that distance will decrease to 616.5 miles. If, as observed in note 16 above, a temple is built in Freetown, that distance gets almost cut in half to 338.8 miles, which is still well above the current mileage goal. So if the minimum distance is lowered at all, Monrovia is almost certain to be a prime candidate for a temple in the near future.
[12]As mentioned in note #12 above, the precedent of the Church only having one temple in any phase of construction in any given area or nation seems to have been broken. With the current growth trends in the Ivory Coast, a second (and even a potential third) temple could be possible sooner rather than later. The Saints in Yamoussoukro currently travel roughly 479 miles to the Accra Ghana Temple, and that distance will be cut to 147 miles once the Abidjan Ivory Coast Temple is built and dedicated. But if, as previously noted, the minimum distance is halved or quartered, then a temple in Yamoussoukro may be a more imminent prospect for the near future.
[13]Although a temple was just announced for Lagos Nigeria last October, since 2018 saw two temples announced for Argentina, a third temple for Nigeria may make sense, particularly in light of the recent growth trends seen there. The Saints in Benin City currently travel roughly 185 miles to the Aba Nigeria Temple, and the temple announced in Lagos would be even further away than that. So if the goal is to halve or quarter the 200-mile distance, Benin City is a prime prospect.
[14]It is somewhat difficult to project what might occur for the Asia Area in terms of other temples. In April 2018, President Nelson noted that he had not originally planned to announce a temple for India, but did so following a direct prompting from the Lord which came the day before his first General Conference as Church President began. With a groundbreaking having been held for the Bangkok Thailand Temple in January, and with President Nelson having looked at potential locations for the Bengaluru India Temple, he subsequently announced during the October 2018 General Conference that a temple would be built in the capital city of Cambodia. While it is unclear whether any other temples would be announced for this area until the three in various phases are further along, the selected cities which follow have a compelling case in their favor for a temple. Until we know for sure, I have preferred to not limit my list this go-round.
[15]Mongolia was one nation I had on my list of more distant prospects, primarily because the Church presence in that nation is not as strong as it seems to be in other Asian nations. There are two main factors in Mongolia’s favor in terms of having a temple built. First of all, that nation now ranks as the eighth of the top ten nations with the strongest Church presence which do not have a temple in any phase. When we add that to the mileage metric (since the Saints in Mongolia currently travel 1,805 miles to the Hong Kong China Temple), my research also shows that no other operating or announced temple will cut that distance at all. So a temple in Ulaanbaatar may simply be a matter of time, and I would anticipate that sooner rather than later.
[16]As mentioned in note #21 above, it is difficult to tell how soon other Asian locations might have a temple announced while the temples in Bangkok, Bengaluru and Phnom Penh are in various stages of the construction process. At the same time, a temple in Indonesia would cut down on the amount of travel involved for the Saints. Currently, that journey is 2,034 miles to Hong Kong. Once the temple in Bangkok is built and dedicated, that distance will be cut to 1,921 miles. Since neither the Bengaluru nor Phnom Penh Temples would be closer, and since the distance from Jakarta to Bangkok is still over 9.6 times further than the 200-mile goal set by previous Church Presidents, a temple in Jakarta may simply be a matter of time.
[17]The Saints in Taichung currently only have to travel 106.4 miles to worship at the Taipei Temple. Depending on how busy that temple is, and on whether the minimum 200-mile distance set by other prophets is halved or quartered, a second temple in Taiwan may just be a matter of time, and Taichung seems to be the best option for such a temple.
[18]The nation of Brazil has seen strong Church growth, perhaps the greatest amount Church-wide outside of North America. With 6 temples in operation there currently, there are two others under construction in Fortaleza (for which a dedication is anticipated sometime in the middle part of next year) and Rio de Janeiro (for which a dedication is anticipated in early 2020). There are three others which have been announced in Belem, Brasilia, and Salvador. With these five in different phases, it is difficult to know how soon other temples might be announced for the nation. But the following locations, for the reasons I will highlight below, have a strong case in favor of a temple.
[19]With a temple having been announced last October for Salvador Brazil, I am fully anticipating that Belo Horizonte will be one of the next Brazilian cities to get a temple (if not the very next city). Saints in Belo Horizonte currently travel 369 miles one-way to worship at the Campinas Brazil Temple (to which they are currently assigned). The dedication of the Rio de Janeiro Brazil Temple may result in those Saints being reassigned to that temple district, in which case that distance would go down to 275.2 miles one-way. Either way, having a temple built in Belo Horizonte makes sense according to the current minimum mileage metric.
[20]While I had seen Florianopolis as a feasible temple prospect at some point in the future, it was not until I took the reports of President Nelson’s ambitious temple-building plans into account that I felt comfortable including Florianopolis on this list for the immediate future. Right now, the nearest temples to the Saints in Florianopolis are the temple in Curitiba (to which they are currently assigned, and for which a journey of 191.3 miles is involved) and Porto Alegre (which is exactly 285 miles away). Because the distances involved constitute undue hardship for the Saints in Florianopolis, a temple there may just be a matter of time. That said, it may be some time before we know how soon a temple might be announced there, if a temple in Belo Horizonte is more imminently needed. For now though, I am confident enough to put it on this list.
[21]Up until 2016, the Church had not been widely-known to put a second temple in any city outside the US. In 2016 and 2017, second temples were announced for Lima Peru (which will be named for and built in the Los Olivos region), and Manila Philippines (in the area of Muntinlupa City, which has yet to receive an official name). Since Sao Paulo is a strong area in terms of Church membership, a second temple there may be needed sooner rather than later, though that prospect could potentially be delayed until temples rise in Belo Horizonte and Florianopolis. But if the initial word on President Nelson’s temple building plans are any indication, then a second Sao Paulo temple, along with the other two locations, may be announced much sooner than anticipated
[22]Prior to the October 2018 General Conference, in the comments on the LDS Church Growth blog, someone mentioned the prospect of a temple in Kingston Jamaica. The Jamaican Saints are currently assigned to the Panama City Panama Temple, and have a one-way overseas journey of 650 miles to get there, which means their assigned temple currently takes them out of the geographical area of the Church in which they live. Once the temple in Port-au-Prince Haiti is dedicated (in mid-May of next year), the Jamaican Saints may be reassigned to that temple, which would then cut that distance to 298 miles. But since that journey will still involve overseas travel, and since the distance involved is still so great one-way, a temple in Kingston makes a lot of sense. That is especially true given that a few of the 19 locations for which President Nelson has announced temples so far will be built to serve only one or two stakes or districts. 
[23]On my blog recently, someone who is familiar with the situation of the Church in Guatemala informed me that a temple in Senahu may be delayed until the presence of the Church increases there, but also noted that a second temple to serve the Saints in the current Guatemala City Guatemala Temple district will likely be more of a priority. It was also noted by the same person that that prospect was the most imminent one for Central America. My personal research leads me to disagree with one element of that comment, which was that no other Central American candidates were likely to be announced in the near future, so I have tentatively added one more location to my list of prospects for this area.
[24]The Tegucigalpa Honduras Temple district currently covers the 43 stakes and 9 districts in Honduras and Nicaragua. Once the temple announced last April for Managua is built and dedicated, that will leave the Tegucigalpa Temple district with 31 stakes and 5 districts. Although that is more manageable, it seems likely that a second temple will be needed to serve the Honduran Saints. And the general consensus from previous comments seems to be that San Pedro Sula is the next most likely location for such a temple. 
[25]Europe, particularly in the eastern countries of its’ continent, has seen some stagnation in terms of the growth of the Church. With temples currently under construction in Rome Italy and Lisbon Portugal (both of which will be dedicated next year), and another announced for a major yet-to-be determined city in Russia, the Church may opt to wait to construct other temples on the European continent until those 3 are either dedicated or at least further along in the process. That said, on the off-chance the Church does not so opt, the cities in this section, for the reasons I will explain in the subsequent notes that will follow this one, have the greatest chance of being announced in the near future.
[26]When I began sharing my thoughts on potential future temple locations, someone who has knowledge of the growth of the Church in Europe indicated that Budapest would likely be the next European city to get a temple. My study on the matter confirms that opinion, so it has been on my list for a while. Right now, the Saints in Budapest travel 418 miles to worship at the Freiberg Germany Temple. And neither of the two European temples under construction will be closer than that, so a temple in Budapest seems likely in the near future.
[27]When expanding my list of temple prospects, I knew I had to look at another temple in the UK. I had a temple for Scotland or Ireland on my list for the distant future, but after numerous comments on my blog and some additional research on my part, I determined that Scotland would be the more likely location for the next temple in the UK. The Saints in Edinburgh are 185.4 miles from their assigned temple in Preston England. If President Nelson’s temple-building plans involve lowering the minimum mileage from which any Saint should be from their assigned temple, then Edinburgh would indeed qualify for a temple, which would likely also serve Ireland, in addition to some parts of England that are nearest to the two countries.
[28]Although the Saints in Austria have seen a slight consolidation in the number of Church units in that nation recently, their currently assigned temple in Frankfurt (which is closed for renovation) is 444.2 miles away. If a temple is built in Budapest Hungary, the Austria Saints may be reassigned to that temple, which would then be 150.8 miles away. Given what I observed in note #29 above (about how some of President Nelson’s 19 temples announced last year would be built to initially serve just 1 or 2 stakes or districts, the same could easily be true for a temple built in Vienna, which is why that city made my list this time.
[29]The Norwegian Saints currently travel 326.7 miles to get to the Stockholm Sweden Temple (to which they are currently assigned). So Oslo would already qualify for a temple based on the current mileage metric. If that 200-mile minimum distance set by previous prophets is quartered or halved, then Oslo would be a prime candidate for a temple. For that reason, Norway has made my list for the first time this go-round. 
[30]The growth of the Church in Mexico has somewhat stagnated to the point where Church leaders began last year to do a mass consolidation of the Church units there, primarily for the purpose of strengthening the remaining units. With that in mind, it may be difficult to gauge how soon other Mexican temples might be needed, but for now, the one candidate on this list, as I will explain in note #38 below, has a strong case in its’ favor for a future temple.
[31]The Saints in Queretaro Mexico currently travel 135.8 miles to worship at the Mexico City Mexico Temple, and would actually be further away than that from the temple which was announced last October for Puebla. Again, the timing of the announcement for the next temple will depend largely on whether or not more temples in that nation would make sense, given the apparent lack of sufficient activity within the Mexico City Temple. Until more is known about that, and about President Nelson’s plans to expand the number of temples, I feel confident in keeping this city on my list.
[32]Papua New Guinea now ranks as the nation with the strongest Church presence that does not yet have a temple. I also learned several years ago that land has been held in reserve in Port Moresby for a temple for a while now. With that in mind, it may simply be a matter of time before a temple is announced there.
[33]Kiribati currently ranks as the third nation with the strongest LDS presence that does not have a temple in any phase of construction. The Saints in Tarawa currently travel 1,402 miles to worship at the Suva Fiji Temple, and no other currently-operating temple is closer than that. With all of this in mind, a temple in that nation may simply be a matter of time.
[34]American Samoa ranks fifth on the list of nations with the strongest Church presence that do not have a temple in any phase. The nearest temple to the Saints in the capital city of Pago Pago is currently Apia Samoa, and the Pago Pago Saints currently travel 76.2 miles, which is not long distance-wise, but involves journeying over a body of water, which may be inconvenient. Also, if the minimum mileage goal set by previous Church presidents is halved or quartered, that will no doubt make this prospect more imminent.
[35]Tonga has recently seen impressive Church growth, which leads me to believe that a second temple may be needed to serve the Saints there. The city of Neiafu Vava’u seems to be the most likely location for a second Tongan temple, since the Saints in that city currently travel 189 miles to the temple in Nuku’alofa. Although that is within the current minimum mileage, if that minimum is halved or quartered, then that, combined with the extensive growth in Tonga, leads me to believe that a Neiafu Vava’u temple will be announced sooner rather than later.
[36]Although Savaii is 23 miles exactly from Apia, getting there involves an overseas flight, which may constitute an undue hardship for the Saints assigned to the Apia Samoa Temple district. With that in mind, it might make sense for the Church to announce a second Samoan temple.
[37]The Church has two operating temples in the Philippines (Manila and Cebu City). The temple announced in October 2010 for Urdaneta had a groundbreaking ceremony in January. And with the last 3 sets of temple announcements, the Philippines has seen temples announced for the greater Manila area (which will be located in Muntinlupa City), Cagayan de Oro, and Davao. If that is any indication of what might happen in the future, then another temple for the Philippines may be needed. The Saints in Bacolod currently travel 141.8 miles to reach the temple in Cebu City, and part of that involves an overseas trip. For both of these reasons, a temple in Bacolod seems likely to be announced sooner rather than later.
[38]The entire South American continent has experienced massive Church growth. Having previously discussed Brazil, I will focus my comments about South America on the two other areas of the Church within this continent. Starting with the South America Northwest Area, I wanted to observe that there are 7 operating temples there. 1 more is currently under construction in Arequipa Peru (for which a dedication is anticipated in early 2020). Two others have been announced (the Lima Peru Los Olivos Temple, which may have a groundbreaking within the next year, if not sooner, and the Quito Ecuador Temple, which could have a groundbreaking within the next 2-3 years, though hopefully sooner if all goes well). With the South America Northwest Area having experienced somewhat rapid growth, I have long been of the opinion that several prospects were likely possibilities for this area in the near future, and I expanded the number of those prospective locations again with the increased comments about President Nelson’s ambitious temple-building plans. For the reasons mentioned in the notes below, each of the locations on this list have a strong case in their favor as prospects for the near future.
[39]It seems to be simply a matter of time before Bolivia gets a second temple. While I personally favor the city of La Paz (because the bishop of my parent’s ward during my late teenage and early young adult years served there), I cannot deny that a temple in Santa Cruz may be more imminently needed, since that city has seen more Church growth in recent years than La Paz. The Santa Cruz Saints currently travel 296.9 miles to worship at the Cochabamba Bolivia Temple, so that city would qualify based on the current mileage metric alone. For that reason, we will likely see a temple announced there sooner rather than later.
[40]As I mentioned in note #46 above, I personally favor La Paz over Santa Cruz as the location of Bolivia’s second temple. However, because a temple may be more imminently needed for Santa Cruz, that might delay the prospect of a temple for La Paz. That said, since the La Paz Saints currently travel 236.5 miles to get to the temple in Cochabamba, and since that distance is also above the current maximum mileage goal, we might see a scenario where temples are announced for both cities at once, or within a General Conference or two of each other.
[41]The Saints in Iquitos currently travel 629 miles to worship at the Lima Peru Temple. The Trujillo Peru Temple is actually closer in mileage, but perhaps Lima is easier for those Saints to access. The Arequipa Peru Temple (which is anticipated to be dedicated in early 2020) will be further away than either of the other two. Once the Lima Peru Los Olivos Temple is dedicated, it will only be 4 miles closer to the Saints in Iquitos than the first Lima Peru temple. Since the distance involved is more than 3 times greater than the 200-mile goal set by previous Church presidents, a temple in Iquitos may just be a matter of time.
[42]Colombia has two operating temples currently in Bogota and Barranquilla (the latter of which was dedicated near the end of 2018). If Church growth continues in that nation the way it has lately, then a third and fourth temple will likely be needed before too much longer, and Cali and Medellin seem to be the most likely locations. This note will focus on the former, with the next note focusing on the latter. The Saints in Cali currently travel 286.7 miles one-way to worship at the Bogota Colombia Temple. So Cali already qualifies for a temple of its’ own based on only the mileage metric, especially if the minimum distance set by previous Church Presidents is lowered at all.
[43]If a temple is announced for Cali, it is possible that a temple in Medellin might be delayed. That said, the Saints in Medellin currently travel 260.9 miles to reach the Bogota temple, and a temple in Cali would only be 0.5 miles closer. With that in mind, temples could be announced for both cities at the same time, or within 1 or 2 General Conferences of each other.  
[44]The temple in Caracas was announced during the October 1995 General Conference, with a groundbreaking occurring in January 1999, and a dedication for it was held the following year in August. One year prior to the dedication of the temple in Caracas, President Hinckley publicly proposed another Venezuelan temple for the city of Maracaibo, which is 433,2 miles from Caracas. Although Venezuela has political turbulence at the moment, and although there has been some Church unit consolidation there in recent years, when we combine the distance factor with the fact that temples publicly proposed during the administrations of Presidents Hinckley and Monson have gone on to be announced during the subsequent administrations of Presidents Monson and Nelson, the case in favor of a temple in Maracaibo is strong, so that prospect may be more imminent than many (myself included) might anticipate, particularly given the unexpected nature of many of the 19 locations which had a temple announced by President Nelson in 2018.
[45]As noted above relating to the South America Northwest Area, the South America South Area has likewise seen very significant and rapidly expanding growth. So again, with President Nelson’s extensive temple-building plans in mind, I have considered the most imminent prospects for future temples in this area, which, for the reasons outlined in the notes below, have a strong case in their favor.
[46]The Church has two operating temples in Chile, one in Santiago, and the other in Concepcion (which was dedicated in late October 2018). Given that the Santiago Chile Temple district is still relatively large, a third (and perhaps even a fourth) temple for this nation seems to make sense in the near future. As to the particular merits of Antofagasta, the Saints in that city currently travel 829.8 miles to worship at the temple in Santiago. Because that is over 4 times further than the 200-mile minimum distance goal set by previous Church Presidents, a temple in Antofagasta may simply be a matter of time.
[47]As I mentioned above (in note 53), another temple or two to serve the Saints currently assigned to the Santiago Chile Temple district may be needed. I have had Valparaiso on my list of prospects for the near future for a while now. The prospect of a temple in Antofagasta may be more imminent, since the Saints in Valparaiso are only 71.6 miles one-way from the temple in Santiago, but if the Church really wanted to break up the current Santiago district, I could see both cities having a temple announced within the next 1-3 General Conferences, whether that occurs simultaneously, or if the announcement of one for Antofagasta is followed by one for Valparaiso within 1-4 General Conferences.
[48]It is difficult to know how soon another temple may be announced to serve the Saints in Argentina. There are 2 operating temples in that nation currently (in Buenos Aires and Cordoba), and two new temples were announced for that nation in 2018 (for Salta and Mendoza). Since both temples will help break up the current Cordoba temple district, it seems logical to assume that something similar will be done to break up the current Buenos Aires temple district. If the Church announced temples in Neuquen and Rosario, that would accomplish such a division. As to the particular merits of Neuquen, it is a more isolated city, and we have seen President Nelson announce temples in cities, nations, and areas where the members are more isolated. But in addition to that, the Saints in Neuquen have a one-way journey of 708.2 miles to get to the temple in Buenos Aires, which is more than 3.5 times further away than the minimum distance set by previous Church Presidents. With all of this in mind, a temple in Neuquen may be a more imminent prospect than many might feel it will be.
[49]As mentioned in note #55 above, the two temples announced for Argentina in 2018 will break up the current Cordoba temple district. If something similar is done for the current district of the Buenos Aires Temple, then a temple in Rosario could help accomplish that. Although the Saints in Rosario currently have a one-way journey of less than 200 miles (the exact distance is 185.1 miles), that is close enough to the 200-mile minimum distance set by previous Church Presidents. If that minimum distance is halved or quartered, then a temple in Rosario would make even more sense.  
[50]If what I have heard and read about the growth of the Church in Paraguay is any indication, a second temple to serve the Saints in that nation may be needed sooner rather than later. Ciudad del Este seems to be the most likely prospect for such a temple in Paraguay. When the renovation process is complete for the Asuncion Paraguay Temple, the Saints in Ciudad del Este will have a journey of 201.4 miles to worship there, which is already above the minimum goal other prophets have set. If that minimum distance is lowered at all, then a temple in Ciudad del Este may simply be a matter of time. 
[51]Although the North American continent (primarily in the United States) has seen somewhat of a stagnating growth situation, in light of the recent increased mentions of President Nelson’s ambitious temple-building plans, the likelihood is extremely high that the US and Canada will be included in whatever the plans are to expand the number of temples worldwide. The locations listed below represent what I believe are the most imminent prospects for each of the 10 North American areas of the Church.
[52]Preston Idaho is a relatively new addition to this list. With the Church having announced that the groundbreaking for the Pocatello Idaho Temple will take place at some point in 2019, and because Idaho is part of the Mormon corridor, that opens the prospect that both temples could be under construction at around the same time. The main reason I added a temple for Preston this go-round is because it would split the current district of the Logan Utah Temple. Right now, the Saints in Preston travel 26.7 miles to worship at that temple. Although that may not be an inordinate distance, at the same time, if the Logan temple is as busy as the reports I have found seem to indicate, splitting the district would make a lot of sense, and Preston seems to be the most effective location to accomplish that. 
[53]According to reports I received through the comments on my blog, Elder David A. Bednar publicly proposed a Missoula Montana Temple while on assignment to a stake conference in that city. My subsequent research indicates that land has been held in reserve for such a temple for several years now, and that an official announcement will occur once the right conditions are met. For that reason, Missoula has been on my list for a while now, and I could see an official announcement of such a prospect in the very near future.
[54]I had been considering the merits of adding Lethbridge Alberta to this list for a while now. The Saints in that city currently travel 49.2 miles to get to their assigned temple in Cardston. Although that is not an inordinately long trip, if the minimum mileage goal set by previous Church Presidents is halved or quartered, a temple for Lethbridge may simply be a matter of time.
[55]Since Wichita Kansas was on one of my other two lists, I simply moved it up to this one as a more imminent prospect. The 7 stakes in Kansas currently are split between the Kansas City Missouri Temple, the Oklahoma City Oklahoma Temple, and the Denver Colorado Temple, and almost all of those 7 have extensive distances involved. So if the 200-mile goal set by previous Church presidents is lowered to any degree, all of the distances may well be considered inordinate. For these reason, a temple in Wichita seems likely to be announced sooner rather than later
[56]When I was first considering the most likely location for Wisconsin’s first temple, I had prioritized Madison (the nation’s capital) or Milwaukee. But after a lot of feedback and more research on my part, I determined Green Bay would be a more preferable location. There are six stakes in Wisconsin, all of which are assigned to the Chicago Illinois Temple District except one, which is assigned to the St. Paul Minnesota Temple district. Because the Saints in Wisconsin have a one way journey of 90-200 miles to their assigned temples, and because a temple in Green Bay would cut that distance for most of those stakes, I am reasonably confident that a temple could (and likely will) be announced for Green Bay in the near future.
[57] Although the Church has previously built temples in sites which have historical significance, and although Council Bluffs in Iowa is one such location, given that the Saints who live in that area are less than 15 miles away from the temple in Winter Quarters Nebraska, a temple in Iowa is more likely to rise in the capital city of Des Moines. The 8 stakes in Iowa are currently divided between the Winter Quarters Nebraska and Nauvoo Illinois Temples. Of those 8 stakes, only the Saints in Council Bluffs are within 15 miles of their assigned temple. All other established stakes in this state are 90-180 miles away from their assigned temple. With all of this in mind, Iowa would qualify for a temple, and if one rises in Des Moines, it would not surprise me at all if that temple was named for Mount Pisgah, which is another historically-significant site from early Church history, and for which the second Des Moines stake is named.
[58]A comment on my blog mentioned that the Saints in Pueblo and nearby Colorado Springs typically deal with massive and significant traffic congestion to get to their currently-assigned temple in Denver, which seems to be a very undue hardship. Since that also involves a one-way journey of 115.8 miles, I can see why a temple in Pueblo in the near future may be very likely.
[59]A temple in Rapid City would serve the Saints in South Dakota who currently travel between 180-300 miles one way. The two temples which currently serve the 2 stakes and 1 district in South Dakota both have relatively small districts, but the mileage involved may justify a temple in that capital city of this state. That said, I would also not be shocked or surprised in any way if this prospect was delayed until the Church has a stronger presence there, although President Nelson has, as noted previously, announced temples which will have a comparatively smaller district.
[60]In view of all we have heard about President Nelson’s plans to expand the number of temples, Maine seems to be a prime candidate for such a temple. Although there are only two stakes in that state, the two are between 160 and 240 miles away from their currently-assigned temple in Boston. Whether or not the minimum mileage is lowered, Augusta surely qualifies for a temple of its’ own, simply due to those involved distances.
[61]A temple for New Jersey has been on one of my three lists of potential temple locations for the last year or so at least. My research shows that the two most likely cities in which a temple could be built to serve the state are Morristown or East Brunswick New Jersey. A temple in either city would likely also serve the other city. Currently, the stakes in New Jersey are split between two temple districts (Manhattan New York and Philadelphia Pennsylvania). Although the distance for each stake in New Jersey only involves a one-way journey of 16-42 miles (with one of those stakes being closer to their currently assigned temple than either city in New Jersey), I could see the Church announcing a temple in New Jersey to cut travel for the other stakes. The question of whether Morristown or East Brunswick would be the best location is something which I am still debating, so for now, both cities are on my list.
[62]The Saints in New Hampshire currently travel between 39-71 miles to get to their assigned temple (Boston Massachusetts). While that is not an inordinate distance, if the 200-mile goal within which previous Church Presidents have said they want each member to be from their assigned temple is halved or quartered by President Nelson, then Concord would be a prime prospect for a temple in the not-too-distant future, even if that prospect is not as imminent as it seems to be.
[63]All but one of the stakes in Ohio fall under the Columbus Ohio Temple district. While that district is not particularly large, I could see the Church potentially splitting it, and a temple in Cincinnati may be the best way to do that. Right now, the Saints in Cincinnati have a one-way journey of around 107 miles to get to the Columbus temple, so I would anticipate that the Church would announce a temple for Cincinnati in the near future.
[64]Right now, the Saints in Pittsburgh Pennsylvania travel 184.9 miles one way to worship at the Columbus Ohio Temple. In my opinion, that distance is close enough to the 200-mile minimum distance to which I have previously referred that a temple in Pittsburgh makes sense. 
[65]Vermont is the 5th smallest of the 50 states, and has a Church presence that matches its’ size. Members in Montpelier currently travel 183.1 miles one way to worship at the Boston Massachusetts Temple. Although Vermont has only one stake currently (in Montpelier), the state has a strong connection to Church history (as the Prophet Joseph Smith was born in Sharon), so it seems likely the Church would favor Vermont for a temple. The only question is whether the Vermont temple would be announced for Montpelier, where a stake has been established, or Sharon. The announcement last October of a temple for Guam (where the only stake operates in Barrigada, but the temple was announced for Yigo), makes it hard to know what might be done for a Vermont temple, but my current research on the subject leads me to conclude that, unless a stake is established in Sharon before this temple is announced, Montpelier may be more of a priority for the moment, though I would anticipate a temple in Sharon as well at some point.
[66]The Saints residing in Fairbanks Alaska currently travel 360.3 miles to worship at the temple in Anchorage. Although the Saints in Juneau do have a longer journey to both Anchorage and Fairbanks, Fairbanks has emerged from my study as the best prospect for Alaska’s second temple. That said, I can see a day when Juneau gets one as well, which may happen sooner than expected, depending on the extent of President Nelson’s temple-building plans.
[67]Victoria has made my list for the first time this go-round. Based on a comment made on my blog by someone living in that city, getting to the Vancouver British Columbia Temple (which is located in the city of Langley) constitutes an undue hardship both in terms of the cost of travel and the difficulty involved in that journey. For that reason, a temple in Victoria makes sense, and it seems likely that an announcement of that prospect will happen sooner rather than later.
[68]Mississippi is another state that does not yet have a temple in any phase. The Saints in Jackson currently travel 174.6 miles one way to worship at the Baton Rouge Louisiana Temple, but with that temple closed for renovation, the trip is much longer to get to the next nearest temple. That presents a compelling argument for the idea that a temple in Jackson may simply be a matter of time.
[69]The Saints in Shreveport currently travel 187.9 miles to their assigned temple in Dallas, so that city would qualify for a temple of its’ own if the current 200-mile distance goal set by previous church presidents is halved or quartered. Therefore, a temple in Shreveport may simply be a matter of time.
[70]With temples operating in Orlando and Fort Lauderdale, a third temple may be needed sooner rather than later. Several people have shared their feeling that Tallahassee may be a more likely location for the third temple in that state, but between my personal research on the subject and the opinions of others who seem to know more about Florida than I do, Jacksonville has made my list. That said, I can see a day within the next 5-10 years or less when both cities will have a temple. The Jacksonville Saints currently travel 140.7 miles to the temple in Orlando, so if the 200-mile distance is halved or quartered, then this prospect may be a very high priority in the near future. The one deterrent to that prospect may be the massive storms that regularly strike that region, but I am confident enough to include Jacksonville on this list for now.
[71]The Saints in Knoxville Tennessee currently travel 180.1 miles to worship at the temple in Nashville. That may also be an inordinate distance if the minimum mileage is lowered at all, and if we also take into account the fact that a journey to Nashville may be arduous, then a temple in Knoxville seems imminent.
[72]The 17 current stakes in Georgia are assigned to three different temple districts (Atlanta Georgia, Columbia South Carolina and Orlando Florida). Savannah is located in the eastern part of Georgia, and the Saints living within the boundaries of the stake in that city currently travel 159.9 miles one way to worship at their assigned temple (in Columbia). Because that journey may constitute an undue hardship for those Saints, the idea of a temple in Savannah makes a lot of sense. And if such a temple is announced, it may allow other stakes in Georgia and the surrounding states to have a less arduous journey to the temple as well.
[73]A good friend with connections to Arkansas told me a while ago that the Church has held land in reserve for a temple in Bentonville for a while now, and that an official announcement was likely once the right conditions were met. For that reason, I believe we will see this temple announced sooner rather than later. Some have opined that Rogers might be a more likely location for the first temple in Arkansas, but my study confirms that a temple is likely in Bentonville sooner rather than later. And as observed by someone on my blog, when the first temple in Arkansas is built, it could potentially be named for the Ozark Mountain range, which is a major landmark in Arkansas.
[74]The Saints in Elko currently travel 229.6 miles one way to their assigned temple (Salt Lake). So Elko already qualifies in terms of the within 200-mile distance. And if that mileage goal is lowered, that prospect becomes more imminently likely.
[75]The note above applies to the Saints in Ely as well, as they commute 201.1 miles to their assigned temple in Cedar City. A temple in Ely would cut the commute substantially. And I fully believe that temples in both Elko and Ely are possible in the near future, since the distance between the two is just under 200 miles.
[76]In sharing my thoughts about potential future temple locations, I learned from someone living in Texas that Fort Worth would likely be the best prospective city to split the current Dallas district. In addition, although some have offered their feedback that El Paso may be a more likely location for that honor, and although I fully believe both cities will have temples of their own at some future point, I have prioritized Fort Worth for this list.
[77]The Saints in Las Cruces currently travel 224.6 miles to the temple in Albuquerque, so a temple there may just be a matter of time. A temple in that city could also likely serve the Saints in El Paso Texas, as the two cities are 46.2 miles apart. The journey between the two cities would be a fairly easy distance if for any reason the El Paso Saints are unable to get to their currently-assigned temple in Ciudad Juarez Mexico.
[78]Although Elder Larry Y. Wilson, the Executive Director of the Church’s Temple Department, stated at last year’s dedication of the Tucson Arizona Temple that Arizona was, for the moment, well-stocked with temples, my study indicates that the next Arizona temple will be built in Flagstaff. Right now, the Saints in that city currently travel 119 miles to worship at the Snowflake Arizona Temple. If the 200-mile distance is decreased by President Nelson (either by halving or quartering it), then Snowflake would be a prime candidate for a temple, and that may even help to split some of the other temple districts in Arizona as well.
[79]When the First Presidency announced area leadership assignments in 2018, three-man area presidencies were reestablished for the North American Areas. As part of those changes, the 3 areas in Utah, which had previously been separate, were consolidated into a single “Utah Area”. The locations that follow are those within the Utah area for which I have felt a temple is most likely.
[80]In 2005, President Gordon B. Hinckley noted that land was being held in reserve for a temple in the Southwestern Salt Lake Valley, which would have an official announcement when that became necessary. Subsequent study on my part in late 2017 and early 2018 pointed me to the conclusion that the land in question was in Bluffdale, but that it has since been annexed into the city of Herriman, although it has been the subject of more than a few border disputes. I am confident enough to list it here, and since President Monson announced temples publicly proposed during President Hinckley’s tenure, I feel that President Nelson may likely do the same (announcing temples which were publicly proposed during the tenures of his two prophetic predecessors). Thus, a temple in Herriman may just be a matter of time.
[81]A temple in Heber City (the prospect of which has been suggested a few times) would help provide a closer option for Saints in the Heber Valley, and it would likely split the district of the Provo Utah Temple, which, by all reports, remains one of the busiest in the Church, if not the very busiest. Although the Saints in Heber City only have to travel 28.1 miles one way to get to the Provo temple, that is certainly an inordinate distance for a Utah County city. So the case in favor of this prospect is a strong one.
[82]Tooele has also been mentioned repeatedly as a potential prospective city for a temple. The Saints in Tooele currently travel 34.1 miles to worship at the Salt Lake Temple. Once that temple closes for the renovation mentioned by President Nelson during the October 2018 General Conference, the journey will be longer. So the more I thought about it, the more I felt that a temple in that city may simply be a matter of time. And since a temple in Herriman would still create an unduly difficult journey (along a U-shape) for those Saints, it seems safe to assume that Tooele could (and likely will) get a temple of its’ own, and that that could occur sooner rather than later. 
[83]Although the city of Evanston is, according to the 2013 Church Almanac, technically located within the boundaries of the Utah Salt Lake City Area, the two stakes in that city are part of the Ogden Utah Temple district (the city of Ogden is part of the Utah North Area). The members in Evanston currently travel 77.4 miles to worship at the Ogden temple. Despite the fact that that is not an inordinate distance, Wyoming is part of the “Mormon corridor”, where Church growth has continued to be somewhat steady and regular, and for that reason, if and when Wyoming gets a second temple, it will likely be built in Evanston, and that could happen sooner rather than later.   
[84]In January 2019, I received a report from someone living in Southern Utah that Elder Steven E. Snow, during his address to a Washington County Stake Conference, mentioned that the Temple Department had indicated to him that, because of how busy the St. George Utah Temple has been kept in recent years, a third temple would be needed in the near future to serve the Saints in Washington County. For that reason, this prospect has been added to this list for the first time, though it may be a few years down the line.