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Friday, April 19, 2019

President Nelson Announces Salt Lake Temple Renovation Plans; Will Minister in Florida in June

Hello again, everyone! I had the privilege of watching the press conference this morning in which President Nelson and others detailed the renovation plans for the Salt Lake Temple, and I had hoped to bring word of those plans to you all here not long after that press briefing concluded, but I wound up having to delay such a report in favor of allowing myself more time to recover from the prodedure I had yesterday.

Something I should have seen coming was that briefing being conducted by Presiding Bishop Gerald Causse. The Presiding Bishopric of the Church, among other responsibilities, handles certain aspects of temple construction and maintenance. Featured speakers at the briefing included President Russell M. Nelson with some introductory remarks, Bishop Dean M. Davies, First Counselor in the Presiding Bishopric (who had been working as the managing director of the Church's Special Projects Division prior to his call to the Presiding Bishopric), Elder Larry Y. Wilson, Executive Director of the Temple Department, and Brother Brent Roberts, the current managing director of the Special Projections Division.

It was explained that the Salt Lake Temple will close for renovation on Sunday December 29 of this year. When President Nelson originally announced the date, he inadvertently mentioned the wrong year. After he concluded his remarks, President Oaks was overheard quietly pointing out that error. President Nelson then corrected himself over the pulpit, and, with a twinkle in his eye and a straight face, said: "If that's the only mistake I made today, I'll count myself lucky."

The temple's renovation closure will take approximately 4 years, and an open house and rededication is anticipated to occur in roughly early-to-mid 2024. Since temple renovations have been known to take longer in some cases than originally anticipated, I could see that process taking shorter or longer than anticipated. The thought did occur to me that it would be really neat if the temple was rededicated either just before or not long after President Nelson observes his birthday that same year (which would thus make him the Church's first centenarian Church President).

I could see that occurring easily, since President Nelson's fellow apostles and his wife have all been quoted as saying that, when he is fulfilling his calling in any respect, he has appeared to have the vitality, vigor, and energy of those 2-3 decades younger than he now is at 94 years of age. That said, the specific plans, and indeed the entire press conference, speak very well for themselves. I would just note that I am grateful some parts of Temple Square will be restored to what they were originally, that the annex and sealings rooms in one of the areas of focus will be removed in favor of creating a couple of areas specifically for temple patrons, and that one of the Visitor's Centers on Temple Sqaure will be removed.

It is also nice to know that a formal temple open house will be held at the conclusion of the construction process, which will give Church members, friends of other faiths, and government and civic leaders a chance to tour the edifice.  It would not shock me at all if multiple rededicatory services were held over the course of a wekk or more to allow many Church members around the world to participate therewith. The Church News has created a special website section in which multiple articles about that subject have been and will be featured.

Turning now in conclusion to a couple other subjects, the Church's Newsroom also reported today that President Russell M. and Sister Wendy W. Nelson, accompanied by Elder Dieter F. Uchtdorf of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles and his wife, Harriet R. Uchtorf, will speak to Church members in an evening devotional which will be held on Sunday June 9 in Orlando Florida. That devotional will be held in the Amway Center, which has been the home venue for the Orlando Magic NBA team and the ECHL Bears. So that will be another member devotional to be held in a professional sports arena.

The devotional will be held on the Sunday between the June 2 dedication of the Fortaleza Brazil Temple and the June 16 rededication of the Oakland California Temple. And that will also be roughly 2 weeks after President Nelson wraps up his tour of the Pacific Area of the Church. It is good to see President Nelson continue the tradition of just stopping between trips long enough to catch his breath and switch apostolic companions. Whether he aims to do so or not, if he continues the travel rate he has observed since his ordination as Church President roughly 1.25 years ago, he will be on track within the next year (if not sooner) to become the most widely-traveled prophet in Church history

Aside from the announcement about the renovation plans for the Saltt Lake Temple, additional updates have been reported for 4 temples. Heavy equipment is now in place to clear the Quito Ecuador Temple site prior to its' scheduled groundbreaking on Saturday May 11.And it has now been confirmed that demolition of the Yigo chapel is officially underway. There has also been an update reported on the  Tokyo Japan Temple, where the angel Moroni statue was reinstalled on April 17, 2019.

It is also worth noting that there seems to be some confusion regarding the current status of the Saratoga Springs Utah Temple. What we know for certain is the that most likely location for the temple has been identified. Less clear, however, is the status of the plans for that temple. Some sources note a "Special Project" site plan submitted by the Church to the city government on December 4, 2018.

But elsewhere, it has been suggested that the plans in question have not yet been submitted to (or aapproved by) the city government. Depending on if, when, and how that information is clarified, it may be harder or easier to get an idea about how soon a groundbreaking could take place for that temple. That said, I appreciate the chance I have had to bring you word of these developments. I continue to monitor all updates in terms of Church news and temple construction milestones and will bring you all word of those here either in new posts or in comments on existing posts as I become aware of such developments.

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.

16 Additional New Temple Presidents Announced

Hello again, everyone! The Church News shared information yesterday (April 18) about an addditional 16 new temple presidents who will begin their service later this year. Of those 16 new temple presidents, 1 is a current area seventy (Elder Yutaka Onda, who will thus likely be released as an area seventy during the October General Conference), 1 is a former area seventy, 4 are serving currently in the presidency of the temple for which they will assume oversight,  1 served previously as a counselor in the presidency of a different temple than the one for which he will assume oversight, and 1 has previously served in the presidencies of two separate temples (1 of which is the same one for which he will be assuming oversight).

Also, 2 of the new temple presidents called to sere in Mexico temples currently live in Puebla, which I thought was an interesting coincidence. given that a temple for Puebla was announced last October in General Conference. There were 3 of those 16 new temple presidents whose calls I had not anticipated. The new Suva Fiji Temple president succeds a man who has only served for one year, and the new presidents of the Paris France and Calgary Alberta Temples succeed presidents who have only served for 2 years each.

The total number of new temple presidents which have been announced thus far this year is now 33. In addition to the 4 new temples for which the first presidents may be called later this year, there are 35 other operating temples whose current presidents have served for 3 or more years. The combined total on this year's list is thus now 72, which is roughly 34% of the total number of temples in any phase (209). That said, the latest copy of that list follows below.

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.


New presidents have been called for the following temples:
1.      Copenhagen Denmark
2.      Manila Philippines (not anticipated; current president has only served for two years)
3.      Tampico Mexico
4.      Philadelphia Pennsylvania
5.      Spokane Washington
6.      Manhattan New York
7.      Columbia River Washington
8.      St. Paul Minnesota
9.      Jordan River Utah
10.  Medford Oregon
11.  Rexburg Idaho
12.  Provo Utah
13.  London England
14.  Tegucigalpa Honduras (not anticipated; current president has only served for one year)
15.  Johannesburg South Africa
16.  Fort Collins Colorado
17.  Panama City Panama
18.  Nauvoo Illinois
19.  Suva Fiji (not anticipated; current president has only served for one year)
20.  Paris France (not anticipated; current president has only served for two years)
21.  Dallas Texas
22.  Guadalajara Mexico
23.  Gilbert Arizona
24.  Detroit Michigan
25.  Anchorage Alaska
26.  Twin Falls Idaho
27.  Sapporo Japan
28.  Kyiv Ukraine
29.  Columbus Ohio
30.  Calgary Alberta (not anticipated; current president has only served for two years)
31.  Tuxtla Gutierrez Mexico
32.  Ciudad Juarez Mexico
33.  Monterrey Mexico

The first presidents will likely be announced for the following new temples:
1.      Arequipa Peru
2.      Rio de Janeiro Brazil
3.      Winnipeg Manitoba
4.      Abidjan Côte d'Ivoire



List of currently-operating temples which may be getting a new president in 2019:
1.      Aba Nigeria
2.      Birmingham Alabama
3.      Campinas Brazil
4.      Chicago Illinois
5.      Cochabamba Bolivia
6.      Curitiba Brazil
7.      Fresno California
8.      Halifax Nova Scotia
9.      Hamilton New Zealand (Note: It is possible that the Church could hold off on calling a new president for this temple until its’ rededication is held in 2021)
10.  Hartford Connecticut
11.  Hong Kong China (Note: It is possible that the Church could hold off on calling a new president for this temple until its’ rededication in 2021 or 2022)
12.  Idaho Falls Idaho (Note: Since the current president of this temple had his service interrupted by its’ renovation, the Church could hold off another year or two on replacing him.)
13.  Lima Peru
14.  Melbourne Australia
15.  Memphis Tennessee (Note: Since the current president of this temple had his service interrupted by its’ renovation, the Church could hold off another year or two on replacing him.)
16.  Mexico City Mexico
17.  Montreal Quebec
18.  Merida Mexico
19.  Nashville Tennessee
20.  Nuku’alofa Tonga
21.  Oklahoma City Oklahoma (Note: Since the current president of this temple had his service interrupted by its’ renovation, the Church could hold off another year or two on replacing him.)
22.  Orlando Florida
23.  Perth Australia
24.  Portland Oregon
25.  Raleigh North Carolina (Note: Since the current president of this temple had his service interrupted by its’ renovation, the Church could hold off another year or two on replacing him.)
26.  Reno Nevada
27.  Santiago Chile
28.  Santo Domingo Dominican Republic
29.  Seattle Washington
30.  Seoul Korea
31.  St. George Utah (Note: Since this temple is scheduled to close for renovation later this year, the Church could hold off on calling a new president until the renovation is complete)
32.  Star Valley Wyoming
33.  Veracruz Mexico
34.  Washington D.C. (Note: Since the current president of this temple had his service interrupted by its’ renovation, the Church could hold off another year or two on replacing him.)
35.  Winter Quarters Nebraska