“St. George Temple Rededicated,” Ensign, Jan. 1976, 93–94
In November, the St. George Temple was rededicated to the Lord by President Spencer W. Kimball. The temple was closed during 1974 and part of 1975 for extensive remodeling. Although the exterior of the ninety-eight-year-old structure was basically unchanged, a one-level addition was constructed on the north side to house a chapel, locker facilities, offices, a laundry, and a cafeteria. Better access to the different levels in the temple has been gained with a new stairway and a new elevator on the west side.
The St. George Temple was the second temple to be rededicated in 1975. In April, President Kimball rededicated the Arizona Temple in Mesa, Arizona, following major renovations.
Among the many thousands who attended the St. George Temple rededication was Ensign Assistant Editor Lane Johnson, who wrote this impression of the event:
Perfect weather—warm sunshine and clean, crisp air—provided a perfect setting for the St. George Temple rededication services held Tuesday and Wednesday, November 11 and 12, 1975.
A total of more than 25,000 Church members, young and old, gathered in six separate dedicatory sessions presided over by President Spencer W. Kimball. Previously, more than 83,000 people had toured the newly remodeled and enlarged structure in ten days of the public open house.
Many of those who attended the ceremonies entered the temple through the large east doors and ascended the steep spiral staircases to the upper-floor assembly room of the edifice—the first Latter-day Saint temple built in the West after the Church’s exodus from Illinois. Others viewed the proceedings from other rooms in the temple via closed-circuit television.
Nearly all members of the First Presidency and the Quorum of the Twelve, and several other General Authorities of the Church, spoke during the two days of sessions. Music was provided by a number of splendid choirs from stakes in the temple district. President Kimball delivered the formal dedicatory prayer.
Following the dedicatory prayer and the traditional Hosanna Shout in the final session, the congregation and choir joined together in singing “The Spirit of God like a Fire Is Burning.” President Kimball then reminded those present that the temple was once again hallowed and sanctified, a structure set apart for the sacred ordinances of salvation.
Afterward, some lingered for a few moments for a last look at the temple’s interior. The results of remodeling were scarcely noticeable; the rich textures of the original floor boards, hand railings, and woodwork remained intact. Perhaps most striking was the pervading whiteness of the interior, much like the clean, sunlit whiteness of the exterior—a dignified and unpretentious whiteness entirely appropriate to a house of the Lord. On the walls were portraits of the prophets of this dispensation.
Leaning against the cool plaster wall, one could see through the original glass of the large windows the massive, red sandstone bluffs to the west, and, to the east, a wide expanse of rolling flatland bordered on the hazy horizon by colossal cliffs of Navajo sandstone.
Reluctantly, the visitors left the temple. Later the temple doors were closed. Outside, the quiet green of the carefully manicured temple grounds; inside, the temple workers, clad in pure white and feeling very much at home once again, and immediate preparations for resuming the sacred ordinance work.