Jordan River Temple Cornerstone Is Laid

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“Jordan River Temple Cornerstone Is Laid,” Ensign, Oct. 1981, 74

Jordan River Temple Cornerstone Is Laid

A persistent breeze tempered the mid-morning sun’s glare on 15 August 1981 as a crowd of some 10,000 Saints gathered to witness the cornerstone-laying ceremonies at the new Jordan River Temple in South Jordan, Utah. The 135,000-square foot temple, now in its final stages of completion, has been under construction since June 1979. Dedicatory services are scheduled for November 16–20, this fall.

Under direction of the First Presidency and conducted by President Marion G. Romney, the ceremonies included addresses by President Gordon B. Hinckley, President Ezra Taft Benson, and brief remarks by President Spencer W. Kimball. Music was furnished by the Mormon Tabernacle Choir.

“We are proud of this temple,” said President Kimball, “as we will be of other temples that will be built in due time. We ask that the Lord will bless our efforts and bless all of us, that as we continue to close the ranks on these many temples, that we maybe blessed and sanctified in the work.”

“This beautiful building,” said Elder Hinckley, “is a testimony to all who see it of the faith of the Latter-day Saints in the immortality of the soul. Every purpose for which it is built is an affirmation of our conviction that life continues after death for all of our Father’s children. Every ordinance that will be administered herein will be of eternal consequence.

“Without that faith in eternal life there would be no reason for this and other temples. With such faith they are indispensable if the full purposes of the plan of the Lord are to be realized.”

President Benson emphasized temple attendance as a protection against tribulation in the latter days. Citing Moroni’s prophecy to Joseph Smith concerning “great judgments which were coming upon the earth, with great desolations by famine, sword, and pestilence; and that these grievous judgments would come on the earth in this generation” (JS—H 2:45), President Benson declared that “we live in a time when those days are imminent. Temples have been provided by a benevolent Father in Heaven to protect us from these tribulations.

“The saints in this temple district will be better able to meet any temporal tribulation because of this temple. Faith will increase as a result of the divine power associated with the ordinances of heaven and the assurance of eternal associations. I repeat what I said at the groundbreaking of the temple two years ago: This valley will be preserved, our families will be protected, and our children will be safeguarded as we live the gospel, visit the temple, and live close to the Lord,” said President Benson.

Over 10,000 attended the cornerstone-laying ceremonies of the Jordan River Temple. (Photography by Dell Van Orden.)