“Perth Australia Temple Dedicated,” Ensign, Aug. 2001, 71–72
President Gordon B. Hinckley dedicated the Perth Australia Temple in four sessions on 20 May. The new temple is the Church’s 106th in operation and the fourth in Australia.
In his dedicatory prayer, President Hinckley said, “We thank Thee for this land of Australia, where this and other temples have been built. We thank Thee for the freedom of worship which obtains here. May this great nation always remain a place of individual liberty, that men and women may approach Thee within these walls without threat or disturbance of any kind.”
Elder Jeffrey R. Holland of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles also participated in the dedication, along with members of the Australia/New Zealand Area Presidency: Elders Kenneth Johnson, Val R. Christensen, and Victor D. Cave of the Seventy.
Nearly 2,773 Latter-day Saints attended the dedication of the temple, which will serve 12,000 of Australia’s approximately 104,000 members. Some 37,000 people attended the 28 April through 12 May open house (except Sundays), including prominent citizens from government, business, media, and interfaith groups.
Other Australian temples in Adelaide, Melbourne, and Sydney have been dedicated in recent years, and ground has been broken for a fifth temple, in Brisbane. Speaking of the new temples, Peter Meurs, president of the Perth Australia Warwick Stake, said, “Australia is emerging as a very significant place for the Church. The new temples will assist our many new members to unite their families eternally and cement their faith in the restored gospel of Jesus Christ.”
Meeting Members in Fiji
Speaking to members in Fiji at a meeting on 21 May, President Hinckley called on them to “make the Church shine” in their country. He met with some 900 members at a stake center in Nadi, Fiji, during a stop on the return trip from the dedication of the Perth Australia Temple.
“The gospel shines through your faces. It makes you look so attractive, wonderful. Stay that way. Stay with the Church. Let everything that you do bring credit and honor to the Church of which you are a member, and the Lord will bless you, magnify you,” President Hinckley promised.
“God bless you, my beloved associates in this great work,” he added. “May He smile with favor upon you. May you know that the Lord loves you, and may each of us seek to live according to the pattern which He has established.”
He assured those gathered to hear him that obedience would bring blessings. “The Lord cannot bless you unless you are obedient to His commandments. I hope, therefore, that you pay your tithes and offerings. Be they large or small, be honest with the Lord, and He will open the windows of heaven and pour down blessings upon you that there will not be room enough to receive them.”
Even though the 40-minute meeting had been arranged on only a few hours’ notice, members came from throughout the island of Fiji to attend. The opportunity to meet with the prophet was especially sweet for Fijian members because they had not been able to attend the dedication of the Suva Fiji Temple last June. That temple dedication was held quietly, out of the public eye, during a period of civil unrest.
Elder Jeffrey R. Holland also spoke at the meeting, bearing his testimony of the Restoration of the gospel in this, the dispensation of the fulness of times, and of the prophetic calling of President Hinckley.
Farewell to an Associate
President Hinckley paid tribute on 25 May to Elder Loren C. Dunn, president of the Boston Massachusetts Temple and an emeritus member of the Seventy, who died on 16 May of complications following surgery. Speaking at Elder Dunn’s funeral in Salt Lake City, President Hinckley was joined by President Thomas S. Monson, First Counselor in the First Presidency; President James E. Faust, Second Counselor in the First Presidency; and President Boyd K. Packer, Acting President of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles.
President Hinckley called Elder Dunn “a noble man in the finest sense of the word” and “the most willing worker I’ve ever seen.” Elder Dunn’s service as president of the Boston temple was probably the capstone of his 34 years of full-time Church service, the Church President said. “He’s gone to a greater work than he ever knew here.”
President Monson spoke of Elder Dunn as “a giant of a man,” a man of great kindness. “He died in the service of his Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.”
President Faust eulogized Elder Dunn as a dedicated, obedient servant of the Lord who endured to the end. “A giant oak among us has fallen,” he said.
President Packer spoke of celebrating the life of one so worthy and able. He noted how well Elder Dunn and his wife, Sharon Longden Dunn, had functioned together in service. “It has been a joy to associate with them.”