2002
President Hinckley Dedicates Two Temples, Meets with Members
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“President Hinckley Dedicates Two Temples, Meets with Members,” Ensign, Aug. 2002, 74–75

President Hinckley Dedicates Two Temples, Meets with Members

Continuing a busy season of temple dedications, President Gordon B. Hinckley dedicated the Campinas Brazil Temple and the Asunción Paraguay Temple in May. The dedications brought the total number of operating temples to 112.

During his travels, President Hinckley also met with Latter-day Saints in Jamaica and Trinidad.

Campinas Brazil Temple

On 17 May President Hinckley dedicated the Campinas Brazil Temple in four sessions.

In the industrial city of Campinas, the new temple has become a beacon of light to the community. “It is brilliant,” said Nei Tobias Garcia Jr., son of the city’s first stake president. “Its light in the dark night serves as a teaching that proclaims the truth.”

In the dedicatory prayer, President Hinckley invoked the blessings of the Lord for the Saints in Brazil. “Here we will honor Thee in carrying forward the great work of salvation and exaltation made possible through the atoning sacrifice of Thy Beloved Son, our precious Lord,” said President Hinckley. “Bless Thy Saints in this great nation of Brazil. As they walk in obedience before Thee, open the windows of heaven and shower down blessings upon them.”

President James E. Faust, Second Counselor in the First Presidency, also attended the dedication. President Faust, who was an early missionary to Brazil, conducted the temple’s groundbreaking ceremony four years ago, in May 1998. Other General Authorities attending the dedication were Elder Athos M. Amorim of the Seventy, President of the Brazil South Area, and his counselors, Elders Neil L. Andersen and Adhemar Damiani of the Seventy.

More than 8,500 people attended the dedication, and some 75,000 people attended the temple’s open house, including Campinas mayor Izalene Tiene. “The city was in need at this time of precisely this kind of spiritual refuge,” Mrs. Tiene said. Campinas has experienced recent civil unrest that culminated in the assassination of Mrs. Tiene’s predecessor, Antonio da Costa Santos.

Many who attended the open house and dedication shed tears of gratitude for the sense of peace they felt at the temple.

Asunción Paraguay Temple

Just two days after dedicating the Campinas temple, President Hinckley dedicated the Asunción Paraguay Temple, the Church’s 112th temple. With the 19 May dedication, every Spanish-speaking and Portuguese-speaking nation in South America now has a temple.

“Marvelous has been the growth of Thy work in this part of Thy vineyard,” said President Hinckley in the dedicatory prayer. “We thank Thee for the labors of missionaries who have taught the everlasting gospel. We thank Thee for all who with open hearts and open minds have accepted these teachings and entered the waters of baptism to become members of Thy Church.”

President Faust and Elder Jay E. Jensen of the Seventy, President of the South America South Area, also attended the dedication.

When the Asunción temple was first announced in general conference in April 2000, the Saints in Paraguay literally shouted for joy. “When we heard the news that a temple was to be built in Paraguay, we clapped and jumped and hollered. We wanted the Lord to know how happy we were,” says President Abilio Samaniego, counselor in the Asunción temple presidency. “The Lord has shown us much love, and I am grateful.”

Meeting Members in Jamaica, Trinidad

More than 2,000 people from Jamaica and the Cayman Islands gathered on 15 May in Kingston, Jamaica, to hear President Hinckley speak. “I can’t tell you how pleased they were to think that the prophet would stop here,” said Norman G. Angus, president of the Jamaica Kingston Mission.

President Hinckley told the Saints they are a blessing to the land of Jamaica. He admonished them to respect their country, to share the gospel with those around them, and to strengthen their families. He told the youth they are the future of the Church and counseled them to be strong. He also promised blessings to those who pay their tithes and offerings.

President Faust also bore his testimony of missionary work and the restored gospel.

In Port of Spain, Trinidad, President Hinckley spoke to a gathering of almost 900 people, including members, government and civic leaders, and journalists. He called on those listening to love their spouses and children, to treat one another with acceptance and respect, and to faithfully pay their tithes and offerings. He also encouraged members to reach out to new converts.

“I place upon you a responsibility to put your arms around others and welcome them and make them feel at home and answer their questions and give them encouragement when they come into the Church,” President Hinckley said. “In so doing you will bless their lives many times over.”

President Faust also spoke to the congregation, sharing his thoughts about gaining and maintaining a testimony. “Our testimonies come from a personal inward belief,” he said. “We are all converts to the Church.”

During their visit, President Hinckley and President Faust met with Patrick Manning, prime minister of Trinidad and Tobago. They discussed the work of the Church in the area, and President Hinckley thanked the prime minister for allowing Church activities and proselytizing to take place.

Members await a dedicatory session for the Campinas Brazil Temple. (Photo by Martinho Caires, courtesy Church News.)

Dedication of the Asunción Paraguay Temple places a temple in every Spanish- and Portuguese-speaking country of South America. (Photo by Jason Swensen, Church News.)