Open House in Tonga Attracts 40,000 Visitors

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“Open House in Tonga Attracts 40,000 Visitors,” Ensign, Feb. 2008, 79

Temple News

Open House in Tonga Attracts 40,000 Visitors

The renovated Nuku‘alofa Tonga Temple was dedicated on November 4, 2007, by Elder Russell M. Nelson of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles. The dedication was held following a month-long open house attended by 40,000 visitors.

The number of visitors is equal to nearly 40 percent of the total population of the island nation, though it includes visitors from other islands as well. Special guests included Her Royal Highness Princess Pilolevu and Mrs. Ainise Sevele, wife of Tongan Prime Minister Feleti Sevele.

“My visit to the temple was a personal journey into the realm of all that is holy, which is peace, serenity, hope, happiness, and joy,” Mrs. Sevele explained.

The Nuku‘alofa Tonga Temple was first dedicated in 1983. In 2006 it was closed for a significant expansion, which has added more than 5,000 square feet (465 square meters) to the structure.

With some 50,000 members, Church membership in this nation of 110,000 ranks as the highest per capita (roughly 46 percent) of any country in the world.