“Cornerstone Ceremony Included in Conference Center Dedication,” Liahona, Jan. 2001, 124
Dedication of the Conference Center on Sunday, 8 October 2000, included a cornerstone ceremony conducted by President Gordon B. Hinckley at the building’s southeast corner about an hour before the morning session of conference.
Those waiting outside the new building’s southeast doors at 8:45 a.m. were surprised when members of the First Presidency, the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, the Senior President of the Quorums of the Seventy, the Presiding Bishop, and the Relief Society, Young Women, and Primary general presidents walked out of the doors to participate in the ceremony. The crowd looked on in quiet reverence as President Hinckley explained that the cornerstone is symbolic of the Lord Jesus Christ, who is the cornerstone of the Church.
A stainless steel time capsule previously placed within the cornerstone box contains numerous items, including a triple combination signed by the First Presidency, a small beehive replica made from the same walnut tree as the Conference Center podium, information about and pictures of the building’s king truss, a hard hat used in the building’s construction, April and October 2000 issues of the Church magazines, and photos of the first ticket holder to enter the Conference Center for general conference.
“We now declare the Conference Center finished and complete. God bless this great and marvelous building,” said President Hinckley after Church leaders placed mortar around the cornerstone.
Some 30,700 people attended the morning session. In addition to the Conference Center’s 21,000-seat auditorium and 900-seat theater, congregations filled the Tabernacle, the Assembly Hall, and rooms of the North Visitors’ Center and the Joseph Smith Memorial Building, spilling over to the outside grounds of Temple Square and surrounding areas. Millions more participated via the Internet and satellite in their homes and in Church meetinghouses throughout the world.