Saturday, May 12, 2012

Groundbreaking May 12th, 2012

The groundbreaking ceremony for the Provo City Center Temple was held May 12th, 2012. Many thanks to photographer Michael Witham for these photos. 

The crowd filled the block, with Elder Jeffrey R. Holland stating that they were so close to history they didn't realize they were making it.  He explained that those present were the last and largest congregation which would ever be gathered on this site.
The speakers assembled on a platform built on the north side of the tabernacle shell. An artist's rendition of the new temple was in place.
Elder William R. Walker of the Seventy, right, said the announcement of the temple was, "an inspired decision I am sure all of you are thrilled about."
Elder Cecil O. Samuelson, president of Brigham Young University, left, said that he recognized the rebirth of the Provo Tabernacle into a temple. Elder Jeffrey R. Holland, former BYU President, is in the center, and his son, Matthew Holland, president of Utah Valley University, is on the right.
Elder Whitney L. Clayton spoke of the sad hearts when the tabernacle burned.  He said, “Weeping may endure for a night, but joy cometh in the morning.”
He compared the building of a temple to our personal growth as we move toward God.
Patricia Holland told of the recent dedication of the Kansas City Temple, which is six miles from Liberty Jail and is within an hour’s drive from Adam-Ondi-Ahman and Haun’s Mill.  She observed that temples rise from the ashes of trial. “Temples are sanctuaries from any devastation that will ever storm about us,”  and added, “Everything in the temple is symbolic of the life of Jesus Christ."
Elder Jeffrey R. Holland of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles was the last speaker and began his remarks by saying, “A picture perfect day in Utah County!”  He was thrilled with the symbolism of two temples just a mile apart and added, speaking of the tabernacle, “No other structure in Utah County has had such a varied history."  William Howard Taft spoke in the tabernacle, funerals have been conducted here, and there has been a century of stake conferences held in the building.  Elder Holland quoted Abraham O. Smoot, who dedicated the Provo Tabernacle in 1885.  At that time Elder Smoot prophetically said that the tabernacle would be a place, “for the gathering and learning of the ways of the Lord.”  During the groundbreaking  ordinance, Elder Holland prayed for the safety of the workers.
Congressman Jason Chaffetz, Senator Mike Lee, Elder Holland and Governor Gary Herbert turned shovels of dirt.
Stake presidents from the temple district were invited to help with the groundbreaking.
Elder Walker said, "Faithful members here made this possible."  After the completion of the Oquirrh Mountain and Draper Temples, the Provo Temple became the busiest temple in the Church.
Elder Clayton said we should, "have the temple reflected inside and outside our souls in everything we do."