The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints is preparing to reopen and rededicate their Ogden temple. In conjunction with the rededication, an open house is being held.
Anyone who wishes to visit and walk through the temple may do so through Sept. 6, after which it will be closed for cleaning and further preparations for the rededication on Sept. 21, 2014. Because of all the foot traffic, many of the carpets will be replaced before the rededication.
“This temple is an important part of the Ogden city culture,” said Elder Craig G. Fisher, a member of the Quorum of the Seventy. “It means a lot to the people of this community.”
The Ogden temple was originally dedicated in January of 1972. At the time it was built, it was the fifth temple in Utah and the 14th temple worldwide. Now, it is one of 14 temples in Utah and 143 temples worldwide.
“At that time (it was dedicated), there were 25 stakes in the Ogden temple district,” said Kent F. Richards, assistant executive director of the church’s temple department. “There are now 76 stakes that represent about 250,000 members of the church who will look to this temple as their temple.”
About four years ago, on Feb. 17, 2010, the Church decided to close down the temple for complete rebuilding. The Church worked closely with the mayor of Ogden city in decisions concerning the temple.
There were quite a few factors in deciding to renovate the temple. However, one of the biggest reasons was to benefit the downtown Ogden area. Church and city officials felt that rebuilding the temple would help rejuvenate the surrounding areas.
The opening of the temple has brought people from around the world to Ogden. The temple is not the only place they are visiting, as businesses and restaurants around the city have experienced an influx of customers.
The exterior and interior stone used in the temple was quarried in Egypt and fabricated in China. Woodwork inside the temple contains cherry and mahogany from various parts of Africa.
The temple is filled with sparkling chandeliers, intricate woodwork, immaculate carpet and sacred artwork.
Inside the temple, there are six sealing rooms and six ordinance rooms, making the newly renovated Ogden temple one of the largest temples in terms of rooms for temple work.
Members of the Church believe one of the crowning ordinances performed in the temple is the sealing ordinance. Through this sacred sealing power, families can be together for time and all eternity.
“One of the biggest things that I hold dear is the (sealing power) that Heavenly Father gives to us, His children, as an expression of His love for us,” said Elder Michael John U.Teh, a member of the Quorum of the Seventy. “The relationships that we hold dear here on Earth do not end in mortality.”
After the open house was announced, reservations to go through the temple filled up quickly. The church has since offered many more reservations so that all who wish to go through the temple may do so.
To make a reservation to visit the Ogden temple open house, visit templeopenhouse.lds.org. Tickets are free of charge.
“The purpose of the temple is very sacred. For members of the church, these are the most sacred places on earth,” Richards said. “I’d like to point out that we worship Jesus Christ and we consider this to be His house on Earth.”