Light begins to creep across the eastern mountains on this dedication morning. It is so early that only a few people have begun to gather for the events of the day.
A temple is a refuge in a darkening world, a place of peace and power. After this day, this building will be a dedicated temple, a gateway to heaven.
As the people begin to line up, a sense of anticipation grows. This handsome, young man is a missionary, who had only taken off his badge for a moment when we caught him on camera. No worries. He’s proud to wear the badge.
President Ronald L. Frandsen of the Box Elder Stake was the local coordinator of the temple activities. He said, “People in Brigham City have not thought we’d have a temple in our midst because we have temples within 30 miles in either direction.
“At times,” said Pres. Frandsen, “when Pres. Packer has been here and made a presentation, he has asked if there are any questions. Some brave soul would have the temerity to ask if we would ever have a temple in Brigham City. He answered, ‘Not while I’m alive.’ When the temple was announced,” said Pres. Frandsen, “everyone was in total shock. President Packer said he was the most surprised.”
These engraved trowels are ready for the official coverstone ceremony.
Fountains are a part of the temple landscapes as a reminder that the temple is about one thing—our Savior’s love and blessings. He is the source of living water.
“Holiness to the Lord. The House of the Lord” is written on every temple so that there can be no mistake to whom this house belongs.
“Holiness to the Lord” has roots that go back to the Old Testament. Zechariah reminds us that the day will come when “there [shall] be upon the bells of this horses, HOLINESS UNTO THE LORD… Yea, every pot in Jerusalem and in Judah shall be holiness unto the Lord of hosts” (Zechariah 14: 20-21).
Even the earth seems to rejoice on a temple lot. This temple lot also has fruit trees and the first apricots have already been harvested.
The temple district contains 42,000 people, but more than 400,000 came to the temple open house. The day of dedication some were at the temple, but even more watched it from their stake centers across Utah.
Every coverstone contains a box behind it with significant historical and spiritual records and books, representing the place and era when the temple was built. No mortar is around the coverstone as yet.
The peach blossom, reminiscent of the wonderful peach harvest so typical of the region, is a motif both on the interior and exterior of the temple. Here a peach blossom is seen as a decorative touch on a post where the wrought iron fence is attached.
Now morning light is just beginning to touch the edge of the roof detail.
Tom and Anneke Lindhart and three of their daughters got up at 5:00 a.m. to be at the temple to take in all of the morning events the day of dedication. Tom has been the project manager on this temple. He said, “From the first day I walked onto the lot, you could feel it was a temple.” He said that the biggest challenge in building a temple is the higher level that is required in construction. You have to inspire workers to achieve that level of perfection because they have never worked on something of this caliber before.He said the temple is built to last forever. From the steel structure to the finish, everything is the best it can be so that it is worthy to be the Lord’s house.
Brigham City’s historic tabernacle is directly across the street from the temple and a good place to catch the sunrise.
And I saw another angel fly in the midst of heaven, having the everlasting gospel to preach unto them that dwell on the earth, and to every nation, and kindred, and tongue, and people (Rev. 14:6).
Pres. Packer said that the Brigham City temple would be a reflection of previous, historic temples. This temple was specially designed to have an historic “feel” to match the pioneer spirit of Brigham City. Here you can see reminiscences of the Salt Lake Temple with the round windows. Each window is a cut glass art of a peach blossom.
Love abounds at a temple dedication.
Reflections of eternity.
At the funeral of Patriarch Joseph Smith Sr., his feelings about the temple were described in these words:“To dwell in the house of the Lord, and to inquire in his temple, was his daily delight: and in it he enjoyed many blessings, and spent many hours in sweet communion with his Heavenly Father. He has trod its sacred aisles, solitary and alone from mankind, long before the king of day has gilded the eastern horizon; and he has uttered his aspirations within its walls, when nature has been asleep. In its holy enclosures have the visions of heaven been opened to his mind, and his soul has feasted on the riches of eternity” (History of the Church, 4: 193-194)
People were so willing to volunteer to help with the preparations to dedicate the temple that Pres. Frandsen said if you asked for six, you’d get a dozen. If you ask for 10 you get 25. He said, “I hope that same spirit will permeate into other areas of our service in the Church.”
President Frandsen said, “One of the first thoughts that I had when I learned a temple was going to built here was that I could go the temple every morning and still be to work on time. That doesn’t happen very many places. Having the temple in our stake has given us a lot of spiritual traction that we haven’t had. As we went through the open house, it was clear that the building already had a spirit of its own. The dedication will only intensify that feeling.”
The gospel could only have been restored in a free land.
Aliya, 7, and Jacob, 3, hug in front of the fountain at the temple. Their mother Tiffany Purcell said that they lost a daughter at age 9, named Abby. When they went through the temple open house, Aliya asked, “Do you think that Abby will be here and that she will be able to be with us again?” Tiffany said, “The temple is the embodiment of what having an eternal family means to us.
President Frandsen said that in planning for the dedication, he saw the Lord’s hand regularly. “There have been thousands of things that I consider miracles that have occurred as we’ve moved along. It happens almost so naturally that you wouldn’t look for a spiritually, miraculous motivation, but it’s there.”
“You have to be attentive or you’ll miss those the miracles in your life,” said Pres. Frandsen. “ It happens so naturally you think, we’re pretty good aren’t we? In actually it is Heavenly Father blessing us.” Here a radiant missionary couple look forward to the dedication.
Even little children fill the joy of dedication day.
A mother and her daughter wait while their husband and father participates in the choir for the coverstone ceremony.To demonstrate how much the spirit of helping permeated Brigham City, President Frandsen noted that one of the challenges they faced was trying to find enough spaces for people to park to be shuttled to the temple that morning. They had spots for 450, but needed many, many more. One day an executive called from a large company in Brigham City who was not a member of the Church. He said, “We’ve just been in an executive meeting at work and we are perplexed as to why you haven’t asked to use our parking lot. We have 700 spaces and you are welcome to them.” Those kinds of things happened over and over again.”
The sky in this photo looks like it was painted by an artist.
A new day is dawning in Brigham City.
When the Brigham City Temple was announced, the property wasn’t already tied up. A few days later Elder William R. Walker of the temple department came with Presidents Monson, President Uchtdorf and Pres. Packer to look for land. When they came to the site where the temple was eventually built, they each separated and walked the land and then came back together. President Monson said to President Packer, “What do you think?” President Packer answered that this would be a perfect place to build a temple. According to President Frandsen, President Monson raised his arm to the square and said, “Let it be done.”
During the first dedicatory session, the General Authorities and their wives emerge for the cover stone ceremony. Here Donna Packer, wife of Pres. Boyd K. Packer, and Terri Packer, wife of Elder Allan F. Packer, walk together.
Pictured l. to r.: President Boyd K. Packer, Elder Allan F. Packer, Donna Packer, Terri Packer, Barbara Perry, Kathy Clayton, Elder L. Tom Perry, Elder L. Whitney Clayton, Wendy Nelson, Elder Russell M. Nelson and Elder William R. Walker. It had been raining a bit that morning, but when they came out, so did the sun.
Elder L. Tom Perry and Elder Russell M. Nelson both spoke at the dedication.
Elder Boyd K. Packer, who dedicated the temple, was the first to put mortar in the coverstone.
Elder William R. Walker, who directs the temple department, invited several people up to put mortar in the coverstone.
Elder and Sister Packer share a tender moment at the coverstone ceremony. They met in Brigham City. Those who know and work with Elder Packer say that he is always happy about his Brigham City roots and returns often.
Father and son both work as General Authorities. Elder Boyd K. Packer says he has traveled two-and-a-half million miles doing the work of the Lord.
The coverstone choir sings “Now Let Us Rejoice” and “The Spirit of God Like a Fire is Burning.”
The choir sang, “Let the mountains shout and be glad before the Lord.”
A temple binds the generations together.
Little children often get the chance to add mortar to the coverstone as a way of sealing the temple into their hearts forever.
Lydia Wilson, age 3, enjoys the temple fountain.
The temple is inscribed with “Holiness to the Lord” and we are to inscribe the same in the “fleshy tablets of our hearts.”
The temple doors are an invitation to come in and “sup with Him.”
The hope is that the enthusiasm of this dedication morning will pour into our lives in increased temple service. People from Brigham City have been among the most diligent temple attenders in both the Logan and Ogden temples. President Harry McMurdie of the Tremonton Stake told the members there that just because a temple is close now, it doesn’t mean that attendance should decline. He had the members of his stake raise their hand to promise that that wouldn’t happen.
The temple looks like a fortress of protection in this picture reminding us of Psalm 121:1 “I will lift up mine eyes unto the hills, from whence cometh my help.”