Hundreds of members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints gathered to celebrate the completion of the Payson Temple at the cornerstone ceremony held on Sunday, June 7.
A cornerstone ceremony traditionally marks the completion of a temple’s construction. The only public part of a temple dedication, this symbolic ceremony takes place immediately before the first dedicatory session. After the temple is dedicated, it is open only to LDS Church members who adhere to prescribed standards. Many such members waited patiently with their families on this beautiful summer morning, excited to be a part of the cornerstone ceremony for the Payson Temple.
Elder Kent F. Richards, executive director of the church’s Temple Department, welcomed the crowd and spoke briefly. In ancient times, he said, the cornerstone was a key building support. But today, the cornerstone is symbolic, he added, citing Ephesians 2:19-21: “Now therefore ye are no more strangers and foreigners, but fellow citizens with the saints, and of the household of God; And are built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ himself being the chief corner stone; In whom all the building fitly framed together groweth unto an holy temple in the Lord.”
Church leaders who were present and helped to seal the cornerstone included President Henry B. Eyring, Elder Quentin L. Cook and his wife Mary, Elder Kent F. Richards, William B. Sonne and Mary Elizabeth B. Sonne (president and matron of the Payson Temple) and other members of the Payson Temple presidency.
As the leaders returned to the temple for the dedicatory session, all of the children and youth present were invited to come and participate by daubing a bit of mortar on the cornerstone. Children as young as 3 years old waited patiently in line for a chance to help seal its edges.
The Payson Temple serves 93,000plus LDS Church members residing from Mapleton to Delta. Announced on January 25, 2010, it is the 146th operating temple of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Ground was broken and the site was dedicated on Oct. 8, 2011. Situated on a 10.63-acre site, the 96,630-square-foot temple is the 15th temple built in Utah and the third in Utah County.
Article republished from the Mapleton News. See more news and photos at MapletonNews.com.
Elder Henry B. Eyring waves to the crowd upon arriving to dedicate the Payson Temple.