Nauvoo temple cornerstone ceremony to imitate original

The symbolic laying of cornerstones at the Nauvoo Temple will take place on Sunday, Nov. 5, 2000, at noon in Nauvoo, Ill.

"We want to imitate, insofar as possible, what was done at the original cornerstone laying on April 6, 1841," said President Gordon B. Hinckley. This is particularly significant because the Nauvoo Temple will be constructed to appear almost as a replica of the original temple built on this same site in the early 1840's.

Participating in the ceremony will be General Authorities of the Church as well as local Church leaders and women of the Church's Relief Society. Four large stones will be set in place, one at each corner, beginning with the southeast corner of the temple. Two choirs, one made up of missionaries from the Nauvoo Mission and the other composed of Church members from the temple district, will sing hymns chosen from the first hymnal of the Church.

The cornerstones for the original Nauvoo Temple were laid on April 6, 1841. As described in History of the Church 3:326-331, the southeast cornerstone was set in place under the direction of and dedicated by Joseph Smith representing the First Presidency. Thereafter, the other cornerstones were ceremonially placed under the direction of various priesthood leaders as designated by the Prophet Joseph Smith. The account records that the Nauvoo Legion was present to add an air of ceremonial splendor to the occasion.

The block upon which the temple sits is an active construction site, not yet landscaped as it will be for the dedication services which will likely occur sometime in 2002. For this reason, attendance at the cornerstone ceremony will be limited primarily to those who live in the immediate area. The Church News will provide coverage of the event in the Nov. 11 issue.

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