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San Jose Costa Rica Temple

Find out information about the San Jose Costa Rica Temple and read the dedicatory prayer given by President Faust

Click here for San Jose Costa Rica Temple information including temple schedule and directions from temples.ChurchofJesusChrist.org.

Announced: March 17, 1999.

Location: Del Hotel Marriott, 600 metros oeste, Ribera de Belen, San Jose, Costa Rica.

Site: 2 acres.

Exterior finish: Blanco Guardiano white marble.

Temple design: Classic modern.

Architect: Alvaro Inigo and Church A&E Services.

Project manager: Duane Cheney.

Contractor: Galvez y Volio.

Rooms: Celestial room, two endowment rooms, two sealing rooms, baptistry.

Total floor area: 10,700 square feet.

Dimensions: 149 feet by 77 feet.

District: 5 stakes and 6 districts in Costa Rica and Nicaragua.

Groundbreaking, site dedication: April 24, 1999, by Elder Lynn G. Robbins of the Seventy and first counselor in the Central America Area presidency.

Dedication: June 4, 2000, by President James E. Faust, second counselor in the First Presidency; 3 sessions.


Dedicatory Prayer

Done by President James E. Faust

O Lord God of Israel, we come unto Thee in solemn prayer to dedicate Thy holy house which has been erected in this great city of San José, Costa Rica.

Thou hast blessed Thy people with the means to carry forward a program of temple building that many more of Thy Saints may enter Thy house to make sacred covenants with Thee, and that they and the generations who come after them may be blessed under Thy great plan of happiness.

Dear Father, we marvel at Thy wondrous program of salvation and exaltation made possible by the sacrifice of Thy Beloved Son, our Savior and Redeemer, even the Lord Jesus Christ. The magnitude of His divine Atonement is so great that we cannot entirely comprehend it, but we know that it extends to all the children of the earth with further blessings for those who walk in faithfulness before Thee.

As we are gathered together in Thy house and in other halls to which this service is carried, we are humbled and grateful that we now have in our midst this beautiful structure where we may come and commune with Thee and feel the presence of Thy Holy Spirit and serve as saviors on Mount Zion.

Thou hast restored to us in this the dispensation of the fulness of times the everlasting priesthood with all of its keys. In the authority of that priesthood and in the name of Jesus Christ we dedicate to Thee and to Him this the San José Costa Rica Temple of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Father, wilt Thou be pleased to accept it and smile upon it as one of Thy great treasures in the earth. Wilt Thou accept it as the sacred gift of Thy faithful sons and daughters who have consecrated of their means to construct it in obedience to Thy commandment. Wilt Thou favor it with the presence of Thy Holy Spirit that all who come here may be touched in their hearts, and strengthened in their testimonies of this Thy great and everlasting work.

We dedicate the grounds on which it stands, the walls and the windows, all of the rooms and facilities, and every other aspect of this The House of the Lord. May all who look upon it regard it with reverence and respect. May there be no disposition to deface it or molest it in any way. May it stand secure against storm and trouble of any kind.

O God, our Eternal Father, take us under Thy beneficent hand and bless us as Thy sons and daughters. We are beholden to Thee for all that we have and are. Wilt Thou look upon us with love and mercy. Wilt Thou touch our minds and open our eyes to the things of eternity. Wilt Thou stir our hearts with love for Thee and Thy Son and for Thy great cause and kingdom.

As was said in the dedication of the Kirtland Temple, "We ask thee, Holy Father, to establish the people that shall worship, and honorably hold a name and standing in this thy house, to all generations and for all eternity;…

"That no combination of wickedness shall have the power to rise up and prevail over thy people upon whom thy name shall be put in this house" (D&C 109:24, 26).

We pray for all who will serve here, Father, the temple presidency and the matron and her assistants, and all who labor in any capacity. May even the effort required to keep Thy house clean be looked upon as a special privilege that all who serve may do so with a spirit of love and consecration. Bless those who come as patrons that they may do so with rejoicing in their hearts, and wilt Thou imbue them with a knowledge of the necessity of this work if Thine eternal purposes are to be accomplished.

We thank Thee for him through whom Thou hast revealed the ordinances of this house, even the Prophet Joseph Smith. May we ever hold him in sacred remembrance as Thy servant in initiating Thy work in this season when Thou hast moved again to build Thy kingdom and to roll it forth as a small stone cut from the mountain without hands rolls forth to fill the earth.

Accept of our love for Thee and for our Redeemer. Help us to walk the straight and narrow road which leads to life eternal. May the specter of death hold no fears for those who have received the ordinances of this house. May all walk in obedience before Thee, and wilt Thou touch their minds and hearts by Thy power to a new awakening of faith and responsibility.

Now, Father, with bowed heads and with reverence for Thee, we pray for Thy blessing upon all that we do and think and say that we may be worthy before Thee. We are grateful for every gift from Thee, as we humbly offer our prayer in the name of Thy precious Son, He who is our Redeemer, even the Lord Jesus Christ, amen.


A new landmark by shining seas

By Jason Swensen

Church News staff writer

SAN JOSE, Costa Rica — High above the Costa Rican heartland, near the summit of the active Poas volcano, is a lookout point shrouded in sulfur mist much of the year. But when the sun is agreeable and the clouds part, visitors can enjoy sublime views of both the Pacific and Atlantic oceans by simply turning their heads.

Now, about an hour's drive from Poas, is a new landmark offering eternal, heavenly vistas to faithful members of the Church. The San Jose Costa Rica Temple was dedicated June 4, 2000 — the Church's 87th temple and the first such structure in southern Central America.

The dedication marked the realization of dreams for thousands of Central American saints — and perhaps the birth of new dreams for millions more.

"Costa Ricans everywhere, members and nonmembers alike, have felt a change in this country," said Henry Obando, who presides over the Costa Rica La Sabana Stake. "Now we are in Zion. Now we are in a country where there is a temple."

President James. E. Faust, second counselor in the First Presidency, dedicated the temple in three sessions. R 30ca8dc46a502db9b620b24f86b6b008 Fri Mar 12 16:20:09 2010


Costa Rica: Land of peace, blessings

By Jason Swensen

Church News staff writer

SAN JOSE, Costa Rica — Costa Ricans live in a special land and they know it. Their country boasts decades of peace, a tourist-rich economy and — despite being smaller than West Virginia — a good chunk of the world's bio-diversity.

San Jose Costa Rica Temple | The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

And, of course, Costa Rica's fertile lands are candy to the senses. Her soil yields acres of orchids, bananas and buttery avocados the size of boxing gloves. Mango trees are so heavy in city parks that their fruit simply falls to the ground, gifts to anyone seeking siesta-hour shade.

Just ask Costa Ricans how they are and you will likely get the same happy answer: "Pura Vida." Pure life.

Pura vida takes on richer meaning for Costa Rican members. In a country where the gospel is still fairly young, the saints are enjoying historic growth. The catchy spark of missionary work is being felt, coupled with the spirit of Elijah in a newly-dedicated temple. Their three-fold charge to proclaim the gospel, perfect the saints and redeem the dead is being fulfilled each day from cosmopolitan San Jose to rural San Carlos and other fledgling districts.

Jose Luis Quesada is emblematic of the Church in this Central American country.

He learned of the Church from his brother in their hometown of San Ramon more than a decade ago. He spurned his brother's baptismal invitation and distanced himself from the faith. He gave the gospel little thought until another family member began saying ugly things about the Church.

"I became curious because of my relative's comments and I started to read the Book of Mormon," Brother Quesada said. "I was fascinated by the story of Joseph Smith. At night, my father forbade me from turning on the light to read my Book of Mormon, so I read it with a lantern. The book possessed me completely."

He joined the Church and was later called to preside over the Alvarado Branch in San Ramon. Last year President Quesada traveled to Guatemala City, Guatemala, to claim his temple blessings.

"I attended seven sessions in the Guatemala City temple and acquired a strong testimony of the temple," he said. "Now, I want to help the members here in San Ramon prepare to go to the temple in our own country."

Like President Quesada, the Church in Costa Rica has developed slowly — perhaps even reluctantly. But once converted, the faithful often become stalwarts. Recent years have witnessed a surge in membership, devotion and commitment.

Watching the gospel grow in Costa Rica has been a joy for Arthur Kocherhans. In 1949, 20-year-old Elder Kocherhans was sent to San Jose to join a few other elders from the Mexican Mission establishing missionary work in Costa Rica.

"There was a lot of door to door work in those days," remembered Brother Kocherhans, who lived with his fellow missionaries in a building that doubled as a small chapel. On November 26, 1949, Victor Lopez became the first native Costa Rican to be baptized in his country. The ordinance was performed by Brother Kocherhans in a river outside of San Jose.

Brother Kocherhans also remembers he and a trio of other missionaries serving in Costa Rica, including emeritus Seventy Joe J. Christensen, organizing a basketball team "as a chance to give the Church exposure and a way to make contacts besides door to door preaching."

"Los Mormones" took on all comers, even the Costa Rican Olympic basketball team.

"We couldn't beat them, but we could give them a good scrimmage," said Brother Kocherhans, who now lives in Murray, Utah.

The first conference of the Church in Costa Rica was held on June 7, 1950. About 70 people attended. A branch was organized a few weeks later and property for the first meetinghouse was purchased the following year. Costa Rica's first district conference was held in the summer of 1968, with 296 members attending. The Church took an important step six years later with the organization of the Costa Rica Mission. When the San Jose Costa Rica Stake was organized in 1977 there were 3,800 members.

"Now we have about 35,000 members; it is amazing to see how the Church has developed," said Henry Obando, a 1981 convert and president of the La Sabana Costa Rica Stake. Presently, there are five stakes in metropolitan areas and several districts in outlying communities.

Much of that growth, President Obando said, can be attributed to Panamanian and Nicaraguan nationals who have been drawn to Costa Rica by its hearty economy.

"These immigrants embrace the Church easily, they are often more humble than we are and they can feel the Lord's Spirit. Their immigration has been a blessing for the Church in Costa Rica," he said.

New members of all nationalities are typically enlisted immediately to fortify and spread the gospel, added President Obando, who remembers being called as the secretary of his branch a week after his baptism.

While appreciative of the Church's local history, LDS Costa Ricans, or "Ticos," anticipate a monumental future. Dedicated June 4, 2000, the San Jose Costa Rica Temple, they say, is already prompting dramatic ripples throughout southern Central America.

"The temple is helping us become better examples and better members, so the image of the Church is improving in Costa Rica," said Oscar Murillo, a member of the Villahermosa Alajuela Ward. "The missionaries will no longer tell our friends that families can be sealed in the Guatemala temple. Now the missionaries can say, 'Your family can go to the temple right here in San Jose and be eternal.' "

Spiritual history will divide Costa Rica — this land of volcanoes, mild climes and rabid soccer fans — into two periods: "Before the temple and after the temple," said Elder Jose Luis Gonzalez, president of the San Jose Costa Rica Mission and Area Authority Seventy. Since the Church announced plans to build a temple near San Jose, Church activity and retention rates have increased and members and non-members alike have taken advantage of the country's many family history centers to discover their ancestry.

"There has been a change in the Costa Rican members over the past year; their attitudes toward God have changed because of the temple," Elder Gonzalez said.

Henry Obando remembers a Church leader once telling him that pioneer Tico members were like children cutting their teeth on the gospel feast.

"Now we are ready to eat meat."


'Imbue them with a knowledge... of this work'

Following is the full text of the dedicatory prayer for the San Jose Costa Rica Temple given by President James E. Faust on June 4, 2000.O Lord God of Israel, we come unto Thee in solemn prayer to dedicate Thy holy house which has been erected in this great city of San Jose, Costa Rica.

Thou hast blessed Thy people with the means to carry forward a program of temple building that many more of Thy Saints may enter Thy house to make sacred covenants with Thee, and that they and the generations who come after them may be blessed under Thy great plan of happiness.

Dear Father, we marvel at Thy wondrous program of salvation and exaltation made possible by the sacrifice of Thy Beloved Son, our Savior and Redeemer, even the Lord Jesus Christ. The magnitude of His divine Atonement is so great that we cannot entirely comprehend it, but we know that it extends to all the children of the earth with further blessings for those who walk in faithfulness before Thee.

As we are gathered together in Thy house and in other halls to which this service is carried, we are humbled and grateful that we now have in our midst this beautiful structure where we may come and commune with Thee and feel the presence of Thy Holy Spirit and serve as saviors on Mount Zion.

Thou hast restored to us in this the dispensation of the fulness of times the everlasting priesthood with all of its keys. In the authority of that priesthood and in the name of Jesus Christ we dedicate to Thee and to Him this the San Jose Costa Rica Temple of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Father, wilt Thou be pleased to accept it and smile upon it as one of Thy great treasures in the earth. Wilt Thou accept it as the sacred gift of Thy faithful sons and daughters who have consecrated of their means to construct it in obedience to Thy commandment. Wilt Thou favor it with the presence of Thy Holy Spirit that all who come here may be touched in their hearts, and strengthened in their testimonies of this Thy great and everlasting work.

We dedicate the grounds on which it stands, the walls and the windows, all of the rooms and facilities, and every other aspect of this The House of the Lord. May all who look upon it regard it with reverence and respect. May there be no disposition to deface it or molest it in any way. May it stand secure against storm and trouble of any kind.

O God, our Eternal Father, take us under Thy beneficent hand and bless us as Thy sons and daughters. We are beholden to Thee for all that we have and are. Wilt Thou look upon us with love and mercy. Wilt Thou touch our minds and open our eyes to the things of eternity. Wilt Thou stir our hearts with love for Thee and Thy Son and for Thy great cause and kingdom.

As was said in the dedication of the Kirtland Temple, "We ask thee, Holy Father, to establish the people that shall worship, and honorably hold a name and standing in this thy house, to all generations and for all eternity; . . .

"That no combination of wickedness shall have the power to rise up and prevail over thy people upon whom thy name shall be put in this house" (D&C 109:24, 26).

We pray for all who will serve here, Father, the temple presidency and the matron and her assistants, and all who labor in any capacity. May even the effort required to keep Thy house clean be looked upon as a special privilege that all who serve may do so with a spirit of love and consecration. Bless those who come as patrons that they may do so with rejoicing in their hearts, and wilt Thou imbue them with a knowledge of the necessity of this work if Thine eternal purposes are to be accomplished.

We thank Thee for him through whom Thou hast revealed the ordinances of this house, even the Prophet Joseph Smith. May we ever hold him in sacred remembrance as Thy servant in initiating Thy work in this season when Thou hast moved again to build Thy kingdom and to roll it forth as a small stone cut from the mountain without hands rolls forth to fill the earth.

Accept of our love for Thee and for our Redeemer. Help us to walk the straight and narrow road which leads to life eternal. May the specter of death hold no fears for those who have received the ordinances of this house. May all walk in obedience before Thee, and wilt Thou touch their minds and hearts by Thy power to a new awakening of faith and responsibility.

Now, Father, with bowed heads and with reverence for Thee, we pray for Thy blessing upon all that we do and think and say that we may be worthy before Thee. We are grateful for every gift from Thee, as we humbly offer our prayer in the name of Thy precious Son, He who is our Redeemer, even the Lord Jesus Christ, amen.

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