Announced: July 20, 1998.
Location: General Pedro Garcia Conde No. 303; Esq. con Juan Jose Rios, Colonia Pitic, Hermosillo, Sonora CP 83150, Mexico; phone (52) 662-210-5660; no clothing rentals.
Site: 2.07 acres.
Exterior finish: White marble veneer.
Temple design: Classic modern.
Architect: Alvaro Inigo and Church A&E Services..
Project manager: David Wills.
Contractor: Grana y Montero / Jacobsen Construction Co.
Rooms: Two ordinance rooms, two sealing rooms; celestial room, baptistry.
Total floor area: 10,700 square feet.
Dimensions: 77 feet by 149 feet.
District: 11 stakes and six districts in surrounding area.
Groundbreaking, site dedication: Dec. 5, 1998, by Elder Eran A. Call of the Seventy and counselor in the Mexico South Area presidency.
Dedication: Feb. 27, 2000, by President Gordon B. Hinckley; 4 sessions.
Done by President Gordon B. Hinckley
Dear Father in Heaven, Thou Almighty God, we thank Thee for the opportunity to meet this day in Thy sacred temple and dedicate it unto Thee and to Thy Beloved Son as the House of the Lord.
It is sacred to us, the place where holy ordinances will be administered for both the living and the dead. Here will be exercised the only authority on earth which reaches beyond the veil of death and is efficacious in the worlds beyond. How thankful we are to have in our midst this sacred and beautiful edifice.
In the name of Jesus Christ, and in the authority of Thy divine priesthood we dedicate to Thee and to Thy Son this the Hermosillo Sonora México Temple of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. We present it to Thee with love and pray that Thou will accept it and sanctify and bless it as the consecrated gift of our hands and our hearts.
May Thy divine presence be felt here. May Thy Holy Spirit touch the hearts of all who serve here. May it be a place of refuge from the noise and tumult of the world. May it be a place of quiet peace to all who come within its portals. We dedicate the grounds, together with the structure from the footings to the crowning statue of Moroni. We dedicate all of the facilities of this Thy holy house. May no evil hand ever defile it. May it be preserved from the forces of nature. May it be a structure of beauty, a crowning gem in this great city. We are grateful that the officials of government have permitted its construction, and that it is now completed and ready to be presented to Thee.
Bless all who shall use it, and may they be very many. It is Thy house and we know that Thou wilt be pleased if it is kept busy with the sacred work for which it was designed. May it be a place of holiness to all who cross its portals.
We thank Thee for the faith of Thy Saints throughout the world whose tithes and offerings have contributed to this building. Keep Thine ancient promises to the faithful. Shower blessings upon them. Crown their lives with a testimony of the truth of this Thy holy work. Bless Thy Saints throughout the earth that they may "look to Thee and live." May they have cause to rejoice in Thy goodness. Favor them with faith and testimony and great joy as they walk in faithfulness before Thee.
We pray for this great nation of Mexico which has permitted the messengers of eternal truth to serve among its people. May it rise in splendor among the nations of the earth. May Thy work here flourish and grow ever stronger among the good people of this land.
Dear Father, we pray for Thy work in all the earth that it may grow and strengthen and move forward as a great wave across the sea. May its numbers increase. May it come to be known everywhere for the tremendous good which it does. May it be welcomed by those who stand in positions of power.
We recognize our dependence upon Thee. Thou art the source of all of our blessings, and in reverence and love we thank Thee. May we ever be mindful of the great atoning sacrifice made by Thy Son in behalf of all men. Accept of our love for Thee and for Him and let Thy peace distill upon us as the dews from heaven we humbly pray in the name of Jesus Christ, amen.
Impact on lives begins even before completion of Hermosillo Temple
By John L. Hart
HERMOSILLO, Mexico — When the old men of Mexico pronounce the name of their hometown, they do so tenderly. Their words are almost music, and if they are fortunate enough to have a hometown with a long name — as those in this city are are — the name becomes as rich as the harmony of strings and brass.
At the dedication in four sessions of the Hermosillo Sonora Mexico Temple Feb. 27 by President Gordon B. Hinckley, the expressions of the members became almost a symphony of their feelings. The dedication was attended by 5,898, and 10,543 attended the open house.
President Hinckley and his wife, Marjorie, were accompanied by Elder Henry B. Eyring of the Quorum of the Twelve and his wife, Kathleen, and Elder Lynn A. Mickelsen of the Seventy, president of the Mexico North Area, and his wife, Jeanine.
The Hermosillo Sonora Mexico Temple began making an impact even before it was completed, as many less-active members responded to their bishops' invitations to return to activity. Also, many in the city gained a new appreciation for the Church, and the faithful members turned their efforts toward family history work.
Now that the temple is dedicated, its impact is expected to increase. While many of the active families who live in the district have been to the Mexico City Mexico, San Diego California, or Mesa Arizona temples, there are many others who have not. Among those who have not include those in part-member families or those with financial or health limitations that have prevented them from making the lengthy trips. These members are eagerly looking forward to receiving the blessings made possible by a temple in their area.
The temple district includes important Church history sites. It was a few miles outside Hermosillo in 1875 that the first five converts in Mexico were baptized by a group of missionaries sent by President Brigham Young. In San Marcos, also in the temple district, in 1915, two members, branch President Rafael Monroy and Vicente Morales, were killed by soldiers when they would not renounce their religion. Descendants of these martyrs are found today among the leaders of the Church throughout Mexico and particularly in this district.
At the dedication of the Church's 72nd temple were pioneer members who had sacrificed to attend temples in distant locations. One of these is Purificacion Segovia, 92, a dedicated woman who, decades ago, brought food to the builders of the first Church meetinghouse in the city.
Another is Moncelo Guerro, 85, one of the pillars of the early branch. He and his wife are the parents of 19 children (15 now living) who have all been sealed to them in the temple. The Guerros filled many callings in the branch and provided transportation for members. He drove around town and gave members rides to the meetinghouse in the back of their truck.
"It was very hard to raise money to travel to the temple," he said. "Whenever we had things to sell, we sold them. Now, we are full of happiness to have a temple here and we will be able to visit it."
President Miguel Enrique Puga Becerra, president of the Hermosillo Mexico Stake, said, "In the past it was not possible for all to go to the temple because they didn't have time or funds to travel. Now more, including youth, will participate in vicarious work."
He said that each ward has collected names for temple work. "There is a good spirit here and they have worked, and for this reason they are already blessed by the presence of the House of the Lord."
Juan and Alfa Loya Casanova, temple missionaries from Monterrey, Mexico, said that the members were so eager to participate in the temple construction that they landscaped the street area and planted flowers in front of the temple.
Mario Dominguez Leon of the Del Bosque Branch, Rio San Luis Colorado Mexico District, located near the U.S. border south of Yuma, Ariz., said of the 450 active members in the district, 320 came to the dedication. The district is about eight hours away by bus from Hermosillo. "This temple is very special to us because some have not been able to get passports to the United States and have waited many years to receive temple blessings."
He said that in one small branch members sold pastries and had a roof repair business and raised enough money to pay for the trip and for a hotel. Some 48 of 64 branch members made the trip."
Another who made a long trip was Rebecca Estrada Monroy Espanta of San Luis Potosi in central Mexico. She lived in Hermosillo until last July and made the 30-hour bus ride to come back for the dedication.
"This was an unforgettable, excellent experience," she said. "I was able to feel the Spirit. This experience is written in my heart and in my diary. It was worth much more than the effort of this trip."
Abel Montoya Gutierrez, stake patriarch and the first local president of the Hermosillo Branch, explained that one of the first projects for the branch after he was called was to build a meetinghouse. One day, he said, they started pouring cement at 5 a.m. and worked until the evening of the following day without stopping. This early effort spawned a love and unity among the members that contributed to the growth of the Church. Working toward the completion of the temple has brought this feeling back.
"No one ever thought there would be a temple here," he said. "The first members here were very happy to know that a temple would be built in our town of Hermosillo."
President Hinckley presides at rites for 50th temple
The dedication of the Hermosillo Sonora Mexico Temple was a silent, unheralded milestone for President Gordon B. Hinckley in his long career of promoting temple building and temple worship.
That service marked the 50th temple he has dedicated or re-dedicated. He has dedicated 24 temples since becoming president of the Church in 1995.
The first temple he dedicated was the Atlanta Georgia Temple, completed in 1983 as the 21st in the Church. At the time he was second counselor in the First Presidency. Ill health prevented President Spencer W. Kimball and his first counselor, President Marion G. Romney, from presiding at the dedication. President Hinckley was called upon to complete the ambitious expansion of temples started by President Kimball in 1980, a string of 18, along with one rededication. He found himself in a similar position in 1989, when he dedicated four more and rededicated three more temples.
Since becoming president of the Church in 1995, a significant advance in the number of temples has been made through a plan he initiated that reduces the size of temples and places them in many more locations. President Hinckley told Dell Van Orden, then editor of the Church News, (see Aug. 1, 1998, issue) that the inspiration for the smaller temples came while he was in Colonia Juarez, Mexico.
"As we were riding to El Paso, I reflected on what we could do to help these people in the Church colonies in Mexico," President Hinckley said. "They've been so very faithful over the years.
He said as they quietly drove along, "I thought of these things and what could be done. The concept of these smaller temples came into my mind. I concluded we didn't need the laundry. We didn't need to rent temple clothing. We didn't need eating facilities."
President Hinckley explained that all the necessary features of a temple could be incorporated into a smaller structure, that could be constructed in a relatively short period of time. Once on the airplane, President Hinckley put his ideas onto paper. "I took a piece of paper," he said, "and sketched out the [floor] plan, and turned it over to the architects to refine it. The concept is beautiful," he said. "It's a very workable concept."
Since that time, 16 of these temples have been dedicated and more than 35 are under construction and expected to be completed by year-end.
President Hinckley also announced the reconstruction of the Nauvoo Temple, which is now underway, and the building of a temple near the Sacred Grove in Palmyra, N.Y., which will be dedicated April 6.