Location: 25 miles south of London, formerly an elizabethan farm at Newchpel near Lingfield; Surrey RH7 6HW, United Kingdom; phone: (44) 1342-832759.
Site: Selected in June 1952 by President David O. McKay and Elder Stayner Richards. Purchased in 1953; 32 ares.
Exterior finish: Concrete and steel structure, brick masonry walls faced with cut Portland limestone. Spire sheathed in copper.
Temple design: Modern-contemporary.
Architect: Edward O. Anderson.
Supervising architects: T.T. Bennett and Son, London.
Contractor: Kirk and Kirk, Ltd., London.
Rooms: Baptistry, celestial room, four ordinance rooms, seven sealing rooms.
Total floor area: Originally 34,000 square feet; 42,775 square feet after remodeling.
Dimensions: 84 feet wide, 159 feet long, 56 feet to the square. The tower rises 156 feet inches from ground level, spire 33 feet above that.
District: 20 stakes in England and two in Wales.
Groundbreaking, site dedication: Aug. 10, 1953; site dedicated by David O. McKay, who broke ground on Aug. 27, 1955.
Dedication: Sept. 7-9, 1958, by President David O. McKay; 6 sessions. Rededicated Oct. 18-20, 1992, by President Gordon B. Hinckley; 10 sessions.
Done by President Gordon B. Hinckley
O God our Eternal Father, Almighty Judge of the nations, we thy thankful children solemnly bow before thee in a prayer of dedication. We are gathered in thy holy house to present it unto thee and unto thy Beloved Son, our Redeemer.
We lift our voices in gratitude for thy manifold blessings. Thou hast favored us with life in this glorious dispensation of time. Thou hast granted us citizenship in this good land. Above all, thou hast blessed us with the truths of thine everlasting gospel and the authority of thine eternal priesthood.
We thank thee for the Prophet Joseph Smith, an instrument in thy hand in bringing to pass this great work of restoration in preparation for the time when thy Son shall come to reign as King of kings and Lord of lords.
We thank thee for this beautiful temple, this house of worship, of learning, of covenants and everlasting promises. We thank thee for the faith and skills of all who have contributed to make it possible. It stands in this community which has become an oasis in the desert. As men have brought water to the dry earth of this region it has become fruitful, and now as a crowning jewel stands thy holy house with its surrounding lawns of green, its beds of colorful flowers, and the trees and shrubs which enhance its beauty.
Within its walls are to be tasted the refreshing waters of living and eternal truth. For all who enter the portals of thy house may this be an oasis of peace and life and light, in contrast with the clamor and evil and darkness of the world.
It stands where it will be seen by multitudes of the generations of men. May all who look upon it regard it reverently as the house of the Lord. May the hand of the destroyer be kept from it by thy power.
We are mindful of thy promise given in the early days of the Church that "inasmuch as my people build a house unto me in the name of the Lord, and do not suffer any unclean thing to come into it, that it be not defiled, my glory shall rest upon it;
"Yea, and my presence shall be there, for I will come into it, and all the pure in heart that shall come into it shall see God" (D&C 97:15-16).
We plead for forgiveness and strength to overcome our weaknesses. We long for the day when we may be worthy to look upon thy face. Keep us from the decay and servitude which come from sin. Bless us with the light and freedom which come of righteousness.
Thy house is now complete. It is beautiful, and we present it as the gift of thy thankful children.
And now, acting in the authority of the holy priesthood which comes from thee, and in the name of Jesus Christ thy Son, we dedicate unto thee and our Savior this, the Las Vegas Nevada Temple of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. We dedicate it as thy holy house. We pray that thy Spirit may fill this sacred structure and that thy influence may hover over it by day and by night. We pray that thou might hallow it by thy presence.
We dedicate unto thee the grounds on which it stands with their vegetation and all of the ancillary construction associated therewith. We dedicate the sacred rooms, each one, with its associated fittings and furnishings. We dedicate the baptistry, the endowment rooms where thy people will enter into covenant with thee, the sacred altars and the sealing rooms where eternal promises will be made and accepted, and every other facility within this beautiful structure. May it be hallowed to all who enter. May their thoughts be lifted to thee and thy Beloved Son. May a spirit of peace and reconciliation be in their hearts. In the great work that will be performed here, everlasting in its consequences, may thy people find satisfaction and gladness.
O Father, look with favor upon thy sons and daughters wherever they may be. When they err, and come unto thee in repentance, wilt thou forgive and remember their sins no more. Give them grateful hearts for the blessings which thou hast showered upon them. Grant unto them strength to walk the straight and narrow way that leads to life eternal. May the people of thy Church across the world become a great and singular community, united by the bonds of the everlasting gospel, with love and respect one for another, with faith and knowledge of thee and thine eternal purposes, with obedience to thy commandments and that happiness which thou hast promised to those who walk acceptably before thee.
We pray for thy prophet of this day, even President Ezra Taft Benson. Give him strength of body and mind according to his need. Give him joy in his heart concerning thy work and thy people. Bless those associated with him among the General Authorities and officers of the Church. Bless all who hold responsibility of any kind in thy Church and kingdom wherever it may be organized. Pour out thy spirit upon thy faithful saints everywhere.
Touch the hearts of the people of the nations that they may receive the testimony of thy servants the missionaries. And bless these, thy dedicated servants, that they may be powerful in their teaching of divine truth and in their testimony of thy Beloved Son.
Bless the homes of thy people. May there be peace and harmony and love. May thy people look to thee and live.
Father dear, we remember before thee the suffering and needful of the earth. There are so many who struggle and yearn. There are so many in the depths of sorrow and pain, of hunger and want, of darkness and sin. Let thy spirit brood over the earth and lead thy sons and daughters of all lands that they may drink of the waters of divine truth.
We so invoke thy blessing, dear Father, with grateful hearts and in humility before thee in the name of thy Beloved Son Jesus Christ. Amen.
Angel Moroni takes flight to London Temple
After five decades of waiting, spire is finally graced by statue
By Heidi Swinton
Church News contributor
LINGFIELD, SURREY, ENGLAND
When 13-year-old Aaron Glover heard in his Bristol England Southmead Ward that a statue of Moroni was being placed on the spire of the London England Temple on Monday, Dec. 15, he "had a warm feeling," and he just knew he "had to be there." His mother got him excused from school, but how he was going to travel the 150 miles to the temple was unresolved.
Bob Horton, also of Southmead, had decided to go to the temple to film this "once in a lifetime event" for his grandchildren, and he invited fellow ward member Paul Webster, who suggested they invite the young deacon Aaron. They did not know of his desire to attend.
The three stood and watched under gray, threatening skies with 150 others while a helicopter flew in from Buckinghamshire, 58 miles away, to lift the 8-foot, gold-leaf covered statue to the top of the 50-year-old temple. Scaffolding — erected earlier — made it possible for construction workers to access the top of the 180-foot spire and secure the statue.
The event briefly stopped traffic on the busy A22, which passes the temple, and onlookers got out of their cars to peer through the temple gates.
Elder Braden Howard, a missionary in the England London South Mission, said, "The figure spun around and around with his trumpet in hand as it made its way to the top as if to say, 'I am here.' We loved it."
"Talk about dreams coming true," said David Scarlet of the East Grinstead Ward, Crawley England Stake. "The whole of my Church life has been miracles coming true, and this is one of them."
The placing of Moroni was the conclusion of the Jubilee Celebration of the London Temple, first dedicated in 1958 by President David O. McKay and rededicated in 1993 by President Gordon B. Hinckley. Included in the Jubilee project have been restoring the Manor House and the visitors center, adding new mission offices to the temple site and renovating the accommodation center for temple patrons.
It joins Latter-day Saint temples around the world — Tokyo, Sao Paulo, Bern, and Freiberg — which have in recent years added this familiar figure to the temple, fulfilling in some ways the Apostle John's record, "I saw another angel fly in the midst of heaven."
Indeed it did fly. The helicopter picked up the fiberglass statue and flew to the nearby spire. The six-foot solid wooden tip of the copper-plated spire was removed for the new addition. The rest of the spire is wood frame with copper cladding.
"Finally, the temple will be completed," Rowland Elvidge, former London England Temple president, said as he stood on the soggy grass watching the installation. Brother Elvidge had instigated the plan to have an angel Moroni placed on the temple and steered the effort for the local council approvals.
"This effort brings the London Temple into the family of temples," said Michael Fagg, current president of the London Temple.
Usually an Angel Moroni is placed atop a temple by a large crane, explained Carl Champagnie, who directed the several construction projects at the temple site. But reaching the top of the spire required an 80-ton crane, and the weight might have damaged the property. An added bonus was that using a helicopter cost a fraction of using a crane. The construction team, dressed in their work clothes, wore white gloves to protect the fragile gold leaf exterior of the statue.
"We've worked on Buckingham Palace and many cathedrals," explained Bob Bolton, construction manager of Stone West, "but this is the first time we have worked with an angel."
Temple rededicated, lives renewed
By Gerry Avant
Church News editor
The London Temple has stood as a visible landmark of the spiritual strength and commitment of Latter-day Saints in the British Isles for 34 years.
Now remodeled and refurbished, the temple, which was completed in 1958, was rededicated Oct. 18-20.Members from throughout the London Temple district - England, Scotland, Wales, Ireland and Northern Ireland - attended the rededicatory services.
Representing the First Presidency at the dedicatory services were President Gordon B. Hinckley and President Thomas S. Monson. In addition, other General Authorities also spoke. (See box on page 3 for listing of General Authority speakers.)
President Hinckley offered the prayer of rededication in the first session in the London Temple.
In the first of 10 different addresses he delivered in the temple, he reflected on the history of the temple, which was originally dedicated in September 1958 by President David O. McKay. President Hinckley recalled some of his own experiences as a missionary to England in the 1930s. As a newly sustained member of the Council of the Twelve, he spoke during the original dedicatory ceremonies in 1958. At that time, he was responsible for temple sites and construction and operations. As he helped prepare the temple for its first dedication, he and his family lived in a house on the temple grounds for a month.
At the rededication of the temple, President Hinckley read from the text of the address he delivered at the dedication 34 years ago. He spoke of the struggles of early missionaries, " the tears of parting and the sacrifices of their loved ones, of their loneliness in times of peril and strife in the days of persecution in these Islands.' " He spoke also of the members "who accepted the gospel in early years and paid such a price for their testimony.. . .
" All of the sacrifices of all who have gone before are a part of the price, of the cost, of this house of the Lord in which we worship today,' " President Hinckley said. "This building cannot be reckoned alone in terms of pounds sterling; it must be reckoned in terms of struggle and sacrifice and devotion and loyalty and love and faith and testimony and conviction. What a price it has cost! But it has been worth every farthing because it now offers to the people of this and other lands the wholeness of the everlasting gospel of Jesus Christ.' "
In another rededicatory session, President Hinckley announced that the Church had acquired a site in the general area of Preston, England, in anticipation of the future construction of a temple. (See Church News, Oct. 24.) In speaking of that future temple, President Hinckley encouraged members who will be in that temple district - the northern part of England, Scotland, Ireland and Northern Ireland - to not put off coming to the London Temple. "May this holy House of the Lord be used and kept full," he said.
He spoke of the eternal ordinances performed only in LDS temples, and of the necessity of that work. "The temple bears the inscription, `House of the Lord, Holiness to the Lord.' This is His house. He doesn't want it kept as a monument; He wants it used."
President Monson, in one of his addresses in the London Temple, spoke of his British Isles ancestry. He related that his great-grandfather and his brother were some of the earliest converts to embrace the gospel, having been baptized in 1847 and 1848. "They were coal miners in the little shire of Clackmannan [in ScotlandT. At one time I read the history of the coal miners of Scotland - how a father would take down into the mines his wife and his children. He would work feverishly to mine the coal and pack it in bags, 56 pounds in weight, that his children would then climb the ladder hundreds of feet, and his wife, taking a heavier load, would climb the ladder and dump the crop of his minings into a bin from which his meager earnings were calculated.
"I'm so grateful that one of my ancestors left the coal mines and became a workman in an inn where Elder Sharp from the United States came to visit and taught him the gospel."
President Monson spoke of his mother's family, the Millers and the Watsons, who came from Rutherglen, Scotland. He said his great-grandmother traveled with a group of saints to New Orleans, and then tragedy struck as family members contracted cholera. The father died, then two days later, the mother. A day later, a brother died, and the next day, another brother. "Then lovely Margaret Miller, an orphan, with what was left of her family, went to Zion, the Valley of the Great Salt Lake," President Monson said, expressing personal and tender feelings toward his British Isles ancestry.
In another of his addresses in the London Temple, President Monson spoke of a painting in a London gallery. The work depicts a doctor tending a sick child, with worried parents looking on in the reflected glow of a lamp in a dark room. In the background is a window, through which can be seen a faint promise of dawn's brightness. President Monson said that many people focus on the darkness of the room, but he appreciates the fact there is light from heaven even if a little one perishes. "Death is not the end," President Monson affirmed. "The temple will bring us closer to those who have gone beyond." Many people, he observed, walk in the glow of the reflected lamp when they could go in the brightness of heaven.
During the sessions, London Temple Pres. Ralph Pulman and his counselors, Leonard Joyce and Percival Terrell, and the temple matron, Retta W.C. Pulman, were called on to bear their testimonies. Also bearing their testimonies were wives of General Authorities who attended the sessions: Marjorie P. Hinckley, Frances J. Monson, Inis E. Hunter, June D. Oaks, Barbara B. Ballard, Patricia T. Holland, Pamela W. Johnson and Anne H. Pinnock.