Kona Hawaii Temple

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Announced: Feb. 3, 1978.

Location: About 15 miles south of Salt Lake City in South Jordan; 10200 South 1300 West, South Jordan, UT 84095-8814; phone: (801) 254-3003.

Site: 15 acres.

Exterior finish: Cast stone containing white marble chips. Tower appears same as the rest of the building, but in order to reduce weight it contains fiberglass in a product called cemlite.

Temple design: Modern.

Architect: Emil B. Fetzer, Church architect.

Resident project inspector: Jerry Sears.

Construction superintendent: Lawrence O. Dansie for Layton Construction Co.

Rooms: Baptistry, celestial room, six ordinance rooms, 17 sealing rooms.

Total floor area: 148,236 square feet.

Dimensions: Basement and main floor, 211 feet by 218 feet; two upper levels, 140 by 166 feet. Height to square is 58 feet, to top of tower, 219 feet, including a 20-foot statue of the Angel Moroni.

District: Southern Salt Lake County, Utah.

Groundbreaking, site dedication: June 9, 1979, by President Spencer W. Kimball.

Dedication: Nov. 16-20, 1981, by President Marion G. Romney; 15 sessions.

Dedicatory Prayer

Done by President Gordon B. Hinckley

Great God, our Eternal Father, we bow before Thee in reverence at this time of dedication. We are gathered to consecrate unto Thee and unto Thy Beloved Son this sacred temple.

Acting in the authority of the divine priesthood, that priesthood which comes from Thee, and in the name of our Redeemer, the Lord Jesus Christ, we dedicate unto Thee and unto Him this the Kona Hawaii Temple of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

We dedicate these beautiful grounds with the vegetation growing thereon. We dedicate the entire structure from the footings to the figure of Moroni atop the spire. We dedicate all of the facilities and the rooms and all appurtenances thereto, including the baptistry, the facilities for the initiatory ordinances, the endowment rooms, the celestial room, and the beautiful sealing rooms. We dedicate the offices, and every fixture and furnishing which is a part of this Thy house.

We ask that Thou wilt accept it as our offering unto Thee, given with gladness and with love for Thee and Thy Son.

We pray that it may truly be the House of the Lord, respected and reverenced by those not only of our faith, but by all who shall look upon it. May it be sanctified by the presence of Thy Holy Spirit. May all who enter its portals be worthy in every respect. May they be clean of body and mind, with hearts open to the inspiration of Thy Spirit.

May the Holy Ghost rest upon this sacred structure and endow it with Thy power that it may be felt by all who serve here.

May Thy blessings rest upon the temple presidency and the matron and her assistants. May Thy blessings attend all who labor within these walls, both those who will administer the ordinances and those who will receive them. May they long to feel the benign influence that will find expression here. May the loftiest ideals of their faith be realized. May a spirit of love and peace, a spirit in harmony with Thee, be felt by all who serve here in whatever capacity.

We pray that Thou wilt withhold by Thy power the destructive hand of any who might be inclined to deface or injure this house in any way. May there radiate from this sacred structure a feeling of respect and appreciation for its presence.

We pray for the well being of the faithful Saints in these beautiful isles of the Pacific. For many years now a sacred House of the Lord has stood in Laie on the island of Oahu. Saints from all over Hawaii have traveled to that house to receive those blessings which are granted only in temples of the Lord. Now we have this second temple, here on the big island. May the work increase. May there come into the hearts of the people a growing desire to come to the House of the Lord, here to taste the sweet refreshment of the Holy Spirit. May the influence of this Thy house be felt among Thy people, and may it find expression in their lives and in their homes.

We pray that the youth of the Church may have a desire to serve the needs of those beyond the veil of death through vicarious baptisms in their behalf. As they do so, may there grow in their hearts a compelling desire to walk as Thou wouldst have them walk, and not after the ways of the world.

We ask that Thou wilt open the windows of heaven and shower down blessings upon the faithful tithe payers of the Church wherever they may be found. It is they who have made possible this sacred structure. Prosper them in their affairs. Give them peace and joy in their hearts as they walk in faithfulness before Thee. Smile down upon them and favor them with Thine encompassing love.

We pray that Thy work may strengthen throughout these islands. Bless those who serve here as missionaries and those who go from here throughout the earth as representatives of Thee and of Thy work. Endow them with a special power, that they may stand before the world and bear testimony of the divinity of Thy Beloved Son and of Thy great plan of happiness for Thy children of all generations.

Hear our prayer, O Lord, and grant our petitions. With love we look to Thee as our Father and our God and to Thy Beloved Son as our Lord and Redeemer, and invoke Thy blessings upon us in His holy name, even the name of Jesus Christ, amen.

Three women find it is never too late for dreams to come true

By Julie Dockstader

Church News staff writer

KAILUA-KONA, Hawaii — At any new temple throughout the world, those attending a dedication come from all walks of life. They are young or old, they are from myriad ethnic backgrounds, they come from far away or down the street. And they all say how "humbled," "blessed," "grateful" they are to attend a temple dedication.

Kona Hawaii Temple
Kona Hawaii Temple | The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

But at each temple, there are those whose gratitude is deeper, more poignant than most. This was the case with three women at the dedication of the Kona Hawaii Temple Jan. 23-24, 2000, by President Gordon B. Hinckley. Singing in the cornerstone choir Jan. 23 were Kuulei Bell and Lucy Kaona of the Kalaupapa Branch on the island of Molokai. Both women are known for their voices; Sister Kaona is a rich alto, Sister Bell a lovely soprano.

And both have lived most of their lives at the Kalaupapa settlement once set aide for patients of Hansen's Disease, known as leprosy. The two women contracted the disease in their childhood and were sent to Molokai, where patients were then quarantined from the public. (Please see Feb. 8, 1997, Church News.) But times have changed now. The disease is controlled by medication, and patients on medication are not contagious. In addition, as Sister Kaona related, "Now people are getting more opened-minded and letting us, the patients, mingle around."

"People are more accepting of us when at one time they weren't," Sister Bell added. "To sing at the cornerstone is really something. This is something special for Lucy and me. We're getting old and this is a new temple and all the Hawaiians are over here so we wanted to be part of this. There's a lot of Molokai people who came and we're just the two from Kalaupapa so we thought we needed to come and represent our branch."

Continuing, Sister Bell related: "Lucy comes from Kona. She was raised here (until being sent to Kalaupapa). My parents come from Kohala (also on the island of Hawaii), so we're a part of this wonderful tradition."

And, as Sister Kaona added, "We wanted to come to the temple. I know I do."

Another woman whose heart and eyes brimmed with gratitude here was Abigail Kailimai of the Honomu Branch of the Hilo Hawaii Stake. In 1919, when she was 4 years old, she was taken by her parents to the dedication of the Laie Hawaii Temple on the island of Oahu. Eighty-one years later, she stood in the celestial room of the new Kona Hawaii Temple leading the choir for the first dedicatory session.

"The Lord has been so good to me," she related. "I never thought I'd get to lead the temple choir. My mother died when she was 67. I never thought I'd reach 85."

Sister Kailimai has been part of Church choirs since she was 12 years old leading the music in Primary. Since then, she's been in many stake choirs, including one for a rededication of the Laie temple. She has been director of the Hilo stake choir for several years now.

After the first dedicatory session, her grandchildren asked her what she wanted to do next.

"Work in the temple," she replied.

Hawaii edifice to help establish eternal families

By Sister Joyce A. Peacock

Hawaii Public Affairs Council

KAILUA-KONA, Hawaii — Not only are families basic and important, but they can also be eternal, Elder John B. Dickson of the Seventy declared during the groundbreaking services of the Kona Hawaii Temple March 13.

And, he continued, "the building that will rise on this sacred piece of property is a building dedicated to the proposition of helping us to establish eternal families."

Some 1,200 people, including members, Church and community leaders, and other guests, gathered in the Kona Hawaii Stake center for the groundbreaking services of the second temple in the Hawaiian Islands. The new edifice will be built on property adjacent to the stake center on the big island of Hawaii. It was truly an "Aloha" gathering, filled with anticipation and emotion. Providing music for the groundbreaking was a combined choir from the Hilo and Kona stakes. The choir members were dressed in white, accented with colorful island floral leis.

The construction site is one of flowering shrubbery and trees, overlooking the ocean with a view east to Mount Haulalai. The Kona Hawaii Temple, one of the new smaller temples in the Church, will serve 6,000 members in its temple district.

After the services in the stake center, the gathering moved to the construction site where Elder Dickson, who is also North America West Area president, conducted the ceremonial turning of the first shovelful of soil. Helping him were Elder Donald L. Hallstrom, an Area Authority Seventy, and other current and former stake leaders. Then others attending the groundbreaking, including many children, were invited to take a turn with a shovel.

In his earlier remarks, Elder Dickson told those gathered that different ordinances of the gospel will be performed in this holy house. "One of the crowning ordinances will be the sealing of husband and wife, parents to children. When couples are married here, it is not for time only or until death do us part, but for time and eternity."

Continuing, he spoke of the prophecy in Mal. 4:5-6 about the coming of Elijah. "We know that in these latter days, as a part of the Restoration, the prophet Elijah truly has come and the keys of turning the hearts of the fathers to the children and the hearts of the children to the fathers have been committed unto man."

Since then, when the keys were committed in the Kirtland Temple in 1836, "we have seen an ever-expanding interest in families and family history. Not only does the Church have the largest family history library in the world to seek out our kindred dead, but millions of people worldwide are showing tremendous interest in their family histories, in their roots and in their past.

"What a great blessing it is that we can break ground this day for a temple wherein sacred ordinances for the living and the dead can be accomplished very close to where you live here on the island of Hawaii."

Elder Dickson also spoke of three "holy places," as referred to in D&C 87:8. "The first one would be our own homes. The second would be the ward meetinghouse or chapel. The third one, of course, would be the holy temple."

He urged those listening to prepare their families to come to the temple, to make their homes "an oasis from the world," and to look to a stake of Zion as "a refuge from the storm."

Also speaking during the groundbreaking ceremony were Elder Hallstrom, Hilo stake Pres. John Sakamaki and Kona stake Pres. Philip A. Harris.

Elder Hallstrom proclaimed this a "historic occasion and perfect . . . to be recorded in our journals and in our hearts of the Lord's blessings to the Hawaiian people in the islands of the earth's largest ocean."

He also rejoiced that "one of 46 small temples announced by President [Gordon B.] Hinckley would provide the means for more Saints to partake of the crowning blessings of the gospel through temple activity, and today we are going forward to assure it."

Pres. Harris referred to this "much-anticipated day as a reality of yesterday's dream. . . . We will write our legacy through faithfulness to temple opportunities and service. We are here because of leadership and vision of real Saints. Now to fill this temple with worthy members will be our legacy."

In his remarks, Pres. Sakamaki said, "This day is a thrill to participate in; all islands are represented."

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