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'City of Everlasting Spring' prepares for LDS temple

TRUJILLO, PERU

The Peruvian coastal city of Trujillo has been aptly called La Ciudad de la Eterna Primavera — or “The City of Everlasting Spring.” The moniker’s a nod to both Trujillo’s balmy climate and the city’s optimism that bright days are ahead.

Trujillo comfortably balances a rich past and a promising future. The Pre-Columbian Huaca del Sol ruins, after all, are located just a few miles from an emerging, tech-friendly business district.

Latter-day Saints in Trujillo say it will truly become a city of eternal promise in a few months. The Trujillo Peru Temple will be dedicated June 21. The palm-framed edifice will become the spiritual anchor for almost 90,000 members.

“We are so enthused for the temple to open, it will be a great day,” said Trujillo Peru Central Stake President William Rabanal.

Peruvians have long been called a temple-going people. The temple in Lima is typically filled with members from across this Andean nation. President Rabanal said the members of his stake often spend entire Saturdays at the temple then travel on buses throughout the night, arriving in Trujillo in time for Sabbath meetings.

The Lord expects His new temple to be busy, he added. Members have worked hard over the past year researching and gathering names from family histories and other resources to be used in the Trujillo temple.

A public open house at the temple runs from May 8 through May 30, every day except Sundays, May 10, 17 and 24.

Peruvians both inside and outside the new temple district have had many reasons to celebrate in recent years.

For almost a quarter of a century, faithful Peruvians from across the South American nation have gathered to worship in the Lima Peru Temple. Many had to travel to the temple via rail, road and river. The First Presidency’s announcement in 2008 to build a temple in Trujillo overjoyed members in northern Peru. Four years later came the announcement to build a temple in Arequipa in southern Peru.

In between those two announcements, a Peruvian was called for the first time as a General Authority. Elder Juan A. Uceda, who presides over the South America Northwest Area, was sustained to the Seventy in 2010.

The beginnings of the Church in Peru stretch back over half a century. Frederick S. Williams — whose name is synonymous with the establishment of the Church in South America — moved with his family to Peru in 1956. He immediately contacted Church headquarters for permission to organize a branch and begin missionary work.

Elder Henry D. Moyle of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles traveled to Peru and, on July 8, 1956, organized the Lima Branch. Three years later the Andes Mission was established and headquartered in Lima. Steady growth over the next decade was highlighted by the creation of Peru’s first stake in 1970, which was organized by then-Elder Gordon B. Hinckley of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles.

The Trujillo Peru Stake was organized in 1978.

[email protected] @JNSwensen

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