At the close of October 2022 general conference, President Russell M. Nelson announced 18 new temples of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, including four in metropolitan Mexico City, Mexico.
In his concluding remarks of the Sunday afternoon session, President Nelson first announced the following 14 locations for new temples:
- Busan, Korea
- Naga, Philippines
- Santiago, Philippines
- Eket, Nigeria
- Chiclayo, Peru
- Buenos Aires City Center, Argentina
- Londrina, Brazil
- Ribeirão Preto, Brazil
- Huehuetenango, Guatemala
- Jacksonville, Florida
- Grand Rapids, Michigan
- Prosper, Texas
- Lone Mountain, Nevada
- Tacoma, Washington
But he didn’t end there.
“We are also planning to build multiple temples in selected large metropolitan areas where travel time to an existing temple is a major challenge,” he continued. “Therefore, I am pleased to announce four additional locations near Mexico City where new temples will be built.”
The four are:
- Cuernavaca, Mexico
- Pachuca, Mexico
- Toluca, Mexico
- Tula, Mexico
‘Focus on the temple’
Before announcing the new temple locations, President Nelson showed a clip from the upcoming season 4 of the Church’s Book of Mormon Videos — a depiction of the Savior Jesus Christ appearing to the Nephites.
“It is significant that the Savior chose to appear to the people at the temple,” he said, emphasizing that the temple is “His house” and “filled with His power.”
“Let us never lose sight of what the Lord is doing for us now,” said President Nelson. “He is making His temples more accessible. He is accelerating the pace at which we are building temples. He is increasing our ability to help gather Israel. He is also making it easier for each of us to become spiritually refined.”
And he reiterated an assurance he has given before. “I promise that increased time in the temple will bless your life in ways nothing else can.”
After announcing the 18 new temple locations, he extended an invitation: “May you focus on the temple in ways you never have before.”
118 temples announced by President Nelson
With the announcement of the 18 new temples, President Nelson has announced 118 temples so far since becoming President of the Church in January 2018. All but one — the Ephraim Utah Temple being the exception — have been announced in a general conference session.
Upcoming milestone events for several temples have already been announced — the Oct. 9 groundbreaking for the Heber Valley Utah Temple, the Oct. 16 rededication of the Hamilton New Zealand Temple after a four-year renovation, the same-day Nov. 20 dedications of the Quito Ecuador and Belém Brazil temples, and the Jan. 15, 2023, dedication of the San Juan Puerto Rico Temple.
It used to be that two or more temples in a single state or country was noteworthy. Now, multiple temples in a metro area is nothing new for the Church — but announcing four at once is.
The Redlands California and Newport Beach California temples in the greater Los Angeles area are the only two nearby temples announced at the same time — by letter on April 21, 2001.
The Ogden Utah and Provo Utah temples were announced 10 days apart in 1967; the Gilbert Arizona and Phoenix Arizona temples a month apart in 2008; and the Draper Utah and Oquirrh Mountain Utah temples a year apart, in October 2004 and October 2005 general conferences, respectively.
Other temples sharing the same metro area were announced decades apart — in cities such as São Paulo, Brazil; Lima, Peru; Santiago, Chile; Manila, Philippines; and Guatemala City, Guatemala.
And the four new locations near Mexico City are in addition to the operating Mexico City Mexico Temple, located northeast of the city’s center; the anticipated temple location near the Mexico MTC on the Church’s old Benemérito de las America’s school property farther north from central Mexico City; and the under-construction Puebla Mexico Temple in that city some 65 miles (105 kilometers) away.
With a statewide membership of 2.1 million Latter-day Saints, Utah is home to 28 temples in various stages of operation, renovation, construction and planning. Most are in close proximity to other temples — and a number within 10 miles or fewer of each other.
Consider that within the 125-mile, north-south distance — as the crow flies, not as the car drives – along Utah’s Wasatch Front between Smithfield and Payson, the Church has temples operating, under construction or in planning in Smithfield, Logan, Brigham City, Ogden, Layton, Syracuse, Bountiful, Salt Lake City, Taylorsville, South Jordan (two), Draper, Saratoga Springs, American Fork, Lindon, Orem, Provo (two) and Payson — and Heber City and Tooele, if you go short distances. That’s a total of 21 alone.
Below are groupings of other nearby temples — sometimes in the same metro areas, others across international borders. (Note: Temples under construction are marked with an asterisk — * — and those still in planning with a pound sign — #):
Mexico City, Mexico (6): Mexico City Mexico Temple, Mexico City Benemérito Mexico Temple#, and the four newly announced temples for Cuernavaca, Pachuca, Toluca and Tula, Mexico.
Los Angeles, California (4): Los Angeles California, Newport Beach California, Redlands California and Yorba Linda California# temples.
Eastern Idaho (4): Pocatello Idaho, Idaho Falls, Rexburg Idaho and Teton River Idaho# temples.
São Paulo, Brazil (4): São Paulo Brazil, Campinas Brazil, São Paulo East Brazil# and Santos Brazil# temples.
Phoenix, Arizona (3): Mesa Arizona, Gilbert Arizona and Phoenix Arizona temples.
Dallas/Fort Worth, Texas (3): Dallas Texas and Fort Worth# Texas temples and the newly announced temple for Prosper, Texas.
St. George, Utah (2): St. George Utah and Red Cliffs Utah* temples.
Sanpete Valley, Utah (2): Manti Utah and Ephraim Utah* temples.
Boise, Idaho (2): Boise Idaho and Meridian Idaho temples.
South-central Idaho (2): Burley Idaho* and Twin Falls Idaho temples.
Sacramento, California (2): Sacramento California and Feather River California* temples
Las Vegas, Nevada (2): Las Vegas Nevada Temple and the newly announced temple for Lone Mountain, Nevada.
Seattle, Washington (2): Seattle Washington Temple and the newly announced temple for Tacoma, Washington.
Guatemala City, Guatemala (2): Guatemala City Guatemala and Miraflores Guatemala City Guatemala# temples.
Lima, Peru (2): Lima Peru and Lima Peru Los Olivos* temples.
Manila, Philippines (2): Manila Philippines and Alabang Philippines* temples.
Santiago, Chile (2): Santiago Chile and Santiago Chile West# temples.
Buenos Aires, Argentina (2): Buenos Aires Argentina Temple and the newly announced temple for Buenos Aires’s city center.
Two Congos (2): Kinshasa Democratic Republic of the Congo and Brazzaville Republic of the Congo# temples.