ST. GEORGE — Nearly a century and a half after it was originally planned, constructed and dedicated by 19th century pioneers, a renovated and refreshed St. George Tabernacle was rededicated Saturday morning, July 28, by Elder Jeffrey R. Holland, a “native son” of the Southern Utah community.
Elder Jeffrey R. Holland of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, joined by Elder Steven E. Snow, church historian and General Authority Seventy, recalled personal experiences in the building during the rededication of the sandstone tabernacle that sits in the center of the city. A religious and community focal point since it was started in 1863 and dedicated in 1876, the tabernacle hosted meetings and activities well before it was completely finished.
Both Elder Holland and Elder Snow used the word “treasure” to describe the tabernacle.
“This is a treasure to us in part because of nearly 150 years of meaning and memory and sacrifice,” said Elder Holland, who offered the dedicatory prayer.
Both Elder Holland and Elder Snow spoke of their memories in the building.
For Elder Holland the tabernacle doubled as his ward meetinghouse and stake center for his first two decades. It started out with his naming and blessing ordinance as a new infant there, followed by his attending Junior Sunday School and Primary meetings, having an Aaronic Priesthood interview on a pew, passing the sacrament as a new deacon, singing a duet with a friend in stake conference from the rostrum and later joining his Dixie High School teammates as the community celebrated the Flyers’ football and basketball championships in the building.
See a complete report on the rededication on Deseretnews.com.