Washington D.C. Temple open house, dedication dates postponed due to COVID-19

The open house and dedication dates for the Washington D.C. Temple have been postponed because of the effects of COVID-19, the Church announced Wednesday, June 17.

The events will be rescheduled when large public gatherings are deemed safe.

The original dates for the Washington D.C. Temple’s rededication events were announced in late February. They included a public open house originally scheduled for Sept. 24 though Oct. 31, excluding the Sundays of Sept. 27 and Oct. 11, 18 and 25 and the general conference weekend dates of Oct. 3-4. The Sunday, Dec. 13, rededication was to be preceded by a Dec. 12 youth devotional.

The temple closed for renovations in 2018 to update mechanical and electrical systems, refresh finishes and furnishing and improve the grounds.

Once rescheduled, the open house will mark the first time the public will be able to tour the Washington D.C. Temple since its 1974 dedication, when it became the Church’s 16th temple in operation. Today, there are 168 operating temples worldwide — they too have been affected by the global COVID-19 pandemic restrictions and adjustments.

The original Washington D.C. Temple public open house was attended by 758,328 guests, including Betty Ford, wife of then-U.S. President Gerald Ford.

The postponement of the temple open house and dedication mirrors a similar March 18 announcement for the Rio de Janeiro Brazil Temple.

Its open house was scheduled from April 17 through May 2, with the dedication on Sunday, May 17. But those events also are on hold until large public gatherings are deemed safe again.