Ground broken for new temple in the Philippines — the Bacolod Philippines Temple

With golden shovels, Elder Taniela B. Wakolo, a General Authority Seventy and president of the Philippines Area, led Church leaders and members, interfaith representatives and government officials, in the ceremonial groundbreaking for the Bacolod Philippines Temple on Saturday, Dec. 11. 

In the dedicatory prayer, Elder Wakolo shared how the Church members in Bacolod have sacrificed to travel to the temple, according to the Philippines Newsroom.

“This temple will then stand not only as a symbol of our membership in the Church, but as a sign of our faith in life after death and as a sacred step toward eternal glory for us and our families,” he said. 

Elder Yoon Hwan Choi, a General Authority Seventy and counselor the Philippines Area presidency, echoed what President M. Russell Ballard, Acting President of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, said to young adults about visiting the temple grounds and preparing to go to the temple.

“Nothing prevents you or anyone else from visiting the temple grounds,” President Ballard said. “The Lord wants you to prepare yourself to be worthy of a temple recommend and come to the temple as soon as you can.”

Elder Choi added, “May the Lord continue to accept your dedicated part and help you to prepare to be more ready to receive all the blessings of the temple when it is built. I want you to know that the blessings will be given even before the temple is physically completed.”

President Russell M. Nelson announced a temple for Bacolod, Philippines, during the October 2019 general conference. The rendering and site location were announced in October.

The site location of the Bacolod Philippines Temple.
The site location of the Bacolod Philippines Temple. Credit: The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

Bacolod is on Negros Island in the central Visayas islands. The temple will be a single story of approximately 26,700 square feet and built on a 12.3-acre site located on the Bacolod Airport Access Road, north of Buri Road. An ancillary building of approximately 18,000 square feet is also planned for the site and will include patron housing, an arrival center and a distribution center.

There are eight temples dedicated, under construction or announced in the Philippines. 

There are two dedicated temples: Manila (dedicated in 1984) on the northern island of Luzon, and Cebu City (2010) in the country’s central Visayas region. 

There are three other temples being constructed: the Alabang Philippines Temple, in the Manila metro area; the Davao temple, on the southern Philippine island of Mindanao; and a temple in Urdaneta, which is north of Manila. 

Temples have been announced for Cagayan de Oro, which is on the northern side of the southern Philippine island of Mindanao, and Tacloban, on the eastern side of the Visayas region on Leyte Island. The temple in Tacloban is one of 13 temples President Nelson announced in the Sunday afternoon session of the Church’s October 2021 general conference

This year, Church members in the Philippines are also celebrating the 60th anniversary of missionary work in the country. There are more than 820,000 members in about 1,250 congregations and 23 missions in the country.