Leaders break ground for Argentina’s 5th temple in Bahía Blanca

The Bahía Blanca Argentina Temple — the fifth temple of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in the South America country — has moved into its construction phase, following a Saturday, April 9, groundbreaking ceremony.

Elder Joaquín E. Costa, a General Authority Seventy and second counselor in the South America South Area presidency, speaks at the April 9, 2022, groundbreaking ceremony for the Bahía Blanc Argentina Temple.
Elder Joaquín E. Costa, a General Authority Seventy and second counselor in the South America South Area presidency, speaks at the April 9, 2022, groundbreaking ceremony for the Bahía Blanc Argentina Temple. Credit: The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

Elder Joaquín E. Costa, General Authority Seventy and second counselor in the Church’s South America South Area presidency, presided at the groundbreaking at the 8.14-acre site at Aldea Romana over Cabrera Avenue.

A number of community members — including local civic leaders — attended the invitation-only event.

“We thank the authorities of the different governments through the many years that the gospel has been shared here,” said Elder Costa, a native of Concordia, Argentina, in the dedicatory prayer over the property and construction process. “We are grateful for the tolerance and openness to receive missionaries, allow construction and provide a safe environment for the restored Church of Jesus Christ to grow in Bahía Blanca and southern Argentina.”

Exterior rendering of the Bahía Blanca Argentina Temple.
Exterior rendering of the Bahía Blanca Argentina Temple. Credit: The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

President Russell M. Nelson announced a temple for Bahía Blanca as one of eight locations identified during the April 2020 general conference.

On Feb. 9, 2022, the Church released a site location and exterior rendering for the temple.

According to plans, the single-story temple will be 19,000 square feet. A 25,000-square-foot ancillary building also will be built on the site, providing patron housing and a distribution center.

The country’s first temple — the Buenos Aires Argentina Temple — was dedicated in 1986, with the second coming nearly three decades later with the 2015 dedication of the Córdoba Argentina Temple.

Attendees participate in the groundbreaking ceremony for the Bahía Blanca Argentina Temple on Saturday, April 9, 2022.
Attendees participate in the groundbreaking ceremony for the Bahía Blanca Argentina Temple on Saturday, April 9, 2022. Credit: The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

Two more are currently under construction — the Salta Argentina Temple and the Mendoza Argentina Temple, both with their groundbreakings held in late 2021.

More than 470,000 Latter-day Saints in some 735 congregations reside in the southern South American country.

Bahía Blanca is a port city in Argentina’s Buenos Aires province, located about 400 miles south of the capital city of Buenos Aires.

A recording of the groundbreaking ceremony is available in Spanish.

Site location of the Bahía Blanca Argentina Temple.
Site location of the Bahía Blanca Argentina Temple. Credit: The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints