With a prayer dedicating both its site and construction process and the ceremonial turning of shovelfuls of dirt, the Grand Junction Colorado Temple is now beginning its construction phase.
The Saturday, April 16, groundbreaking ceremony in Grand Junction, Colorado, marks the start of what will be the third temple in Colorado for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and was announced on ChurchofJesusChrist.org.
Elder Chi Hong (Sam) Wong, a General Authority Seventy and counselor in the Church’s North America Central Area presidency, presided at the event and offered the dedicatory prayer.
“This is a day of dedication — not only of this temple site, but for each of us in our individual lives,” said Elder Wong in the dedicatory prayer.
He continued: “Tomorrow is Easter Sunday. We are grateful for the Atonement of Thy Son Jesus Christ and the blessing of the promised Resurrection. As we dedicate this holy ground, we pray that we can maintain this positive spiritual momentum in our lives.”
Attendance at the groundbreaking ceremony was by invitation only; however, the event was livestreamed to Church meetinghouses throughout the temple district.
With a population of about 65,000 people, Grand Junction is the largest city in Colorado’s Western Slope region and is where the Gunnison and Colorado rivers converge.
The temple — a single-story structure of about 29,000 square feet — will be located on a 6.94-acre site at the intersection of Horizon Drive and North 12th Street.
The temple’s site was announced on June 23, 2021, with the temple’s exterior rendering released three months later, on Sept. 17, 2021
The Grand Junction temple is one of 100 new temples announced by President Nelson during his four-plus years of Church leadership. The Church has 282 total temples worldwide — in operation, under construction or renovation, or announced.