From the Church

In a Church history first, three temples dedicated on the same day

The dedication of the Moses Lake Washington Temple on Sunday, September 17, by Elder Quentin L. Cook of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, the third dedication of the day, brings the number of operating temples of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints to 182.

The dedication came two hours after a similar ceremony in Bentonville, Arkansas, by Elder David A. Bednar of the Twelve. About two hours prior to that, Elder Neil L. Andersen, also of the Twelve, dedicated the Brasília Brazil Temple. Having triple dedications in a single day is a first for the Church.

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Moses Lake Washington Temple

Latter-day Saints gather in the grounds of the Moses Lake Washington Temple on Sunday, September 17, 2023, the day it was dedicated in Moses Lake, Washington.
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“The temple is a blessing and a gift and prepares us to rejoice in what the Savior has done for us,” Elder Cook said in Moses Lake, Washington, where he dedicated the Moses Lake Washington Temple.

While previously a General Authority Seventy, Elder Cook served as president of the Church’s North America Northwest Area, which included Washington state. In addition to visiting many stakes in that area, he also participated with then-President Gordon B. Hinckley at the dedication of the Columbia River Washington Temple, in Richland, on November 18, 2001, and also during the open house prior to the dedication.

Bentonville Arkansas Temple

The Bentonville Arkansas Temple in Bentonville, Arkansas, on Sunday, September 17, 2023, the day the temple was dedicated.
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Elder Bednar tied Sunday’s three dedications with the Church’s total number of temples — and looked back to his youth to put the increase in numbers in perspective.

“As a 12-year-old boy in 1964, I attended with my mother the dedication of the Oakland California Temple—the 13th operating house of the Lord. Today, just 59 years later, 315 temples are functioning, announced, in design, under construction, or being renovated,” he said.

“How grateful we should be to live in this remarkable season of the latter-day dispensation of the fullness of times,” he added. “We are blessed to witness and participate in the ongoing fulfillment of prophecies that holy houses of the Lord will dot the earth. Surely the Lord is hastening His work in marvelous ways all around the world.”

Elder Bednar and his wife, Sister Susan Bednar raised their young family in Bentonville during the 1980s and 1990s.

Brasília Brazil Temple

The Brasília Brazil Temple on on Sunday, September 17, 2023, the day it was dedicated by Elder Neil L. Andersen of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles.
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Nearly three years to the day since ground was broken in what is known as Brasília’s North Wing, Elder Andersen dedicated the new Brasília Brazil Temple. Recognizing the significance of the day in Church history with three temple dedications, Elder Andersen smiled and said, “It is a glorious day.”

Elder Andersen invited worthy members of the Church to come to the temple in any of life’s circumstances because “the Lord’s Spirit will be here and the beauties of the eternities will be yours.”

He, and all who spoke in the dedicatory sessions, spoke in Portuguese without the aid of live interpretation.

You can read more about each of the temple dedications on Church Newsroom.

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