LDS Church News

Temples, including Rome Italy Temple, reflect growth of the Church

By Gerry Avant

Church News editor

Published: Friday, April 4 2014 7:15 a.m. MDT

Construction is progressing on the Rome Italy Temple; some scaffolding was removed in March. President Thomas S. Monson announced in 2008 plans to build the temple; he dedicated the site Oct. 23, 2010. It is anticipated the temple will be dedicated in 2015.

IRI

Work is progressing on the construction of the Rome Italy Temple, one of the most-watched and talked-about building projects underway by the Church.

President Thomas S. Monson announced plans to build the Rome Italy Temple on Oct. 4, 2008. He dedicated the site and broke ground for the temple on Oct. 23, 2010.

“Much of the exterior scaffolding has been removed, so the beauty of the temple can be seen,” said Elder William R. Walker of the Seventy and Executive Director of the Temple Department. He said a date for the temple’s dedication hasn’t been determined but it might take place some time during 2015.

The Rome temple sits on 14.5 acres located at Via de Settebagni, 376, in the northeast corner of the city. It is being constructed primarily of cast-in-place concrete with Sianco Sardo granite façade; the stone is quarried and fabricated in Italy.

The main building will be 59 feet, 9 inches in height. There are two spires; the west one is to be 138 feet, 6 inches and the east spire will rise to 156 feet, 3 inches when topped with the statue of Angel Moroni.

Temple Department officials said that great care has been taken with the landscaping of the site throughout the project. Stony pines on the site were preserved from existing vegetation and the olive trees have been relocated throughout the site. Walkways surrounding the temple are constructed of Travertine pavers quarried from various locations throughout Italy.

The primary stone in the interior is Perlato Svevo marble; it is used on the floors, stone base, walls and countertops throughout the temple. The stone is being quarried in various locations and fabricated in Italy.

A variety of materials will be used on the floors of the temple. Accent stone is used on the floor at the baptistry and the grand stair lobby. The patterns were inspired by Michelangelo's Piazza del Campidoglio located at the top of the Capitoline Hill in Rome. The design includes Michelangelo’s oval design representing the center of the world. Stones used in the floor patterns come from several nations, including Spain, Brazil and Turkey, as well as Italy.

Carpets in the celestial and sealing rooms will be off white with carvings reflected in the decorative painting and inspired by the Campidoglio.

Decorative paintings, art glass, millwork and crown moldings will add to the beauty of the temple.

The Rome Italy Temple is one of the landmarks of the growth of the Church. Elder Walker said he marvels at that growth and the increasing number of temples, from 10 that had been built by the time he was 12 years old to the 142 that have been dedicated to date. The 143rd, the Fort Lauderdale Florida Temple, will be dedicated May 4.

“When I was 11 years old, the Primary president in our ward (Raymond, Alberta, Canada) said she wanted us to memorize the 13 Articles of Faith and the names and locations of all the temples in the Church by the time we graduated from Primary,” he said. “I had most of the Articles of Faith memorized by that time, and I decided I could learn the names and locations of the nine temples of the Church.”

He already had learned about the temples built in Kirtland, Ohio (1836), and Nauvoo, Ill., (1846) before the Saints migrated west. Also, he had learned about the four temples built in Utah: St. George (1877), Logan (1884), Manti (1888) and Salt Lake City, (1893), and the ones built in Laie, Hawaii (1919), Cardston, Alberta, Canada (1923) and Mesa, Ariz. (1927).

“My great-grandfather, Adam Russell, attended the dedication of the Salt Lake City Temple. He considered it one of the great moments in his life,” Elder Walker said.