— Following is the text of the prayer President Henry B. Eyring, first counselor in the First Presidency, offered in dedicating the Philadelphia Pennsylvania Temple on Sept. 18, 2016.
O God, our Heavenly Father, Thou Great Elohim, in the name of Thy Beloved Son, Jesus Christ, we come before Thee in love and humility to dedicate this holy house. We are grateful for the blessings that have been showered upon us.
First and foremost, we remember the gift of Thy Son, the great Jehovah, Savior of the world. We are grateful that He came down from His place in glory at Thy side to offer the infinite sacrifice that makes it possible for us to be purified and to return to Thee.
We are grateful for the hospitality of this historic city and pray that it may be blessed by the very presence of Thy house. May the light of the gospel that emanates from this holy temple be felt throughout the community.
We thank Thee for all who have made possible this day, those who have made the decision to place a temple here, the architects and contractors, the city officials who have granted the necessary permits, the workmen and all associated with this undertaking. Bless the faithful tithe payers of the Church who have given to further the building of temples. Keep Thine promises made by the prophet Malachi to open the windows of heaven and shower blessings down upon them.
We are profoundly grateful for the Constitution of the United States and for the Bill of Rights. These are the guarantors of our independence and our liberty.
We pray for this nation of which we are part. Preserve the freedom of the people now and for generations to come. May these blessings rest upon its citizens without restraint or hindrance of any kind. Bless those who lead and inspire them in their endeavors that righteousness may grow, that the people may look to Thee, and that this nation, under God, may continue as a base from which Thy work may spread throughout the earth.
Many not of our faith have previously visited this building. May they reflect on their experience with reverence and appreciation. May they be led, as Thou hast promised, to acknowledge that this is indeed Thy house.
May the sanctifying influence of the temple be extended into the families, the neighborhoods, and the communities of those who will come to worship here. We seek Thy favor, Father, in pouring out Thy blessings upon all those who reside in the temple district. Prosper them as they honor this Thy house.
May it ever be a place of peace, of order, and of love, where hearts are turned heavenward, whatever tumult may be in the world around it. We ask that the Holy Ghost may be unrestrained in this sacred place.
We ask that no unclean thing shall enter the portals of this Thy holy house. Rebuke the devourer and him who seeks to disrupt and destroy. Guard and fortify and strengthen all who come here against the forces of evil.
Now, acting in the authority of the Holy Melchizedek priesthood, we dedicate and consecrate unto Thee and Thy Beloved Son, this sacred structure, the Philadelphia Pennsylvania Temple of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. We ask that Thou will accept it as a gift of love for Thee and for Thy Son.
We dedicate this beautiful temple with all its facilities, furnishings, ancillary structures, and the adjacent meetinghouse. We dedicate the place on which it stands, with the vegetation growing thereon to add such beauty to this structure. We dedicate the temple from its foundation to the figure of Moroni, which crowns its steeple. We dedicate the sacred baptistry, the initiatory ordinance facilities, the endowment rooms, the sealing rooms with their altars, and the crowning jewel of the temple, the celestial room, and every part of this sacred house. May it be safeguarded from vandalism, fire, the elements of nature and any evil hand that might be inclined to deface or defile it in any way.
Bless Thy worthy Saints who come here that they may grow in faith and testimony concerning Thy Beloved Son. May they grow in understanding of Thy eternal purposes in bringing to pass the immortality and eternal life of Thy sons and daughters. May they stay faithful to their promises and covenants made herein.
We pray for those who are sealed as man and wife in this temple for eternity. Bless them with charity, the pure love of Christ. Protect them from evil. Protect them from selfishness and pride. Bless them that their hearts will be turned to each other, to their children, to their descendants, and to their ancestors with the hope of eternal life.
Please strengthen the youth who are surrounded by temptations and evil. Give them the courage to stand firm for truth and righteousness. Bless them with a vision of temple service and of their eternal purpose.
Bless the temple presidency, ordinance workers, and patrons. Bless them that they may feel Thy loving arms and those of the Savior in whatever challenges may come into their lives and the lives of their children. Bless them with the peace Thy Son has promised His faithful disciples.
Father, we ask Thee to endow with power those who go forth from this house as Thine authorized servants to carry the message of the eternal gospel to the people of the world. Let Thine inspiration rest upon them. May the Holy Ghost be their companion. May they be protected from harm and evil. May Thy work roll on across the earth to touch for everlasting good, the lives of all who will accept it.
On this historic day in Philadelphia, we sing Thy praises dear Father. We are mindful that Thou art God, the Father of our spirits, the Almighty Governor of the universe. How thankful we are that we know Thou hearest and wilt answer our prayers. We pray for these blessings as we renew our faith and strengthen our determination to honor our own covenants, in the name of Him who is our Redeemer, our Savior, our Lord, and our King, even Jesus Christ, amen.
Temple Fact Box
Location: 1739 Vine Street, Philadelphia, PA 19103
Plans Announced: October 4, 2008
Groundbreaking: September 17, 2011
Public Open House: August 10September 9, 2016
Cultural Celebration: September 17, 2016
Dedication: September 18, 2016
Property Size: 1.6 acres
Building Size: 61,466 square feet
Building Height: 208 feet, 2 inches
Architect: Perkins + Will and FFKR
Contractor: Driscoll and Big-D Joint Venture
The Philadelphia Pennsylvania Temple will be the 152nd operating temple of Church worldwide and the first in Pennsylvania. It will serve more than 40,000 Church members in parts of Pennsylvania, Delaware, New Jersey and Maryland.
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