Comments about ‘Despite recession, downtown Salt Lake is rising’

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Published: Saturday, July 25 2009 12:00 a.m. MDT

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To those concerned about a slow down in temple building and chapel, I might ask how often you attend the closest temple to you. Temple building has slowed because we as members do not use the existing temples enough. As for chapels we could stand to do more missionary work. It is sad to see a new chapel built and then only have one small ward in it. Temples and chapels cost plenty to build and even more to maintain. It is very laughable to see people confuse investment funds with tithing funds. It is so easy for people to be critical of those who are taking care of things. As for development, that creates jobs which gives people income which they can in turn spend at stores and restaraunts. That is how to get the economy going, not by handing out lots of money to people who screwed up in the first place but that is another story.


Unfortunately, it appears far too many posters here have a strange and/or limited understanding of economics, and have little apparent appreciation of how tithing funds invested long ago can be returned to church coffers--to be used for church ecclesiastical purposes--with all additional (current and future) investment income being generated as 'non-tithing' funds. Do you not see the difference? the distinction? is this rocket science?

And I think Watchman may be making cause and effect assumptions and presumptions regarding chapel and temple building which may have little to do with reality.

Watchman's flaw

Watchmen says "I sustain the brethren because they hold the keys", but TWICE insinuates they are lying about tithing use (i.e the comment "SUPPOSEDLY non-tithing"). That pretty much nullifies Watchmen's "sustaining" of the brethern. So, Watchman, don't insult our intelligence (and perhaps your own) by saying you "sustain" them, when your posts on this issue show you clearly do not. Criticize them if you like, but do so bravely, without trying to have it both ways. (Maybe you could look up some scriptures on being honest?) The church is true, Thomas S. Monson is God's prophet. The church will continue to grow, just as it has for 160 years, in spite of those who claimed it would die with the prophet Joseph Smith. The only safe place to be in troubled times is on God's side, which means standing with and by the church and its leaders.

Dear "me"

You say "As for development, that creates jobs which gives people income which they can in turn spend at stores and restaraunts."

But not on Sunday, which means that businesses in the project will basically lose 15% of their potential income, when we who DO have the money and spend it, shop and eat elsewhere.

There's lots of us who absolutely avoid businesses that wear their religion (ANY religion) on their sleeve, and pander to one group.

Why do you think ZCMI Center and Crossroads failed in the first place? Because ZCMI and many other businesses were closed HALF THE TIME ON WSEEKENDS when people could go shopping.

Thanks for the Laugh

Re: "City Creek is where friends meet friends, where work meets play, where the past meets the future, and WHERE SALT LAKE MEETS NEW YORK."

I just blew coffee out my nose reading that gem. What a hoot!

Answer Me Please

Why must they close on Sunday? The church sold coffee and cigarettes in the Hotel Utah (and booze and prostitutes were also available there). Brigham Young had no compunction about selling liquor to the gentiles.


The church has recently had to put half a billion into beneficial life due to speculation. How much will the church need to put in the upmarket City Creek to keep it afloat? Where is everybody doing their shopping now? Will they all of a sudden find extra money to shop at City Creek? How many shops in other locations in the salt lake area will be fighting for survival and then blaming the church? Why will alcohol be served on church owned property? City Creek is a 2 billion speculation of covetousness.

Heber C Kimball prophesied: After a while the gentiles will gather by the thousands to this place, and Salt Lake City will be classed among the wicked cities of the world. A spirit of speculation and extravagance will take possession of the Saints, and the results will be financial bondage.

Jeremiah prophesied 8 v 9 The wise men are ashamed, they are dismayed and taken: lo they have rejected the Word of the Lord; and what wisdom is in them...for everyone from the least even unto the greatest is given to covetousness from the prophet even unto the priest every one dealeth falsely.

Heber C Kimball

"After a while the gentiles will gather by the thousands to this place, and Salt Lake City will be classed among the wicked cities of the world. A spirit of speculation and extravagance will take possession of the Saints, and the results will be financial bondage. "

So creating a beautiful, peaceful area next to temple square is contributing to the wickedness of Salt Lake? Trust me if nothing is done here economically, extravagance will be the last problem found amongst an insolvent people.

Something tells me watchman that Pres. Hinkley/Monson understand the ramifications of this project, if they were afraid of this being the downfall of the Gospel, they'd pull the plug long ago. Instead of being such a pessimist try reading Daniels vision of the rock cut without hands. It will make you feel better.


1. Does God's revelation include where to invest money?

2. If someone bequeaths their estate to the LDS church they are free to use it for profit?

3. You are saying if the church invests $100K of tiyhing, earns a million, they are free to take the million for profit investment?

A in LA

I have read all these comments (Many of them pathetic in their reasoning) and I wonder if anyone has given thought to the timing of this building project. I find it interesting that during this terrible economic time with people being laid off all over the country, this project is providing many, many, jobs to a community and people who otherwise might be out of work as well. Maybe these church officials, whom so many of you feel free to criticize as if you actually had any knowledge, were more divinely inspired on this project and its timely construction, than you realize. You should all be a little more grateful for the economy boost to your area instead of being so quick to criticise.


People need to chill out on bashing Watchman. The "holier-than-thou" crap is a little much. It remains to be seen if it will be a good investment. I hope it will be. But acting like church leaders can't do wrong in money matters and investing shows a bit of ignorance of church history.

I think it will come out okay and given the volume of people visiting Temple Square I think it's good to attempt to have a vibrant downtown SLC. But times are tough and any recovery at this point is pretty precarious. So you can understand Watchman being a little dubious. What I can't understand is how people can be so judgmental and pious. Simmer down a bit, dismount your high horse, and let's hope time will prove it to be a wise investment.


When one pays tithing it is no longer "their money", it is the "Lord's Money" used to build the kingdom how he sees fit. The way the tithes are spent is overseen by The Council on the Disposition of Tithes that consists of the First Presidency, the Quorum of the Tweleve Apostles and the Presiding Bishopric.

As members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints we have the responsability of paying a full tithe. It is not our concern how those tithes are spent. The Council on the Disposition of Tithes bears this responsability. So my advice would be to relax. The Lord is in charge of His Church. There are 18 people called to oversee how the money is spent. They are smart, educated, experienced men.

Not lds but

I think it's great that someone with a huge interest in the state of Utah puts their money where their mouth is. ZCMI and Crossroads were blighted junky piece of crap malls, and the LDS church is actually being proactive and making their community a better place. Do you not remember how bad downtown SLC was getting before the mormons stepped up to the plate and did something about it. Also, relatively speaking Utah still has one of the strongest economy's in the country and I don't think that they will have a hard time filling up the mall by the time it is done in almost 2 years.

Lloyd K.

Sorry folks, but Harry L. was right. There isn't a cent in tithes in these projects. I doubt, knowing somewhat how the Church operates, that even very old originating tithes were used for the basis for the corparations that are doing this work. Many of them are Church majority owned; some just have church leaders on board of directors.
Since the Church growth started in Nauvoo (their first place of real settlement and growth) church members have invested as much as possible in property - I only wish I had been so wise in my lifetime.
This practice continued in SLC until members, and the Church itself (through indowments and non-tith contributions) has, over 100 years latter become a financial powerhouse - leaving tithes for their intended purposes.
Non-eclessiastical projects are NOT built from actual Church coffers. To my knowledge non of these corparate entities is totally Church owned; but they have a great enough ownership in them to have substantial say in where to go and what to do.
Unfortunately I lost a lot last year when a downtown project I was invested in collapsed due to bank failure. The Church has great wisdom in being self financed.


Hopefully the overall economy will be better by the time the downtown project is completed. Otherwise there will be a lot of empty apartments and office space. Any reasonable person can clearly see that empty apartments and offices cannot be a good investment.


I think it was pure inspiration for the church to invest in the downtown area when they did. With this economic downturn, they are stimulating the economy and providing jobs. Heck! Obama is probably excited about this also, he can say we have saved or created "such and such amount of jobs this year" in part by what the LDS church is doing downtown. So, quit your whining, Anon.


To Bear Laker and all the Utahn's who think spending millions of tithing money on fixing up Downtown Salt Lake City is o.k.. Get real, the tithing money comes in from all over the world and not just Salt Lake City. That is why people outside of Salt Lake City should enjoy the blessing of chapels and more temples, not just you Utahn's should reap the benefits of the tithing money for your city beautification projects.


Was it the 150's or 1960's that the Church was almost out of money? So all this wealth has been amassed since then. Just a little history.


Isa 28:1-4: “Woe to the crown of pride, to the drunkards of Ephraim, whose glorious beauty is a fading flower.... The crown of pride, the drunkards of Ephraim, (drunk with worldliness) shall be trodden under feet: And the glorious beauty, which is on the head of the fat (prosperous) valley, shall be a fading flower, and as the hasty fruit before the summer”

Is the above prophesy referring to wealthy members of the Church living in their comfort and prosperity in the Salt Lake Valley with their spanking new 2 billion shopping up market shopping centre on the way? As Isaiah prophesied this will turn out be a “fading flower and hasty fruit before the summer” in the fat valley of covetousness. No expense is being spared ‘The retail streets will have retractable roofs’

Maybe the recent closing of the Church College of New Zealand is now helping to finance the project? Why has the price already gone up from 1 to two billion? The church department I work for has been told to cut budget by 20% why? I repeat their are congregations of saints who have been refused chapels because funds are short.


I don't understand why a church has a place in business at all. It seems to me that a church should be interested in matters of the spirit, not matters of money.

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