I remember when I was in the MTC back in 1998 - I remember it being overcrowded
then. And apparently, they had just completed an expansion then, too! If they
need an expansion then, they certainly need it now with the influx of new
missionaries with the lowered age requirements.@Brave Sir RobinA couple groups after mine, they implemented a "split" MTC period
where missionaries would spend one month in Provo and one month in Sao Paulo.
From what I heard, even in Sao Paulo, they went out of their way to ensure that
the American missionaries had all their activities - classes, devotionals,
temple sessions - in English. The missionaries were so disappointed that they
didn't feel like it was worth it to be moved in the middle of their MTC
Well, the church is opening a fourth mission in Ghana this year. International
student enrollment at BYU is kept down by many factors, including the
difficulties the US puts in the way of international students it sees as at risk
to not retrun at the end of their studies. The cost and logistical problems in
returning home also make it a much more difficult experience than for those who
come from even the most distant parts of the US.
Having the MTC close to a temple is generally considered a good thing. There is
no temple in Tooele so I doubt that would be considered. Also, creating a new
MTC would require a new set of leadership, which expanding the current one would
not. Another consideration is many current MTC teachers get there by bus, so it
needs to be an easily accessible place. The language issues at
BYU-Idaho are not relevant since teachers draw on their experience as
missionaries, not on college classes in the language. However there are strong
logistical considerations in making new MTCs, and it is probably not worth doing
so within the US.
Having the MTC connected with BYU makes it possible to employ international
students there in a way that would not be possible if they were not connected.
Of course the connection does not demand a physical proximity. However the
Church many years ago determined not to expand academic space at BYU, so there
is really not a need to expand BYU onto the MTC property.
Even if it was reasonable to open more international MTCs, that would not be a
total solution. A-there is a huge number of missionaries called to serve in the
US. b-This includes many foriegn missionaries who come to the MTC in part to
learn English. c-Being adjacent to BYU provides the MTC with a clear supply of
teachers. Having a ready supply of trained teachers is an issue that needs to
be surmounted in building international MTCs. I am really not sure where else
the Church could build additional MTCs. Maybe in Germany, France and Italy, but
it is not clear that such would really alievate much demand on the one in Utah.
They might try to build MTCs elsewhere in the US, but the logistical difficulty
of such would probably be even greater than expanding the existent one.
dustman:: If you are talking about the Beehive House, you are wrong. The
beehive House was Brigham Youngs home.
Why not build an MTC at the International Center? It is close to the airport so
the cost of transportation for the missionaries would be greatly reduced. It is
far enough out to discourage missionaries from getting out and into trouble.
There are plenty of LDS returned missionaries in Salt Lake and Davis counties
that could serve there for language training, or they could dedicate that
facility to those who will be serving in English speaking missions.No temple for them to attend? How about building one within the MTC. It
worked for the Hong Kong and NYC temples to be in multi use buidlings. Plus a
temple out in the NW part of SL county would benefit Toole residents and those
on the west side.
President Hinckley's polar star vision, in which you would see this visual
link between the MTC and the temple. which really the 3 fold mission of the
Church. What a great idea from a person that lives in the area.
Missionaries will have that experience to see the aligning of the three-fold
mission in their stay at the MTC. Those that instruct and are leaders will have
that more indelible in their minds, hearts, and soul. 900 East for missionaries
should be doable as we still have people with the DNA of pioneers who can see
something and as President Kimball said, "do it". 1.
Proclaim the Gospel: MTC2. Perfect the Saints : church attendance,
temple attendance, church service, prayer, scripture study, family home evening,
and other gospel principles and ordinances.3. Redeem the Dead:
Temple The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints works very
hard in the myriads of things that the Church does on a daily basis around the
world and especially in Utah. The Presiding Bishopric have such a
busy schedule in planning, coordinating, partnering, and doing so many tasks in
those areas for meeting houses, temples, and other structures for the furthering
I think anytime someone wants to build close to my house or obstruct my view, I
should be able to voice my opinion. As an LDS church member, I'm glad
I'd be able to let my church leaders know that I'm not okay with them
building in front of my house. I don't live in Utah, but I applaud those
that stood up for themselves. I never felt right about the prophet Brigham Young
taking that one guy's house in Salt Lake away from him after he put all
that work into it. I'm sure Brigham needed a house, but to just take this
dude's house? It's a good house. Its still standing in SLC next to the
Joseph Smith building. As church members we can choose to say no. God is
pro-choice, its called agency.
Serious question, why does this expansion have to be in Provo? We have MTC
campuses all over the world, why can't the church build a second campus in
another part of the state, the region, or the country? I can't imagine
getting real estate in Idaho, Arizona, or even Virginia would be that hard, it
creates another visible church property, and wouldn't be a burden on the
local community. What am I missing? Why does it all have to be at one location?
Brave Sir Robin called it "The stated mission of BYU" to "provide an
LDS atmosphere specifically to out-of-state and international LDS students who
may not have had an atmosphere like that where they grew up."Really? Where has BYU or its sponsoring church EVER stated that as the
mission of BYU?
@Strider 303. You may not be aware that when the MTC was first built
many years ago, the Church made a promise to those living in the neighborhood
adjacent to the MTC that they would not build any buildings higher than four
stories. Therefore, the residents in this neighborhood had every right to
remind the Church of that promise. When this promise was brought to the
attention of the First Presidency, the plans to build the nine-story building
ended. The obstructed view that the nine-story building would have
created was really beside the point. Property values in this neighborhood have
always been the point and that is precisely why the promise about erecting
buildings no higher than four stories was made in the first place. Additionally, it is a courteous, "good neighbor" policy of the Church
to take into consideration the impact that building projects might have on any
surrounding properties in spite of zoning regulations or their legal right to
I like the idea of an English-only MTC near the Rexburg Temple. Keep the
language training in Provo. Back in the 70s, Scandinavian languages were taught
at the Ricks LTM, while Asian languages were taught at the CCH LTM.
The best way is to build a center in Rexburg. Send the Elders to one and the
Sisters to the other.
I'm surprised that neighbors favor the northeast option for aesthetic
reasons. The view from 900 East, looking from in front of the MTC to the temple,
is beautiful, open, and unobstructed. It's an amazing view not just of the
temple, but of the mountains behind it. Even short buildings would totally alter
the feel of the place.And by expanding to the south, placing the new
campus between the MTC and some BYU parking lots, on the current site of the
laundry, maintenance, and auxiliary support buildings, the Church would be
obstructing the view of...what exactly?
Twin Sister,Members of the community were engaged during a
three-year planning process in which expansion several options were considered.
The cramped all brick classrooms and other facilities needed to be replaced. A
single consolidated building in place of some of the original buildings was the
recommendation.After announcing their intentions, the church's needs
were explained to "all concerned parties." Information and resources
were put out online, in newspapers, city council and local community meetings
and this went on for months. There was no shortage of invitations for input. The church not acting on the wishes of a few does not mean that their wishes
were not considered. It is far more likely that during the three years of
planning that significant resources were put forth to meet the church's
needs and enhance rather than detract from the community. Your claim that
members in the community were not notified and consulted before and after the
announcement is false and disingenuous. The church has certainly been gracious.
Despite the church's efforts towards dialogue, those apposed staged
protests and sighted the fallibility of their leaders. To me they were arrogant.
The church ultimately respected their wishes.
The Church did not have to inform anyone personally about their plans to build
the nine-story building. They went to the City of Provo and followed the rules
by submitting plans and having them reviewed and approved. If the residents
with the view have a beef, it is with their representatives on the city council.
It is their representatives that set up and approved the zoning and building
rules and procedures. I'll bet it was on the agenda of the planning
commission and maybe even on line for all the world to see, if anyone cared to
check.There is no "right" to a view, you have a right to do
what you want to your property as long as you conform to the rules your
representatives make. And that's an issue for another time.The
Church would have been within it's rights to build the building as planned
once all requirements were met and ignore the public hue and cry over a view.
And if the new building did not meet the demand, they could build a second on on
the land it owns.It's not your land folks, get over it!
I really lovetheopen field west of the Temple. It is beautiful and peaceful.
Hope they don't build on it b
"Rexburg only teaches Spanish, French, Russian, German, Chinese--and of
course, English."Arizona1:There are a few others. My
son is taking classes in Arabic.
There is this principle called synergy. I know, cliches notwithstanding, it is
real. The combination of MTC, Temple, BYU, linguistic support, regional hub
airport, etc. is an obvious one. You would find no other place in the US with
that combination. That isn't to say that alternatives aren't
attractive in other states where you are focusing on that language, but for
broad support, BYU is it. The only alternative, would be a place like U of U for
English speaking missionaries, but that isn't going to happen given its
build out issues.
Correction: It was Elder Jeffrey R. Holland who stated in his talk that the
Lord only has imperfect people to work with in His Church--except for His
Perfect Son, Jesus Christ. "That must be very difficult for Him, but He
deals with it." I mistakenly attributed that statement to President Monson.
I suppose this is a case in point--I was mistaken.
snowman:: correction that should say less than 1%
thebigsamoan: It would be nice if more Provo residents could get into BYU.
Right now less than 15 of the students at BYU are from Provo.
When the age change announcement was made there were 2,800 missionaries in the
MTC. The LDS Church expects to hit a high around 8,000 this summer. In what
world does this stay at 6,000 missionaries, for the foreseeable future, in the
MTC?It doesn't make sense that this is a permanent bump more
than doubling the previous number of missionaries. Simply lowering the age means
a one-time bump for a few years until things go back to almost normal. Of
course, there will be some who will go on missions who wouldn't have before
the age change, but to expect it to more than double the number of missionaries
in the MTC going forward seems ludicrous to me. I would expect a more likely
permanent baseline increase of 10% to 20%.But then, I don't
receive revelation for the MTC!
@ Turtle,"The motto "The World is Our Campus" has real
meaning and in the future it would be nice to see more international students
get into BYU."Amen to that! We need more Ziggys from Ghana to
give BYU more exposure Ansahs, lol! Hope the Church is sending more
missionaries there. As for the MTC expansion plans, sounds like the
thngs are going well and everyone concerned are please and happy. I'm sure
the Lord is involved in the details of the plan so all will be well.
I wish they'd put one in Modesto CA so we can at least one good thing in
amagnetick: Property values go up where there are church builds.
So there aren't enough languages supported at BYU-ID... um, then maybe
there is a plethora of English speaking RMs there who could gain campus-type
employment... the temple is basically on campus. Re: flying to mission fields
- um, Idaho Falls (?) and there's always the 4 hour express available to
SLC airport. Its no worse than what students there are face with addressing, if
they don't drive personal vehicles. This approach could offload Provo
issues and strength the weak employment situation BYU-ID students face.
The MTC needs to stay in its same location for a variety of reasons that have
already been posted: close proximity to a temple, easy access to an enormous,
qualified pool for foreign language and other MTC staff, an hour drive to a
major airport which can handle the amount of missionaries departing, etc.There are other considerations as well. These could include the
following which may already dovetailed into BYU functions: integration of
security services, across-the-street-access to the BYU Health Center, food
services and food suppplies, and emergency services. I suspect that the church
has in place food storage to handle all missionaries and other
security/emergency plans in place to handle these missionaries should evacuation
or lock down occur. It would be hard to efficiently provide all
services the MTC needs on a cost-efficient basis if it were relocated to another
I'm not thinking about Tooele. I was thinking somewhere off-campus.And how often do they go to the temple?
It is absolutely essential that the MTC be next door to the temple, so the
missionaries can attend regularly and participate in the ordinances. This
further strengthens their testimony and reinforces the sacred covenants they
make. An MTC in Tooele would not further this need. Too much instructional and
learning time lost in transporting them to a temple. Those who will be living in
the Wyview and Raintree apartments, I assume would be bussed to the temple,
which would be a much shorter trip. Crossing 900 East would be very
simple, Simply make underground passages as they have done on Temple Square in
SLC. These passages would link the two campuses and be available only within
the campuses. No outside access.
I believe that proximity to an operating temple is essential for the MTC
experience of preparing missionaries. To move the MTC to a remote location will
take away from this spiritual strenthening instruction. Sounds like the Church
has reached a good solution with the two alternatives that reside near the Provo
Temple. Exciting times. These are great problems to have with so many young
people heading the Lord's call to serve.
The stone rolling forth to fill the earth? Not in my back yard.Seriously,
I don't know how the locals put up with the whole BYU congestion.I
suppose there is money to be made renting to students and the boost to the
economy.But the MTC gives the locals nothing but lunches and congestion on
intake day.If the church is going to invest in a building program they
need to think about a completely new complex. The current site is not adequate
for the big plans of the last days.Proximity to the temple needs to be
discounted as a consideration. Put the new MTC far away from the current
congested area. Plan for exercise areas.Once built the old MTC will not
go to waste. BYU has always filled the vacuum before.
I wonder what they will do if they go forward with all of this expansion and
then find after a few years that all of this excitement about going on a mission
"early" dies out.
Shamal, One of your points is in error. It is a fact (My parents
live in this neighborhood, therefore, I know whereof I speak.) that the Church
did not include the people who live in this neighborhood in their plans to build
the nine-story building. This decision was announced to the public (this
neighborhood included) and the press after the Church had made the decision to
build a nine-story building. Those living in this neighborhood had no input in
this decision nor any knowledge of these plans prior to this announcement. As President Monson reminded us in our recent General Conference,
imperfect people belong to and run the Church. Mistakes are made. A mistake was
made when the Church's committee failed to notify and include the neighbors
in the first building decision. What the Church did right the second
time was to invite all concerned parties in making the decision about the needed
expansion of the MTC. Again,I applaud the Church this second time around for
including all concerned parties in the decision making process. All is well!
Claudio Springville, UtRe: ClaudioThe
comments made by Brave Sir Robin were spot on. The BYU experience is often the
only one that people who live out of state can have. My children all grew up in
the mission field and going to BYU was a great opportunity. Sir Robin was
suggesting that your kids can go to one of several institutions in Utah other
than BYU and essentially have the same experience w/o having to deal with out of
state tuition. The motto "The World is Our Campus" has real meaning and
in the future it would be nice to see more international students get into
BYU.I would hope that you would have some sympathy for those who
live outside your boundaries. This is somewhat like the Perpetual Immigration
and Perpetual Education funds which allows members to help others. I do not
believe we should ever make statements to the brethren about how tithing is to
Build it out in the Tooele valley. Close to the airport, no distractions, lots
of room. Kinda simple.
Twin Sister,Some of us are still mortified by the reaction of our
neighbors in Provo after they were invited to support the decision to move
forward with the project and saddened the church felt the need to scrap it. If
only claiming love and loyalty was enough to make it so. In stating how
thrilled they are about the process the church has followed this time around,
the implication is that they were not sufficiently considerate the first time
around. How arrogant! Does anyone believe that a great deal of effort and care
were not exercised in both planning and discussing the project? I'm sorry
but if the church makes a proposal, goes through multiple iterations of dialogue
with neighbors, makes a decision and then invites them to support the decision,
the conversation is over. It's time to be counted. Some have a hard time
understanding that not getting what you want is not the same as not being
listened to. In this case the church took the high road in accepting the wishes
of a small number of arrogant members.I believe Mr. Johnson's
enthusiasm is genuine. His view won't be obstructed...
oh! New MTC hy 7-Peaks...something to do on P-Day!!!
Why not make a new MTC somewhere else in the outlying area. Move all English
speaking to one, and all foreign language to another? Move the
entire dirt/gravel/storage operations toward springville, and Build new MTC
where the old Agriculture land is.
Why do they have to add to the Provo MTC? They fly the missionaries out of the
SLC airport. There's plenty of land in-between Provo and SLC to build a new
Rexburg doesn't currently teach many language classes in comparison to
BYU--hence few student workers. Rexburg only teaches Spanish, French, Russian,
German, Chinese--and of course, English. Aside from English and Spanish, you can
only go as high as a minor in each of the other languages if I'm not
mistaken. That doesn't create the best-qualified instructors.
Re: Brave Sir RobinHmm, that's funny. Last time I drove by BYU
I was pretty sure their mission statement hadn't changed to implicitly
exclude the tithe payers of Utah. I was pretty sure the mission statement went
something like "Enter to Learn, Go Forth to Serve." Here I was thinking
my kids had just as much a right as anyone else to attend the school which is in
part subsidized happily by my tithing. What an egregious error I made!
@Russell - while a thoughtful idea of putting an MTC in Idaho, there is a
fall-out issue, which is the fact that there is not a sufficient airport to
accommodate the new missionaries' flight statuses. Having an airport near
an MTC (within an hour's time) is one essential thing for the missionary
training to succeed.
Build an MTC in Rexburg. Provo is overcrowded, Idaho is not, and I can't
imagine there being a lot of jobs to go around for RMs up there. Maybe MTC jobs
in Rexburg would reduce the number of BYU-I freshmen trying to get into
BYU-Provo after their missions, and if you moved the MTC entirely up there,
you'd have more space for BYU academic buildings.
They should put one in Bountiful so Davis County could get some blessings too.
For those who didn't read the article carefully, the Church said that their
original plan for building the nine-story building became obsolete with the new
announcement of the age change for missionaries. One new nine-story building
never would have accommodated the current, huge influx of missionaries.
Scraping the nine-story building plan turned out to be a GOOD thing. Why the judgmental, sarcastic remarks about what the neighbors are quoted as
saying in this article? I don't live in this neighborhood, but I know some
of the people who do live there, and their comments in this news article are
sincere. Church officials, BYU officials, Provo City officials, and the
residents of this neighborhood are all happy with the two current alternatives
for expanding the MTC that will now support the new tremendous need for expanded
housing and training for the new missionaries. All concerned are happy with
this win/win situation, but some people can't seem let go of their
vindictive attitudes. I applaud the LDS Church, BYU, Provo City, and
the MTC neighbors for coming to an amiable resolution that takes into
consideration the needs of all concerned.
It's never wrong for members to object to a church building proposal. Years
ago, when members were asked to contribute to a ward budget or to donate to a
ward building fund, the Handbook of Instructions clearly stated that leaders
should encourage members to express their thoughts without fear of
recrimination. That should be the case here. However, once leaders make a
decision, after taking all comments into consideration, it's considered
good etiquette for all members to support the decision.
@trekkerThe stated mission of BYU is to provide an LDS atmosphere
specifically to out-of-state and international LDS students who may not have had
an atmosphere like that where they grew up. LDS kids in Utah don't need
that. They can go to other in-state schools or go out of state.Really what the church needs to do is open more international MTCs. Those are
a better solution for missionaries who are learning a language, because even
when you do "total immersion" in the Provo MTC, it's not truly
total immersion because you still order your food in English, go to church in
English, go to the temple in English, etc. True immersion would be better
served by sending missionaries to MTCs where they have to do everything in that
I loved the original plans. I'm sorry to see that they won't be
Yeah, I'm all for Missionary work and expanding the MTC. I support it 100%
as long as it doesn't affect my view or property values.
Are these the same Utah county residents that strongly objected to the first
plan last year that led to this overcrowding condition now?Gee, we
hope their view of Utah Lake isn't affected by what the church is trying to
do in spreading the gospel beyond University Ave.
The obvious answer to Trekker is that the foreign language classes and many
other employment opportunities are handled well by BYU students. Moving the MTC
to another part of Utah wouldn't make any sense at all.
Why not build a new MTC in another part of Utah. Let BYU use the current MTC
property to expand and allow for more locals to attend BYU.