Commenting on the view of the Manti Temple when it is shrouded in snow, Elder Vaughn J. Featherstone, president of the LDS South Utah Area and member of the First Quorum of the Seventy, said that "a temple is never more beautiful than in the time of storm."
"We live in a time of storm," continued Elder Featherstone, speaker at the Manti Temple Centennial program on Temple Hill Saturday. "A temple can be a haven from the storms that beset us," he said, referring to the prevalence of crime, delinquency, drugs, pornography and child and spouse abuse."We can be free only as we live up to the commitments we make here. The courage of faith is the courage of progress," he said.
Other speakers took as their theme the role of the temple. "What happens in these houses helps make families forever," said Elder Paul H. Dunn, Elder Featherstone's first counselor and member of the First Quorum of the Seventy.
"The Lord doesn't work on a temporary basis. In the temple we are learning about the eons of time. This is the Lord's way," Elder Dunn said.
Elder Russell C. Taylor, second counselor in the area presidency and member of the First Quorum of the Seventy, said there had been a private as well as several public dedication services for the temple a century ago.
"This too is a special day," Elder Taylor said. "It is a day when we rededicate our lives. It is a time for a rededication within. It is an occasion for freeing ourselves of feelings that would be displeasing to the Lord."
"This is a day," he said, "to be more than we have been before."
The program also included four musical numbers by a combined choir of 36 voices from 28 stakes in the South Utah Area directed by W. McLoyd Erickson.
During his talk, Elder Featherstone suggested that a jubilee box containing brief comments expressing the thoughts and feelings of persons attending the centennial observance be placed in the temple vault and not opened for 50 years. Temple President Alma P. Burton agreed to this.
An hour after the program, 3,000 dancers from the 28 stakes, who were organized into eight groups, presented a dance revue with numbers representing various peoples involved with the LDS Church in its early history.
An estimated crowd of 16,000 attended the centennial under a cloudless sky on the south side of temple hill.
High on the hill, in observance of the death of President Marion G. Romney, the flag flew at half staff. Another flag was advanced by the colorguard representing the Army, Navy, Marines and Mormon Battalion.
While Saturday's activities marked the high point in the Manti Temple centennial celebration, two other activities will continue through July.
In the ancillary building on the north side of the temple, an exhibit of temple memorabilia - clothes, tools and artifacts from the temple building era - will continue through July 31. It is open between 11 a.m. and 7 p.m. Also, each evening at 8 p.m. preceding the "Mormon Miracle Pageant," July 7,8,9, and July 12-16, there will be short firesides with LDS general authorities and district choirs.