With the upcoming Provo City Center Temple dedication on March 20, we thought we'd provide details about other temples in operation.
Here are some facts and stories you may not know about 15 LDS temples.
Note:The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has 149 temples in operation around the world, 16 under construction and eight others announced.
On March 22, 2007, an accidental fire started in the 30-year-old stake center adjacent to the Anchorage Alaska Temple. Most of the stake center's roof was damaged along with the inside. The very next day, the temple received minor flood damage from a suspected break in a water pipe or cap. Although the exact cause of the flooding remains unknown, efforts to extinguish the nearby fire may have been related. Damage was caused in the mechanical room and restrooms in the basement of the temple.
According to city-data.com, Anchorage Alaska ranks third in the top 101 cities with the highest average snowfall in a year. It receives around 114 inches each year.
Special VIP tours were held before the rededication sessions of the Atlanta Georgia Temple in 2011. On April 7, Martin Luther King III toured the temple with NFL Pro Football Hall of Fame football quarterback Steve Young and two-time National League MVP Dale Murphy, formerly of the Atlanta Braves. Young and Murphy also welcomed special guests during temple tours and encouraged young athletes to "continue their quest for excellence not only in their sport but also in their education," according to the LDS Church News.
The Atlanta Georgia Temple was the LDS Church's 21st overall and the first in the Southern United States when it was first dedicated in 1983, according to the Deseret News.
Court cases were still pending when the Boston Massachusetts Temple was dedicated in October 2000, according to LDS Church News. They involved state law on the construction of religious buildings and the height of the temple's steeple. The first case was settled by the U.S. Supreme Court a couple months later on Jan. 1. Finally on Sept. 1, an Angel Moroni was placed on top of the steeple, thanks to a Massachusetts Supreme Court ruling a few months prior.
Becoming the 100th operating temple — a milestone reached through the goals set by President Gordon B. Hinckley — the Boston Massachusetts Temple is located on a gentle rise in the western suburbs of Boston, according to the Church News. A clear view of downtown Boston can be seen from the temple grounds.
During the 28 dedicatory sessions of the Bountiful Utah Temple in 1995, 201,655 members were in attendance — which was the largest number of attendees at a temple dedication in the history of the church, according to LDS Church News.
John O'Donnal, an American who moved to Guatemala at age 24, traveled to Salt Lake City in 1946 and 1947 to request that the church send missionaries to Guatemala. In December 1947, four elders arrived, and the country was dedicated for the preaching of the gospel. (The story was recounted by President Hinckley in March 1987.) Thirty-seven years later, O'Donnal became the first president of the Guatemala City Guatemala Temple.
The Guayaquil Ecuador Temple was announced in 1982, but the groundbreaking did not take place until 1996. The temple was finally dedicated in 1999, more than 17 years after it was announced.
In 2010, the Kyiv Ukraine Temple was awarded first place for being the most religious building constructed in Ukraine, according to LDS Church News. The award was granted by the Ministry of Regional Development.
After running out of lumber, construction of the Laie Hawaii Temple came to a halt, according to a story recounted by LDS Living. Two days later a cargo ship was found stranded on a coral reef. The captain told the Saints they could have the cargo, which happened to be lumber, if they unloaded the ship. The Laie Hawaii Temple was the fifth operating temple to be built. It was dedicated in 1915.
After touring the Lima Peru Temple, the wife of the mayor of La Molina mentioned, "If heaven really exists, today I have visited a little piece of that heaven," according to LDS.org.
The London England Temple was the church's 12th temple and the second built on the European continent. It was dedicated in 1958, three years after the first temple, the Bern Switzerland Temple. They served a large geographical area that included districts on the African continent, according to LDS Living. The third temple on the continent, the Freiberg Germany Temple, was built in 1985.
In June 2009, lightning struck the Angel Moroni statue atop the Oquirrh Mountain Utah Temple, damaging Moroni's trumpet, arm and face. A replacement statue was installed on Aug. 11, 2009, 10 days before the dedicatory services began, according to the Deseret News.
Portland is known as the "City of Roses." In 1994, the Portland Oregon Temple was awarded first place in the category of commercial rose plantings by the Royal Rosarians of Portland, Ore., according to LDSchurchtemples.com.
On the day when ground was to be broken for the Santiago Chile Temple, there was a heavy rainstorm, according to LDS Church News. The storm only intensified, adding what a member called "thunderclaps," as thousands of Saints left their homes to go to the groundbreaking ceremony. As they arrived and waited for the ceremony to begin, a choir sang hymns and members joined in the singing. According to the Church News, as President Spencer W. Kimball arose from his seat to address the members, "from among the dark clouds came a ray of sunshine, followed by others. Soon the clouds parted and bright sunshine warmed all those present."
After the Seoul Korea Temple was dedicated, many of the Korean members gained testimonies of the importance of doing work for their ancestors. Among them was Kim Jung Shik, whose family had been diligent in keeping genealogy records, according to LDS Church News. After the Korea temple was announced and dedicated, he submitted more than 50 generations to the temple, starting with the direct line to his first known ancestor.
The Hague Netherlands Temple is located in Zoetermeer, which translates in English to "Sweet Lake." While Utah has the Salt Lake Temple, the Netherlands has the "Sweet Lake Temple," as pointed out by the Church News.