Provo Tabernacle to rise from ashes as a temple

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  • Bill in Nebraska Maryville, MO
    Oct. 4, 2011 8:52 p.m.

    To UVWHITEKNIGHT: The problem is that to you it is exclusive because you don't believe or want to believe what goes on within the walls of the temple. As you stated only worthy members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints and hold a current temple recommend are allowed within its walls once the Temple is Dedicated. The thing is that not one of those worthy members in are perfect. Each one went before a Bishop/Branch President and then their Stake President or his counselors and declared that they were worthy to enter the Temple. It is a commitment deal. The standards are high, obey the Word of Wisdom, pay a full tithe, have a testimony of the Church and of a living prophet. Did you know it is up to the individual to declare those things. They either answer yes or no to the questions and then declare themselves worthy. If that means it is an exclusive club then ask yourself if the Lord is ever going to allow someone into his kingdom if they don't believe in him. If the refuse to obey his commandments. If they show absolutely no love to him.

  • bluecoug89 Highland, UT
    Oct. 3, 2011 10:37 p.m.

    People don't understand that the temple is not an exclusionary place. Anybody can enter in, as long as they are ready and willing to make promises with God. UVWhiteKnight, you can go, you just need to be prepare because you wouldn't want to go into the Lord's house unprepared to meet him? In Moroni 10:32 it says, "Yea, come unto Christ, and be perfected in him, and deny yourselves of all ungodliness; and if ye shall deny yourselves of all ungodliness, and love God with all your might, mind and strength, then is his grace sufficient for you, that by his grace ye may be perfect in Christ; and if by the grace of God ye are perfect in Christ, ye can in nowise deny the power of God." This invitation is for everyone and if we come unto Christ and become clean (deny yourselves of all ungodliness) we can enter into his temple so that we can become perfect in Christ. This isn't an "active Mormons only" place but we invite EVERYONE to prepare and enter. It goes beyond being a mormon, it has to do with our love for God and our desire to serve him.

  • Oryssman FORT COLLINS, CO
    Oct. 3, 2011 10:26 p.m.

    Cats writes,

    It's always so sad to hear bitter, unhappy people whine. All who wish to make themselves worthy are welcome to attend ANY Temple in the world. You just have to humble yourself and make become worthy. It will bless your life and, believe me, it will be worth it.

    Orin Ryssman replies,

    I have a daughter that attends BYU (she started in August) and having recently visited Provo I can attest that it looks rather run down. Even more noticeable is the lack of public places and spaces like the Provo Tabernacle once provided where the community can gather together. Now there will be another LDS Temple, using a historic building as a facade.

    As a believing and practicing Roman Catholic I reject the claim of the LDS faith that there was any sort of apostasy and it has nothing to do with humbling oneself and becoming "worthy".

  • UVWhiteKnight PROVO, UT
    Oct. 3, 2011 6:14 p.m.

    LDS Temples are fundamentally exclusionary. If you think you can argue with that point, it is in your best interest to review inclusive/exclusive in a dictionary, because you are confused.

    People would be sad if BYU decided to convert the Art museum into an office building. Or if the Carnegie Hall were turned into a private, "members only" club, regardless of the beauty of the building. Or any other number of private organizations that can and do restrict access to their facilities.

    The Provo Tabernacle was a place where non-mormons, jack-mormons, ex-mormons, and active mormons were all welcome. Instead of that cultural breadth and unifying presence in the community, the Provo Tabernacle will now proclaim on city's Main Street: Only Active Mormons Wanted (In Provo, by association). A beautiful building that says look but don't touch, unless you are the "right" type, an exclusive club.

    And Cats and others, while the church has graciously maintained the structure for the last few decades, the Church's contributions, financial or otherwise, were neglible in the building of the structure. It was built on contributions beyond those required as tithes.

  • John Pack Lambert of Michigan Ypsilanti, MI
    Oct. 3, 2011 1:54 p.m.

    The comment about the Church buying the Tabernacle may have been about the Church buying the old Hotel Roberts site. It is true that that site, on the block south of the Tabernacle, was purchased by the Church very recently. It also appears that the Church purchased it as part of the plans for the new temple, although exactly how they connect I do not know. However, as far as I know there was never a suggestion that the city turn the old hotel site into a cultural center.

  • John Pack Lambert of Michigan Ypsilanti, MI
    Oct. 3, 2011 1:25 p.m.

    The Church has always owned the Tabernacle. The city never did own it. The loss of the tabernacle as a place for concerts happened last December. Whether there is a need in Provo for more concert venues is hard to say. Whether it is a worthwhile expenditure of funds on the part of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints to provide such a venue is another question.

    Non-BYU groups are at times able to perform in various venues at BYU. Whether the Harris Fine Arts Center really has enough facilities to meet community needs I do not know. If it does not, building an additional concert venue may be needed.

    That said, a big use of the Provo Tabernacle was for stake conferences. I am not usre how this void is being filled in full, but others may be able to shed light on this topic.

  • Kami Bountiful, Utah
    Oct. 3, 2011 10:07 a.m.

    @UVwhiteKnight, I was having the same thoughts. So many members of the community who have enjoyed many events in that building will now be turned away.

  • BASavage Orem, UT
    Oct. 3, 2011 8:43 a.m.

    This is FANTASTIC!! I have just moved back to Utah County from Vernal where The Church did the exact same thing, turn a Tabernacle into a Temple. There are some detractors citing that temples are exclusionary, I say otherwise. The historic building will draw tuorists to down town Provo. LDS Temples seem to draw people to them because of their feelings of peace when you are near them. I won't speculate on names for the temple. Let those in authority decide that.

  • anti-liar Salt Lake City, UT
    Oct. 3, 2011 1:25 a.m.

    I am glad about the restoration/adaptive reuse.

    But the woeful lack of adequate concert facilities in town and at BYU (no worthy concert pipe organ) will be felt more acutely now. It is a shame that at a school with a music program as large and well-developed as BYU's, organ performance majors at BYU are having to play their required recitals at the University of Utah (which does have a worthy concert pipe organ) and other far-away places.

  • Raeann Peck Salt Lake City, UT
    Oct. 2, 2011 11:42 p.m.

    Raising glorious new life from ashes

  • dell San Antonio, TX
    Oct. 2, 2011 6:20 p.m.

    I wonder if it will have a visitors center? Would make sense with the out-of-town traffic to the new convention center. Wouldn't have to be big. Could also cover the history of the building and downtown Provo. Plenty of retired folks around to staff it. Plus it would give tourists somewhere they could go inside an not feel so left out.

    On Community use topic...seems that Provoans did already get off their duffs and build a community performance hall--the Covey Center for the Performing Arts. You can rent the performance hall for $600 for 6 hours (at least that's what their website says.)

  • O'really Idaho Falls, ID
    Oct. 2, 2011 5:45 p.m.

    I tend to agree with UVwhiteknight and Oryssman. It was very classy to have a downtown Provo center for non-denominational concerts. It would have been nice for Provo City to pony up with the $$ to restore it as a concert hall. But unfortunately they didn't. And that leaves Provo wanting for something like that. But since Provo City offered to sell it and the Church offered to buy it, Provo can't exactly complain when the church wants to turn it into a temple.

    One option that would have made sense is for the church to restore it simply as a tabernacle and then build a temple in Spanish Fork or Springville.

    OH well. What's done is done.

  • Chachi Charlottesville, VA
    Oct. 2, 2011 5:09 p.m.

    To Allen#1: BYU only has Rodgers organs in the organ lab. The individual practice rooms are all pipe organs or hybrid pipe/electric. Digital organs have made great strides in recent years, but any professional organist will tell you that a speaker cannot exactly replicate the sound. Nor does the key action feel the same. It's kind of like how electronic pianos can't replace the real thing.

    To Western Rover: It's precisely because the Coalville Tabernacle was so tragically lost that the church is now so conscientious about its remaining architectural heritage.

    To InspectorC: Congratulations. But seriously, are you hoping to get your name on a plaque or something if that name is used?

    To Kevin and Oryssman: I also feel a little bittersweet about the loss of a community center open to all faiths. Please understand that to us, temples are about inclusion, since they are the way that our theology explains how everyone may have an equal chance at eternal life. I know you don't believe that, but to us, it isn't a symbol of exclusion. I hope you'll take advantage of the open house when that time comes.

  • CWEB Orem, UT
    Oct. 2, 2011 4:44 p.m.

    To those who are unhappy about it being rebuilt as a temple...the property and the building belong to a church. What that church decides to do with the building is the Church's decision and should be respected. If there are "many" that want a new community center, get off your duffs and raise the money to build one. Other wise, you are just a complainer, not a builder or doer.

    If you are one who does not like the church and did like to go to performances in the Tabernacle, then you are a user, for you like what the church gives you, but you want no part of the church.

    That's an interesting it not?

  • mightymite DRAPER, UT
    Oct. 2, 2011 3:50 p.m.

    They should have just built a strip mall to bring in more revenue. That make bettere sense with the churches business model.

  • Oryssman FORT COLLINS, CO
    Oct. 2, 2011 3:30 p.m.

    Both of the previous comments ignore the fact that the Provo Tabernacle had previously been a center for many community events that was open to everyone. While it is wonderful that this building will be "saved", it is truly unfortunate that this building will only be saved to be renovated into a structure that will now symbolize exclusion, rather than inclusion (as it once did). And to state that it is open to all that get themselves LDS worthy ignores the very real fact that many have examined the claims of the LDS faith and found them wanting.

  • JRJ Pocatello, ID
    Oct. 2, 2011 3:26 p.m.

    Provo Temple A and Provo Temple B? I'm sure it will be just as vibrant as we Mormons are prone to doing things..Conference Center? Whatever it becomes, it will eventually feel "homey and natural".

  • Kevin Surrey, BC
    Oct. 2, 2011 2:45 p.m.

    to:UVWhiteKnight | 12:36 p.m. Oct. 2, 2011

    The fire was a tragic happening and a loss to the church and community but your comments suggest that the Church is making a mistake by building a temple on the site. The temple is at the core of our religion because of the saving ordinances that go on in there. A temple will provide much needed relief to the Provo Temple. Tithing is sacred and is used where it is needed most, as in temple building.

    As for being exclusionary, any worthy member can enter the temple. We desire all people to come to the truth and become worthy to enter the temple. Everyone is welcome in Zion. Even you!

  • Mark C Gilbert, SC
    Oct. 2, 2011 2:27 p.m.

    To: UVWhiteKnight

    The new Provo Utah temple, as with all temples, will be open to all people, including you. It is not an exclusionary place nor are you or any others disenfranchised by the Church. It is your individual decision whether or not you can enter. All the Lord asks is that we clean up our lives, wipe some mud off our shoes and enter appropriately--the same thing you would ask if I entered your home. You wouldn't want me to track mud across your living room carpet but would kindly ask that I remove my shoes and leave them at the door. That's all the Lord asks for His house. All are welcome in an ever growing Zion and is all-inclusive. The only people who don't or can't enter a temple make that decision of themselves.

  • InspectorC Kaysville, UT
    Oct. 2, 2011 1:11 p.m.

    To Mark C @ 8:26 AM today ---

    Ummmmm... just to set the public record straight, "PROVO PIONEER TEMPLE" was MY idea; posted ~17 hours before your comment. Sorry to disappoint you, brother!

    I suggested that possible name (again, "Provo Pioneer Temple") at 3:31 PM yesterday, in my posting on another comment-board here on the DesNews, from their FIRST article titled "LDS general conference opens with the announcement of six new Mormon temples". See Comments, pg. 2, post #23).

    But I'm humbled to see that you and several other posters like my suggested name for the new Provo Temple. 8^)

    As I also mentioned in my post yesterday (ibid), wouldn't it be awesome if the Church would give members the opportunity to submit suggested names for that second temple in Provo? I already have first-dubs on "Provo Pioneer Temple"!

  • UVWhiteKnight PROVO, UT
    Oct. 2, 2011 12:36 p.m.

    Sad day to be a Provoan. The loss of an beautiful tabernacle with great acoustics, perfect for community choruses and like events was tragic.

    But rather than rebuild a community center and focal point, they are electing to disenfranchise an increasingly significant portion of the population. The tabernacle was built by the citizens of Provo, and so many are now being told "You aren't welcome in our little "Zion"".

    As to those who think that it will revitalize downtown, they clearly haven't seen the Provo's downtown was increasingly vibrant. The last thing it needs is an exclusionary Temple, and another massive parking lot on its main street.

  • Ghost Writer GILBERT, AZ
    Oct. 2, 2011 12:23 p.m.

    Fabulous way of taking a negative and creating a positive. Can't wait to see how the new interior is set up.

  • Western Rover HERRIMAN, UT
    Oct. 2, 2011 11:12 a.m.

    I wonder why the church chose to restore the Provo Tabernacle, when they chose to demolish the Coalville Tabernacle, even though it wasn't burnt down? (At least they salvaged the artwork.)

  • Twin Lights Louisville, KY
    Oct. 2, 2011 11:07 a.m.


    That would be awesome.

    Whatever they call it, this is a wonderful use for the building.

  • Another Perspective Bountiful, UT
    Oct. 2, 2011 10:32 a.m.

    I would have thought this would be a good opportunity to get a better design for this tabernacle. But the people have spoken and they will get what they ask for.

  • Mike Johnson Stafford, VA
    Oct. 2, 2011 10:15 a.m.

    I like "Provo Pioneer Temple." It has a good ring to it.

    I also like that the state with the second largest LDS population without a temple is now getting one in Wyoming (61,000 members in 2009 with 16 stakes).

    I am, of course, living in the state with the largest LDS population without a temple--Virginia (85,000 members in 2009 with 19 stakes).

  • Cats Somewhere in Time, UT
    Oct. 2, 2011 10:00 a.m.

    I like the name "Provo Pioneer Temple." But, we'll just have to wait and see. Whatever it is, I'm so thrilled I can't wait.

    As someone who is a Provo native with generations of roots in Provo (my ancestor founded Provo) it means everything to have this building not only restored, but turned into a Temple. It broke my heart when it burned. I have spent my life attending meetings and events at the Provo Tabernacle. Now it's going to be even better. I thank President Monson and the Saviour for this great blessing.

  • CARL South Salt Lake, UT
    Oct. 2, 2011 9:49 a.m.

    I am hoping that that they will not use that 300 watts bulb inside the sound box in that building again. They better start using LED lights where it stay cooler and last a lot long than regular light blubs. Cheaper too.

    Oct. 2, 2011 9:35 a.m.

    Awesome decision. Great surprise. Can't wait to see it. Outstanding to see so many temples being built in so many areas of the world. President Thomas S. Monson is a true prophet.

  • Granny Saint George, UT
    Oct. 2, 2011 9:21 a.m.

    Agree with John of Michigan...The Provo Tabernacle Temple.

    Could be The Provo Center Temple, but then it might be confused with Provo Towne Center.

    How about The Provo Pioneer Temple?

  • Mark C Gilbert, SC
    Oct. 2, 2011 8:26 a.m.

    Naming the new temple Provo Tabernacle Temple would be like naming it Provo Temple Temple. My idea is Provo Pioneer Temple.

  • owlmaster2 Kaysville, UT
    Oct. 2, 2011 7:26 a.m.

    Maybe, coulda, shoulda, woulda and suppose.

    Lots of conjecture.. ok, from an outsider I'll throw in a guess.

    How about the Temple be named the New Provo Temple as apposed to the Old Provo Temple.

    The way Mormons are building Temples, soon there will be one in every town in Utah and Idaho.

  • ulvegaard Medical Lake, Washington
    Oct. 2, 2011 7:25 a.m.

    Though I grew up near Spokane Washington, I was born in Utah and remember attending stake conference in the Provo Tabernacle as a very young boy, I've always been interested in architecture and pipe organs, so the building made a lasting impression on me.

    I too was thrilled while watching the morning session of conference and heard the announcement. The fire was tragic, but it goes to show each of us that even when tragedy strikes, we can pick up the pieces and accomplish something even better after wards. I think it is too frequent that many of us simply leave the ashes and scarred in our personal lives and retain the soot as evidence that we have suffered. Lets all be a little more forgiving, less bitter about past fires in our lives and replant, rebuild, and then have glorious open houses to celebrate what we've accomplished.

  • Allen#1 West Valley, UT
    Oct. 2, 2011 6:38 a.m.

    As a person who loves the sound of a pipe organ, I feel a pipe organ is a waste of money. BYU replaced the practice pipe organs with Rodgers Digital organs many years ago.

    The new Allen and Rodgers Digital organs are superior to the "expensive to build, expensive to maintain" pipe organs that are now modern day dinosaurs. Our ward house much less expensive LDS standard Allen AP 22a is surperior in every way to the 10 rank pipe organ in our stake house.

  • John Pack Lambert of Michigan Ypsilanti, MI
    Oct. 1, 2011 11:24 p.m.

    I would not be surprised if the new temple is called the Provo Tabernacle Temple.

    On the issue of BYU having a true concert hall, it might be nice for them to build an additional concert hall, and if they could convince the board that it does not count as academic space they might get approval. With the Broadcasting Building finished I am not aware of any major construction projects at BYU, so maybe building a new concert hall there will occur. I am all for it, but that does not really matter much.

  • owlmaster2 Kaysville, UT
    Oct. 1, 2011 10:15 p.m.

    Well Chachi, until Tom Monson announces it I'm predicting no names will be changed and your concert hall problem will remain just that....

    I'm glad the existing structure will be utilized in this new temple scheme of things.
    Maybe after it's finished I'll sneak down to Provo to do a walk thru during the tours. I've actually been in a couple of your temples on tours..

  • BYUSTER Provo, UT
    Oct. 1, 2011 9:49 p.m.

    Provo City Council voted unanimously to sell 3/4 acre of public land in Downtown Provo to the LDS Church for $500K. No bids, no auction, no public comment period - just here, one-true church, take this public land for less than commercial value.

    Just another day in Utah - where theocracy knows no bounds.

  • Chachi Charlottesville, VA
    Oct. 1, 2011 9:40 p.m.

    1) The Copenhagen Denmark Temple is a good indicator of how size constraints might be addressed when remodeling a pre-existing building into a temple: there, a reinforced foundation was added, and an underground addition was built to the side of the main building, connecting to the basement.
    2) The rendering seems to show the old heater building still in existence, but you can't see whether the brick smokestack is still there or not.
    3) Doubtless the temple will help breathe new life into the Center Street area (as will the new convention center and NuSkin project), but also the blocks just south of the tabernacle, which are what really need it.
    4) Now BYU's lack of an adequate concert hall is felt more acutely than ever. BYU has no concert pipe organ--just the Madsen Recital Hall.
    5) It would seem strange if the current Provo Temple were to retain that name while the temple at the exact center of downtown gets a name like "Provo Peak Temple" or "South Provo Temple." Perhaps an Ogden-style remodel of the current Provo Temple will occur after this or Payson is finished, and it will then be renamed.

  • MoJules Florissant, MO
    Oct. 1, 2011 9:37 p.m.

    Thy dross to consume and thy gold to refine. They are taking something that was damaged and turning it into something sacred. That is so awesome, I am so happy for the people in the Provo area to not only have a new temple, but to enjoy this beautiful structure.

  • toosmartforyou Farmington, UT
    Oct. 1, 2011 9:10 p.m.

    This will be a great use of a reconstructed historic structure and will be fondly embraced by members in the area and elsewhere.