The Kansas City Temple of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (often misnamed the Mormon Church) has opened its doors to citizens who wish to take a tour. Each Mormon temple has an open house before its dedication to allow members of the community to come and see what a Mormon temple is like and to ask questions.
This week, CNN reporter Brian Todd was taken on a tour by Elder William R. Walker of the Church’s First Quorum of the Seventy. Todd remarked, “It’s unmistakable, rising up like a castle from the rolling prairie, the gold-leafed statue of the Angel Moroni adorning its main spire. The new Mormon temple in Kansas City symbolizes a rare pattern at a time when many faiths see their numbers in North America shrinking.”
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints never starts construction on a building unless it has all the funds up front to cover the cost. Mormon temples are the most sacred buildings in the religion, and no expense is spared in the construction, because Latter-day Saints believe that temples are literally houses of the Lord, and the Lord deserves the best.
There are now 137 Mormon temples in operation, with 30 more currently under construction. “The purpose of the temple is not for a big meeting,” Elder Walker said. “We have other chapels and throughout the church and throughout the world, assembly halls and meeting halls. But when we come to the temple, this is more for private and individual communion.”
Todd said, “We saw sealing rooms, where weddings take place; an instruction room with a mural depicting earth, as Mormons believe, just after creation; and the pristine ‘celestial room,’ the most sacred space inside, for reflection and meditation complete with crystal chandeliers. This is the biggest room you’ll find in the temple. There’s no large sanctuary.”
The open house is scheduled through April 28. Church President Thomas S. Monson will formally dedicate the temple on May 6.
Kansas City Star reports “137th Mormon Temple Awaits 75,000 Visitors for Public Viewing”