May 20, 2015

I Love To See the Temple…

Payson Utah Temple
Those who are really familiar with the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints will know that there are two basic types buildings for the Church. There are chapels and there are temples. For those of you not familiar with the difference, I would say quickly, that a chapel is where Sunday meetings and other social gatherings happen daily. All are welcome there for any meeting. However, the temple is where members of the church, who are following the teachings and principles of the gospel go to make covenants with God. It is a place of peace, reflection and learning.

To say that I love to go to the temple is an understatement. I like the chance to spend time in a quiet, beautiful building to reflect on my life and how much I have been blessed with. Now, temples, once dedicated as such, are only open to those with a ‘recommend’ (similar to an LDS version of an ID). But every once in a while a new temple will be completed and for several weeks before it is dedicated officially, the temple is open to the general public to tour and see all of the rooms and learn what ordinances happen there—like the ability to be married for time and all eternity, not just ‘till death. These sacred ordinances are the pinnacle of worship for a Latter-day Saint.  

Provo Utah Temple (right next to my work)
There are some iconic temples around the world that people have come to know and recognize, Sand Diego, Washington, DC, La'ie, Hawaii, and of course the temple in Salt Lake City, Utah. The newest temples completed are the Indianapolis, Indiana and the Payson, Utah temples. Now we live in Utah again we made arrangements to go to the Payson, Utah Temple open house. It is gorgeous inside. Dark wood banisters and door frames juxtapose white and cream walls. Colorful stain glass windows and rich colored furniture adorn the immaculate rooms. I like how each temple has a theme that is carried out in the decorations, the lighting, and the rooms. Payson’s theme was nature. Flowers, leaves and original nature landscape paintings were central to the décor.

We were happy to make it into the temple (partially because it was rainy and then snowy and we, of course, don’t have coats!). As we walked through the tour we were amazed at how peaceful the place was even with the hundreds of people trailing through. I had a mother with her four small children behind me and I was touched to hear her explain to her children in simplified detail so the children could understand her humble testimony of the importance of temples for the family.
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Tau’aho of course was more interested in the rocks outside then he was with anything else. People in line with us were joking (they must not have known I was the dad of this cute little brown child) that he was a future geologist because he would meticulously look at rock after rock and cast them off until he found the perfect rock to his tastes. He had two of them in his hands when we entered the temple and as we were passing the baptismal font he decided to throw it in! Luckily it hit one of the poles to the railing (what are the chances of that?) and bounced back onto the tile floor so I could grab it! Life with a little Lucky Dragon!

We miss Istanbul for sure, but we are so happy that we are here and close to temples. I find myself singing the children’s hymn, “I love to see the temple…” in my head often.

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