With great joy and songs of praise to the Lord, the Tegucigalpa Honduras Temple was dedicated on Sunday by President Dieter F. Uchtdorf, second counselor in the LDS Church‘s First Presidency in three sessions that were broadcasted throughout the temple district, which includes Nicaragua.

 Elder Jeffrey R. Holland of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles and Gregory A. Schwitzer of the Seventy also joined him for the dedication.

The 28,254-square-foot temple is made of gray granite from China and stands 41.2 meters tall, with an angel Moroni on top heralding the good news that the gospel has been restored.

The five other temples in Central America are in Guatemala City, Guatemala (dedicated in 1984); San Jose, Costa Rica (2000); Panama City, Panama (2008); San Salvador, El Salvador (2011); and Queltzaltenango, Guatemala (2011).

More than 210,000 people attended a three-week open house prior to the temple dedication, including special guests Honduran president Porfirio Lobo Sosa, First Lady Rosa Elena de Lobo, and a large government delegation that included 10 cabinet ministers.

 The night before the temple dedication 4,100 Latter-day Saints participated in a cultural celebration at Hector Chochi Sosa Stadium in Tegucigalpa. With song and dance, beauty and culture of the nation was celebrated, focusing primarily on the coming of the temple to this land.  It took ten months to prepare the colorful program.  Approximately 15,000 people attended the program, including President Ucthdorf, other Church leaders and the president and first lady of Honduras.

Honduras2Elder Jeffrey R. Holland and his wife, Patricia, greet the Saints as they arrive for the dedication.

Honduras3Tegucigalpa Honduras Temple

Honduras4Excited children are all dressed up for the occasion.

Honduras5President Uchtdorf helps a child place mortar in the cornerstone, imprinting the moment forever in this child’s mind.

Honduras6A sweet girl gets her chance to place some mortar in the cornerstone.

Honduras7(left to right) President and Sister Dieter F. Uchtdorf, Elder and Sister Jeffrey R. Holland and Elder and Sister Gregory A. Schwitzer participated in laying the cornerstone and dedicating the Tegucigalpa Honduras Temple.

Honduras8After the cornerstone ceremony, the temple is ready for dedication.

Honduras9The cultural celebration was a colorful pageant of dance.

Honduras10It is a coordination effort of great proportions for those who participate in the cultural celebration.

Honduras11People performed dances that they didn’t dream they could do.

Honduras12The dedication of a new temple is truly something to cheer about.

All photos are copyright 2013 by Intellectual Reserve, Inc.