President Russell M. Nelson made the exciting announcement of eight new temples this Saturday, during general conference. Particularly noteworthy, was his decision to make the announcement during the women’s session, which was held in the Conference Center Saturday evening.
The prophet’s announcement brings the number of operating temples around the world to 166. The number of temples announced or under construction around the world (including those from this recent announcement) is now 51, bringing the total to 217 worldwide.
As reported from the Church Newsroom:
The new temples will be in the following locations:
Freetown, Sierra Leone
There are more than 21,000 Latter-day Saints and approximately 70 congregations in Sierra Leone. This will be the first temple in Sierra Leone. There are presently nine temples in Africa in operation, under construction or announced including: Accra, Ghana; Democratic Republic of the Congo; Abidjan, Ivory Coast; Aba, Nigeria; Nairobi, Kenya; Durban, South Africa; Johannesburg, South Africa; Harare, Zimbabwe; and Lagos, Nigeria.
The new temple in Orem, located about 40 miles south of Salt Lake City, will be Utah’s 22nd house of the Lord. As the Church’s world headquarters, Utah has 2.1 million Church members, which is more than 65% of the state’s population of 3.2 million residents. There are 17 operating temples in the state, including the Bountiful, Brigham City, Cedar City, Draper, Logan, Jordan River, Manti, Monticello, Mount Timpanogos, Ogden, Oquirrh Mountain, Payson, Provo City Center, Provo, St. George, Salt Lake and Vernal Temples. Announced temples in Utah include the Saratoga Springs Temple, Layton Utah Temple, a temple in Washington County and the Tooele Valley Utah Temple.
Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea
More than 28,000 Latter-day Saints in 80 congregations live in Papua New Guinea. Port Moresby is the capital and largest city of Papua New Guinea. Members of the Church currently attend the temple in Suva, Fiji. The Port Moresby Branch (a small congregation) was organized October 10, 1979. The Papua New Guinea Port Moresby Mission was created February 13, 1992.
This will be this state’s first temple. There are more than 31,000 Latter-day Saints in Arkansas with approximately 70 congregations. The first meeting of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Arkansas was in 1835, led by missionaries Wilford Woodruff and Henry Brown.
This temple will be the seventh house of the Lord in the Republic of the Philippines. The country, made up of more than 7,107 islands, is home to over 800,000 Latter-day Saints. The first temple constructed was in Manila and dedicated in 1984. The second temple is in Cebu City and was dedicated in 2010. The Urdaneta temple is currently under construction while three others will be constructed in Cagayan de Oro, Davao and the Greater Manila Area. Today, there are more than 1,200 congregations and 22 missions in the region.
This will be the fifth temple in the state of Texas. The others are in Dallas, Houston, Lubbock and San Antonio. In 1990, there were more than 154,000 Latter-day Saints; today, there are over 350,000 members in nearly 700 wards and branches.
The temple in Cobán, located in the highlands of central Guatemala, will be the country’s third temple. Nearly 278,000 Latter-day Saints in approximately 450 congregations reside in Guatemala. Missionaries first arrived in the Central American country in 1947. There are now seven missions. Two temples are operating in Guatemala, including the Guatemala City Guatemala Temple and the Quetzaltenango Guatemala Temple.
The new temple in Taylorsville, located in metropolitan Salt Lake City, will be Utah’s 23nd house of the Lord. As the Church’s world headquarters, Utah has 2.1 million Church members, which is more than 65% of the state’s population of 3.2 million residents. There are 17 operating temples in the state, including the Bountiful, Brigham City, Cedar City, Draper, Logan, Jordan River, Manti, Monticello, Mount Timpanogos, Ogden, Oquirrh Mountain, Payson, Provo City Center, Provo, St. George, Salt Lake and Vernal Temples. Announced temples in Utah include the Saratoga Springs Temple, Layton Utah Temple, a temple in Washington County and the Tooele Valley Utah Temple.
“As the Church grows, more temples will be built so that more families can have access to that greatest of all blessings, that of eternal life,” said President Nelson, who was the final speaker of the session. “We regard a temple as the most sacred structure in the Church. Whenever plans are announced to construct a new temple, it becomes an important part of our history.”
Since becoming Church president in January 2018, President Nelson has announced 35 new temples. Last April, he announced eight new temples. Aside from when former Church President Gordon B. Hinckley announced some 30 new smaller temples in 1998, no other Church president has announced more temples in such a short period of time.
Update on Other Temples Under Construction or Renovation
The Kinshasa Democratic Republic of the Congo, Fortaleza Brazil, Port-au-Prince Haiti and Lisbon Portugal Temples were dedicated this year. Following renovation, the Memphis Tennessee, Oklahoma City Oklahoma and Oakland California Temples were rededicated.
Nine temples are being renovated, including the Raleigh North Carolina (rededication Oct. 13), Frankfurt Germany (rededication Oct. 20), Asunción Paraguay (rededication Nov. 3) and Baton Rouge Louisiana (rededication Nov. 17). Other temples under renovation include the Hamilton New Zealand, Hong Kong China Temple, Mesa Arizona, Tokyo Japan and Washington D.C. Temples. The St. George and Salt Lake pioneer-era temples will close for renovation before the end of the year. Temples undergoing renovation are included in the number of operating temples.