Officials break ground on Meridian Mormon temple -

Officials break ground on Meridian Mormon temple

Officials break ground on Meridian Mormon temple

By On Your Side Newsroom. CREATED Aug 23, 2014

Officials from The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints joined with community leaders in north Meridian Saturday to break ground for a new 65,960 square-foot temple.

The temple will be located at 7345 North Linder Road on a fifteen-acre site.

Elder David Bednar of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles presided at the ceremony. He was joined by Elder Kent Richards, Executive Director of the Temple Department. Several community and civic leaders also attended, including Meridian Mayor Tammy deWeerd, Eagle Mayor James Reynolds, and Ada County Commissioner Dave Case. They all joined Elder Bednar to turn the first shovels of dirt on the project.

Bednar said, “The decision to build a temple in a particular location is about the hearts of the people, so it says a great deal that the Lord has inspired His servants to construct a temple here as a reflection of the devotion, the dedication, and the faithfulness of you good Latter-day Saints.”

The Meridian Idaho Temple was announced by Church President Thomas Monson at the Church’s April 2011 general conference.

There are currently four temples in Idaho -- in Boise, Twin Falls, Idaho Falls, and Rexburg. The Church says there are about 426,000 Latter-day Saints in Idaho.

To members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, temples are considered the “house of the Lord,” the most sacred places on earth. Unlike meetinghouses, where Sabbath worship and weekly activities take place, temples are open throughout the week and closed on Sundays.

There are currently 169 temples throughout the world either in operation, under construction, or announced, a Church spokesperson said.

Construction of the Meridian temple is expected to be completed in 2017.