Pocatello Idaho Temple
The Pocatello Idaho Temple was first announced during the Annual General Conference of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints on 2 April 2017 by then-Church President Thomas S. Monson. This will be the Gem State’s sixth temple, a state with nearly half a million members of the Church. Other temples are located in Boise, Rexburg, Twin Falls, Idaho Falls, and Meridian.
The Idaho Falls Idaho Temple was dedicated in 1945 and rededicated on 4 June 2017. Decades later came the Boise temple in 1984. That was followed by the Twin Falls and the Rexburg Temples, both dedicated in 2008. The Meridian Idaho Temple was dedicated on 19 November 2017.
An artist rendering of the Pocatello Idaho Temple of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints was released on Thursday, 6 September 2018. The rendering features a three-story temple with a center spire. The temple will be located east of Satterfield Drive and Butte Street in Pocatello, adjacent to an existing LDS stake center, in a new subdivision known as Crestview Estates – Division 2. The new sacred edifice will be located on a 13-acre lot high up the East Bench, in the vicinity of Highland High School. Construction on the temple is expected to begin in 2019 and will take between two and three years to complete.
Pocatello Mayor Brian Blad, who is a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, said there were four locations he thought the Church would consider. In addition to the site the church ultimately chose, he saw promise in a site in northwest Pocatello, one within the planned Northgate development just north of the selected location, and at the church’s farm to the south, along Bannock Highway. He commented, "They owned the land already, and it seems like the temples typically are on top of a hill, where you can see them and they are visible from all over. Where this location is you can see it north and south, and you can see it west as you come in on Interstate 86." He added that the city will have to keep a close eye on the temple’s effect on traffic patterns, but the announcement is good news for both residents and the economy. "Anywhere they have built a temple historically, you see an uptick in the economy," he said.
New Renderings Released for Pocatello Idaho Temple
On Friday evening, 1 March 2019, Church representatives shared the recently released renderings of the new Pocatello Idaho Temple at a neighborhood open house for those who live near the temple site east of Satterfield Drive and Butte Street, giving neighbors an opportunity to see the interior renderings as well as the site plan. A rendering of the exterior of the temple was released to the public in September 2018. In addition to the neighborhood open house, Church representatives held a briefing Thursday evening 28 February 2019, for local leaders to showcase the plans for the temple. They also conducted interviews with local media.
Mormon Newsroom.org reports that the rendering features a three-story, 67,696-square-foot temple with a center spire. The temple will occupy a 12.77-acre site on the city’s east side, and once completed, it will serve more than 64,000 Latter-day Saints from southeastern Idaho.
Brent Roberts, managing director of the Church’s Special Projects Department, commented, "This is an exciting and wonderful time for Pocatello. The temple design is beautiful, intricate, and has been meticulously planned. As with all temples, this building will be constructed with the finest materials and with careful attention to detail so that it can fulfill its sacred purpose as a house of the Lord." Bill Williams, director of Temple Design, who was born and raised in Pocatello, further commented, "This temple combines classical architectural elements as well as more modern art deco designs and draws upon colors native to the beautiful state of Idaho. The details inside and outside the building will be stunning, from the art glass to the flooring to the grounds. Those who visit this temple will also be able to enjoy lovely views looking out to the west toward the Snake River Plain."
Larry Fisher, a Pocatello business owner and the Church’s local director of Public Affairs, said, "It has been a wonderful experience being part of the preparations for the temple that will be built here in our valley. Not only have we felt the excitement of the members of our faith, we are appreciative and grateful for the support and excitement of many who are of other faiths, including members of the Portneuf Valley Interfaith Fellowship. The temple will be a blessing for our whole community."
Members Clear the Way for the Groundbreaking of the Pocatello Idaho Temple
In preparation for the groundbreaking for the new Pocatello Idaho Temple which will take place on Saturday, 16 March 2019, thousands of youth gathered this week with shovels and rakes in hand to clear the way. Both youths from The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and community members worked together to clear and knock out sagebrush in less than two hours.
Tad Hancock, who is from Pocatello, said, "You know, nobody expected that many people and so when they got there I think it was such a surprise and kids were just amazed by, you know, four to five thousand is quite a few kids together and I think it was just special that they knew that this is going to be an important event in their lives and having that many kids together and knowing what it’s going to mean for them down the road, I think is just a neat experience."
Groundbreaking Ceremony for the Pocatello Idaho Temple
Leaders of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints joined with community and interfaith leaders in southeastern Idaho Saturday morning, 16 March 2019, for the official groundbreaking ceremony of the Pocatello Idaho Temple. Music was provided by a local choir and selections included "Let Zion in Her Beauty Rise" and "Redeemer of Israel."
Elder Wilford W. Andersen of the Seventy presided at the ceremony and offered the dedicatory prayer at the temple site on the Gate City’s east side. Attendance at the ceremony was by invitation only and the general public was invited to view the proceedings live from local meetinghouses.
Elder Andersen was joined by Elder S. Gifford Nielsen of the Seventy and Elder Brian K. Taylor of the Seventy. During his remarks, Elder Andersen said, "It's very much appreciated by us to see these representatives of other faiths here. We see that wherever a temple is built and dedicated, the faith of the Saints increases, their attendance increases, they become better neighbors, they become better members." He continued, "So many of our friends from other faiths joined us. This says volumes about this community being able to reach out to so many people and invite them to participate."
Karen Mead, a local Latter-day Saint, said, "We have been anticipating that someday there might be a temple in Pocatello." Pastor Jacqualine Theresa Thomas of Praise Temple of God in Pocatello who attended the groundbreaking, said, "I think [the temple] is going to bless [Latter-day Saints] and bless them immensely, and it will probably bring us even closer together." And Mohammed Safdar of the Islamic Society of Southeast Idaho commented, "We were asking for permission to build the mosque here, so this community will be there to help us."
The Pocatello Idaho Temple, the sixth temple of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in the Gem State, will be located east of Satterfield Drive and Butte Street in Pocatello in a new subdivision known as Crestview Estates – Division 2. Construction on the temple is expected to take between two and three years to complete. Once completed, the temple will serve more than 64,000 Latter-day Saints from southeastern Idaho.