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Preston England Temple

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The Preston England Temple is the 52nd operating temple of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

It was here Preston, England that the Mormon Church first took root, with Mormon missionaries arriving in 1837. Those missionaries were, Heber C. Kimball, Orson Hyde, and five others. They arrived in Liverpool and within the first week fifty people were baptized and after nine months of preaching the Gospel of Jesus Christ, nearly two thousand people were converted to the gospel. The success of these Mormon missionaries brought a flood of converts from the British Isles.

Many of those converts immigrated to the United States, taking with them their strengths and talents in hopes of helping the Mormon Church at such a critical time in its history. This exodus, combined with two world wars and economic difficulties, kept many British Mormon congregations small and struggling.

Before 1951, there were only 6,500 members in the United Kingdom. With the addition of more Mormon missionaries, the Mormon Church saw 1,000 people baptized in 1951 alone. [1]

Because of the history of the Mormon Church and the growth of membership in Preston, President Gordon B. Hinckley announced that this would be the site for England's second temple (the first being in London). The Preston England Temple is located in Chorley, Lancashire, England, a suburb of Preston and is the centerpiece of a 15-acre complex that includes a stake center, a missionary training center, a family history facility, a distribution center, temple patron housing, temple missionary accommodations, and a grounds building. The temple itself, with its exterior of white granite and zinc roof, has been described as "reminiscent to the old churches built in this land many years ago." [2]

President Hinckley dedicated the Preston England Temple on June 7, 1998. The Preston England Temple has a total of 69,630 square feet, four ordinance rooms, and four sealing rooms.

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Notes

  1. "The Church in the United Kingdom and Ireland", by Don Searle, Ensign, 1998, p. 40
  2. "The First 100 Temples", by Chad Hawkins, 2001, p. 145

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