File:Suva fiji mormon temple.jpg

The Suva Fiji Temple is the 91st operating temple of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

On May 7, 1998 the First Presidency of the Mormon Church announced that plans had been made to build a temple in Suva, Fiji.

The first Mormon missionaries arrived in Fiji in 1893. It was hard work for missionaries to travel among the 100 inhabited islands of Fiji to teach the people. The work was slow and it was not until 1954 that the first branch was organized. After 1954 the work began to quicken and by 1993 there were more than 6,600 members in six wards and fifteen branches.

A groundbreaking ceremony and sited dedication were held for the Suva Fiji Temple on May 8, 1999. Earl M. Monson, a member of the Quorum of the Seventy, presided at the ceremony and dedication. The site chosen for the Fiji temple was 4.7 acres and is considered one of the most beautiful temple sites. The Pacific Ocean can be seen from three sides of the property on one of the tallest hills in the area, and is located just a few minutes away from downtown Suva. The exterior of the Mormon temple is finished with Snow-white granite from Campolonghi, Italy and the grounds are beautifully landscaped.

The temple was open for public tours June 7th through the 12th, 2000. Just before the open house, starting on May 19th, political unrest occurred in Fiji. A group of armed rebels held a group of government leaders hostage in Suva for weeks. Those held hostage included the Prime Minister of Fiji at the time, Mahendra Chaudhry. The situation was so intense that the Church decided to send all of the Mormon missionaries in the area to the other side of the island to avoid any dangerous situations. Despite these problems and little media attention over 16,000 people toured the temple including 300 community leaders. Those who toured the temple were able to see the two ordinance rooms, two sealing rooms, Celestial room, baptistery, and learn more about Mormon beliefs associated with the temple.

The Suva Fiji Temple was dedicated on June 18, 2000 by President of the Mormon Church, Gordon B. Hinckley. Because of the political unrest that had been going on since before the open house it was decided that a small dedication service would be best and the normal four dedicatory services were abandoned. Sixty people attended the dedication, which was held in the Celestial room of the temple.


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