Temples are a symbol of faith for members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. A long-awaited symbol of that faith is now ready to welcome visitors in Wyoming. LDS Church members now have a temple to call their own—the Star Valley Wyoming Temple. The public open house for it started last week.
“We’re humbled and excited that we had the chance to build this temple,” said JCC Superintendent Dirk Zenger. “The people in this area have been waiting for this for a long time. Before our crews built this temple, many had to drive more than 90 minutes to Idaho for temple services.”
In April 2015, thousands of people, including LDS Church and civic leaders, gathered to break ground on the temple. Many in attendance were descendants of pioneer settlers—settlers who had always envisioned a temple in Star Valley.
“The temple will become a landmark—a sacred place for this valley for years to come,” said Elder Craig C. Christensen, President of the LDS Church’s Quorum of the Seventy. “It links generations together.”
Jacobsen built the temple in association with Span Construction. Like Jacobsen project executive Kirk Dickamore, Span CEO King Husein has ancestral ties to the valley. Both men still have ties to the area.
“This temple means a lot to people in Star Valley,” said Kirk. “My wife’s family helped settle this valley, so I know people here have been waiting for this for quite a long time. Making this temple a reality for the generations who’ve lived here is an exciting and humbling experience.”
In April 2016, our crews celebrated a key milestone with the Star Valley community: The placement of the 350-pound, gold-leafed angel Moroni statue. Two cranes were used to hoist the 350-pound statue into place.
“We just couldn’t believe that it was going to be here,” said Star Valley resident Julie Skinner. “All my life I’ve heard that a temple would be in Star Valley; it seems like the angel Moroni is the part that makes it real for me.”
Officials in the LDS Church’s Temple Department have been overwhelmed by the public’s interest in this sacred facility.
“The community embraced this project and our team,” said JCC Project Manager Tom Heath. “Several families brought treats and lunches to our workers. When we saw that enthusiasm, it made us feel like we were part of something much bigger.”
While the Star Valley Wyoming Temple will be the 154th operating temple worldwide, it’s the first LDS temple in Wyoming. It now stands east of U.S. Highway 89. The public open house will run through Saturday, October 8. The LDS Church will dedicate the building in three sessions on Sunday, October 30. (Take a look inside the Star Valley Wyoming Temple right now on lds.org.)