San Antonio Texas
On June 24, 2001, it was announced by the Mormon Church that a temple would be built in San Antonio, Texas. This would be the fourth temple in Texas. Work quickly began to find a site for the temple. The Church purchased a 5.5-acre lot. The need for a temple in the San Antonio area was great because of the rapid growth of the Church in the area. In ten years the number of Mormon members grew from 9,038 to 12,084. Until the San Antonio temple was announced, members in the area had to travel to Houston, a three and a half hour trip one way; or Dallas, a four and a half hour trip one way.
On March 29, 2003, a site dedication and groundbreaking ceremony was held and construction began. As the Mormon temple neared completion in September 2004, a ceremony was held to place a thirteen-foot, gold leafed angel Moroni statue on the spire of the temple. The day chosen for the ceremony was September 21, because that was the day 181 years ago that the angel Moroni first appeared to Joseph Smith.
An open house was held to allow people to see the inside of the Mormon temple, April 16 through May 7, 2005. During these three weeks, more than 50,000 people took a tour through the newly finished 16,800 square foot Mormon temple. The inside of the temple is beautifully furnished with African Cherrywood, stained glass windows, paintings of Jesus’ life, and a mural by San Antonio artist Keith Bonds. During the open house a group of Evangelical Protestant missionaries got together to hand out pamphlets about the Mormon Church with information claiming that the Mormon Church misrepresents itself. However, members were asked to be kind and not argue with the protestors. Michael Otterson, the media relations director for the Mormon Church, explained that church officials do not need to respond to critics, “This is a never-ending battle, and we just don’t think the Lord Jesus Christ is pleased when we start throwing accusations at each other.” Throughout the open house, those handing out pamphlets were allowed to use the facilities at the nearby Mormon Chapel.
Then President of the Mormon Church, Gordon B. Hinckley, officially dedicated the San Antonio Mormon Temple for use on May 22, 2005. The night before the dedication, a celebration was held at the Alamodome. More than 20,000 people attended to watch a show featuring over 4,000 singers and dancers, horses, fireworks and presentations of Texas history, family values and Mormon beliefs. President Hinckley also spoke to those in attendance about the temple.
The San Antonio Mormon Temple serves about 45,250 members from Waco to Brownsville, Texas.
20080 STONE OAK PKWY
SAN ANTONIO TX 78258-6920
119 Garden Trace
San Antonio, Texas 78258