Reno Nevada Mormon Temple
Nevada is known for Las Vegas, often called “Sin City,” but members of the Mormon Church are quick to point out that Nevada is not all bad, because they have not only one, but two Mormon temples. The first temple was built in Las Vegas in 1989 and the second in Reno. The Reno Nevada Temple was dedicated in 2000. It serves over 25,000 members in the area.
The groundbreaking services were held on July 24, 1999. This is a special holiday for members of the Mormon Church and Utah called Pioneer Day. It marks the day that Mormons, led by Brigham Young, first entered the Salt Lake Valley. It is a day where the sacrifices of those early pioneers, who established what is now a worldwide church, are remembered.
During the services, Elder Rex D. Pinegar of the Seventy commented on those first pioneers saying, “These devoted faithful saints traversed the dangerous, forbidding country of America’s wilderness. Through extreme and inhospitable weather they endured hardships, privation, and went into the unknown with great faith and courage. From the temple experience they had gained a vision of who they were and what their relationship was with God.”1 It was the temple experience that gave them the strength that they needed to face the hardships of the plains and endure the loss of loved ones.
The temple can provide strength for members today. Elder Pinegar explained, “We need the Lord’s strength in our own lives and in the lives of our children.” 2 The temple stands as a beacon of God’s love, reminding members to come to Him. It is within the temple that members today can receive the strength that they need to fulfill their life journey.
Within Mormon temples members make sacred covenants with God. Promising Him to keep the commandments, love each other, and serve Him, and He promises them blessings and eternal life. It is also within temples that couples can be married for eternity, ensuring that familyMormon Church today. relationships exist beyond the grave. The sacred ordinances performed in temples strengthened the early pioneers and strengthen members of the
Before the Mormon temple was dedicated, it was opened to visitors. Visitors were impressed with the temple and the strong emphasis on family. One visitor said, “I feel there’s so much religious commitment with these people. I was particularly inspired by the focus on familyMormons values. I was taken and moved by that, by the importance of keeping the family together. It made me come away really feeling good.” A newspaper columnist wrote: “I was among 5,000 people who visited the final day of the open house. … I was among many non- delighted to experience the facility.” 3
President Thomas S. Monson, then First Counselor in the First Presidency, dedicated the Reno Nevada Temple on 23 April 2000. Members are overjoyed to have a temple so close. Vaughn and Wanda Abbott, who are both nearly 90, moved to the Reno area in the 1930s, when there were fewer than 100 Church members. They have watched Church membership grow and now are “just thrilled” 4 to have a Mormon temple in Reno.
During the dedicatory prayer, President Monson said, “Bless all who have made possible this beautiful structure. May they gain satisfaction from the knowledge that they have had a part in creating this sacred edifice. May they recognize that it is no longer simply a building, but rather a house consecrated unto Thee and Thy Beloved Son, a place of holiness, a sanctuary of faith. We pray that the divine presence of this house in this community may be felt by all who pass by, that it may be looked upon with respect and appreciation.” 5
2000 BEAUMONT PKWY
RENO NV 89523
P.O. Box 33040
Reno, Nevada 89523-3040
(1) Church News, 31 July 1999.
(2) Church News, 31 July 1999.
(3) “News of the Church,” Ensign, July 2000, 74
(4) “News of the Church,” Ensign, July 2000, 74
(5) “Reno dedicatory prayer: ‘No longer simply a building,’” Church News 29 Apr. 2000: 10.