President Uchtdorf Dedicates Fort Collins Colorado Temple

Contributed By Marianne Holman Prescott, Church News staff writer

  • 17 October 2016

President Dieter F. Uchtdorf, Second Counselor in the First Presidency, greets the crowd gathered for the cornerstone ceremony of the Fort Collins Colorado Temple on October 16, 2016.  Photo by Marianne Holman Prescott.

Article Highlights

  • The Fort Collins Colorado Temple, dedicated October 16, is the Church’s 153rd temple.
  • President Uchtdorf said the cornerstone ceremony reminds us that it is “the Savior, Jesus Christ, who is the cornerstone in our lives and in His Church.”

More than a century after the first congregation was organized in Colorado—and five and a half years after President Thomas S. Monson announced the temple in general conference—the Church’s 153rd temple has been dedicated in Fort Collins, Colorado.

Situated near the Cache La Poudre River between the Rocky Mountains to the west and the great plains to the east, the temple stands—just as the previous forts in the area did—as a place of peace and refuge.

“The Fort Collins Temple is beautifully located in the shadows of the Rocky Mountains, where many early members passed through on their way to the Salt Lake Valley,” President Dieter F. Uchtdorf, Second Counselor in the First Presidency, told the Church News. “Quite a few who were searching for a new beginning stayed in Fort Collins. These faithful members who were the salt of the earth started the Church in that area. During the very early years the original Fort Collins offered during uncertain times a place of refuge, a place of safety, and a good place for restoring their supplies and energy.”

While the first known members of the Church arrived in Colorado as early as 1846, many different experiences tie the Church to Colorado. Whether it was as a refuge for sick members of the Mormon Battalion or an assignment from U.S. President Abraham Lincoln to assist in protecting the telegraph lines and mail routes during the Civil War, the Fort Collins, Colorado, area has a rich history with the Latter-day Saints.

To now have a temple in the area is a great blessing for the 44,000 Church members living in the temple district.

“Although a ‘Fort Collins’ is no longer needed in the traditional way, the temple is now there as a place of protection and a place of light and truth. It has the power of renewal, of strengthening, of refuge from the storm, and of safety for families and the whole community,” he said. “One of the main reasons for the original fort was to establish peace among the settlers and within the communities. The temple, its values, and its blessings will be a great source of peace for individual lives and for these can really unite and bring peace to communities.”

President Dieter F. Uchtdorf, Second Counselor in the First Presidency, places mortar in the cornerstone of the Fort Collins Colorado Temple on October 16, 2016. Photo by Marianne Holman Prescott.

A young boy waits outside the Fort Collins Colorado Temple prior to the cornerstone ceremony October 16. Photo by Marianne Holman Prescott.

President Uchtdorf presided over the three dedicatory sessions and the cornerstone ceremony. The services were also broadcast to meetinghouses in Colorado, Wyoming, and Nebraska that are part of the Fort Collins Colorado Temple district.

Joining President Uchtdorf for the dedication and cornerstone ceremony was his wife, Sister Harriet Uchtdorf, and other Church leaders including Elder Dale G. Renlund of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, Elder Ulisses Soares of the Presidency of the Seventy, Elder Wilford W. Andersen and Elder C. Scott Grow of the Seventy, and Bishop W. Christopher Waddell of the Presiding Bishopric.

Wives of the visiting authorities—Sister Ruth L. Renlund, Sister Rosana F. Soares, Sister Kathleen B. Andersen, Sister Rhonda Grow, and Sister Carol S. Waddell—also accompanied their husbands during the dedication and cornerstone ceremony.

Although the new temple is only 70 miles away from the Denver Colorado Temple, the distance will take off hours of transportation time for some of the members living in other areas of the temple district. The temple district includes members of the Church from 13 stakes located in Casper, Wyoming, to the north; Arvada, Colorado, to the south; parts of Nebraska to the east, and Rawlins, Wyoming, to the west.

The Fort Collins Colorado Temple. Photo by Marianne Holman Prescott.

With beautiful scenic views surrounding the temple—and a street address of 2180 Majestic Drive—the newly dedicated temple will serve as a beacon of light for the community.

“It’s majestic—and not just the address,” said President Uchtdorf during the cornerstone ceremony. “It is wonderful. … The foliage has put on its nicest colors to celebrate with us.The sun is shining and just a short while ago the full moon was setting—everything has come together to make this the best day ever.”

The first session included the cornerstone ceremony, where President Uchtdorf led others in adding mortar around the symbolic stone. Choirs consisting of members in the temple district provided music during all three of the dedicatory services.

A choir performs during the Fort Collins Colorado Temple cornerstone ceremony October 16. Photo by Marianne Holman Prescott.

During the cornerstone ceremony, President Uchtdorf taught, “It is a ceremony which is given to us to remind us that the true cornerstone in our lives is the Savior.“ He later continued, “We dedicate this temple to our Heavenly Father and to His Son, Jesus Christ. … We seal this stone and remind each other that it is really the Savior, Jesus Christ, who is the cornerstone in our lives and in His Church.”

A crowd of people assemble for the Fort Collins Colorado Temple cornerstone ceremony October 16, 2016. Photo by Marianne Holman Prescott.

President Uchtdorf shared President Monson’s love and greetings and thanked the community for welcoming the holy edifice into their area. He also encouraged members to live the values and principles of the gospel of Jesus Christ.

“We want to thank every one of you who has participated and is participating in such a wonderful way to have the house of the Lord here in Fort Collins. It is a continuous effort; it is a lifetime effort because the temple and its values represent our way of life,” President Uchtdorf said. “These are the values and the principles of the gospel of Jesus Christ.”

He encouraged the youth to make an entry in their journals and in their hearts so they will remember the uplifting and joyful feelings experienced both in the cultural celebration and in the dedication.

For Kiley Ostler, 12, that journal entry will be special. She was one of the four children President Uchtdorf asked to come forward and put mortar in the cornerstone. Kiley and her mother, Shaunna Ostler, were at the temple at 6:00 a.m. to make sure they had a good spot during the cornerstone ceremony.

“It is special to have a temple here and to be a part of this and the cultural celebration,” Kiley said with tears in her eyes.

Her mother added, “As parents we want [our children] to know the divine gift of the temple. She will never forget this day.”

The 42,205-square-foot edifice is the second temple in Colorado. The Denver Colorado Temple was dedicated in 1986.

From left President Dieter F. Uchtdorf, Sister Harriet Uchtdorf, Elder Dale G. Renlund, Sister Ruth L. Renlund, Sister Kathleen Andersen, Sister Rhonda Grow, Elder C. Scott Grow, Sister Carol Waddell, Bishop W. Christopher Waddell, and members of the temple presidency. Photo by Marianne Holman Prescott.

President Dieter F. Uchtdorf, Sister Harriet Uchtdorf, Elder Dale G. Renlund and Sister Ruth L. Renlund stand with the four children invited to participate in the cornerstone ceremony for the Fort Collins Temple Dedication held on October 16, 2016. Photo by Marianne Holman Prescott.

Wayne Boss and Leslee S. Boss, who served on the Fort Collins Colorado Temple committee, wait for the cornerstone ceremony during the first session of the dedication. The Boss' were in charge of identifying and collecting artifacts and documents to include in the cornerstone capsule. Photo by Marianne Holman Prescott.

Kiley Ostler looks up at President Dieter F. Uchtdorf during the cornerstone ceremony of the Fort Collins Colorado Temple dedication on October 16. Photo by Marianne Holman Prescott.

Church members wait outside the Fort Collins Colorado Temple to greet visiting Church leaders after the dedication on October 16. Photo by Marianne Holman Prescott.

October 16. Photo by Marianne Holman Prescott.

October 16. Photo by Marianne Holman Prescott.

President Dieter F. Uchtdorf, Second Counselor in the First Presidency, and his wife, Sister Harriet Uchtdorf, during the cornerstone ceremony October 16. Photo by Marianne Holman Prescott.

A young girl holds up her white handkerchief as she waits outside the temple to see the cornerstone ceremony during the first session of the Fort Collins Colorado Temple Dedication October 16. Photo by Marianne Holman Prescott.

Elder Wilford W. Andersen, General Authority Seventy, and his wife, exit the temple to attend the cornerstone ceremony of the Fort Collins Colorado Temple October 16. Photo by Marianne Holman Prescott.

President Dieter F. Uchtdorf, Second Counselor in the First Presidency, and his wife, Sister Harriet Uchtdorf, stand by Elder Dale G. Renlund of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, and his wife, Sister Ruth Renlund during the cornerstone ceremony of the Fort Collins Colorado Temple dedication on October 16. Photo by Marianne Holman Prescott.

 

Elder Dale G. Renlund and his wife, Sister Ruth Renlund, during the cornerstone ceremony of the Fort Collins Colorado Temple dedication on October 16. Photo by Marianne Holman Prescott.

Four children help President Dieter F. Uchtdorf place mortar in the cornerstone during the first session of the Fort Collins Colorado Temple dedication on October 16. Photo by Marianne Holman Prescott.

Two boys help President Dieter F. Uchtdorf place mortar in the cornerstone during the first session of the Fort Collins Colorado Temple dedication on October 16. Photo by Marianne Holman Prescott.

Elder Ulisses Soares and his wife, Sister Rosana Soares, leave the Fort Collins temple after the dedication on October 16. Photo by Marianne Holman Prescott.

Sister Kathleen Andersen and Elder Wilford W. Andersen, General Authority Seventy, visit with members after the dedication of the Fort Collins Colorado Temple on October 16. Photo by Marianne Holman Prescott.

Sister Rhonda Grow and Elder C. Scott Grow, General Authority Seventy, greet Church members outside the Fort Collins Colorado Temple after the dedication held on October 16. Photo by Marianne Holman Prescott.

Sister Kathleen Andersen and Elder Wilford W. Andersen, General Authority Seventy, visit with members after the dedication of the Fort Collins Colorado Temple on October 16. Photo by Marianne Holman Prescott.

Elder Dale G. Renlund and his wife, Sister Ruth L. Renlund, visit with members as they leave the Fort Collins Colorado Temple after the dedication on October 16. Photo by Marianne Holman Prescott.

Elder Dale G. Renlund shakes hands with a young boy as he leaves the Fort Collins Colorado Temple after the dedication on October 16. Photo by Marianne Holman Prescott.

President Dieter F. Uchtdorf and his wife, Sister Harriet Uchtdorf, visit with members outside the Fort Collins Colorado Temple after the dedication on October 16. Photo by Marianne Holman Prescott.

The Fort Collins Colorado Temple was dedicated in three sessions on October 16. Photo by Marianne Holman Prescott.