Youth Perform at Indianapolis Temple Cultural Celebration

Contributed By Sarah Jane Weaver, Church News associate editor

  • 22 August 2015

In a scene depicting the Indianapolis 500, youth participate in the Indianapolis Indiana Temple cultural celebration, “Gather to the Light: Crossroads of America,” on August 22, 2015.  Photo by Sarah Jane Weaver.

Some 1,500 youth in Indianapolis, Indiana, shared the rich culture and history of the Hoosier State through music and dance on August 22.

The celebration was held in the Michael A. Carroll Stadium in Indianapolis in conjunction with the dedication of the Indianapolis Indiana Temple—the first temple in Indiana and the 148th worldwide.

Speaking to the youth before the performance, President Henry B. Eyring, First Counselor in the First Presidency, reminded them of the countless hours they spent preparing to participate in the cultural celebration. “You have stretched higher and farther than you thought you could,” he said. “The Lord has magnified your performance because of your faith in Him.”

President Henry B. Eyring cheers youth who participated in the Indianapolis Indiana Temple cultural celebration, “Gather to the Light: Crossroads of America,” on August 22, 2015. Photo by Sarah Jane Weaver.

Elder M. Russell Ballard of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles watches the Indianapolis Indiana Temple youth cultural celebration on August 22. Photo by Shane Hintze.

President Eyring promised the teens that the memory of the night would return to them time and again during their lives. Then he ushered in the show. “Let’s fill this stadium with joy and with light and with love,” he said.

Bryanna Sperry, 15, said the cultural celebration was a way to show the culture of Indiana and the different aspects of what Latter-day Saints represent.

Will Ketchum, 17, said he is not a “dance-type of person,” but he participated in the event “as a way to show gratitude for Heavenly Father for the temple.”

Kristen Bills said she gave her best performance—not only for the Church leaders for also for God. “It is not every day you get to dance for God,” she explained.

Youth participate in the Indianapolis Indiana Temple cultural celebration, “Gather to the Light: Crossroads of America,” on August 22, 2015. Photo by Sarah Jane Weaver.

Elder M. Russell Ballard of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles participates in the Indianapolis Indiana Temple youth cultural celebration on August 22. Photo by Shane Hintze.

Youth participate in the Indianapolis Indiana Temple cultural celebration, “Gather to the Light: Crossroads of America,” on August 22, 2015. Photo by Sarah Jane Weaver.

Youth participate in the Indianapolis Indiana Temple cultural celebration, “Gather to the Light: Crossroads of America,” on August 22, 2015. Photo by Sarah Jane Weaver.

Youth participate in the Indianapolis Indiana Temple cultural celebration, “Gather to the Light: Crossroads of America,” on August 22, 2015. Photo by Sarah Jane Weaver.

Youth participate in the Indianapolis Indiana Temple cultural celebration, “Gather to the Light: Crossroads of America,” on August 22, 2015. Photo by Sarah Jane Weaver.

In a scene depicting the Indianapolis 500, youth participate in the Indianapolis Indiana Temple cultural celebration, “Gather to the Light: Crossroads of America,” on August 22, 2015. Photo by Sarah Jane Weaver.

Youth participate in the Indianapolis Indiana Temple cultural celebration, “Gather to the Light: Crossroads of America,” on August 22, 2015. Photo by Sarah Jane Weaver.

Youth participate in the Indianapolis Indiana Temple cultural celebration, “Gather to the Light: Crossroads of America,” on August 22, 2015. Photo by Sarah Jane Weaver.

Youth participate in the Indianapolis Indiana Temple cultural celebration, “Gather to the Light: Crossroads of America,” on August 22, 2015. Photo by Sarah Jane Weaver.

Youth participate in the Indianapolis Indiana Temple cultural celebration, “Gather to the Light: Crossroads of America,” on August 22, 2015. Photo by Sarah Jane Weaver.

Indianapolis Indiana Temple. Photo by Sarah Jane Weaver.