We took a trip to Kirtland Ohio over labor day weekend. Our first stop was the Kirtland temple. It was fascinating to learn about some of the history there.
In December of 1832, God commanded Joseph Smith to build a temple in Kirtland, Ohio. The church was not doing great economically, but they began construction in June of 1833. Members made huge sacrifices to build the temple.
The temple was dedicated on March 27, 1836. The dedicatory prayer can be found in D&C 109. Some of my favorite scriptures came from that dedicatory prayer. There were so many people that wanted to attend, that even with the temple filled to capacity and the windows open to let people see in, not everyone could witness it. When it came time for a lunch break, people refused to leave their seats for fear that they would lose their place.
There were many spiritual experiences in this dedication, written by the people who attended as well as people in the neighborhood who claimed to have seen men dressed in white standing on top of the temple.
A second dedication was held a few days later to seat all those that were unable to attend the first one. It is said to be even longer than the first dedication.
Many of the Saints moved from Kirtland in 1838 and the Reorganized Church of Jesus Christ (now Church of Christ) gained the title to the building in 1880 and restored it. Imagine putting all that hard work into it and then getting to enjoy it for such a short amount of time? The Saints in those days had so much faith!
The priesthood keys were restored in the temple. I am especially grateful for that one!
We were not allowed to take pictures inside the temple, but it was an amazing place! You can find a few pictures here, but it doesn’t capture many of the amazing details. It has three floors, which were used for different purposes. The curtains could be lowered to divide the temple, and there were four different sections for choirs, which would divide by parts creating a surround sound choir!
The pews were great! They were closed in and people would bring bricks warmed over the fire that they put at their feet. The closed in booths would help keep the heat in (and children… I could use one of those at church!).
You can read more about the Kirtland temple here.