Suva Fiji Temple
|Suva Fiji Temple|
|Dedication||18 June 2000
Gordon B. Hinckley
|Site||4.7 acres (1.9 hectares)|
|Floor area||10,700 sq ft (990 m2)|
|Height||71 ft (22 m)|
|Preceded by||Melbourne Australia Temple|
|Followed by||Mérida Mexico Temple|
|Official website • News & images|
The Church in Fiji
The first LDS missionaries arrived in Fiji in 1893. It was hard work for missionaries to travel among the 100 inhabited islands of Fiji to teach the people. The work was slow and it was not until 1954 that the first small congregation was organized. After 1954 the work began to quicken and by 1993 there were more than 6,600 members in six wards and fifteen branches.
Construction of the temple
A ground-breaking ceremony were held for the Suva Fiji Temple on May 8, 1999. Earl M. Monson, a member of the Second Quorum of the Seventy, presided at the ceremony. The site chosen for the Fiji temple was 4.7 acres (19,000 m2) and is considered one of the most beautiful temple sites. The Pacific Ocean can be seen from three sides of the property on one of the tallest hills in the area, and the site is located just a few minutes away from downtown Suva. The exterior of the temple is finished with Snow-white granite from Campolonghi, Italy and the grounds are beautifully landscaped.
Open house and dedication
The temple was open for public tours from June 7 to 12, 2000. Just before the open house, starting on May 19, political unrest occurred in Fiji. A group of armed rebels held a group of government leaders hostage in Suva for weeks. Those held hostage included the Prime Minister of Fiji at the time, Mahendra Chaudhry. The situation was so intense that the church decided to send all of the Mormon missionaries in the area to the other side of the island to avoid any dangerous situations. Despite these problems and little media attention over 16,000 people toured the temple including 300 community leaders. Those who toured the temple were able to see the two ordinance rooms, two sealing rooms, Celestial room, baptistery, and learn more about Mormon beliefs associated with the temple.
The Suva Fiji Temple was dedicated on June 18, 2000 by LDS Church president Gordon B. Hinckley. Because of the 2000 Fijian coup d'état, which had been occurring since before the open house, it was decided that a small dedication service would be best and the normal four dedicatory services were abandoned. Sixty people attended the dedication, which was held in the Celestial room of the temple.
The temple closed October 13, 2014 for renovations that included improving air conditioning and adding new finishes inside the building. After renovations were completed, a public open house was held from Monday, 25 January 2016, through Saturday, 6 February 2016, excluding Sunday, 31 January. The temple was rededicated by Henry B. Eyring on Sunday, February 21, 2016. The temple was rededicated the day after landfall of Cyclone Winston, the strongest tropical cyclone ever recorded in Fiji. The cyclone forced changes to the cultural celebration held the day prior to the rededication.
- The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Fiji
- List of temples of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints
- List of temples of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints by geographic region
- "President Eyring Rededicates Suva Fiji Temple: Major cyclone doesn't discourage Latter-day Saints' participation", Newsroom, LDS Church, 2016-02-21
- Several dozen temples, built from identical plans.
- Hunter, Richard; Wakeley, Alan (June 24, 2000), "Four temples dedicated in one overseas tour", Church News
- "'Fortress of faith' prompts brotherhood and tears", Church News, June 24, 2000
- Wakeley, Alan (May 22, 1999), "'Warm spirit' prevails in Fiji", Church News
- "Facts and figures: Suva Fiji Temple", Church News, June 24, 2000
- "Suva Fiji: 'May be blessed with peace'", Church News, June 24, 2000
- "Country information: Fiji", Church News, Jan 29, 2010
- Weaver, Sarah Jane (March 3, 2016). "Elder Cook Recalls Dedication of Fiji Temple amid Political Unrest in 2000". LDS.org. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Retrieved April 4, 2016.
- "Suva Fiji Temple to Close for Renovation" (Press release). The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Public Affairs Department. July 30, 2014.
- "Temple dates announced, postponed", Church News, March 11, 2000
- "Temple dedications planned", Church News, April 8, 2000
- "Gospel shines in faces of members in Fiji", Church News, May 26, 2001