Opinion

World LDS Church Leader Blesses Fiji In Temple Prayer

Sulueti Kama in the Public Affairs officer of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Suva.   A world leader of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day
22 Feb 2016 10:33
World LDS Church Leader Blesses Fiji In Temple Prayer

Sulueti Kama in the Public Affairs officer of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Suva.

 

A world leader of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints yesterday blessed this nation, its leaders and people.

Elder Henry B Eyring, the First Counsellor in the First Presidency of the Church, asked God to bless Fiji when he re-dedicated the Suva Fiji Temple at Princes Rd in Suva.

The temple was packed with members who attended by invitation. The Minister for Youth and Sports, Laisenia Tuitubou, and his wife, a former Commissioner of Police Ratu Meli Vakarewakobau and wife Koto, also members of the church, were among them. Others watched the proceedings beamed live by satellite to the church’s Stake Centres throughout the country. Those who were unable to watch it because the chapels had been used as evacuation centres during Cyclone Winston, would see a replay next week.

Elder Eyring also prayed for the members to be blessed and remain faithful in the restored gospel of Jesus Christ.

He said the sacred ordinances performed in the temple would bless their lives. He spoke of the early pioneers of the church who made sacrifices to build the first temples in Kirtland and Navoo in the United States because they wanted to receive their endowments and blessings of the temple.

He said those blessings prepared them for the extreme conditions, trials and persecution they later endured.

Elder Eyring said he was a descendant of some of those early pioneers.

Elder Quentin L Cook, a member of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, who conducted the re-dedication service, said the presence of the ‘House of the Lord’ in Suva was a blessing for this country.

He said  when the church was looking for a location to build the temple, the then president of the Church, President Gordon B Hinckley, had identified three sites.

But President Hinckley was inspired to favour the current site as his first choice. At that time the Australian Government owned the site. After they acquired the site the church had to clear the big bunkers which housed a gun battery. The battery was used for an impending Japanese invasion during World War War II.

He said the bunkers of war had now become a fortress of peace.

President Hinckley flew into the country in 2000 to dedicate the temple. Acting on advice of the military, celebrations were scaled down for security reasons.

Elder Cook thanked the Fijian members of the church for their welcome and their dedication to service. He especially mentioned the spectacular cultural show at the Vodafone Arena on Saturday which had to be cut short because of Tropical Cyclone Winston. The show was a finale to the celebrations of the completion of the renovation and refurbishment of the temple which was closed for 16 months.

Prior to the cultural show, 22,000 people toured the temple in a two-week open house.

After the rededication yesterday, only members with temple recommend (special pass) are allowed to enter.

Elder Kevin W Pearson, Pacific Area president, said rededication was not only for the temple but for members also.

He said it was also time to rededicate their lives in the service of Jesus Christ.

The new Temple President, President Jackson Yee, a former manager Human Resources Fiji National Provident Fund, and wife Temple Matron Mele Yee spoke of the blessings of the temple.

Before 2000, members of the church used to travel to Tonga and even to New Zealand to attend the temple.

Members receive their endowments, are married and sealed for time and all eternity and act as proxies for the baptism of their ancestors who did not have the opportunity to hear the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

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