All Latter-day Saint temples will close worldwide over coronavirus concerns, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints announced in a letter Wednesday. Above is the Jordan River Utah Temple. | Jeffrey D. Allred, Deseret News
‘This is a temporary adjustment, and we look forward to the day when the temples will reopen,’ First Presidency says in letter
SALT LAKE CITY — Tonight, all Latter-day Saint temples will close until further notice due to the COVID-19 pandemic, according to a letter issued by the First Presidency of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
“After careful and prayerful consideration, and with a desire to be responsible global citizens, we have decided to suspend all temple activity churchwide at the end of the day on March 25, 2020,” the letter said. “This is a temporary adjustment, and we look forward to the day when the temples will reopen.”
The decision will mean the postponement of temple weddings, sealings and live endowments.
As of Tuesday night, 112 of the faith’s 168 temples around the world had closed, including all of those in Europe, Asia and Australia.
Those still operating were strictly limited to gatherings of 10 or fewer people and to the performance of living ordinances.
On March 13, the First Presidency and Quorum of the Twelve Apostles suspended all proxy ordinances in every temple around the world. At that point, 13 temples were closed.
The 56 temples previously operating under the limitations were mostly in North America. The only ones open on other continents were the Johannesburg South Africa, Montevideo Uruguay, Nuku’alofa Tonga and Suva Fiji temples.
The church began closing temples on Feb. 21, when it announced the closures of the Taipei Taiwan and Seoul Korea temples. On Feb. 27, it said it was closing those in Fukuoka and Sapporo, Japan.
The Rome Italy Temple followed next on March 5.
Since then, closures have happened in swaths as church leaders said they were following guidance from government and health officials.
Read the full letter below.
Dear Brothers and Sisters:
After careful and prayerful consideration, and with a desire to be responsible global citizens, we have decided to suspend all temple activity churchwide at the end of the day on March 25, 2020. This is a temporary adjustment, and we look forward to the day when the temples will reopen.
Please be assured of our sincere love and appreciation for your devotion and faith.
The First Presidency
The following details have also been provided:
• Temple staff will contact all patrons with an existing appointment to confirm cancellation.
• When temples resume activity, patrons should contact the temple to reschedule their living ordinances.
• Members with additional questions are invited to visit with their bishop or stake president.
Source:: Deseret News – Utah News