The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints sets date for new temple groundbreaking

Noel Lyn Smith
Farmington Daily Times

FARMINGTON — The First Presidency of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has revealed that a groundbreaking ceremony will take place in April for the new temple here.

The ceremony will mark a year since the church President Russell Nelson announced that Farmington was among 20 cities worldwide where new temples will be built.

The Jan. 31 news release states that the groundbreaking ceremony on April 30 will be by invitation only and Elder Anthony D. Perkins of the Quorum of the Seventy of the church will preside at the event. Additional details will be provided as the event draws near.

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According to the release, the temple will be a single-story structure and approximately 25,000 square feet with a meetinghouse on site.

It will be built on a 6.62-acre site at the intersection of College Boulevard and Windsor Drive.

Artist rendering of the new temple that will be built on a 6.62-acre site at the intersection of College Boulevard and Windsor Drive in Farmington.

Ned Fuller, temple committee communication chair, said on Feb. 3 that Porter Brothers Inc. is the project manager.

In addition to the construction process, the company has been overseeing demolition of existing structures at the location, he said.

"It is anticipated that construction will begin shortly after the demolition is completed," Fuller said.

This will be the second temple in New Mexico, following the one that was dedicated in 2000 in Albuquerque.

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The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints will break ground in April at the location on the map that will house the new temple in Farmington.

The selection of temple sites is determined by the First Presidency, which is the highest governing body of the church.

"We know there is a long history of faithful members in this area who for decades traveled to Mesa, Arizona and Manti, Utah for their temple worship," Fuller said about Farmington's selection.

"The Albuquerque temple that was dedicated in 2000 has been a great blessing to our members that has reduced the travel time and thus, increased the frequency of temple worship," he said. "The building of a temple in Farmington makes the sacred ordinances more available to our members."

Elder Anthony D. Perkins

Perkins has "a strong connection" to Farmington, where his family moved to in 1973 and he graduated from Farmington High School five years later, Fuller explained.

He married Christine Abbott, whose father was Bob Abbott, a beloved educator in Farmington.

Perkins currently serves at the church headquarters as executive director of the correlation department and serves as the president of the Middle East/Africa North area.

Noel Lyn Smith covers the Navajo Nation for The Daily Times. She can be reached at 505-564-4636 or by email at nsmith@daily-times.com.

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