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This week in Church history

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25 years ago

The Marriott Center, a multi-million-dollar athletics and assembly building at BYU, was dedicated under the direction of President Harold B. Lee on Feb. 4, 1973, according to an article in the Feb. 10, 1973, Church News.

President Lee presided over the ceremonies and his second counselor, President Marion G. Romney, gave the dedicatory prayer.

President N. Eldon Tanner, first counselor in the First Presidency, also spoke. "He noted that the Marriott Center is the finest building of its kind in the country where competitive sports can be enjoyed, as well as the finest in music, dancing, outstanding programs and religious meetings," the article stated.

The 23,000-seat arena which officially opened in December 1971 was filled to capacity for the dedication.

J. Willard Marriott was honored during the ceremonies for donating more than $1 million toward the building of the center. In his remarks, he said: "I realize my part in this university is a small one. But, I consider the investment I made here to be the best investment I will ever make."

The article stated that Dr. Dallin H. Oaks, BYU's president at the time, noted that the Marriott Center "is, indeed, a multi-purpose facility, and that over 700,000 will use it each year, and only one third will be for basketball. The majority of the use will be for Church and other uses."

Earlier, on Jan. 26, President Romney presided over the dedication of the Aloha Center on the BYU-Hawaii campus, then known as Church College of Hawaii. "The new education, culture, recreation and spiritual activity center dominates CCH campus," according to the Feb. 10, 1973, Church News.

Quote from the past

"What a world this would be if a million families in this Church were to be on their knees every night and morning! And what a world it would be if nearly a hundred million families in this great land were praying for their sons and daughters twice daily; and what a world this would be if a billion families throughout the world were close-knit, and were on their physical knees pouring out their souls for their children, their family, their leaders and their government." - President Spencer W. Kimball, then president of the Quorum of the Twelve, from an address given during the April 1973 general conference