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Barring any changes, President Russell M. Nelson is preparing to preside over another first for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
ChurchBeat reader Seth Jackson of Billings, Montana, gets credit for bringing this to my attention. A few weeks ago, I wrote about the historic nature of President Nelson’s temple dedication assignments. Seth pointed out that adding in those he has assigned to rededicate temples, too, provides a fuller, even more interesting picture.
He was right.
President Nelson has assigned Elder Gary E. Stevenson to dedicate the Rio de Janeiro Brazil Temple in May. When that happens, for the first time in church history, all 15 members of the First Presidency and Quorum of the Twelve Apostles will have participated in temple dedications or rededications.
No previous prophet’s administration has come anywhere close to spreading that responsibility across the entire senior leadership of the church.
In fact, under President Nelson 10 of the 15 apostles have dedicated a temple for the first time in their ministries. (See chart. Bold signifies a leader dedicating a temple for the first time. Rededicated temples are listed in italics with an asterisk.)
|Date||Temple dedicated (or rededicated*)||Leader|
|2018-Apr 22||Houston Texas Temple*||President M. Russell Ballard|
|2018-May 20||Jordan River Utah Temple*||President Henry B. Eyring|
|2018-Oct 28||Concepción Chile Temple||President Russell M. Nelson|
|2018-Dec 9||Barranquilla Colombia Temple||President Dallin H. Oaks|
|2019-Mar 10-12||Rome Italy Temple||President Russell M. Nelson|
|2019-Apr 14||Kinshasa Democratic Republic of the Congo Temple||Elder Dale G. Renlund|
|2019-May 5||Memphis Tennessee Temple*||Elder Jeffrey R. Holland|
|2019-May 19||Oklahoma City Oklahoma Temple*||President Henry B. Eyring|
|2019-Jun 2||Fortaleza Brazil Temple||Elder Ulisses Soares|
|2019-Jun 16||Oakland California Temple*||President Dallin H. Oaks|
|2019-Sep 1||Port-au-Prince Haiti Temple||Elder David A. Bednar|
|2019-Sep 15||Lisbon Portugal Temple||Elder Neil L. Andersen|
|2019-Oct 13||Raleigh North Carolina Temple*||President M. Russell Ballard|
|2019-Oct 20||Frankfurt Germany Temple*||Elder Dieter F. Uchtdorf|
|2019-Nov 3||Asunción Paraguay Temple*||Elder D. Todd Christofferson|
|2019-Nov 17||Baton Rouge Louisiana Temple*||Elder Quentin L. Cook|
|2019-Dec 15||Arequipa Peru Temple||Elder Ulisses Soares|
|2020-Feb 16||Durban South Africa Temple||Elder Ronald A. Rasband|
|2021-Oct 31||Winnipeg Manitoba Temple||Elder Gerrit W. Gong|
|2021-Nov 7||Pocatello Idaho Temple||President M. Russell Ballard|
|2021-Dec 12||Mesa Arizona Temple*||President Dallin H. Oaks|
|2022-May 8||Rio de Janeiro Brazil Temple||Elder Gary E. Stevenson|
|2022-June 19||Washington D.C. Temple||Assignment not yet announced|
President Nelson has explained before why he has shared the responsibility of temple dedications with the other apostles.
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