SOUTH JORDAN -- Leaders of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints concluded the last of nine services held inside the new Oquirrh Mountain temple in South Jordan Sunday afternoon.
The dedication services began Friday morning and continued through Sunday afternoon, with services reaching tens of thousands of LDS members who participated in their local chapels.
The usual LDS worship services were canceled Sunday in Utah so church members could take part in the dedication services through a closed-circuit satellite broadcast from the temple to individual chapels throughout the state.
During the nine separate dedicatory sessions held inside the temple, President Thomas S. Monson presided and gave a dedicatory prayer.
When he came outside following the final session, church members offered their thanks and respect to President Monson by singing a hymn as he walked by.
Those inside for the final service say they left the temple with a new appreciation of what it means to their faith.
Alexis Call said, "It's just an amazing experience. I feel really humbled and blessed that I was able to be a part of it and be in this beautiful temple."
Ryan Call said, "It was an amazing experience. We've been waiting for this for a couple months. Just to see the joys and blessings of temple worship is going to be a great blessing in our lives."
After watching a service at a chapel, Ruben Garces decided to take his family to the temple grounds to make the day even more memorable.
"It's been a special day for LDS members, and especially for me and my family. I even brought my little girl," he said.
Some young girls we met told us they would write down the memories they have from today, so they won't forget their experience.
The Oquirrh Mountain temple will serve church members who live on the west side of the Salt Lake Valley. It's the second LDS temple in South Jordan, the 13th in the state of Utah and the 130th in the world.
Right now, the LDS church has 16 temples under construction or in the planning stages.
The temple officially opens to church members on Tuesday.