Thursday, May 22, 2014

The Manti Temple

It is unsurprising that I would like to begin with the Manti Temple--it is the Church's most stunning example of pioneer architecture. It is also, in my opinion, the most well preserved: St. George has been heavily remodeled to accommodate the film presentation of the endowment; Logan has been gutted, and Salt Lake has had other changes to its architecture (a greenhouse, elevator, etc.). Manti also has a setting that feels more true to its nature--on a hill above a small town in rural Sanpete County. The temple was dedicated in 1888 by Wilford Woodruff.

The portion of the temple closest to the front is the annex. The temple has always had an annex, but this particular annex was built in 1985 as part of the remodeling of the temple. The main hallway of the annex includes the chapel and laundry rental; the lower floor contains the locker rooms and cafeteria. Upon entering the temple proper, patrons either can participate in sealings (there are sealing rooms on the first floor or on the second floor, off of the celestial room) or sessions (which takes patrons on a five-room journey to the second floor). The ordinance rooms have stunning murals and architecture in the rooms.

The third floor contains the assembly hall of the temple--used at least once a year for a devotional for temple workers. The central, east tower contains sealing rooms that can only be accessed by the open-center spiral staircases that wind up the side towers.

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