The Church Newsroom published its article on the completion of the Mesa Temple Renovation this week, and it was exciting to look through! I have updated my original post that tours the temple with the new images, so I won't go through all of them here. However, I wanted to share my thoughts on how much I loved this renovation.
I loved how this renovation focused on restoring the temple to its original appearance. The
Church renovations have been very good at this recently, getting rid of
furnishings, paint, and changes that were made since the temple opening
so that it focuses on how it looked at its original dedication.
I loved how this renovation balanced modernization and restoration. The Mesa Temple had some heavy remodels that removed progression and most of the murals. This remodel restored progression and recreated the murals. Portions of the original murals that were saved were hung in the temple hallways so they could be honored. I think this was a wonderful idea. While it's a little sad that the few original portions of murals aren't in the endowment rooms anymore, the walls did have to come down to allow for utility improvements.
After the discouraging news of the Salt Lake Temple's remodel, which appears to have gotten rid of murals without a second thought, and the intention to do the same in Manti, the decision to instead preserve Manti's murals, along with the results of this remodel, are refreshing and encouraging. I hope the results would have some impact on the Salt Lake's remodel--perhaps encouraging them to recreate murals, as was done very well here, and/or restore progression, as was done here. Even if they didn't do those, they should certainly keep some of the original murals and hang them in the temple, as was done here, so that they can still be seen and enjoyed in their original environment.
Meanwhile, the pioneer temple renovations continue. St. George is about halfway through its remodel that will also see its murals recreated:
The Salt Lake Temple continues its heavy renovation, still at least 3 years away from completion:
And the Manti Temple has only just begun its 2-year renovation that will see its original floorplan and murals preserved, thanks to the efforts of members:
The only one we haven't heard anything about is Logan, which is the one I'm most intrigued about. President Nelson originally indicated a restoration would be in the work for some pioneer temples, which seems to be the case for St. George but certainly not Salt Lake nor the original Manti plans. I'm wondering if they will change their minds and basically keep Logan as is, or update it in some other way that is a little more sensitive to its pioneer history. We'll have to see.