In December 2010, this historic building erupted in flames during the night and soon all that was left was a brick shell. It broke the heart of the Provo community as well as the hearts of those who once lived here but still held memories.
Later in October of 2011 it was announced that the building would be rebuilt but for another use. It would become a holy temple to the Lord.
The brick walls were stabilized and and steel girders placed under those walls so that the earth might be removed so that additional construction could take place on the lower level.
It has been a miracle to watch over the years as what was mostly ashes has been restored according to this plan.
What had stood as a ruin with the light shining through lost window spaces . . .
was now a beautiful edifice fully renewed six years later. It has been magical to watch this process.
Once again it looked much as the original tabernacle had looked in the 1890's with its center tower soon removed as it was too heavy for the roof. This building has been reconstructed and is ready for use for at least another 100 years. In the beginning weeks of January it opened for viewing by the general public before its dedication to the Lord on March 20, 2016. It has been a great experience to share this beautiful building with family and friends.
The first Saturday the temple was open, we braved the morning chill of temperatures in the teens to go inside this building we had been watching for the last five years. It did not disappoint.
Joining us in this early morning adventure were my sisters with one husband and a son.
A month later, we were back with our local grandchildren. That sweet little girl called it "grandma's castle."
The oldest, who is ten, was fascinated to learn about the history of this building.
A couple of weeks later I was back for a third time. My great Mesa friend, Kathy, was in Provo for training at the MTC before leaving for Virginia on her mission. She was finished with her training so we braved the Friday afternoon lines while we talked and walked. It was so fun to experience the beautiful interiors with her and now I felt almost like I could be temple guide.
It was also a joy to be able to walk right up next to the building after viewing the progress from the post office parking lot on the southwest corner of the temple lot.
I feel so privileged to live in this temple district with a view of this tower and Angel Moroni from my Provo home.
I look at the brick work and marvel at the restored brick and art glass windows.
I feel like it honors all those workers who first sacrificed to build the tabernacle all those years ago.
I'm sure that they never imagined that their work would become the impetus for a "The House of the Lord."
This statue honoring the family is on the north side. It is most appropriate because that is what temples are about, the linking of families for eternity.
The background is the buildings of historic Provo, many being built in the 1880's.
This is my last photo from the post office parking lot. This glorious building has been worth the wait and it has been so rewarding to share it with others.