LDS church to build temple in Cedar City, residents react

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CEDAR CITY – Members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Cedar City are still beaming from the announcement that a temple will be built in their neighborhood.

The news came from LDS church president Thomas S. Monson at the start of the 183rd Annual General Conference.

Cedar City residents who are members of the LDS church, like Steve Pickett, were very excited to hear the news.

“First thing I looked at my wife, and she was ready to go out and start banging pots and pans,” Pickett said.

Rumors of a temple have been circling the city for months. The LDS church acquired close to 20 acres of property near Leigh Hill. The city has made improvements to the area with road development. Residents said they believe it to be the site of the Cedar City LDS temple.

“Yeah, it’s just one house separating us,” said Todd Hess, who lives just down the street from the property. “In fact, that’s what I posted on Facebook: ‘It’s official, and it’s just one house away.'”

Cedar City mayor Joe Burgess said they’ve been working with the LDS Church since last fall to secure permits and ensure zoning was in order. He said regardless of religious affiliation, he believes the building will bring a spirituality to the community, as well as an economic boost.

“The residents from Beaver County and over on 89… that come to the St. George Temple now, they’ll come here,” Burgess said. “And of course they’ll go to dinner here and go shopping here, and we’ll have some economic input.”

There’s no official timeline on when the temple may be complete. When it is complete, the Cedar City Temple will be the 17th to be built in Utah.

The LDS Church also announced the construction of a temple in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, which will be the eighth temple in that country.