Wind and rain delays didn’t deter thousands gathered to see the Angel Moroni statue take its place on the new Brigham City Temple.
Inclement weather delayed placing the gold-leafed statue into position Tuesday atop the temple for almost two hours, but it eventually was secured in place. The event marks the completion of the exterior work on the newest temple in Utah.
The temple is scheduled to be completed in 2012, but many Brigham City residents said it is already changing their community.
Cecilia McCullam said she felt the experience of having her children see the event was more important than getting a little wet.
“It doesn’t matter if the weather is bad,” she said. “I actually thought that this is nothing compared to what the pioneers went through, this is such a small sacrifice and so important for our community.”
McCullam, originally from Chile, said she was excited to hear a temple announced in her birthplace, Concepcion, Chile, and her current hometown Brigham City during the same General Conference.
Shannon McCullam, Cecilia’s daughter, said she could feel the anticipation in the air.
“We’ve all been so excited about the temple, we do everything we can to help,” she said. “Some people don’t have a temple in their country, and now the Lord’s house is right in our own back yard.”
Brenda Anderson, Young Women’s president of the Brigham City 15th ward, watched the event from a nearby chapel where it was being broadcast.
“We were all so disappointed when it didn’t happen on time, people said they might not do it today,” Anderson said. “But I waited and I’m glad I did.”
Ronald Frandsen, president of the Brigham City Utah Box Elder Stake, said he was as surprised as anyone to hear Brigham City would have a temple built within his stake boundaries.
“When the announcement was made, we could hardly believe it,” he said “We’re already within 30 minutes of a temple on either side of us.”
President Brigham Young created the Box Elder Stake as his last official act in August 1877, and the boundaries of the temple district are almost identical to the boundaries of that original stake. That same area is now home to 13 stakes.
Frandsen said the Moroni statue being placed is a culmination for those who have been excitedly watching the progress of the temple.
“Anyone that is driving by makes an occasion to drive by and see the temple,” he said. “They’re excited to see how the progress is going.”
The new temple will be the fourteenth in Utah and is anticipated to serve more than 40,000 Church members in northern Utah and southeastern Idaho.
Brian Rex, a resident of Brigham City for 20 years, has been chronicling the temple construction on his blog, brighamcityldstemple.blogspot.com. Rex took work off to see the Moroni statue put into place.
“It’s hard to put into words,” he said. “Almost everyone from Brigham City and around is here … I never thought Brigham would have a temple. It’s a great blessing, and it’s going to be wonderful when its completed.”