Utahns don’t need to go far to see a nationally recognized religious wonder. CNN recently included the Salt Lake Temple as one of eight religious wonders to see in the United States alongside other religious wonders in various states, including New York and California.
CNN reporter Marissa Conner called the view from the outside the temple “inspirational” and “imposing.”
Richard Bennett, a professor in the College of Religious Education, said considering the temple’s historic significance to both Utah and the United States, it is a well-deserved honor. When Brigham Young first arrived in what would become Salt Lake City, one of the first things he did was section off an area where a temple could be built. Bennett said that action is significant for both American and Utahn history, not just Mormon history.
“It’s an architectural wonder for the pioneers to build something of granite,” Bennett said. “It’s an ecclesiastical treasure … and it’s quite an honor to be recognized that way.”
Seven other religious structures were recognized: Bahá’í House of Worship in Wilmette, Ill., Hsi Lai Temple in Hacienda Heights, Calif., Islamic Center of America in Dearborn, Mich., Memorial Presbyterian Church in St. Augustine, Fla., Temple Emanu-El in New York City, Palace of Gold in Moundsville, W. Va. and St. Patrick’s Cathedral in New York City.