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BIRMINGHAM ALABAMA: 'May the Church grow and prosper here'

Following is the full text of the dedicatory prayer for the Birmingham Alabama Temple given by President Gordon B. Hinckley on September 3, 2000.

O Lord God of Israel, Thou Great Judge of the nations and Father of Thy people, with thankful hearts, and with reverence and love, we approach Thee on this day of dedication.

We are met to present unto Thee this sacred house, a temple of the Lord dedicated for purposes according to Thy will and pattern.

Quoting from Thy revealed words, we pray: "That thy glory may rest down upon thy people, and upon this thy house, which we now dedicate to thee, that it may be sanctified and consecrated to be holy, and that thy holy presence may be continually in this house;

"And that all people who shall enter upon the threshold of the Lord's house may feel thy power, and feel constrained to acknowledge that thou hast sanctified it, and that it is thy house, a place of thy holiness" (D&C 109:12-13).

Acting in the authority of the eternal priesthood which Thou hast bestowed upon us, and in the name of Jesus Christ our Lord, we dedicate and consecrate this the Birmingham Alabama Temple of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints to Thee and to Thy Beloved Son. We do so with love and gratitude. It represents our gift to Thee, given with thanksgiving, and with appreciation for this sanctuary which has been constructed in our midst.

We dedicate the grounds on which it stands, the footings, the foundation, the walls and windows, and the steeple crowned with the figure of Moroni. We dedicate the Baptistry, the endowment rooms, the beautiful celestial room, the sealing rooms with their sacred altars, and every other space and facility found in this Thy house.

We pray that this edifice may be beautiful to all who receive the sacred ordinances which will be administered here.

Wilt Thou stay the hand of the destroyer that it shall not be damaged by the elements, nor by hands that run to mischief. May it be looked upon with reverence and respect as a place that is sacred and holy unto Thee.

May only those who are worthy before Thee enter its portals to serve Thee in righteousness. Imbue all who participate within these walls with a great overpowering sense of the importance of that which they do. May that which they do for themselves, in accepting the ordinances of this house, strengthen their lives, give purpose to their existence, make of them better husbands and wives, parents and children. May the solemnities of eternity rest upon them and bring to them an understanding of the efficacy of the work they do in behalf of the dead.

Dear Father, here within these walls will be presented aspects of Thy great and eternal plan for the blessing and exaltation of Thy sons and daughters. May they be faithful in their attendance. May they be anxious in their concern for the accomplishment of a glorious work in behalf of those beyond the veil. May this temple represent the highest order of heaven which Thou hast revealed to men on earth.

May this house ever remain holy and sacred unto all who enter herein. May Thy Spirit dwell here and touch the hearts of those who serve.

May the influence of this Thy house be felt throughout this great temple district. May the Church grow and prosper here. May those in government be friendly to Thy people. Let Thy Holy Spirit lead those called to preach the gospel that they may seek out and find those who will accept the everlasting truth revealed in this the dispensation of the fulness of times. May all who come into the Church remain faithful and true and advance in maturity and worthiness to participate in the sacred activities of Thy house.

We pray that Thou wilt bless the temple presidency and the matron and assistant matrons. Grant them strength and vitality of body and mind to carry forward the great work here to be accomplished. Bless all who labor with them that they may experience great joy and satisfaction in their service. May Thy Spirit rest upon those who come as patrons that a growing knowledge of things divine may bring firm and unshakable testimony of the truth of Thy gospel plan.

Father, this house has been constructed largely with the tithes of Thy people throughout the world. Please keep Thine ancient promises, open the windows of heaven, and shower down blessings upon them. Prosper them in righteousness in their labors. May the generations who come after them be blessed because of the faithfulness of their forebears who live today.

Bless Thy work in all the earth. May it grow in strength and numbers. May the spirit of revelation rest upon those called to lead this work. Wilt Thou guide them to those decisions which will advance Thy work wherever it may be established, and may the leaders of those nations whose doors are now closed, be touched by Thy Spirit to welcome Thy messengers.

Our Father in heaven, we look to Thee with wonder and affection. How richly Thou hast blessed us. Thou hast smiled with favor upon us. We love Thee. We love Thy Son, our Redeemer, who gave His life for us. May we ever draw nearer to Thee and to Him. May we walk the paths which Thou hast outlined. May our understanding of the things of life and eternity grow and add to our faith and strength.

On this historic day in this Thy house we pledge our loyalty and service. We rededicate ourselves to Thy great cause. We bow before Thee in faith and reverence. We express our love and plead for Thy blessings in the name of Thine only Begotten Son, the Savior of the world, even the Lord Jesus Christ, amen.

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