I can’t even begin to express how devastated I was when the Provo Tabernacle burned down. That building had such special meaning for our family. I remember attending a choir concert of Adam’s after his mission and before we had decided to start dating again. We had decided before his mission that we wouldn’t plan on dating after his mission and definitely didn’t see marriage in our future. Sitting in the tabernacle that evening, I remember feeling so sad that we had come to that decision and wished there was a future for us. We had both grown and changed so much since his pre-mission days, little did I know that he was having the same thoughts as I was having. That choir concert in the tabernacle was the start of a renewed relationship that turned into something very very wonderful ;).
After we were married, Adam and I attended Stake Conferences in the tabernacle. I have never been in a ward choir let alone a stake choir, but one stake conference season I decided to join the stake choir. I will never forget sitting up in the choir sits looking out at the rest of the congregation in that beautiful building. I am not sure why I decided to be a part of the choir then and never before or never again, but it is an experience I will never forget. Even little Megan remembers attending conference there, and climbing up and down the spiral staircases.
Perhaps the most special memory I have of the Provo Tabernacle was with Megan. Megan has what is called a pragmatic language delay. While she takes in everything she hears and reads like a sponge, she has extreme difficulty sharing the thoughts in her head. With age and experience it has become easier, but communication is still a struggle for her. Communication was especially difficult during her preschool years. But I’ll never forget the very first time she had a unique thought, and was able to share it with no problem. We had just recently returned to Provo and she had barely turned 4. She and I were in the car together. We drove past the beautiful Provo Tabernacle and she looked out the window and exclaimed, Look! A temple!” This was such a breakthrough for her!! With happy tears in my eyes I told her it was the tabernacle and not a temple but that it was indeed a beautiful and special place.
Today the tabernacle IS a temple! When the announcement was made, I was so overcome with emotion. My devastation at the loss of the tabernacle was nothing compared to my joy at its rebirth. When the announcement was made, our future was very very unknown. I prayed regularly that we might stay in Provo if only long enough to see the temple to completion. My prayer was granted. We were able to not only attend the open house more than once, we were able to volunteer at the open house, Megan and I were able to attend a special bridal room tour, Adam and I were able to attend the actual dedication IN the temple and I was also able to do a session in the brand new Provo City Center temple before we left Provo. Also, my uncle Bob painted the murals inside the temple ceremony rooms. Adam was able to come and have some conversations with him while he painted about the astronomy aspects of the paintings. That was a wonderful experience for Adam.
We took our family through the Open House the very first day it started. We were THAT excited!
Aunt Janice, and I after the dedication. Uncle Bob wasn’t able to be there because he was too ill, but he was definitely there in spirit.
I am so grateful we have temples. I am so grateful I was able to have so many experiences with this new Provo City Center Temple. No matter where I go, it will always be my temple.