Holding Conference in an Undedicated Building

April 1, 2007 | 20 comments
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I was surprised that the Saturday Afternoon session, held in the tabernacle, was nearly over before the tabernacle was dedicated. I had expected the dedication at the beginning, perhaps even before the official start of the session. If there’s no problem or benefit to having General Conference in a dedicated building, why was the tabernacle dedicated at all? Anyone know the rationale?

20 Responses to Holding Conference in an Undedicated Building

  1. queuno on April 1, 2007 at 3:35 pm

    When we dedicated a stake center a few years ago, we had talks and sang hymns before the prayer. The prayer itself occurred at the end of the meeting. I think it’s fair to assume that since the two functions (GC and dedicatory session) were combined, it’s OK to hold the prayer at the end.

  2. Keith on April 1, 2007 at 3:36 pm

    Temple dedications, dedications of chapels, stake centers, etc., all seem to follow the pattern of talks, music, and the like before and the dedicatory prayer at the end of the meeting. Nothing unusual here. The same pattern was followed with the conference center a few years back.

  3. Left Field on April 1, 2007 at 4:10 pm

    I don’t think general conference is a meeting that requires a dedicated building. If I’m not mistaken, it has been held outdoors on a number of occasions. The April 1980 general conference was held in the undedicated Fayette Branch chapel, which was also dedicated at the end of the session. I think it’s not unusual for buildings (other than temples) to be used for some time before they are dedicated.

  4. Seth R. on April 1, 2007 at 4:12 pm

    Does this mean I can ignore all the advice given before the dedicatory prayer?

  5. Broz on April 1, 2007 at 4:20 pm

    Its already been dedicated

  6. Nate Oman on April 1, 2007 at 4:22 pm

    I think that they were actually usuing the SL Tabernacle for several years in the 1870s before it was formally dedicated.

  7. Jacob J on April 1, 2007 at 5:19 pm

    Does this mean I can ignore all the advice given before the dedicatory prayer?

    Yes, Seth. Yes, that must be what it means. [smiley rolling its eyes]

  8. WillF on April 1, 2007 at 5:54 pm

    I don’t think there is any building dedication requirement for words to be prophetic.

  9. m&m on April 1, 2007 at 6:13 pm

    I wondered about this, too, but as I was thinking about it today, one thought that I had was that the session also served as part of the decication…note how many talks tied in the Tabernacle. Pres. Monson gave an unexpected extra talk in there for that purpose, it appeared to me. And so we could perhaps consider it all part of the dedicaion (which, in turn, was what made this an Historic Conference) rather than happening before the dedication.

  10. Larry Ogan on April 1, 2007 at 6:58 pm

    At the Nauvoo Temple dedication the dedicatory prayer was the last thing after talks.

  11. Connor on April 1, 2007 at 8:34 pm

    At the Nauvoo Temple dedication the dedicatory prayer was the last thing after talks.

    True, but nobody was doing any temple work before the prayer… : )

  12. m&m on April 1, 2007 at 8:51 pm

    Well, nobody will be doing temple work in the Tabernacle, so it’s all good. : )

  13. Matt Evans on April 2, 2007 at 12:38 am

    The explanation that makes the most sense to me is that it was a two-hour dedicatatory meeting that happened to also be a General Conference. And as m&m says, that’s probably what Elder Nelson had in mind when he said this would be an “historic” conference.

  14. Indra on April 2, 2007 at 9:47 am

    If the hymns were sung before the prayers or the talks given before the dedication of the building, it a mases me that some persons can conduct the Lord\’s meeting kfor him. We first need to understand that we havve a profit and if we trust in this Gospel it means having confidence that God will reveal it to the profit DON\”T YOU THINK SO.

  15. Indra on April 2, 2007 at 9:50 am

    Sorry for the misspelt words i am at work and wanted an inspiration so kinda glance SO SORRY

  16. Karen on April 2, 2007 at 2:04 pm

    Actually, eight sessions of General Conference were held in the Conference Center before it was dedicated. General conference was held there in April 2000 and President Hinckley dedicated it Sunday morning, October 8, 2000. ( I remember this because I had the opportunity of attending the first session of General Conference held at the Conference Center in April 2000, and the building wasn’t quite finished. I did check my facts though on the church web site. See the May 2000 Ensign and November 2000 Ensign

  17. Matt Evans on April 2, 2007 at 3:39 pm

    Given that conference has been held in non-dedicated buildings, as recently as 2000, what is the purpose of dedicating a building like the tabernacle or conference center? Is it just the Mormon equivalent of breaking a bottle of wine across a new boat’s bow (an unnecessary but fun tradition to honor the builders)?

  18. Visorstuff on April 2, 2007 at 8:43 pm

    What revelation requires that a building or other area should be dedicated before use? Isn’t the Earth the Lord’s already?

    And was the first vision negated because the sacred grove wasn’t dedicated? Or was it dedicated by Moroni? :)

    To me this thread is like saying that because a gravesite is not properly dedicated that the individual can’t come forth on the morning of the first resurrection. It just happened that the session was a dedicatory session.

  19. Becky on April 5, 2007 at 10:35 am

    Let’s not worry about such things like when or if a dedicatory prayer should be done. If we have a strong testimony of the gospel, and we trust in the Lord, that means we also trust in President Hinckley to do things when he feels it needs to be done.

  20. Benji on April 6, 2007 at 2:28 pm

    Perhaps dedication is more about us than about the building. WE dedicate the building, i.e., set it apart for a specific, sacred purpose. Sometimes I fear it is easy to take too talismanic a view of things in the church. Could it be that we are blessed and inspired not because we worship in a dedicated building but because WE dedicated the building in which we worship, and our lives, to the Lord?