Video and Model Details
This is one of many temple models I had no real predecessor for. It was based upon the standard small temple design, but required some modification to make it more accurate. There was also a severe lack of information as to the grounds, so I am afraid most of that is fuzzy at best. I have a cousin who served her mission in the area, but even she did not have decent reference material.
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Asunción Paraguay Temple Wiki
Before 1949, the country of Paraguay officially recognized only one religion — Catholicism. However, the first Paraguayan member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints was baptized in 1948 by Samuel J. Skousen, a U.S. embassy worker, after receiving permission from the First Presidency of the Church. This first convert’s name was Carlos Alberto Rodriguez. Soon the government fully welcomed The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, and in 1949 missionaries were sent to preach in Paraguay.
In 1977 Paraguay became its own mission area and soon after converts to the LDS Church began to increase. The average number of baptisms per year in Paraguay up to that time had been just over 200. In the year following the announcement 400 people were baptized into the church. Currently, there are approximately more than 152,000 Mormon members in Paraguay.
In Paraguay’s capital city, Asunción, most people speak Spanish, but in much of the rest of the country, many people speak only Guarani, so many of the Mormon missionaries must learn both languages.
In 1994, Carlos Espinola, a member of the LDS Church in Paraguay said, “We have lived in Paraguay since the Church had only two branches, I feel that the day is much closer now when there is going to be great growth in the Church here. When President Ezra Taft Benson dedicated this land for the preaching of the gospel, he said there would be many stakes in Paraguay. I can see that day coming.”
On 2 April 2000, an announcement was made that The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints was planning to build a temple in Paraguay. Although there were already eleven other dedicated temples in South America, the Asunción Paraguay Temple was the first temple to be built in Paraguay. For the more than 68,000 members that the Asunción Paraguay Temple would serve, the announcement was gladly received.
When the Temple was announced, many Paraguayan Latter-day Saints were so excited they shouted out loud. Abilio Samaniego, who later became one of the Church’s leaders in charge of the temple, stated, “When we heard the news that a temple was to be built in Paraguay, we clapped and jumped and hollered. We wanted the Lord to know how happy we were.” He said, “The Lord has shown us much love, and I am grateful.”
Elder Jay E. Jensen of the Seventy and president of the South America South Area, who presided over the groundbreaking ceremony for the Asunción Paraguay Temple, said he felt impressed during the site dedicatory prayer to designate the block for the temple grounds, even -though all of the land had not yet been purchased. He said that the hand of Lord opened the path to buy the land needed to complete the temple grounds.
Elder Jensen offered the dedicatory prayer giving thanks that the people of this nation would soon receive the fulness of priesthood blessings and ordinances in their own country. He also gave thanks for those persons whose lives would be touched and forever changed by coming to a knowledge of the restored gospel because of the future temple. He expressed desire that the members would dutifully pay their tithes, thus enabling them to receive temple recommends.
An open house was held from May 4–11, 2002. This allowed Latter-day Saints and those not of the faith to see the inside of the temple and learn more about what takes place inside.
The open house for the Asunción Paraguay Temple generated wide interest from media representatives, civic leaders, and the general public. The week-long event brought 22,482 visitors with nearly 3,000 requesting more information about the Church. Among the invited VIP guests was the First Lady of Paraguay, Mrs. Susana Galli de Gonzalez Macchi, who expressed beautiful words of gratitude for the “magnificent” temple that was being inaugurated in Asunción.
The Asunción Paraguay Temple was dedicated by President Gordon B. Hinckley just two days after he presided over the dedication of the Campinas Brazil Temple. Local media outlets covered the event, featuring quotations from President Hinckley and other Church members who were interviewed.
On Sunday May 19, 2002 four dedicatory sessions were held, allowing all church members who wanted to attend an opportunity to be present. LDS Church president Gordon B. Hinckley gave the dedicatory prayer.
The day of the dedication, May 19, 2002, was rainy. However, thousands of members from Paraguay and Argentina traveled to attend, and the local media covered the event.
Once the Asunción Paraguay Temple was dedicated in 2002, every Spanish- and Portuguese-speaking nation in South America had an operating temple. This milestone was reached just 24 years after the dedication of the first temple in South America—the São Paulo Brazil Temple (1978)
The Asunción Temple was the first Mormon temple built in Paraguay and the Church’s 112th operating temple worldwide.
In the dedicatory prayer, Church President Gordon B. Hinckley commented on the wonderful growth the Church had experienced in the area: “Marvelous has been the growth of Thy work in this part of Thy vineyard.” He added, “May Thy Saints throughout the land look to this Thy holy house as a sanctuary to which they may come.”
Once the Asunción Temple was dedicated in 2002, every Spanish-speaking country in South America had at least one temple. Now Mormons in Paraguay, totaling more than 86,000, and those from nearby countries can find peace as they draw closer to the Lord at their beloved temple. Visitors not of the Mormon faith are also always welcome to walk the temple grounds and enjoy the serenity of the beautiful temple site.
On April 10, 2017 the First Presidency of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints announced the closure of the Asunción Paraguay Temple for extensive renovations. The renovations will help maintain functionality, efficiency, and beauty. The temple will receive mechanical upgrades along with updates in finishes and furnishings. The Renovations are expected to be completed in 2019. Once the renovations are complete, a public open house and rededication services will be announced. While the temple is closed, Latter-day Saints will be able to attend neighboring temples.
The Asunción Paraguay Temple closed on October 29, 2017. Renovations are anticipated to be completed in 2019..
The Asunción Paraguay Temple is located near the center of Asunción
in the Mariscal López neighborhood on the corner of Avenida España and
Avenida Brasilia—a major city thoroughfare. Sharing the temple site is a
meetinghouse, which was constructed as an addition to a former
residential mansion and is known locally as Capilla Moroni. Across the street from the meetinghouse are Church offices, a distribution center, and a patron housing facility.
The Asunción Paraguay Temple was built on the site of the first Latter-day Saint meetinghouse built in Paraguay in 1964. The building was demolished to make room for the temple.
The temple has a long, rectangular design with a single spire and is covered with light gray Asa Branca Brazilian granite
Decorative circles carved into the exterior walls are centered above trios of rectangular windows. A similar circle motif can also be seen in the fence surrounding the beautiful temple grounds, which are filled with vivid green grass, tropical trees, and bright flowers.
Inside the temple are a baptistry and instruction rooms, as well as a celestial room. The temple also contains two sealing rooms, where marriages are performed.
Sources and Links
- LDS.org (official)
- MormonNewsroom.org (official)
- Aba Nigeria Temple Open House (Journal, has interior photos)
- Violence forces closure of LDS Nigeria temple
-  Marvin K. Gardner, “Pioneers in Paraguay,” Ensign, Mar. 1994, 39 ↩
-  “Asunción Paraguay Temple,” Ensign, Aug. 2002, ↩
- Pedro Servin Fabio, “Rains cool Paraguay temple groundbreaking,” Church News 17 Feb. 2001: 3. ↩
- Asunción Paraguay Temple dedicatory prayer, in Church News, May 25, 2002, . ↩
- “Four Mormon Temples Will Close for Renovation”, Newsroom, LDS Church, 2017-04-10 ↩