Bern Switzerland


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Video and Model Details

Video Details

This is a rendering of my model of the Bern Switzerland Temple of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. For the location, this is a rather plain temple. The ornamentation is very low key. It works well though. The bulk of the detail in this model is actually in the terrain, with the hill behind the temple, and the trees, of which there are many.

This model was originally created for Google Earth.


Park, Quiet, Bern, Switzerland 1 – Dr Zoom
Park, Quiet, Bern, Switzerland 2 – Dr Zoom


Modeled: Blender 2.63
Render: Cycles render engine

Whole Scene

 Vertices: 24,842
 Faces: 22,544
 Objects: 154
 File Size: 3.9mb mb

Temple Only

 Vertices: 20,730
 Faces: 17,016
 Objects: 35
 File Size: 3 mb

Google Earth

Model Details


This is the my original Bern Switzerland Temple Model, created for the Google Earth Building Layer. The automatic creation of buildings has replaced this model, so it is no longer visible on Google Earth.


Modeled: Blender 2.49
Render: WebGL render engine

Temple Only

 Vertices: 484
 Faces: 184
 Objects: 13
 File Size: 580kb mb


Bern Switzerland Temple Wiki


The Bern Switzerland Temple (formerly the Swiss Temple) is the 9th operating temple. Though the building is located in Münchenbuchsee, its postal address is assigned to the neighboring municipality of Zollikofen. The temple site is seven acres just at the edge of a national forest. The capital city of Switzerland, Bern, is just south of the temple.

It was the first LDS temple to be built in Europe and the first to be built outside of North America. It was the first temple to use a video presentation of the endowment ceremony. The patrons of the Bern Temple speak a variety of languages, using a film with separate switchable audio tracks made it easier to meet the needs of those attending.  Gordon B. Hinckley supervised the initial making of this film and was the person responsible for transporting the film to Switzerland.[1]

The Bern Switzerland Temple serves 39,000 members in 10 stakes in Austria, France, Italy and Switzerland.


In Switzerland in 1906  Joseph F. Smith, who was the president of the Church at the time, prophesied that temples would be built in the various countries of the world. The prophecy was far from being fulfilled; as there were only four temples in operation, and all of them were in Utah.

By the end of World War II focus had moved away from having the Church’s membership emigrate to Utah and had turned towards the focus of building up the Church where you already are. However there was also great emphasis being put on temple ordinances, and all Temples in teh world where in Utah, Hawaii, and Alberta Canada. Many members in Europe where still emigrating just to receive temple ordinances. On 17 April 1952 the decision was made to build a temple in Europe. The decision was made to look for a site in Switzerland.[2]

A site was located southwest of Bern, but obtaining this site where David O. McKay initially wanted to build the Temple was a difficult task. There were 30 heirs with claim to the desired property, and the Church entered into much negotiation, all in vain. In the end, the owners of the originally chosen site withdrew it from sale. The site where the temple now stands was found and purchased in a short amount of time, and it was then learned that a new highway would be built through a key portion of the originally selected site. A Successful purchase of the original intended sight would have resulted in ownership of soon to be forfeited property.[3] The new 2.8-hectare (7-acre) lot was selected on 1 July 1952 by LDS Church president David O. McKay and Samuel E. Bringhurst, then president of the Swiss-Austrian Mission.  


Official announcement of the temple project was made on 22 July 1952 while President McKay was speaking in Glasgow Scotland.[4] The land for the Temple was purchased at half the cost of the original on 20 November 1952.[5]


A groundbreaking ceremony and site dedication were held on 5 August 1953. President David O. McKay presided at the ceremony and dedication. 50 Chairs had been set up for the event, but about 300 people from Switzerland and Germany attended. Six weeks of rain were interrupted and the day of dedication was sunny and warm, with rains resuming again that night and the following day.[6]


Construction for the temple began in earnest on 1 October of 1953.[7]

Cornerstone Ceremony

The Cornerstone for the Swiss Temple was placed on 13 November 1954. Stephen L. Richards of the First Presidency presided over the event, which was held on wooden benches inside the unfinished temple. After Elder Richards address the congregation moved outside as a copper box was sealed under the cornerstone.[8]

Open House

9–10 September 1955


President McKay dedicated the temple September 11th through the 15th 1955 over 10 sessions in 8 different languages.[9] Many in attendance at the dedication had traveled very long distances and wanted to be able to attend a temple endowment session, so sessions started the day after the dedication at 5:00 in the morning. By the end of the day, 6 sessions had been held in the temple at which 900 people had been in attendance.[10]

Dedicatory Prayer

Dedication Order




A Remodel for the temple was commenced in 1990.  Originally the Temple contained one ordinance room capable of seating 250 people. After the remodel completed in 1992 , the temple contained instead four ordinance rooms capable of seating 75 each. This allowed smaller groups to be done for language specific sessions, and for multiple sessions to be run starting at 20-30 minute intervals instead of one session every 2-3 hours. Additionally the upper section of the temple was restructured to add a fourth floor, allowing for more sealing rooms to be added. In conjunction with this expansion, several feet were added to the back end of the upper section of the temple. The original Terra Cotta exterior was removed and replaced with a new exterior. The old exterior appeared to be made of small bricks, and the new exterior has a pattern of larger tales instead.

Public Open House

After a two and a half year extensive renovation a public open house was held from 8–17 October 1992.  32,900 visitors attended during the 8 days of the Open House .


President Gordon B. Hinckley rededicated the temple October 23rd through the 25th 1992 over 10 sessions. The renovation updated the interior and added more endowment and sealing rooms.


50th Anniversary

For the 50th anniversary of the temple, as part of the Jubilee celebration, an angel Moroni Statue was fitted to the top of the spire on 7 September of 2005, replacing the tall gold colored rod that had been their since its original construction.



President Pierre M. Brenders2017–
President Frederik F. Psota2014–2017
President Horst-Dieter Sperling2011–2014
President Raimondo Castellani2008–2011
President Wayne M. Hancock2005–2008
President Roland R. Dätwyler2002–2005
President Gary L. Schwendiman1999–2002
President Georg J. Birsfelder1996–1999
President Mario V. Vaira1993–1996
President Louis E. Ringger1988–1993
President Carl W. Ringger1984–1988
President Stanley D. Rees1981–1984
President Percy K. Fetzer1977–1981
President Immo Luschin von Ebengreuth1972–1977
President Charles Grob1969–1972
President Walter E. Trauffer1957–1969
President Samuel E. Bringhurst1955–1957


The Temple has a total of 35,546 sq ft (3,302.2 sq m.) The design of the temple is modern, with a single spire.


The Bern Switzerland Temple sits just south of a national park and is rotated about 4.8° counter-clockwise from a North South alignment.



The height of the spire on the Bern Switzerland temple is 140 ft. The width of the temple is 84 ft and the length of the temple is 152 ft.



The exterior is finished with reinforced concrete, covered in cream terra cotta facing and trimmed in white.

Terra Cotta Finish of the Bern Switzerland Temple, from a photo taken near the cornerstone.





The Inscription on the Bern Temple sits above the main entrance, just below the name of the church, and faces South.

Originally the inscription was above the name of the Church, and read just “DASS HAUS DES HERRN,” with the front Doors having “HOLINESS TO THE LORD” written directly above them in English.


The Cornerstone of the Bern Temple is on the South East Corner, facing South.

Spires and Moroni


The spire on the Bern Switzerland Temple consists of one large square tower of the same Terra Cotta finish as the remainder of the temple, with white trim. A smaller white tower (shaped like a + from above) with windows set in the 4 points sits atop the tower, with a white steeple finishing off the height.


The Angel Moroni was placed on 7 September 2005 as part of Bern Switzerland Temple’s 50th anniversary celebration. It sits atop the single spire and faces East by South.

The Statue on the Bern Temple was sculpted by Karl Quilter around 1985. It is typically a taller statue and is identified by its closed left hand and a looser fitting sleeve look on the arms.

Sculptor Karl Quilter
Version 1985
Placed 7 September 2005
Faces East by South

Individuals and Contractors

Architect Edward O. Anderson 
German Architect Wilhelm Zimmer of Bercher and Zimmer Architects 
General Contractor Hans Jordi of Bern 
Metal work (Dorrs and font) Michael Jager 

Sources and Links

External links

Additional Articles


  1. [1]Sheri L. Dew, Go Forward with Faith: A Biography of Gordon B. Hinckley, Salt Lake City, Utah: Deseret Book, 1996, ISBN 1573451657, OCLC 35364667
  2. [2]Richard O. Cowan, “The Pivitol Swiss Temple”, Regional Studies in Latter-day Saint Church History: Europe. Accessed 18 July 2017.
  3. [3]Richard O. Cowan, “The Pivitol Swiss Temple”, Regional Studies in Latter-day Saint Church History: Europe. Accessed 18 July 2017.
  4. [4]“Latter-day Temples” Ensign, January 1972. Accessed 20 July 2017.
  5. [5]Richard O. Cowan, “The Pivitol Swiss Temple”, Regional Studies in Latter-day Saint Church History: Europe. Accessed 18 July 2017.
  6. [6]Richard O. Cowan, “The Pivitol Swiss Temple”, Regional Studies in Latter-day Saint Church History: Europe. Accessed 18 July 2017.
  7. [7]Richard O. Cowan, “The Pivitol Swiss Temple”, Regional Studies in Latter-day Saint Church History: Europe. Accessed 18 July 2017.
  8. [8]Richard O. Cowan, “The Pivitol Swiss Temple”, Regional Studies in Latter-day Saint Church History: Europe. Accessed 18 July 2017.
  9. [9]Richard O. Cowan, “The Pivitol Swiss Temple”, Regional Studies in Latter-day Saint Church History: Europe. Accessed 18 July 2017.
  10. [10]Richard O. Cowan, “The Pivitol Swiss Temple”, Regional Studies in Latter-day Saint Church History: Europe. Accessed 18 July 2017.


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