The temple district includes members who live in an enormous geographic area that has been called “the cradle of Mormonism.” It covers six Canadian provinces and parts of five American states. The area includes members who come from many nations: England, Scotland, Germany, France, and Italy predominate, but there are also members from Greece, Hungary, Finland, Holland, Estonia, Mexico, Columbia, Guatemala, Nicaragua, and Poland.
In Toronto, Ontario, Canada, the Church has a history that reaches back to its earliest days. Ontario, Canada, was the first area outside the United States where the Church sent missionaries. As a result of these missionary efforts, John Taylor, a Methodist minister in Toronto, was baptized in 1836, later becoming the third president of the Church. Between 1830 and 1850, 2,500 people from Canada joined The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. The majority of these early members joined the pioneers on their trek to the Salt Lake Valley.
In the early 20th century, the Church’s missionary efforts led to the establishment of a permanent Church presence in eastern Canada, and in 1960, a stake, or group of congregations similar to a Catholic diocese, was created. However, the prospect of a temple being built in eastern Canada seemed unlikely to Church members who held regular Sunday meetings in rented halls, conducted missionary work in outdoor or rented locations or traveled long distances to attend leadership meetings.
Church membership in the area continued to grow steadily, and to the joy of Church members, the Toronto Canada Temple was announced on April 7, 1984, by Gordon B. Hinckley, then a member of the Church’s First Presidency. Thomas S. Monson, also a member of the Church’s First Presidency, who had been a mission president in Toronto, broke ground for the temple on October 10, 1987. The temple was dedicated in 11 sessions held from August 25 to 27, 1990, with more than 17,000 members in attendance.
The site location for the Toronto Ontario Temple was announced on June 22, 1986, by President Thomas S. Monson, second counselor in the First Presidency, during the organization of a new stake in Ontario—the 1,600th stake of the Church. President Monson was president of the Canada Mission when the first stake in Ontario was created on August 14, 1960.
Ground was broken for the Toronto Ontario Temple on October 17, 1987, by President Thomas S. Monson, who was assisted by Elder M. Russell Ballard of the Quorum of the Twelve and Elder John K. Carmack of the First Quorum of the Seventy.
Construction of the Toronto Ontario Temple was completed on schedule despite a six-week labor strike that idled construction workers just nine weeks before the open house. In consideration of the open house schedule, union leaders agreed to allow a few Church members to do finishing work in the temple as unpaid volunteers.
During the two-week open house of the Toronto Ontario Temple, 2,600 Church members volunteered in whatever capacity was needed. From ushering to cleaning, they donated more than 64,000 hours.
A total of 61,285 visitors toured the Toronto Ontario Temple during its public open house. It was estimated that 30 to 40 percent were members of other faiths. Of those, 6,044 requested to receive more information about the Church.
The Toronto Ontario Temple was dedicated August 25–27, 1990, in 11 sessions by President Gordon B. Hinckley. The services were translated in French, Spanish, Portuguese, Mandarin, Cantonese, and Korean due to the cultural diversity of the new temple district, which covered eastern Canada and the northeastern United States.
During his remarks at the dedication, President Gordon B. Hinckley said, “What we do today will go on growing and blossoming to the degree that those of generations to come will look back at our day and say it was a time of beginning.”Dell Van Orden, “‘Our Treasure,’ a New Temple Is Dedicated,” Church News, Sept. 1, 1990, The sacrifice and faith of former Mormon Church members had made this temple possible. Now, as President Thomas S. Monson said encouragingly, Church members can continue to live with the faith that motivated those early Saints: “In our day of affluence in our homes we have many rooms for every purpose. May we have room for Christ and may we have time for Christ.”Dell Van Orden, “‘Our Treasure,’ a New Temple Is Dedicated,” Church News, Sept. 1, 1990,
In the dedicatory prayer, President Gordon B. Hinckley prayed that the Church members’ faithfulness and devotion to God would continue: “May all who enter here be pure in heart and consecrated in purpose. May they here partake of thy Holy Spirit and carry that influence into their homes and reflect it in their lives.” The temple would be a place where Church members could grow closer to God.
President Hinckley also spoke of Church members’ devotion to God and His Son: “We pledge to thee our love, our strength, our means, our faith, and bear witness to the world that thou art our living God … and that thine Only Begotten Son is the Savior of mankind, the Spotless Lamb who was sacrificed for the sins of the world, the Holy One of Israel, the only ‘name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved’ (Acts 4:12).”Toronto Canada Temple dedicatory prayer, in Church News, Sept. 1, 1990.
The Toronto Ontario Temple is the 44th operating temple and the second temple built in Canada, following the Cardston Alberta Temple (1923). It is the first temple built in Ontario. Canada is the first country in the world, outside the United States, to have two temples within its borders. Germany became the second country outside the United States to have two temples when Germany reunified six weeks later.
Ten years after the dedication of the Toronto Ontario Temple, President Monson returned on August 19, 2000, to commemorate the 10th anniversary of the temple and the 40th anniversary of the Toronto Canada Stake by dedicating a historical monument, commemorating the contributions of early missionaries and members who served and lived in Upper Canada including John Taylor, third president of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
Standing in a beautiful residential neighborhood in Brampton, a Toronto suburb about 20 miles west of downtown. The temple is located on 5.26 hectares (13.0 acres) .
The Toronto Ontario Temple is a sublime structure with a 105-foot spire rising elegantly from its rooftop. The temple is oriented east, facing the intersection of Bramalea Road and Bovaird Drive. The Brampton Ontario Stake Center shares the exquisitely landscaped temple grounds, which are open for public enjoyment.
he temple’s central spire gradually ascends in steplike squares until the point of the spire rises to meet the gold-leafed statue of the angel Moroni. The temple is surrounded by trees, flowers and fountains. A long stretch of grass lined with bushes and blossoms leads up to the temple’s main covered entrance. Rounded arches are incorporated into the stone walls at intervals all around the temple. While some of these arches are solid and part of the temple walls, others are partly open, exposing entrances that allow access to doors leading inside.
Inscriptions on the exterior of the Toronto Ontario Temple are in both English and French—the official languages of Canada.
The floor plan and design of the Toronto Ontario Temple was based on plans created for the Denver Colorado Temple. The Temple comprises a total of 57,982 square feet, four ordinance rooms, and six sealing rooms.
References [ + ]
|1, 2.||↑||Dell Van Orden, “‘Our Treasure,’ a New Temple Is Dedicated,” Church News, Sept. 1, 1990,|
|3.||↑||Toronto Canada Temple dedicatory prayer, in Church News, Sept. 1, 1990.|