People should work to preserve the Manti temple as it is

Dear Editor:

The Manti temple is a graceful masterpiece of nineteenth century building and architecture, not a shell waiting to be ruined. Everything about the Manti temple, not only the art, should be preserved as it is.

We often hear words of respect about Utah’s pioneers. If such speakers are sincere, they should believe that artifacts left by that generation should be carefully preserved. The Manti temple is an example of extraordinary craftsmanship, inside and out, that should be honored and preserved. The Temple also represents tremendous sacrifice on the part of the builders and their families, and indeed all the people of Sanpete valley and beyond. It should not be altered.

An example of what may come of the temple if it were left as is can be seen in the Spring City historic rock chapel, which was threatened with destruction because it was not up-to-date. Instead, the chapel received a compatible addition. People like to tell how Gordon B. Hinckley, former president of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, referred to it as his favorite chapel in the church. Thousands of others, who have visited it over nearly forty years of Heritage Day tours, have felt the same way. If the Manti temple were to be preserved as is, that would be the long-term outcome.

An international example of the strength of preservation can be seen in the struggle to restore the Notre Dame in Paris. People around the world have donated time and money for its restoration after the devastating fire. Sacred places all around the world are maintained for the spirit they house. They are not remodeled into something valued in the current day (which will change) on a whim.

If you love the Manti temple and love Sanpete valley, of which the temple is the crowning achievement, please do all that you can to resist this impulsive and repulsive change. You’ll be honoring your pioneer forebears and saving a place people will be proud to point out.

E.W. Leigh

Spring City