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Mormons gather to dedicate Europe's largest temple in the 'Eternal City'

View of the new Mormon temple in Rome Rfi / Sabina Castelfranco

The leadership of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, widely known as the Mormon Church, has for the first time gathered outside of the United States in the Italian capital for a very special occasion: the dedication of its temple in the eternal city. Europe’s largest temple is being dedicated over three days starting Sunday by their “Prophet” Russell Nelson.

For the more than 25,000 Italian Mormons and the many other followers of this faith who came to Rome, this temple has special significance.

Rome the centre of Christian faith

“Rome is the centre of Christianity. Here’s where the apostles Peter and Paul, the early apostles of the Church of Christ came to preach and bear their testimony”, says Alessandro Dini-Ciacci Italy’s representative of the Mormons.

“We are followers of Jesus Christ. We love the Saviour” adds Dini-Ciacci. He stresses that the temple was built as a statement for their beliefs of “Jesus Christ as the Saviour of the world” and the idea that life goes on after death where families can be together. “That is the focus of our temples. The ordinances that bind families together” says the head of the Italian branch of the Mormons.

Mormons have 162 temples in different parts of the world and 40 more have already been announced for a church growing in numbers.

No barriers to building a magnificent temple

No expense was spared for this construction of Rome’s towering white “house of the Lord”.

“The temple was built with the finest materials, is very refined, as our offering of love. Our show of love for the Saviour and his father. That’s why we choose the best materials possible. There’s Carrara marbles, stained glass, fine fabrics. It is all a tribute to our heavenly father” explains Dina-Ciacci.