Mormon church dedicates new temple in Brazil

The Associated Press/June 2, 2008

Curitiba, Brazil - Mormon church President Thomas S. Monson has dedicated a new temple in Curitiba, Brazil,

It's the fifth temple for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Brazil and the 126th church temple worldwide. A series of dedication events were held through the weekend.

On Sunday, Monson and two other church elders used mortar to lay a symbolic cornerstone on the building's facade.

The trip was Monson's first outside North America since he became president of the 13-million member church in February.

Temples are considered sacred to Latter-day Saints and can be entered only by members in good standing.

The church plans to build another temple in Manaus, Brazil. As of 2006, the last year for which statistics are available, there were more than 970,000 church members in Brazil, according to a church almanac.

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