Church Presidents and the Provo Tabernacle

and both delivered sermons in the Old Tabernacle. John Taylor—who had dedicated the Old Tabernacle in 1867 as an apostle and urged construction of the new as president—may also have spoken in the new structure. President Taylor was in exile, as a result of the polygamy hunts, during much of the period between the time the building came into use and his death July 25, 1887.

News accounts of conferences in the new Provo Tabernacle mention one or more visits by: , , Joseph F. Smith, Heber J. Grant, , Harold B. Lee and Spencer W. Kimball. George Albert Smith spoke at a BYU Baccalaureate service in the historic building in the late 1930s. Casual checking, without going to quarterly conference minutes, failed to turn up recorded tabernacle appearances on Church assignments of the ninth president, David O. McKay. However, given his long tenures, it would seem unreasonable to believe he never drew a Provo Tabernacle assignment, having been an apostle since 1906.1

In September 1986, then LDS Church President Ezra Taft Benson, presided over the rededication of the Provo Tabernacle, with President Thomas S. Monson, then a First Presidency counselor, offering the dedicatory prayer.2

President Gordon B. Hinckley, along with his first counselor Thomas S. Monson, spoke at the funeral of BYU President Rex E. Lee in the Provo Tabernacle on Mar. 15, 1996.3


  1. N. La Verl Christensen, Provo’s Two Tabernacles and the People Who Built Them (Provo: Provo Utah East Stake, 1983), 150.
  2. Scott Taylor, Deseret News, Dec. 17, 2010.
  3. LDS Church News, Mar. 23, 1996.
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1 thought on “Church Presidents and the Provo Tabernacle

  1. When I was about 8 years old, or about 1958, I remember attending an East Sharon Stake Conference the Provo Tabernacle and President David O. McKay spoke as he was our visiting general authority. Ben E. Lewis was our Stake President.

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