Deseret News, Sunday, November 17, 2002
This is the text of LDS Church President Gordon B. Hinckley's letter
regarding the Main Street Plaza:
To Our Neighbors,
I send to you my warmest greetings.
For almost all of my 92 years, I have lived and worked in the Salt Lake
community among wonderful fellow citizens — people of all faiths and
backgrounds whom I have greatly appreciated and considered my friends.
We have worked side by side to accomplish many significant things to
benefit the community and assist the needy.
Never has the strength of our community been manifest more clearly than
earlier this year. Thousands of volunteers, of all beliefs and
persuasions, earned international admiration and respect by working
tirelessly together to host the 2002 Olympic Winter Games.
I have spoken often and plainly to the members of our Church on the
subject of reaching out as good neighbors and being helpful to all. I am
convinced this is what God expects of us, despite personal differences
of opinion in some matters.
In October 2000, we dedicated the Church's new Conference Center and the
new Church plaza — including the area immediately in front of the Salt
Lake Temple, which was formerly part of Main Street. The prayer of
dedication included a plea that the plaza be seen as a place of peace —
an oasis in the midst of this bustling city — an island of quiet beauty
where the weary may sit and contemplate the things of God and the
beauties of nature. Unfortunately, some have since felt that this place
of peace should be a place of protest, that this island of quiet beauty
should be used for confrontational and noisy demonstrations. A
distressing legal battle has ensued.
I am sending you this packet of information for the simple purpose of
sharing our perspective. I invite you to study and ponder it in light of
our most important goal as neighbors: to live together in peace with
appreciation and respect for another. If, after having read it, you
would like to share your thoughts with me, I would gladly welcome them.
Please direct any reply to the Office of the First Presidency, Re:
Church Plaza, 47 E. South Temple St., Salt Lake City, UT 84150-6200.
Gordon B. Hinckley
© 2002 Deseret News Publishing Company
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