Mesa Arizona South Stake                   Not an official website of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints                     830 E 2nd Ave, Mesa, AZ 85204

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Lamanite Temple Excursions 1957-1983

From Lucian M. Mecham, Jr.’s Book of Remembrance:

 In 1957, I was called by President McKay, through his secretary Brother Joseph Anderson to be coordinator for Spanish speaking missions and members from stakes, and stakes in the Salt River Valley who were sponsors for the excursion groups and with the temple. This responsibility I held until released by letter of February 6th, 1974 signed by President Spencer W. Kimball, N. Eldon Tanner and Marion G. Romney. 

During this time, the housing facilities were moved from the Mezona building to the Inter Stake Center and dining added along with added kitchen facilities then the dormitories and playground were added. The efforts put forth to secure these improvements were great and of long suffering. Much opposition was met on a local level but not too much with the Brethren in Salt Lake. 


Report from Elder William J. Critchlow, Jr., of the Seventy, in a letter to Brother Mecham, written 12 November 1964:


·         The oldest excursionist was 91 years old; 

·         The largest family – parents and 8 children;

·         The longest distance traveled – 4,000 miles from Guatemala;

·         The most frequent visitors to the 30 excursions held to date: Hector Travino and wife from Monterey, Nuevo Leos, Mexico and a brother Carillo and wife from Fresno, California. One of each of these two couples – usually both – has attended 19 of the 2o excursions. Other couples have attended 6, 8, 11, or more times. Young couples frequently come from distant places in Mexico to be sealed in the temple. They do not wait for the excursions.

·         One brother in a wheel chair attended every session each day;

·         One elderly lady sold her home to finance her trip. She had no kin to leave it to; a friend, she said, invited her to live with her;

·         One young couple sold a horse, a stove and a sofa to raise the needed fare.

·         One couple brought four children -from way down south in Yucatan;

·         One man crossed the border with only one peso in his pocket “How far will you get with that,” he was asked. “All the way to the Temple,” he replied.

 The opening of the Mexico City Temple in November of 1983 effectively ended 26 years of Lamanite Temple excursions to Mesa.

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