Lima Peru Temple Hosts an Interreligious Night of Prayer and Concert

So... that's a cross on a temple.

Okay guys, this may be a first. Has a temple of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints ever hosted a presentation using projection mapping on its walls?

On July 26, 2021, Interfaith leaders and the outgoing president of Peru gathered on the grounds of the Lima Peru Temple in a program called “Oramos por el Perú” (We Pray for Peru). The program was broadcast on national television. The event was also commemorating the 28th of July, the Bicentennial of the Independence of Peru. On that day, the new president of Peru, Pedro Castillo took office as well.

The event takes place as Peru is in a tense political situation. Pedro Castillo will be be the fifth president in the span of five years. Amid corruption, impeachment, and resignations, the government has struggled to have stable leadership. One week in November 2020, there was three presidents in less than the span of a week. Add on top of that the effects of the Covid-19 pandemic, and it has been a tough year for Peru.

The election in April 2021 advanced two candidates to the runoff that represented both the far left and far right political parties. Keiko Fujimori, the daughter of the imprisoned former dictator Alberto Fujimori, was defeated by a razor-thin margin in the June runoff election. The winner was a rural school teacher and union leader who has never held elected office, Pedro Castillo, who was frustrated by lack of government support for rural schools during the pandemic lockdowns. 

Perhaps in the spirit following President M. Russell Ballard’s admonition to pray for your country, the church hosted the event for Peru’s Interfaith Council “Religions for Peace.” The lights around the temple were to honor the individuals that passed away during the pandemic. The event including projection of images on the façade of the Temple. The images included scenic images, symbols of Peru, images of religious building, and music videos from various artists.

Yeah for Ecumenism!

 I think it is pretty cool. Did the area leaders get permission from church leaders in Utah to do this? Could such a thing be done in the future on other temples for different purposes? Usually temples don’t have this kind of colorful display, even during Christmas light celebrations. When Salt Lake City was hosting the Olympics in 2002, other buildings hosted projections but the temple did not. Although, a large American flag was hoisted on the side of the temple when Utah received statehood in 1896.

Here are some images from the night:.

Check out the video (in Spanish). There are some great musical numbers like “Hallelujah” written by Leonard Cohen (41:00) and “You Will Be Found” from the Broadway musical and upcoming film Dear Evan Hansen (45:30). You would be forgiven if you thought it was an EFY song.

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