Preston in the Picture: The Preston Temple

preston temple

Ok, I know this isn’t really a photograph of Preston but there is definitely a link here and it’s another ‘claim to fame’ as far as Preston goes.

Back in 1837, a small group of missionaries were sent to Britain by the relatively new Church of Jesus Christ of the Latter Day Saints. The Church had only been formed seven years so this was very much a recruitment drive and after arriving in Liverpool the missionaries made their way to Preston, where one of the group had family.

They preached in Preston and then on July 30th of that year they carried out their first baptisms. The more traditional church halls were out of bounds and so the baptism took place in the River Ribble. A plaque in Avenham Park commemorates the occasion.

Between 1837 and the turn of the century it is estimated that as many as 100,000 converts emigrated to join the main body of the Church in the United States, may leaving from Liverpool where the missionaries had arrived. Preston is now recognised as being the oldest continuos branch of the Church anywhere in the World.

The Preston Temple at Chorley was opened in 1998. It includes a missionary training centre and a family history centre.

Photo: Nikon D700, 200mm f8 1/500 ISO400

Paul Melling [Paul Melling Photography]

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