Source: The New York Times
On April 22, 2004 The New York Times reported, "A legacy of misunderstanding and persecution has bred a keen instinct for public relations in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. And so, in what has become something of a ritual itself, the Mormon church opens every newly built temple to the public. Then it shuts the doors. The latest viewing takes place next month at a new temple - the 119th in the world and the only one between Washington and Boston - carved out of an existing Mormon-owned building across the street from Lincoln Center, at 65th Street and Columbus Avenue. After an open house from May 8 to June 5 and the dedication of the temple on June 13, only Mormons - and only those Mormons deemed worthy - will be allowed to enter what are considered the most sacred precincts of the faith. After 16 months of work, the temple is nearly complete. An army of workers, including skilled Mormon craftsmen who travel the world to work on new temples, are painting walls, installing carpet, and adding gilt edges to architectural details. 'We view the temple literally as the house of the Lord," said Scott Trotter, the church's spokesman in New York.' We believe it is the most sacred place on earth.'"