There’s something special about the Columbia River Washington temple.
It is one of the smaller temples, but the design and architecture make it stand out. And not just that- There’s a feeling there that it’s bigger.
I’m not describing it very well. The detailing on the roof line is amazing, the grounds are beautiful and so peaceful, and it just seems like the earth around it is rejoicing that it gets to be the spot where this temple was placed.
The exterior is amazing. But when I walked inside- even just barely inside the doors, it took my breath away. The beauty of the woodwork combined with the strong spirit was so inviting and I felt so lucky to be there with my family.
We went on a warm summer day with our boys to do family baptisms. Being with my children in the temple is one of my favorite things. There is such a peace that we just can’t replicate- though we try- at home or out in the world. The temple president came to the baptistry to meet with us and gave us a little devotional, which made the experience all the more special.
I feel so spoiled to live where I live. The Portland temple is just a few miles from my door, and I can attend or visit any time I want. I grew up in Utah where there was always a temple nearby.
During law school was the first time I didn’t have easy access to a temple. When Carey and I wanted to attend, we needed to drive several hours, figure out childcare, and either stay overnight or make the long drive home the same day. Needless to say, we didn’t go very often.
So when I visited the Columbia River Temple, I just felt so excited for the members of the church in the area. No more commuting- even if it was just a couple of hours. It makes a huge difference. I’m so grateful for President Hinckley’s inspired idea to build these smaller temples, to make them more accessible to more people.
Date Visited: July 22, 2017
Miles From Home: 222
Location: Richland, Washington
Dedication: November 18, 2001 by Gordon B. Hinckley
From the Dedicatory Prayer: We dedicate the grounds on which it stands with the surrounding shrubbery and trees, grass and flowers. May it be beautiful to Thy people and to all who shall look upon it. May all recognize that this is a consecrated and holy structure, Thy sacred house.