LDS Church closes its downtown Salt Lake City restaurants and more temples worldwide

(Tribune file photo) The lobby of the Joseph Smith Memorial Building at Christmastime in 2017. The building and its restaurants have been closed now due to the coronavirus pandemic.

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The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints on Saturday added its Joseph Smith Memorial Building, along with the restaurants inside it, and the nearby Lion House eatery to its list of closed visitor attractions in downtown Salt Lake City.

On Friday, as the coronavirus pandemic continued to alter daily life in Utah, around the nation and across the world, the Utah-based faith announced the closure of Temple Square, one of Utah’s most frequented tourist draws, the Conference Center (a de facto visitor center during renovation of the iconic Salt Lake Temple), Family History Library, Church History Museum and other church facilities.

The church’s expanding tally of closed temples around the globe also swelled to nearly 30 Saturday morning. All 15 of Utah’s temples remained open but, starting Monday, they will accommodate Latter-day Saints “by appointment only” and only for “living ordinances” such as marriages, sealings, and endowments for prospective missionaries and couples intending to wed.

No so-called proxy work — in which members perform ordinances such as baptisms for their deceased ancestors — will take place at any of the church’s more than 160 temples.

The faith also has canceled all worship services worldwide “until further notice.”