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Mormon church dedicating Cambridge Stake Center Sunday

Posted by Brock Parker  June 24, 2010 11:45 AM

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The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints will dedicate a new stake center Sunday that will house six congregations and office space for church leaders overseeing 14 congregations in the area.

The 36,000-square-foot building on Binney Street in Kendall Square, will also serve as a temporary home for two Mormon congregations displaced by a fire that destroyed the Longfellow Park chapel in May of 2008.

“We’re very excited that we’ve finished this new building in Kendall Square,” said Grant Bennett, a spokesman for the Cambridge Stake, which is the Mormon equivalent of a diocese.

Construction of the Cambridge Stake Center was completed June 14, and Bennett said the church has been holding an open house this week that will continue through Saturday and anyone is welcome to walk through the building.

Thursday new age classical pianist Jon Schmidt will be playing concerts at the stake center at 3:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. Friday at 7:30 p.m. the center will host a lecture about the relationships and parallels between Mormonism and Judaism and Saturday at 7:30 p.m. a choral music ensemble will perform at the center.

Dedication services will be held Sunday morning, and two congregations will be able to meet simultaneously in the stake center, with one meeting on the second floor, while the other meets on the first floor, Bennett said.

The church began looking for property to locate a stake center in Cambridge in 2000, and, after finding the spot in Kendall Square, began construction in 2008.

In May of that same year a fire at the Longfellow Park chapel in Harvard Square displaced four Mormon congregations, which have since been leasing space in the Episcopal Divinity School in Harvard Square. Two of those congregations will now move into the stake center while the church rebuilds the Longfellow Park chapel.

Bennett said the Longfellow Park chapel is expected to reopen within the first quarter of 2011. The two other congregations displaced by the fire will move into space the church has been renting in Davis Square until the Longfellow Park chapel is completed.

--brock.globe@gmail.com

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