The Salt Lake Temple Keystones
A keystone is the apex and centerpiece of an arch. Its function is to hold all the other pieces of an arch in its place. If a keystone is removed the whole arch collapses. There are keystones at the top of each of the arched windows and doors of the Salt Lake Temple. There is a blank keystone located over the second window of the center tower on the East and West faces. The other keystones on the temple contain an additional symbol and the meaning of each of those symbols will be explained on subsequent pages.
The keystones on the Salt Lake Temple are a symbol that represents the Holy Priesthood of God. The priesthood is the sacred authority that oversees and holds together all the sacred ordinances performed within the temple. They keystone also represents the New and Everlasting Covenant; which LDS Church President Joseph Fielding Smith defined is "the fulness of the gospel. It is composed of ‘All covenants, contracts, bonds, obligations, oaths, vows, performances, connections, associations, or expectations that are sealed upon members of the Church by the Holy Spirit of promise, or the Holy Ghost, by the authority of the President of the Church who holds the keys. The President of the Church holds the keys of the Melchizedek Priesthood. He delegates authority to others and authorizes them to perform the sacred ordinances of the priesthood. Marriage for eternity is a new and everlasting covenant. Baptism is also a new and everlasting covenant, and likewise ordination to the priesthood, and every other covenant is everlasting and a part of the new and everlasting covenant which embraces all things." (Answers to Gospel Questions, Vol 1, p.65.)