Serendipity Bed And Breakfast
116 S Pleasant, Independence, Missouri, 64050, United States
More about Independence
Magnificent pipe organ within the Temple
Frederick M. Smith, the second RLDS president
LDS monument to the temple site at Far West
Entrance to the Stone Church
Travel Tips for Independence
COMMUNITY OF CHRIST AUDITORIUM
Made to house the World Conferences of the Reorganized Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints (RLDS and now Community of Christ), the Auditorium was designed by church architect Henry Smith with inspiration from church president Frederick M. Smith back in the 1920's. Originally, the Auditorium was designed 66% larger than it is today with another balcony but budgetary constraints imposed due to the Depression and a large schism in the RLDS church occurring in response to what was seen by many as increased autocratic church rule by Frederick M. - he introduced the concept of 'supreme directional control', something the Utah-based LDS church has been much better at; up to 30% of the RLDS broke off, reducing tithe funds, though with time, many did return to the fold. The present capacity of the building is 5800 - by contrast, the new LDS Conference Center seats over 21000 - and even with this reduction in total volume, it was not until 1962 when the Auditorium was finally formally dedicated - construction had run from 1926 to 1929 and then resumed in 1956.
The Auditorium hosts many local community events in addition to the Community of Christ World Conferences - formerly held every two years and now every three - such as concerts and graduation ceremonies for high schools and colleges, besides being the venue for many well-known speakers from Harry Truman to Colin Powell to Bill Clinton. Many administrative offices for the Community of Christ are also maintained in the Auditorium and there is a Lower Assembly Room which can seat up to 1000 people. Providing music is one of the larger free-standing organs in the US, an 111-rank organ with over 6500 pipes ranging in size from 1/4 inch to 32 feet. The organ was built by Aeolian-Skinner of Boston and installed in 1959. You can listen to 30 minute recitals every Sunday at 3pm between September to May/daily during the summer. Tours of the Auditorium are also given Mon-Sat 9am-5pm and Sundays 1-5pm.
INDEPENDENCE - HARRY TRUMAN AND THE GARDEN OF EDEN
Harry Truman’s spirit is ever-present in Independence. His home is a part of the National Park system; there is a large Presidential Library/Museum; you drive into downtown Independence from Kansas City to the west on Truman Road; a large building commemorating WWI veterans just off the main courthouse square bears his name; a pamphlet describes a special walking trail that takes you past several buildings and sites that either had an impact on Truman’s life or that he had on that site. There are plenty of other witnesses in town to their most famous native as well. Not bad for a President who left office in 1952 with a favor ability rating of under 30%. Maybe Midland, Texas will be like this in 50 years from now with GW sites all over town to visit?
As you approach the town of Harry Truman from the west you also notice a gleaming spire and a large copper domed building just west of the main downtown area. These are the headquarters buildings of the community of Christ, the second largest church evolving from the Mormon tradition. While they are the most obvious branch of the Mormon tree here in Independence, they are far from the only one for it was here on a plot of ground - the so-called Temple Lot - between the two large Community of Christ buildings where Joseph Smith revealed to the faithful that Jesus would return here at the time of the Second Coming. The ground was the supposed site for the original Garden of Eden - according again to Smith. The Mormon faith underwent traumatic fractures at the time of Smith’s murder in Carthage, Illinois in 1844. Here in Independence, the aftermath of those layers of schismata can be uncovered.
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