Only a Stonecutter

DVD cover

DVD cover

A new short film by Excel Entertainment and T.C. Christensen has been released entitled “Only a Stonecutter: One Man’s Sacrifice to Build the House of the Lord.”  The film tells the story about John Rowe Moyle and how for 20 years he walked 22 miles from Alpine to Salt Lake to work as a stone mason on the Salt Lake Temple.  He endured this rigorous routine even after losing his leg in an accident.

Several general authorities have told this story, including President Uchtdorf in the Priesthood Session of the most recent General Conference (October 2008).  We have also recounted this story previously as told by Elder Holland in the April 2000 Conference.  As a capstone to Br. Moyle’s work on the temple, he is the one who chiseled “Holiness to the Lord” on the eastern façade.

The film is 14 minutes long and available at Deseret Book and likely wherever LDS items are sold.  A short preview video clip is below.


  1. LDS Desert Kid
    Posted December 24, 2008 at 7:23 am | Permalink

    I got an early christmas gift of family genealogy book that tells the indepth story of one of my great, great, great grandfather – Welcome Chapman – who also worked on the several early Utah Temples as a master stonecutter with several of his sons.

  2. Posted December 24, 2008 at 3:16 pm | Permalink

    Thank you for sharing your knowledge with us, I value your work highly.
    I have learned very much from your web site.
    Than your have a Merry Christmas
    Than templestudy go right ahead for a long time
    An assiduous reader, Juan Reta
    Forgive my English, I speak Spanish.

  3. Posted December 24, 2008 at 3:35 pm | Permalink

    Thank you Juan. I appreciate hearing from you, and your kind comments. Que tenga una muy Feliz Navidad y un Buen Año!

  4. Lari
    Posted January 7, 2009 at 2:15 pm | Permalink

    I am a great great grandaughter of John Moyle and have treasured his story for many years. This video is so well done! Several years ago I drew a picture representing his life and used the handcart statue on temple square as a reference. Several years later at a family reunion I found out that his likeness was use to make the statue. I am so grateful for this video!!!!!

  5. Owen
    Posted March 29, 2009 at 6:36 pm | Permalink

    I enjoyed the movie and would like to know the music used throughout, title, etc.

  6. John Webster
    Posted September 21, 2009 at 3:00 pm | Permalink

    I’m not sure this is the right place to ask this question but I have been online looking for the answer and can not find it. How was the granite cut so precisely (technique) I teach gospel doctrine and one of the questions that came up is how did they do such esquisite work with the stone. Clearly stone cutting was done anciently but the pioneers had little to work with. What did they do to quary the stone and the engineer it so precisely. If you have some online information it would be useful to me.

    Thanks very much

    John Webster

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