A new stake was created last Sunday in the Brazilian state of Mato Grosso do Sul. The stake in Campo Grande was divided and a second stake for the city organized (which becomes the third stake in the state as well). The Campo Grande Brazil Monte Líbano Stake includes four wards and one branch. This brings the total number of stakes to 229 in Brazil.
The original Campo Grande Brazil Stake was organized in June of 1991. It appeared like the stake would be divided in 2001 when there were nine wards and one branch. The new Campo Grande Brazil Monte Líbano Stake is one of the smallest stakes created in recent years in terms of the number of congregations. The recently created stake in Kinshasa last month also had four wards and a branch. It is likely that the two stakes in Campo Grande will have more congregations added in the coming months and years.
The first new stake created in Guatemala in 10 years was created last Sunday. The Totonicapán Guatemala Stake was created from the Nahualá Guatelmala District and a portion of the Quetzaltenango Guatemala El Bosque Stake. The three branches in the Nahualá Guatemala District became wards and three wards and two branches were taken from the Quetzaltenango Guatemala El Bosque Stake. The new stake will be nearby the Quetzaltenango Guatemala Temple, which is currently under construction. The new stake brings the total number of stakes in Guatemala to 39 and districts to 18.
We will likely see more new stakes in Guatemala, created mainly from districts. The Church has recently had a drop in the number of wards and branches in Guatemala primarily due to many branches being discontinued since 2000 as well as several wards discontinued last year. The number of congregations in the country fell from 451 in 2000 to 418 at the end of 2008. This drop in congregations was likely attributed to smaller branches combining to created stronger branches in districts so that they could become stakes (the number of wards increased in Guatemala from 239 to 241 - indicating that very few branches in stakes had become wards during this time). Unfortunately we have not seen any districts become stakes happened as of yet with the exception of the Totonicapán Guatemala Stake.
Membership usually increases by about 5,000 members a year in Guatemala and currently stands at 215,000.