Thursday, November 5, 2009

New Districts in the Dominican Republic

Two new districts were created last Sunday in the Dominican Republic. The Bonao Dominican Republic District was created from the La Vega Dominican Republic Districts and consists of four branches. The Cotuí Dominican Republic District was created from the San Francisco de Macoris Dominican Republic Stake with three branches. A district used to exist in Cotuí until the early part of this decade. The two new districts were likely organized due to these cities and nearby towns having multiple congregations. Membership growth has been consistent in Bonao and Cotuí, but unfortunately we have not seen any new congregations organized in this area.

There are now 19 stakes and 10 districts in the Dominican Republic. Senior missionaries serving in the Dominican Republic recently reported that about 500 Dominicans are serving missions currently. In the near future we may see additional stakes organized in Santo Domingo or from districts in the Dominican Republic Santo Domingo West Mission. The city of San Pedro has had a large number of branches, but as of yet has not been made into a stake.

6 comments:

Holly Walton said...

Do you think there is much chance that Puerto Rico will see a temple built any time soon?

Matt said...

I have thought that Puerto Rico is a likely possibility for a temple in the near future due it being an island with five stakes and two districts. Returned missionaries from Puerto Rico hinted to me that a temple for the island will not be likely until membership grows more in numbers and activity. Puerto Rico suffers from high inactivity and few members who have been through the temple. Furthermore it is much easier for members in the Caribbean to visit the temple in Santo Domingo than if a temple were in Puerto Rico. Members in Puerto Rico can easily and cheaply attend the temple in Santo Domingo according to missionaries who have served in Puerto Rico.

You never know though. The Church is investing much into establishing the Church in Puerto Rico, as evidenced by the creation of a second mission for the island in 2007. Both of the Puerto Rico missions include many islands in the Caribbean, which is one of the reasons for why the new mission was organized.

rfelsted said...

District growth has been tremendous in 2009! It seems as if there are new ones every few weeks.

We are down from year-end '07 (618 districts) to the present 605, but even though a few have been dissolved or merged into neighboring stakes or districts, the majority have become stakes.

I've misplaced the number of districts at year-end '08, but I think it was down from '07. --Ray

Matt said...

Ray-

The number of districts at the end of 2008 was 622. However only 615 were in countries where the Church publishes its presence. Currently there are at least 605 districts in countries where the Church publishes its presence. We likely have around 615 or so total districts in the Church. I believe all of these districts are in Asia. One of these districts was the military district in Afghanistan that was created in 2008.

rfelsted said...

Thanks, Matt, for clearing that up. I knew there were unannounced districts but didn't realize they were over and above the 605 number. So really we're only down a few from last year and with all the districts that became stakes in Mexico this summer it makes sense.

Does that also apply to branches? Are there several new and existing brnches not included in the statistics part of Rick's Temple website?

Matt said...

I believe that the La Vega Dominican Republic Stake has been discontinued and the remainder of the stake is now the La Vega Dominican Republic District. I don't have confirmation, but this appears the case because the title of Bishop has been removed for all the wards in the La Vega area.

I am not sure about branches this year because I believe there have been many new branches created in places where the Church does not announce them. Areas of which may be of interest to you where we have seen a large increase of congregations include Nigeria, Cote d'Ivoire, Madagascar, and Ghana.

I imagine we will be seeing more new branches created in India in the coming months in New Delhi, Chennai, Hyderabad, and Bangalore.

Also according to my count, the total number of congregations in the United States has increased by 100 since the beginning of the year.