The La Vega Dominican Republic Stake was discontinued a week ago and split into three districts. I reported on two of these districts last week. The third districts is the La Vega Dominican Republic District, which consists of four branches. I don't believe there has been a time in Church history when a stake was discontinued and broken down into so many districts. The stake was likely discontinued due to membership scattered over a large geographic area and concentrated in the three cities where the new districts were created (Bonao, Cotui, and La Vega). Perhaps mission and area leadership hope to increase membership and member activity to eventually turn each of the districts into stakes. It is likely that the stake was discontinued due to a lack in active Priesthood holders considering the former stake consisted of five wards and six branches. By turning the stake into three districts, local leadership can focus on a more local level in each district. There are now 18 stakes and 11 districts in the Dominican Republic.
There have now been three stakes discontinued this year, the other two being in the Grants New Mexico and Albany Georgia Stakes. So far 2009 is shaping out to be the year with the fewest stakes discontinued since 1999 when only two stakes were discontinued. The last year in which no stakes were discontinued was 1997.