Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Countries of the World and Year Opened to LDS Missionary Work

Below is a chronological list of countries that have had LDS missionaries assigned provided with the year the first missionaries were assigned.  Years with multiple countries opened have countries listed in alphabetical order.  Countries that no longer have an LDS presence are listed in red and provided with the last year of an LDS presence.  Notes are provided clarifying when an LDS presence was first established, any previous attempts to begin missionary activity earlier on, and setbacks requiring the removal of all missionaries.
  1. United States - 1830
  2. Canada - 1830
  3. United Kingdom - 1837
  4. Australia - 1840
  5. French Polynesia - 1844
  6. Denmark - 1849
  7. France - 1849 (missionaries served inconsistently in France until 1946)
  8. Switzerland - 1850
  9. Germany - 1851 (first branch created in 1843)
  10. Norway - 1851
  11. Sweden - early 1850s
  12. Ireland - 1850s (missionary work began in late 1830s but closed due to famine and emigration)
  13. New Zealand - 1854
  14. Netherlands - 1861
  15. Finland - 1870s (more permanent, consistent missionary activity began in 1947)
  16. Mexico - 1875
  17. Austria - 1883 (year first Austria baptized in Austria; missionaries periodically visited years earlier)
  18. American Samoa - 1888 (previous attempt to establish church in 1862 but unsuccessful)
  19. Belgium - 1888
  20. Samoa - 1888 (previous attempt to establish church in 1862 but unsuccessful)
  21. Tonga - 1891 (missionaries removed from 1897 to 1907)
  22. Syria - late 1890s-1951 (closed due to political conditions and emigration of Armenian converts)
  23. Japan - 1901 (mission closed in 1924 and reopened in 1946)
  24. South Africa - 1903 (missionaries also served from 1853-1865)
  25. Argentina - 1925
  26. Brazil - 1928
  27. Czech Republic - 1929 (missionaries removed in 1950; reintroduced in 1990)
  28. Israel (Palestine) - 1933-1939, 1946-1951, 1970s-mid-1980s (closed due to BYU-Jerusalem agreement with government)
  29. Cook Islands - 1946 (previous attempt to established church in 1899 unsuccessful)
  30. Costa Rica - 1946
  31. Guatemala - 1947
  32. Uruguay - 1947
  33. El Salvador - 1949
  34. Hong Kong - 1949 (previous attempt to establish church in 1853 unsuccessful)
  35. Paraguay - 1950
  36. Zimbabwe - 1950 (missionary visits began as early as 1930)
  37. Honduras - 1952
  38. Niue - 1952
  39. Nicaragua - 1953 (missionaries withdrawn for most of the 1980s)
  40. Fiji - 1954
  41. South Korea - 1954
  42. Chile - 1956 (previous attempt to establish church in early 1850s unsuccessful)
  43. Taiwan - 1956
  44. Peru - late 1950s (first branch created in 1956)
  45. Philippines - 1961
  46. Luxembourg - 1963 (no missionaries appeared to be assigned in the 1970s)
  47. Bolivia - 1964
  48. Macau - 1964
  49. India - 1960s (exact year missionaries assigned unknown; some missionary activity in 19th century)
  50. Ecuador - 1965
  51. Lebanon - 1965-1975 (LDS presence remains, but no proselytism missionary at present)
  52. Panama - 1965 (first LDS presence established in 1940s among military)
  53. Bermuda - 1966
  54. Colombia - 1966
  55. Italy - 1966 (some missionary activity occurred in the mid-19th century)
  56. Venezuela - 1966
  57. New Caledonia - 1968 (first branch created in 1961)
  58. Singapore - 1968 (missionaries removed for much of the 1970s)
  59. Thailand - 1968 (missionaries briefly assigned in 1854, LDS presence established in 1950s)
  60. Spain - 1968-1969
  61. Indonesia - 1970
  62. Malaysia - 1972
  63. Puerto Rico - early 1970s (time when Puerto Rico assigned to a mission; missionaries visited in 1940)
  64. Portugal - 1974
  65. Iceland - 1975 (LDS presence and missionaries assigned from 1851-1914; reintroduced in 1975)
  66. Iran - 1975-1979 (missionary work closed due to Iranian Revolution)
  67. Kiribati - 1975
  68. Northern Mariana Islands - 1975 (LDS presence among military first established in 1940s)
  69. Vanuatu - 1975 (first branch organized in 1973)
  70. Federated States of Micronesia - 1976
  71. Guam - 1977 (year first native baptized; LDS presence since 1944 but among military)
  72. Marshall Islands - 1977
  73. Trinidad and Tobago - 1977
  74. Croatia - late 1970s (at the time part of Yugoslavia; dedicated for missionary work in 1985)
  75. Serbia - late 1970s (first missionary visited in 1899)
  76. Curacao - 1978 (missionaries removed same year, reassigned in 1982; first branch created in 1979)
  77. Ghana - 1978
  78. Jamaica - 1978 (previous attempt to establish church in 1840s and 1850s unsuccessful)
  79. Namibia - 1978
  80. Nigeria - 1978
  81. Palau - 1978
  82. US Virgin Islands - 1978 (first convert baptisms occurred in 1976)
  83. Bahamas - 1979
  84. Barbados - 1979
  85. Dominican Republic - 1979 (country dedicated, first branch organized in 1978)
  86. Mauritius - 1979 (one missionary was assigned for two months in 1856)
  87. Papua New Guinea - 1979 (year first branch was organized; first converts baptized in 1980)
  88. Reunion - 1979
  89. Belize - 1980
  90. Haiti - 1980 (first convert baptisms occurred in 1978)
  91. Kenya - 1980 (first convert baptisms occurred in 1979)
  92. Saint Vincent and the Grenadines - 1980
  93. Saint Martin/Sint Maarten - 1983
  94. Antigua and Barbuda - 1984
  95. Guadeloupe - 1984 (first branch created in 1982)
  96. Martinique - 1984
  97. Saint Kitts and Nevis - 1984
  98. Grenada - 1985
  99. Tuvalu - 1985 (year first branch and convert baptisms occurred; missionaries removed 2005-2010)
  100. Cayman Islands - 1985 (church services began in 1982)
  101. Greece - 1986 (first branch created in the 1960s;  (some limited missionary activity in the late 19th and early 20th centuries)
  102. Aruba - 1987 (first branch created in 1986)
  103. Democratic Republic of the Congo - 1987
  104. Liberia - 1987
  105. Swaziland - 1987 (first branch created in 1986)
  106. Cote d'Ivoire - 1988
  107. Guyana - 1988
  108. Malta - 1988 (previous attempts to establish church occurred in the 1850s and 1979)
  109. Poland - 1988 (sporadic missionary efforts occurred for nearly 100 years before this time)
  110. Sierra Leone - 1988
  111. Suriname - 1988
  112. Cape Verde - 1988-1989
  113. Hungary - 1988-1989 (sporadic missionary presence around 1900, first convert baptisms in 1988)
  114. French Guiana - 1989
  115. Lesotho - 1989
  116. Botswana - 1990
  117. Bulgaria - 1990
  118. Estonia - 1990
  119. Romania - 1990 (missionaries were assigned periodically from 1903-1933)
  120. Russia - 1990
  121. Slovakia - 1990 (some missionary activity occurred in the 1930s and 1940s).
  122. Slovenia - 1990
  123. Uganda - 1990
  124. Ukraine - 1990
  125. Armenia - 1991 (year country dedicated for missionary work; first branch organized in 1994)
  126. Madagascar - 1991 (first convert baptisms occurred in 1988)
  127. Republic of the Congo - 1991-1992
  128. Albania - 1992
  129. Andorra - 1992 (first convert baptism; unclear exact year first missionaries were assigned)
  130. Cameroon - 1992 (young missionaries not assigned until mid-2000s)
  131. Latvia - 1992 (some missionary activity briefly occurred in 1903)
  132. Lithuania - 1992
  133. Mongolia - 1992
  134. Tanzania - 1992
  135. Zambia - 1992 (missionaries briefly assigned in 1960s)
  136. Belarus - 1993
  137. Cyprus - 1993 (year country dedicated for missionary work; unclear when first missionaries assigned)
  138. Ethiopia - 1993
  139. Pakistan - 1993 (first LDS presence established in 1970s)
  140. Cambodia - 1994
  141. Solomon Islands - 1995 (year first senior missionaries assigned; missionaries withdrawn for much of the 2000s
  142. Moldova - 1997 (missionaries withdrawn from 2004 to 2007)
  143. Sri Lanka - late 1990s (time when first proselytizing missionaries from Singapore Mission assigned)
  144. Benin - 1998 (year senior missionaries first assigned and first baptism; first branch organized in 2003)
  145. Malawi - 1999 (first convert baptisms occurred in 1992)
  146. Mozambique - 1999 (first branch created in 1996)
  147. Togo - 1999
  148. Saint Lucia - 2003 (year branch was reestablished; brief missionary presence from 1983-1986)
  149. Kazakhstan - mid-2000s (exact year unknown; country dedicated in 2003)
  150. Vietnam - mid-2000s 
  151. Dominica - 2006
  152. Georgia - 2006
  153. Laos - 2006 (young missionaries removed same year; only humanitarian missionaries at present)
  154. Angola - 2008 (first branch created in 1996)
  155. Turks and Caicos Islands - 2008-2009
  156. Burundi - 2010
  157. Kosovo - 2011
  158. Bosnia and Herzegovina - 2012 (first branch created in 2011)
  159. Macedonia - 2012
  160. Montenegro - 2012
  161. Turkey - 2012 (some limited missionary activity in the late 19th and early 20th centuries)

10 comments:

Gnesileah said...

Do any of the below have or have had missionaries assigned to them?

Anguilla
British Virgin Islands
Central African Republic
Cook Islands
Gibraltar
Guernsey
Isle of Man
Jersey
Liberia
Mayotte
Montserrat
Nauru
Nepal
Niue
Panama
Rwanda
Saint Pierre and Miquelon
St Barthelemy

Matt said...

Thanks for the feedback.

I added the Cook Islands, Liberia, Niue, and Panama to the list. I am not sure when or if missionaries serve or have ever served in the British Virgin Islands, Gibraltar, Guernsey, Isle of Man, or Jersey. No young proselytizing missionaries have been assigned to the Central African Republic, Mayotte, Nauru, Nepal, or Rwanda. There is no known LDS presence in Anguilla, Montserrat, Saint Pierre and Miquelon, and St. Barthelemy.

Craig said...

The Turkish Mission was an active successful mission from 1885-1909 and again functioned from 1921 until it became the Armenian Mission in 1924 according to the 2004 Church Almanac. In the mid-1890s, my former wife’s great grandfather was a missionary in the Turkish Mission. He served in Haifa and Jerusalem in Palestine (now Israel), Damascus & Aleppo (now Syria), Beirut (now Lebanon), and Istanbul (now Turkey). Then all were part of the Ottoman Empire (Turkey).

Craig said...

Panama has been a mission since 1989 and was part of the Costa Rica San Jose Mission and Central America Mission before that.

Liberia had missionaries starting in 1987. There was a Liberia Monrovia Mission from 1988 to 1991.

The Cook Islands (Rarotonga) had missionaries as early as 1899. There was a separate Rarotonga Mission from 1960-1966.

miro said...

Jersey, Guernsey and Isle of Man have or had missionaries assigned. When I served in the London South Mission (2004-2006) the missionaries alterated between Jersey and Guernsey. My sister served last year around chrismas on the Isle of Man.

Dad, KC4RZW said...

The list does not show the first missionaries sent to South America or India. This is important because many countries were prepared to receive the gospel after an initial failure in missionary work. My great great grandfather Hugh Findlay and his brother Allen served in India with over 20 missionaries in the mid-1850's, it is all documented in the book "Nothing More Heroic" from Deseret Book, Author is R. Lanier Britsch. The we're pulled out just prior to the civil war where the Britsh were overthrown.

Dimitrius said...

Craig is correct about the Turkish (Ottoman) Mission. Elders Jacob Spori and George C. Naegle were probably the first missionaries assigned, which they opened on December 1, 1884 when they arrived in Constantinople. Elder Naegle had previously served in the Swiss and German Mission for a few months prior to his reassignment to Constantinople.

To correct the original posted date concerning Greece, President Joseph Wilford Booth arrived in Athens in October 1905. On October 6, 1905 he dedicated Greece on Mars Hill for the preaching of the Gospel. On October 22, 1905 he baptized the first five members on a beach in Paleo Phaleron (Rigas Pofantis, Andomaka H. Malaveta, Constantine Theodoseau, George Zdralis, and John Lazos).

On March 19, 1906, Joseph F. Thorup, the first Elder called to the Greek people arrived in Athens. By mid-1906, he had begun translation of the Book of Mormon into Greek with the help of the small Greek Athens branch. They completed the Full Book of Mormon into Greek in 1907, but never received sufficient funds to publish the Greek Book of Mormon. The mission was closed in 1910 because of fears of war.

The Church still retains a copy of the original translation, which it provided parts of to translators who worked on re-translating the Book of Mormon into Katharevousa Greek back in the mid-to-late 1970s (pre-katsakis).

Finally, the first missionary couple to be sent to Greece arrived in 1978. A couple was generally stationed in Athens from 1978 until 1986 when the first four Elders were transferred from Chicago and Australia to Greece. The 1986 date coincides with the post-war transfer of the four Elders, not the original preaching of the Gospel to the Greeks in the early 1900s.

Dimitrius said...

BTW, Greece was the only part of the Turkish Mission to remain open after 1909. The Church made a concerted effort when Greece was assigned to the Armenian Mission in the 1920s to locate all the members of the Greece Athens branch; none were discovered to still exist in Greece. The 1920s were a difficult time because of the large population transfers between Greece and Turkey.

Matt said...

Thanks for the feedback and corrections. I have made adjustments to the list.

TempleRick said...

The British Virgin Islands are covered by the Puerto Rico San Juan Mission. My "greenie" served on Tortola toward the end of his mission.