The Church created two new stakes in Melbourne, Australia over the past two Sundays.
On January 13th, the Melbourne Australia Gippsland Stake was organized from the Melbourne Australia Braeside and Melbourne Australia Narre Warren (formerly Pakenham) Stakes and includes the following five wards and three branches: The Cranbourne, Devon Meadows (Samoan), Lynbrook, Moe, and Pakenham Wards and the Bairnsdale, Sale, and Wonthaggi Branches.
On January 20th, the Melbourne Australia Craigieburne Stake was organized from stakes in western Melbourne. Information on the names of wards and branches pertaining to the new stake is currently unavailable. I will post this information as a comment once I receive it.
The organization of two new stakes in Melbourne came as a total shock to me due to the relatively small number of units in the six preexisting stakes. The creation of the new stakes has coincided with the organization of at least three new wards, thereby providing a sufficient number of wards for all eight stakes. No additional stakes appear likely to be organized in the Melbourne area for the foreseeable future. With the creation of two new stakes in the Brisbane area last November, members in Australia speculate that two new stakes may be in the works for the Sydney area considering a couple of the stakes have a sufficient number of wards to divide.
There are now 36 stakes and nine districts in Australia.