Saturday, February 23, 2013

New Missions in 2013: Analysis

I wanted to take some time to analyze the recent announcement of 58 new missions to be organized in July 2013. 

No year has come close to having as many missions organized as are planned for 2013.  1990 had the largest increase in the number of missions for the Church prior this year when the number of missions increased by 28.  Of the 58 new missions announced for 2013, 17 were in the United States (29%), 8 were in Mexico (14%), 8 were in other countries in South America (14%), 7 were in Brazil (12%),  5 were in Africa (8.6%), 4 were in the Philippines (6.9%), 3 were in other countries in Central America (5.2%), 3 were in Oceania (5.2%), 2 were in Asia (3.4%), and 1 was in Europe (1.7%).  The vast majority of new missions were organized in locations that have experienced recent growth in the number of members serving missions.  Despite my earlier report that another mission would be created in Guatemala City, only one new mission will be organized in Guatemala in Coban.

The location of most of the new mission announcements did not come as much of a surprise to me considering the Church has organized the majority of its new missions in the western United States and Latin America.  There was speculation on whether any missions closed within the past decade would reopen as a result of the surge in the full-time missionary force.  Of the 58 new missions announced, six are missions that were in locations where missions were recently closed, namely Australia Sydney North, Georgia Macon, Illinois Chicago West, Japan Tokyo South, Korea Seoul South, and Ohio Cincinnati.

The Church announced the creation of its first mission in only three countries - all of which are in Africa - including Angola, Botswana, and Liberia. 

One of biggest surprises with this year's announcement of 58 new missions was the creation of a new mission in L'viv, Ukraine.  The Church operates only one branch in L'viv and approximatey half a dozen additional branches in large cities in western Ukraine.  The new mission may service only seven or eight branches once organized but missionaries report that several additional cities may open to missionaries within the near future.

I was disappointed that there were not more missions organized in Africa, specifically in countries that have no missions but have a growing church presence such as Cameroon, Ethiopia, Malawi, the Republic of the Congo, Rwanda/Burundi, Tanzania, and Togo.  However it is important to note that no other year has had as many new missions organized in Africa as will be organized in 2013.  Missionary reports indicate that the creation of new missions appears likely within the near future.  The Church has also favored the opening of new missions in locations where there are close to 250 missionaries assigned rather than in locations where missionary forces remain small (less than 50) in order to accommodate the massive surge in the missionary force.  This explains why more missions were not organized in Africa for this year thus far.  Furthermore, some of these countries will likely be unable to accommodate many more missionaries for the foreseeable future due to limited missionary visas, few church units, the relatively small size of the native full-time missionary force, and small numbers of local church leaders.  Generally the Church creates its first mission in a country when there are more than 2,000 members.

The Church has followed a pattern of organizing most of its missions in July but it is possible that the Church may organize missions in different months of the year.  For example, the India New Delhi Mission was the most recent mission not organized in July in November 2007.  Perhaps additional missions may be organized before July 2014 as local church conditions improve.

Lastly, church leaders have emphasized that none of the 58 new missions to be organized this July are anticipated to close within the foreseeable future notwithstanding an anticipated decline in two or three years as the double-cohort of missionaries returns home.  These new missions were organized with a long-term vision for the number of missionaries and church growth for many more years to come.  Click here to access an article where church leaders discuss the sustainability of recent increases in the full-time missionary force.

Below is a map of the approximate location for the 58 new missions to be organized this summer.

View New Missions 2013 in a larger map


Mike Johnson said...

Thanks, Matt. Good assessment. I agree on all points.

In some ways, a mission is like a YSA branch in size. Some are pretty small, but when they get large, they either become a ward or need to be split.

250 missionaries implies to me 10-12 zones of 20-24 missionaries each. Larger zones become harder for zone leaders to manage and more zones make it harder for the mission president. Two missions of 6 zones each can expand as needed. 11 missionaries arriving and departing every month sustains 250 missionaries in a mission in the long run. At some point, a mission president get overwhelmed with the number of new missionaries each month.

I can see 250 as about the maximum for a mission to be effective.

On the first Thursday in December, the Council for the Disposition of the Tithes approves budgets and plans for the next year. Missions come with some costs (a mission home, an office, travel for the mission president and office) that depend on the number of missions and not necessarily on the number of missionaries. So, my guess is the council approved a certain number of missions to be added this year.

James Crowther said...

I was wondering what you thought of the mission in Lae, Papua New Guinea. There is also only one branch there and the district is located in Madang. I don't Know the size of the branch in Lae, but it is the 2nd larges city in Papua New Guinea. I was thinking that since it is more a an urban place, it is more suited for a mission headquarters than places like Daru or Sogere.

Matthias said...

Do you have any idea what proportion of the proselyting missionaries in Africa are native Africans?

Matt said...

I was trilled to hear about the new mission in Lae. Yes, there is only one branch in the city but it will serve as the best location outside of Port Moresby to service northern areas of the country.

In Africa, Africans account for half to the entire full-time missionary force depending on the mission based on reports I have received.

Downtownchrisbrown said...

I found it interesting that there were 16 missions that didn't have a mission president assigned. Is this typical? I wonder if the mission presidents have been called and not assigned, or if the callings haven't been made yet.

John Pack Lambert said...

There are generally some "to be announced" included in the list of new mission presidents. I am not sure what that means.

James Miller said...

The new Ukraine L'viv Mission will likely help strengthen the western branches in Ukraine and allow the better coordination of missionary work in the region.

One of the challenges for priesthood leadership in the Ukraine Kyiv Mission has been oversight of the many outlying branches in the mission. Mission presidents traditionally have had called one their counselors from L'viv to represent them in the west and have assigned senior couple missionaries to provide additional support and leadership in the branches.

Hopefully the added concentration on the western region of the country will also allow the Church to expand into unopened areas that the Church attempted to enter in the late 1990s, such as Ternopil and Chervonohrad. Uzhhorod, where the Church has maintained a legal presence despite not having an active branch, was recently reopened by missionaries in December 2012.

To see how the mission boundaries will probably look, take a look at my blog post on this page:

James Anderson said...

I have heard some new estimates on numbers of missionries from an area Seventy visiting our stake.

They anticipate numbers to peak at about 93,000 later this year, but to taper off and end up at around 70,000. Still with about 56,000 out at the time this all started in October, we're seeing an increase in the numbers of missionaries that matches the percentage in the growth of missions when the dust settles.

Matthew Crandall said...

missionaries report that missionary work could ramp up in Belarus later on in the year when the Church receives official recognition. There is a 20 year waiting period that will finally be fulfilled. Currently there are few missionaries who are not there as service volunteers. I wonder if this also factored into the decision to create a new mission in Ukraine.

James Perry said...

Hi Matt, et al.

I have one question, does the Church currently track the number of converts who have served missions?

I would be interested to see any patterns or trends in regards to converts serving missions.

Whilst working at the England MTC, I taught many converts, both American and International. I would go so far to say that almost every single district I taught contained at least one convert.

soc. man I am ---------------- said...

I had an interesting conversation with someone who works in Church facilities today. He said he doesn't have any inside info(although he was aware of a few of the missions earlier)but he believes that several of the new missions will actually not remain permanent. He said they may be around for 9 or so years. He said in North America (and Probably central and south America) missions and Temple distracts will be aligned to match. He said if a temple isn't announced within 6 or so years within these new missions then they will probably disappear.

Mike Johnson said...

The Utah Provo Mission will have within it boundaries 5 temples. The Utah St. George Mission has 2 temples. The Utah Ogden Mission will have 3 temples. The Utah Salt Lake City South Mission has three temples. Neither of the Utah Salt Lake City West or Central missions has a temple. The Utah Salt Lake City Mission has the Bountiful Temple (technically the Temple Square Mission has the Salt Lake Temple).

So, some missions have multiple temples--two in the Idaho Pocatello Mission and two in the Arizona Tucson Mission.

But most of the existing missions in the US don't have a temple inside its boundaries. That was true well before the new missions.

Temples are of very different sizes--some require many stakes to keep them running and some require a few. The Church has to consider the number of members and the number of non-members in determining a mission.

I wonder if we really are getting to a point inside the next ten years where missions and temple districts will align. I tend to doubt it.

Deivisas said...

Hi Matt,

I too served in The Baltic States Mission and am very interested in any developments that take place in Eastern Europe. I served in Lithuania from Dec 2007-Dec 2009 (I got out of the MTC in early 2008).

-Kevin Davis

John Pack Lambert said...

From doing a little searching I noticed that the Congo Lumbumbasi mission got a new president in 2012, and the Congo Kinshasa mission got a new president this year. I wonder if they decided not to form a new mission in Congo this year so they could have each mission get a new president every third year.

John Pack Lambert said...

The new mission in Papua New Guinea is even more impressive considering that the Vanuatu Port Vila Mission was organized in part from the Papua New Guinea Mission only last year.

coachodeeps said...

As part of Mission Alumni email list, I recieved the following that explains the Coban and East missions (I believe this also means there is no North mission going forward):

The following was written by President Edward Watts and wife Lorie Watts:

"...As most of you know, our mission, Guatemala, Guatemala City North, is one of the missions that is going to be divided in July of this year. The Guatemala City North Mission will be divided into two different missions - Mision Guatemala Coban and the Gutatemala Guatamala City East Mission. Each Mission will have about 250 missionaries assigned for service. The Coban Mission will comprise the areas of Coban, Baja Vera Paz - Salama, Peten and the Polochic. The Guatemala East Mission will still have all of the areas in the city as the North Mission had plus the outlying areas of Motagua, Zacapa - all of the areas from Motagua to Puerto Barrios. These areas are now included in the South Mission. Approximately 50% of our missionaries now serving with us will be in the Coban Mission and the remaining 50% will be in the East Mission. Specific assignments for each missionary will be made at a later time. We love every one of our missionaries and so this is difficult for us to loose any of them, :( but we have 4 months left to serve together! :) have been called to serve in the Guatemala East Mission. We know the new Mission President and his wife that have been called to serve in the Coban Mission and they are wonderful!

Whenever anything significant happens to further the work of the Lord, Satan pulls out all of the stops. He is on the move... Please pray for every missionary throughout the world. Wonderful, historic things are about to take place...We'll go where you want us to go, dear Lord!..."

Will said...

Instead of the percentage of the total new missions globally per area, I'd like to see the percentage increase of missions per each area. For example, the 58 new missions represents a 16.7% increase globally. What kind of percentage increase occurred in each area? Even though Africa had low nominal increase, it percentage increase was likely much higher. Which areas were on par with or beat the global average? Which ones were lower?

Mike Johnson said...

Two stakes were created yesterday (24 February 2013) in New Zealand:

Auckland New Zealand Otara Stake
Auckland New Zealand Redoubt Stake

Mike Johnson said...

Units in the new stakes are:

Auckland New Zealand Otara Stake
Hillary Ward
Otahuhu Ward
Tamaki 3rd Ward (Tongan)
Tamaki 5th Ward (Samoan)
Wymondley Ward (Samoan)

Auckland New Zealand Redoubt Stake
Alema Ward (Samoan)
Chapel Downs Ward
Clendon Ward
Hillpark Ward
Rowandale Ward
Saione Ward (Tongan)

Mike Johnson said...

Mission percent increase by Church Area follows. Note that I placed the Utah Salt Lake City East Mission listed in the "Utah Area" in the Utah Salt Lake City Area.

Idaho Area: 2 + 2 = 100.0%
North America Northwest Area: 9 + 3 = 33.3%
Mexico Area: 26 + 8 = 30.8%
Africa West Area: 10 + 3 = 30.0%
Brazil Area: 27 + 7 = 25.9%
Philippines Area: 17 + 4 = 23.5%
Central America Area: 14 + 3 = 21.4%
Pacific Area: 14 + 3 = 21.4%
Asia North Area: 10 + 2 = 20.0%
South America Northwest Area: 25 + 5 = 20.0%
Utah Salt Lake City Area: 5 + 1 = 20.0%
North America Central Area: 16 + 3 = 18.8%
Africa Southeast Area: 11 + 2 = 18.2%
North America West Area: 17 + 3 = 17.6%
South America South Area: 23 + 3 = 13.0%
North America Southwest Area: 19 + 2 = 10.5%
North America Northeast Area: 22 + 2 = 9.1%
Europe East Area: 13 + 1 = 7.7%
North America Southeast Area: 17 + 1 = 5.9%
Asia Area: 10 + 0 = 0.0%
Caribbean Area: 7 + 0 = 0.0%
Europe Area: 30 + 0 = 0.0%
Utah North Area: 1 + 0 = 0.0%
Utah South Area: 2 + 0 = 0.0%

Will said...

Thanks Mike! That was very helpful. Maybe I should have asked for rate of change over the last three decades, too. :P

But seriously, since the brethren have said they don't anticipate any of these new mission closing this helps show us not only which areas are nominally very busy, by missions and missionary workforce, but which ones are increasing and they expect to increase going forward. The whole continent of Africa saw a 23.8% increase which is only surpassed by Mexico (30.8%) and Brazil (25.9%), and barely beats the Philippines (23.5%). Granted that's comparing countries and continents. Meanwhile, North America (minus Mexico) had a slightly sub-par increase of 15.5%. I could go on for a while making comparisons. Needless to say, it's all very interesting.

Also, I want to add my two cents about why so many new mission were focused on areas like Brazil, Mexico, etc. I really do think the brethren are utilizing the missionaries more for rescue efforts (aka less-active and retention efforts). The focus on these areas is to help strengthen and get more out of areas with long membership rolls, but low activity. This will pay off in the long run as much as bring in new members, which of course will continue and be the result of this rescue work.

coachodeeps said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
John Pack Lambert said...

This article in the "Deseret News" seems to suggest that the Philippines Urdeneta Mission will be created entirely from the currently Phillipines Bagio Mission.

coachodeeps said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
coachodeeps said...

Sorry for deleting all the comments. I want to make sure I got the translation correct. Here is the post:

From a South Mission missionary (helping to sort out where each district/stake will fall; again this shows the North mission being changed to the East mission):

We will receive two stakes from the Central Mission, Mariscal Stake and Stake Nimajuyu. They are next to the Roosevelt (a highway) and the airport. We will go from having 93 units to 73 units in the mission.

The new Coban mission will include Coban Alta and Baja Verapaz by Polochic and all the Peten. This mission will have zones 1, 2, 3, 5, 6, part of 7, 8, 17, 18, ​​19 and 23 in the capital and across the Atlantic Highway. The South mission will include Zones 4, the other party of 7, 9, 10, 11, 12, 16, 21 and part of the capital, Jalapa, Cuilapa, Guazacapan outside the capital.

To be clear, the zones (stakes) Guatemala, Utatlán, Monserrat, Florida, Milagro, Mariscal, Nimajuyu, and Jalapa more areas (districts) and Guazacapan Cuilapa remain in our mission.

It is likely that those who are transferred to areas that will be part of the East mission will be transferred at the next meeting there will still be changes on the day of the formation of the new mission and the change of the North mission to the East mission. Of those already there, there may some of the newest that stay in their same mission, some will change missions before the date. It will be a wonderful opportunity to have two mission presidents and learn other ways to do the Lord's work.

Effective the end of June the following areas pass to the North mission which will be renamed the East Mission. Portagua areas, Zacapa, Palmita, Central and Bosques de San Nicolas will pass to this new mission and their mission president will be my very good friend, President Edward Watts. He and Sister Lori Watts are excellent and the love they have for missionaries is palpable.

Mike Johnson said...

I went out with the missionaries tonight and we committed a sweet sister (a grandmother) to be baptized.

The missionaries told me that both the Woodbridge and the Fredericksburg stakes will be moving next July into the Virginia Richmond Mission from the Washington DC South Mission. So, the Virginia Richmond Mission will run all the way north to the Occoquan River 15 miles south of DC. The Washington DC South Mission is expecting to have 250 missionaries covering 6 stakes (40+ per stake) compared to 160 like they had had for some time covering 8 stakes (20 per stake). Meaning there will be about twice as many missionaries per stake than they had in December. Right now, the mission has almost 200.

Spencer said...

I had a similar question to Will's earlier, as to whether this represented a further realignment of missionary resources, as we've been seeing over the past decade. You've hit this a little bit, but surprisingly, the answer is Yes & No. Mexico and South America (esp. Brazil) were clear winners. These came at the expense of Europe & Russia and Canada, which is not exactly surprising. But most other areas (including the US as a whole, Asia, Oceania & Central America) indeed got essentially a 16.7% increase.

The actual number of new missions opened and the difference from an across-the-board 16.7% increase (in parentheses) is below:

Area / # of New (+/- from 16.7%)
Mexico / 8 (3.65)
South America / 15 (2.46)
Africa / 5 (1.32)
Australia/Oceania / 3 (0.49)
Asia / 6 (-0.02)
United States / 17 (-0.22)
Central America and the Caribbean / 3 (-0.51)
Canada / 0 (-1.17)
Europe & Russia / 1 (-6.02)

So while the one in L'viv was a surprise, Europe & Russia still got 6 fewer missions than they would have if they had received a proportional increase. And while the five in Africa seemed surprisingly few, it's still 1 more than they'd have gotten at 16.7% growth. Almost as interesting as Mexico's disproportionate favor is that Central America essentially got their fair share of new missions (and perhaps one fewer than they'd have been due).

Of course at a more granular level (as Mike went into) within the US, the Pacific Northwest & Idaho certainly made out well, even if the country as a whole was average.

Mike Johnson said...

The Idaho area doesn't cover the entire state. The Utah North Area has the southwest corner, while northern Idaho is in the North America Northwest Area. Four missions covered Idaho (including the Utah Ogden and Washington Spokane).

The Idaho Area goes beyond Idaho. Three Oregon stakes are in the Idaho Area.

The two previous missions were quite different in terms of the relative size of the LDS population. The Idaho Pocatello Mission covered 68 stakes organized into four Coordinating Councils. The underlying population is about 400,000. The Idaho Boise Mission--with a lot more underlying population close to a million--covers 46 stakes in 3 Coordinating Councils (Boise, Nampa, and Twin falls). It appears that the Boise Mission is being divided into thirds, probably along the lines of the existing Coordinating Councils.

Jason Jackson said...

Anyone know much about the new Irvine Mission? I know a few years ago the San Diego mission took stakes from the Carlsbad mission, which took ones from the next one north, so I wonder if the Irvine Mission will make that whole boundary set realign and give the SD mission 7-8 stakes again instead of the 11 it has now.

Mike Johnson said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Mike Johnson said...

Quite possibly. Certainly missions around the new missions will lose stakes to accommodate the new mission.

155 stakes in California divided by 16 missions is about 9.7 stakes per mission right now. With 19 missions, that becomes about 8.2 stakes per mission. So, the California San Diego Mission could drop from covering 10 to 8 stakes and be about average for a mission in California both before and after the new missions.

I find it interesting that the six Northern California missions generally cover more stakes than the ten Southern California missions, but all three new California missions are in Southern California. Bakersfield could effect missions to the north, perhaps, but Irvine and Rancho Cucamonga will be accommodated from the missions in Southern California.

Current number of stakes covered by each mission:

11 in California San Jose Mission
11 in California Fresno Mission
11 in California Oakland/San Francisco Mission
11 in California Riverside Mission
11 in California Roseville Mission
11 in California Sacramento Mission
11 in California Ventura Mission
10 in California San Diego Mission
10 in California San Fernando Mission
9 in California Anaheim Mission
9 in California Arcadia Mission
9 in California Carlsbad Mission
9 in California San Bernardino Mission
8 in California Santa Rosa Mission
7 in California Long Beach Mission
7 in California Los Angeles Mission

California Rancho Cucamonga Mission will likely take from the San Bernardino and Riverside (and possibly Acadia) missions.

California Irvine Mission will likely take from the Santa Ana and Carlsbad missions, which in turn will likely take from the Long Beach and San Diego, respectively.

The Bakersfield stakes are in the Ventura mission and so will at least draw from the Ventura mission and possibly from Fresno and San Jose, as well.

James Miller said...

While the Church may be working for national recognition in Belarus, it legally cannot receive it yet. The Church does not yet meet the legal requirements as established by Belarusian religious law. The Church must have at least 6 local religious organizations registered in at least half of all its oblasts (provinces), with at least one of these organizations in existence for 20 years. Currently the Church has 4 organizations registered in 3 oblasts. The two organizations in Minsk were registered in December 1993/January 1994.

Missionaries in Belarus will not be allowed to proselytize until national recognition is obtained. Until then, foreign missionaries will continue to serve as humanitarian "volunteers." Even a Russian couple serving as a humanitarian couple in the country cannot preach.

Mike Johnson said...

Thanks, James. Belarus has 6 oblasts plus the City of Minsk. So, does half of the oblasts mean 3 oblasts or 4 of the 7 including Minsk?

The Minsk Branch was formed in January 1994.

The Church could be close in Belarus to recognition, if 20 years is completed in December 2013 and either one or no new "organizations" needed. The Church may be aiming for 2014.

What are examples of "organizations"? For the Church, does this mean simply a branch? Or could CES or a welfare program asset (Bishop's Storehouse) count?

James Miller said...

A "local religious organization" is the term the Church uses to refer to the official religious organizations recognized by local law in the former USSR. They are usually referred to as a "religious community" in the laws themselves. These organizations are distinctively separate from our Church units and programs (branches, districts, CES, etc.) and provide the legal basis for the Church's activities in a given municipality in compliance with the law. One city could have multiple Church units but only one "religious community" that takes legal responsibility for the Church there. Each "religious community" is headed by one of the local members - not necessarily the ecclesiastical leader of the Church unit.

The requirements to establish a "religious community" and laws that regulate its organization vary somewhat from country to country, but the pattern is basically the same. In Russia and Ukraine, the many LROs are united by an officially recognized "religious association" (Russia) or "religious administration" (Ukraine). However, the Church does not meet the requirements to establish a national organization in Belarus (as I mentioned before).

I believe that Minsk City in the law is considered part of the oblast, but I'm not sure. If not, they would need to organize another "religious community" in either the Brest, Hrodna, or Homel oblasts. That is no simple task considering that foreigners are banned from proselytizing unless invited into the country by a national religious association. (This makes the growth of the Church in Belarus all the more amazing - it is done only by the members!)

The Church will meet the 20 year requirement in January 2014 I believe.

John Pack Lambert said...

The new Redlands Mission might take the Lake Havasu City Stake from the Las Vegas Mission. It would involve area boundary changes, but it is possible.

Mike Johnson said...

The California Redlands Mission is a renaming of the California San Bernardino Mission.

With the creation of the California Rancho Cucamonga Mission, we essentially have--it appears--two missions (Riverside and San Bernardino) becoming three missions.

Just west of the Lake Havasu Arizona Stake are the Yucca Valley California and the Palm Springs California stakes. They are currently in the Riverside mission, but that could change with the mission realignment in the Inland Empire.

Mike Johnson said...

Looking at Brazil, the existing missions cover the following number of stakes and operate the following number of districts and independent branches.

I have placed each of the new Brazil missions opposite an existing mission--either the new mission is another mission based in the same main city or the new mission is named for the same city as one or more of the stakes in the mission.

The missions are sorted by the number of stakes they cover:

Brazil São Paulo South Mission (16 stakes) New Mission: Brazil Santos
Brazil Curitiba Mission (15 stakes; 1 district; 1 independent branch) New Mission: Brazil Curitiba South
Brazil Fortaleza Mission (15 stakes; 1 district; 1 independent branch) New Mission: Brazil Fortaleza East
Brazil Rio de Janeiro Mission (15 stakes; 1 independent branch) New Mission: Brazil Juiz de Fora
Brazil São Paulo North Mission (14 stakes) New Mission: Brazil Sao Paulo West
Brazil Campinas Mission (13 stakes; 2 districts; 1 independent branch) New Mission: Brazil Piracicaba
Brazil Recife Mission (13 stakes; 1 district; 2 independent branches)
Brazil João Pessoa Mission (12 stakes; 2 districts; 1 independent branch) New Mission: Brazil Natal
Brazil São Paulo Interlagos Mission (12 stakes; 3 districts; 1 independent branch)
Brazil Manaus Mission (11 stakes; 2 districts; 6 independent branches)
Brazil São Paulo East Mission (10 stakes; 1 district; 1 independent branch)
Brazil Ribeirão Preto Mission (9 stakes; 1 district; 1 independent branch)
Brazil Belém Mission (8 stakes; 1 district; 2 independent branches)
Brazil Porto Alegre North Mission (8 stakes; 3 districts)
Brazil Porto Alegre South Mission (8 stakes; 1 district; 1 independent branch)
Brazil Belo Horizonte Mission (7 stakes; 3 districts; 3 independent branches)
Brazil Londrina Mission (7 stakes; 1 district; 1 independent branch)
Brazil Maceió Mission (7 stakes; 1 district; 1 independent branch)
Brazil Salvador Mission (7 stakes; 6 independent branches)
Brazil Brasília Mission (6 stakes; 1 district; 4 independent branches)
Brazil Florianópolis Mission (6 stakes; 3 districts; 1 independent branch)
Brazil Cuiabá Mission (5 stakes; 2 districts; 3 independent branches)
Brazil Goiânia Mission (5 stakes; 1 district; 4 independent branches)
Brazil Santa Maria Mission (5 stakes; 4 districts; 3 independent branches)
Brazil Teresina Mission (5 stakes; 1 district; 6 independent branches)
Brazil Salvador South Mission (4 stakes; 1 district; 2 independent branches)
Brazil Vitória Mission (4 stakes; 3 districts; 1 independent branch)

Of course, the new missions may take from other nearby missions as well. This is particularly true in the Sao Paolo area where several missions could easily be realigned to accommodate the new Brazil Sao Paolo West Mission.

I find it interesting that of the missions covering the most stakes, only the Brazil Recife Mission does not appear about to be split.

Mike Johnson said...

I found this quote from a missionary blog in the Virginia Richmond Mission, passing on an email to missionaries from the mission president.

"Dear Elders and Sisters:
As you know, on or about July 1, 2013 the mission will be divided.

The following stakes will be a part of the Virginia, Richmond Mission (VRM):
Chesterfield, Midlothian, Richmond, Waynesboro and two additional stakes will be added from the Washington DC South mission, they are: Fredericksburg and Woodbridge, both North of us and border our mission boundaries.

The Following stakes will be a part of the new Virginia, Chesapeake Mission (VCM): Chesapeake, Newport News, Virginia Beach and two additional stakes will be added from the North Carolina, Raleigh mission, they are: Goldsboro (just west of Chesapeake) and Kinston (which is the rest of the Outer Banks to the south). The new mission home and office will be located in the Chesapeake stake boundaries."

The blog is at

John Pack Lambert said...

Well, we now know who the new president of the Papua New Guinea Lae Mission will be. That was one of the TBA's when they listed all the new presidents, and after reading about how the missionary force from the Mission president down in New Guinea has been people from Oceania it is worth considering who they chose to open the new mission.

The new mission president is Mark Peresia Peteru, either an ethnic Samoan or Maori. He is a native of New Zealand, but there are lots of Samoans in New Zealand, and his mother's maiden name was Schmidt, and there are lots of Samoans of part German descent, so that makes me wonder if he might be part Samoan, but I don't know. He is prsently president of the Sydney Australia Hebersham Stake, where he works for the department of corrections. His wife was born in Samoa. So the new mission is going to continue the tradition of Church leaders from the Pacific region.

John Pack Lambert said...

3 of the new missions in Mexico divide missions along the border. In some of these cases the new mission presidents are not only from Mexico, but from Northern Mexico very close to the border. For example President Abelardo Morales M. of the new Reynosa Mission comes from Monterrey, which is about 150 miles from Reynosa. Reynosa is currently in the Monterey East Mission.

Mike Johnson said...

The existing Mexico missions with the numbers of stakes each covers and the numbers of districts and independent (direct report) branches in the mission. The branches include an administrative mission branch, if present.

The missions are sorted by numbers of stakes, thus the missions.

Each of the eight new missions is shown next to the mission which contained one (or usually several) stakes named for the city where the new mission is being created. Six of the new missions are splits of six of the eight largest missions.

Undoubtedly, stakes will be moved around as new missions are created.

I do get four of the new missions pretty much along the northern border. Three are in the Mexico City area and one in the Yucatan.

México Mérida Mission (12 stakes, 2 districts, 3 branches) New Mission: México Cancún
México Monterrey West Mission (12 stakes, 2 districts, 1 branch) New Mission: México Saltillo
México Monterrey East Mission (11 stakes, 2 districts, 1 branch) New Mission: México Reynosa
México Cuernavaca Mission (11 stakes, 2 branches)
México México City East Mission (11 stakes, 1 branch) New Mission: México Pachuca
México México City North Mission (11 stakes) New Mission: México Queretaro
México Chihuahua Mission (10 stakes, 2 districts, 2 branches) New Mission: México Ciudad Juarez
México Tijuana Mission (10 stakes, 3 branches)
México Culiacán Mission (9 stakes, 3 districts, 4 branches)
México Torreón Mission (9 stakes, 2 districts, 4 branches)
México Villahermosa Mission (9 stakes, 1 district, 3 branches)
México México City Northwest Mission (9 stakes)
México México City South Mission (9 stakes)
México México City Southeast Mission (9 stakes) New Mission: México México City Chalco
México México City West Mission (9 stakes)
México Tampico Mission (8 stakes, 2 districts, 4 branches)
México Oaxaca Mission (7 stakes, 3 districts, 2 branches)
México Puebla South Mission (7 stakes, 2 districts)
México Guadalajara East Mission (7 stakes, 1 district, 4 branches)
México León Mission (7 stakes, 1 district, 3 branches)
México Veracruz Mission (7 stakes, 1 district, 2 branches)
México Xalapa Mission (7 stakes)
México Hermosillo Mission (6 stakes, 5 districts, 1 branch) New Mission: México Ciudad Obregón
México Guadalajara Mission (6 stakes, 3 districts, 3 branches)
México Tuxtla Gutiérrez Mission (6 stakes, 3 districts, 1 branch)
México Puebla North Mission (6 stakes, 3 branches)