Wednesday, July 10, 2013

New Stake in Nigeria

A new stake was organized in Nigeria.

The Warri Nigeria Stake was organized from the Warri Nigeria District.  Information on which of the eight branches in the district were upgraded to wards is currently unavailable.  The new stake becomes the Church's first stake in the Nigerian state of Delta where only one other member district functions in Asaba.  In 1993, only one branch operated in Warri under the jurisdiction of a stake in Benin City.  In 1999, there were a sufficient number of branches in the city to organize a member district.  The district previously pertained to the Nigeria Port Harcourt Mission but as of July 1st the entire state of Delta now pertains to the newly created Nigeria Benin City Mission.

There are a large number of member districts in Nigeria that appear likely to become stakes within the next couple years - perhaps more than ever before in the Church's history in Nigeria.  Provided with the current number of branches in parentheses, districts that appear most likely to become stakes in the near future include the Abak Nigeria District (7), the Abeokuta Nigeria District (8), the Akamkpa Nigeria District (7), the Asaba Nigeria District (12), the Ekpoma Nigeria District (9), the Enugu Nigeria District (10), the Ibadan Nigeria District (7), the Ikot Ekpene Nigeria District (7), the Ile-Ife Nigeria District (8), Okpuala Ngwa Nigeria District (8), the Onitsha Nigeria District (10), and the Umuahia Nigeria District (11).  Most of these districts have had multiple new branches organized within the past couple years and have experienced rapid growth within the past decade.

There are now 22 stakes and 19 districts in Nigeria.


Michael Worley said...

If Matt's list is accurate this is the first stake organized in July in several years. Wonder if the General Authorities' break is late or if this is a result of hastening or if local authorities took care of the creation or something else entirely.

Ed Clinch said...

Hmmm...Interesting analysis about July stake creations. I guess because July is such a big month for mission presidents to take over their new responsibilities, perhaps this is one factor that stops these stake organizations in this month. Could it be a trend for a reason? Maybe it is a big time to vacation.
I know in Utah you have at least two significant holidays that I have participated in 4 different summers, where Church presidents and governors assemble and speak to masses at places like the Marriot Center or take part in large parades or celebrations in SLC at the football stadium.
It will be interesting if any more happen before the end of the month.
Nigeria seems to be doing pretty well with growth. I think that it will split with the north in the next generation, so there will be another country to target. And the rate of membership will practically double in southern, Christian Nigeria.
Good stuff. And French speaking Africa seems to be gaining momentum, event though Niger, Chad, Mali and Senegal are still off the table. At least we have a presidential candidate in one. I wonder how well French speaking missions are growing worldwide?

Mike Johnson said...

The Warri Nigeria Stake has 5 wards and 3 branches:

Effurun Ward
Orhuwhorun Ward
Ugborikoko Ward
Ughelli Ward
Warri Ward
Ekete Branch
Ubeji Branch
Ugboroke Branch

John Pack Lambert said...

Does the Church have any presence in any part of Nigeria that is Muslim majority. I know it has a presence in Abuja, which is at least significantly Muslim. Which states in Nigeria have a church presence. Legally are there places that Church could not send missionaries in Nigeria, or is it just a matter of concentrating missionaries where they will be the most well received?

Matt said...

Yes, the Church has a presence in several predominantly Muslim states in Nigeria such as in Kaduna (one ward), Jos (three branches), and Bauchi (one branch).

John Pack Lambert said...

Kaduna is a Muslim majority area, but it has a significant Christian presidence. 20 churches (and 8 mosques) were burned there when people got mad at a Lagos Newspapers back in 2002 over an article it wrote about the upcoming Miss World pageant in Abuja. Kaduna was also saw 1,000 people killed in religious related violence in 2001.

John Pack Lambert said...

The state is actually called Plateau State, not Jos. There was a Nigeria Jos Mission starting in July 1992, but it was renamed to Nigeria Enugu Mission in December 2013. The city of Jos saw several bombings of Churches on Christmas Eve by partisans of Boko Haram in Dec. 2010. As a mining area it has been home to many Christians from further south for a century.

John Pack Lambert said...

The Enugu Mission, which is based in Enugu, a heavily Christian area in Nigeria (also an area with rampant kidnapping), seems to take in all of northern Nigeria, while it splits the southern third of Nigeria with 4 other missions.

John Pack Lambert said...

I just realized the Abuja Stake has only existed for a year. Their stake patriarch was just called as the new president of the Aba Temple. His name is John A. Ihenkoro. He is however a native of Aba.