Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Aggressive LDS National Outreach Expansion Begins in Kiribati

Missionaries serving in the isolated Micronesian country of Kiribati report that the Marshall Islands Majuro Mission has begun an aggressive national outreach expansion initiative that has thus far resulted in the opening of three islands to missionary activity, including Maiana, Nonouti, and Onotoa. Multiple member groups have opened on Maiana and Nonouti to improve accessibility to the Church and capitalize on local populations exhibiting high receptivity to LDS outreach. Missionaries report plans to open additional islands to proselytism in the coming months once larger numbers of missionaries are assigned to the mission. Additionally, senior missionaries report that preliminary plans are underway to reconfigure the two Tarawa stakes to accelerate growth as receptivity remains high, but local leadership development problems have prevented the creation of additional congregations.

Historically, the Church in Kiribati has experienced some of the lowest member activity rates among countries in Oceania with 1,000 or more members as only 25% of members self-reported being LDS on the 2005 census. Missionaries report that some wards on Tarawa have over 1,000 members on their records. Although inactivity and convert attrition remain serious problems, there have been some recent improvements as 32% of nominal LDS membership self-identified as LDS on the 2010 census. Official LDS membership for Kiribati currently constitutes 16.3% of the national population, although 2010 self-reported membership constituted only 4.66% of the national population. Although the Church's Moroni High School on Tarawa has served as an effective proselytism and public affairs tool, the Church has continued to strongly rely on Church Education System (CES) employees to staff lay leadership positions. At one time, CES employees comprised the entire stake presidency of one of the stakes on Tarawa!

I am currently writing a case study that provides a geospatial analysis of LDS growth in Kiribati, examines 2010 census data for religious affiliation, and analyzes recent church growth developments. I anticipate that this case study will probably be posted on cumorah.com in August sometime, and hopefully in the next couple weeks cumorah.com will be back up and running.

11 comments:

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

The Primavera do Leste Branch, Rondonópolis Brazil District, Brazil Cuiabá Mission, was created on 6 July. There are now 4 branches in the district:

Primavera do Leste Branch
Rondonópolis 1st Branch
Rondonópolis 2nd Branch
Rondonópolis 3rd Branch


The Washford Branch, Bristol England Stake, was created on 29 June. There are now 8 wards and 1 branch in the stake:

Bath Ward
Bristol 1st Ward
Bristol 2nd Ward
Bristol Wells Road Ward
Taunton Ward
Trowbridge Ward
Weston Super Mare 1st Ward
Weston Super Mare 2nd Ward
Washford Branch

Mike Johnson said...

The Abak 2nd Branch, Abak Nigeria District, Nigeria Calabar Mission, was created on 6 July. There are now 8 branches in the district:

Abak 1st Branch
Abak 2nd Branch
Abia Okpo Branch
Atai Otoro Branch
Ediene Branch
Eka Nto Obo Branch
Ikot Ntuk Branch
Ikot Oku Mfang Branch

Iris and Craig said...

They just had their very first ever Young Women's Girls Camp this last week in Vietnam. Exciting stuff! :D

Mike Johnson said...

The Huehuetenango Guatemala Central Stake was created on 6 July. There are 5 wards and 2 branches in the stake:

Cerrito del Maíz Ward
El Centro Ward
El Prado Ward
La Viña Ward
Las Flores Ward
Malacatancito Branch
Tojocas Branch

The Opinion said...

A ward is being created in the Apex, NC Stake next week. That will mean there will be 12 wards and 1 branch in the stake. All of our buildings will be full except the Garner building where I attend church. The stake president said once we split your ward (Garner) then we will be able to split the stake. We have 555 people on the roster and about 285 show up each week.

Ryan Searcy said...

Any word on which branches in the Sao Felipe Cape Verde Stake became wards? It's been almost 2 months.

Mike Johnson said...

Ryan, all 8 are still showing up in CDOL as branches

Ray said...

The same delay happened with the second stake in Cape Verde.

Mike Johnson said...

The Daniel 2nd Ward, Heber City Utah East Stake, was created on 20 July. There are now 11 wards in the stake:

Center Creek Ward
Cobblestone Ward
Daniel 1st Ward
Daniel 2nd Ward
Daniels Canyon Ward
Lake Creek 2nd Ward
Lake Creek 1st Ward
Lake Creek Farms Ward
Old Mill Ward
Wheeler Park Ward
Wild Mare Ward


The Dover Branch, Lancaster Pennsylvania Stake, was created on 20 July. There are now 7 wards and 1 branch in the stake:

Elizabethtown Ward
Ephrata Ward
Lancaster Ward
Lititz Ward
Shrewsbury Ward
West York Ward
York Ward
Dover Branch


The Jordan Willows 9th Ward, Lehi Utah Jordan Willows Stake, was created on 20 July. There are now 9 wards in the stake:

Jordan Willows 1st Ward
Jordan Willows 2nd Ward
Jordan Willows 3rd Ward
Jordan Willows 4th Ward
Jordan Willows 5th Ward
Jordan Willows 6th Ward
Jordan Willows 7th Ward
Jordan Willows 8th Ward
Jordan Willows 9th Ward


The La Riviera Branch (Spanish), Sacramento California Cordova Stake, was created on 20 July. There are now 7 wards and 2 branches in the stake:

Anatolia Ward
Brighton Ward
Goethe Park Ward
Mather Ward
Perkins Ward
River Park Ward
Rossmoor Ward
American River YSA Branch
La Riviera Branch (Spanish)


The Okanagan YSA Branch, Vernon British Columbia Stake, was created on 29 June. There are now 9 wards and 4 branches in the stake:

Kamloops 1st Ward
Kamloops 2nd Ward
Kelowna 2nd Ward
Kelowna 1st Ward
Penticton Ward
Salmon Arm Ward
Vernon 1st Ward
Vernon 2nd Ward
West Kelowna Ward
Clearwater Branch
Merritt Branch
Okanagan YSA Branch
Osoyoos Branch


The Spring Meadow Ward, Saratoga Springs Utah Israel Canyon Stake, was created on 13 July. There are now 7 wards in the stake:

Fox Hollow Ward
Jacobs Ranch 1st Ward
Jacobs Ranch 2nd Ward
Jacobs Ranch 3rd Ward
Spring Meadow Ward
Stillwater Ward
Summerhill Ward


The Valley Hi Ward, San Antonio Texas Stake, was created on 20 July. There are now 10 wards and 3 branches in the stake:

Adams Hill Ward (Spanish)
Alamo Ranch Ward
Heritage Ward
Las Palmas Ward (Spanish)
Pleasanton 1st Ward
San Antonio 5th Ward (Spanish)
San Antonio 6th Ward
San Antonio 10th Ward
Valley Hi Ward
Wiseman Ward
Palo Alto YSA Branch
Pleasanton 2nd Branch (Spanish)
San Antonio Military Branch


The Victor Harbor Branch, Adelaide Australia Marion Stake, was created on 13 July. There are now 5 wards and 3 branches in the stake:

Happy Valley Ward
Marion Ward
Mount Barker Ward
Mount Gambier Ward
Onkaparinga Ward
Kangaroo Island Branch
Murray Bridge Branch
Victor Harbor Branch

Ed Clinch said...

Self reporting members is usually always lower than stats available.Where is it the worst? Chile? Russia? Hong Kong?