Friday, February 6, 2015

New District Created in Cape Verde

The Church organized a new district in Cape Verde on January 25th. The Assomada Cape Verde District was organized from a division of the Praia Cape Verde Stake and includes the following six branches: the Assomada 1st, Assomada 2nd, Calheta, Chão Bom, Ribeirão Manuel, and Tarrafal Branches. The Church has experienced rapid growth on the island of Santiago where the Praia Cape Verde Stake operates as evidenced by the number of congregations increasing from six in early 2012 to 15 at present. Missionaries have noted some leadership and administration challenges in the outlying units of the former boundaries of the Praia Cape Verde Stake. The organization of the Assomada Cape Verde District has appeared to help reduce the administrative burden of the large Praia Cape Verde Stake and provide greater mission president supervision of congregations outside Praia. Missionaries also reported that General Authorities have indicated that the Church in Cape Verde will become a good candidate to have a temple announced once there are at least five stakes. Currently there are three stakes and two districts.


Mike Johnson said...

Three of the six branches in the new district (Assomada 1st, Assomada 2nd, and Tarrafal) were wards and are still showing as wards on LDS Maps. I wonder how close this district is to becoming a stake. I also wonder why they didn't wait until a stake could be formed before splitting. Perhaps, the Praia Cape Verde Stake was getting too large to manage.

The Maio Branch--on the island to the east--shows up as the Maio Group (the icon is colored as a branch, but the label is of a group).

In the northwest part of the island chain, in the Mindelo Cape Verde Stake, there is an island to the east with a group icon on it labelled Ribeira Brava Group, Mindelo Cape Verde Stake. This group, according to LDS Maps, belongs to the Mindelo 2nd Ward (which of course is inside the stake).

Joseph said...

1 more for the 25th
Kindele Ward, Kinshasa Democratic Republic of the Congo Mont Ngafula Stake (1 Branch, 9 Ward)

1 for the 8th
Spectrum Ward, Gilbert Arizona Greenfield Stake (10 Wards)

John Pack Lambert said...

Continued report on new mission presidents. 4 of the 8 announced this week are from outside the US. None are from Utah, although a few of the people were born in Utah. One is a man who used to own a wedding chapel in Las Vegas. If I calculated correctly we are at 32 mission presidents with biographies published in the Church News, 16 of whom have been from outside the US.

John Pack Lambert said...

In the 1990s there were several districts organized from divisions of stakes in the United States. In these cases the districts tended to be in inner-city areas where the Church had only started making inroads in the last 10 years at that point. Very few of these districts still exist, and as far as I know all that were made into stakes were only done so by combinations with other areas. Of course the fact that at least in some cases the net population within the District boundaries was in constant decline during its existance didn't help.

Adam said...

I know there have been reports from out of Thailand on and off and I don't remember what all has been reported. But I just read an email from an Elder saying that they are expecting to create two new stakes before July. He has been having baptisms almost every weekend.

James Anderson said...

I'm hearing some things out of the Bountiful region, where they say one stake has 78 missionaries (including couples) out right now.

That was at a stake conference yesterday. The Bountiful Temple no longer needs to get names from the general pool of names, members are submitting more than enough for the work done there as well. There was once a day when only 20 percent of names were member-submitted, that was in the 80s and 90s.

Also, they've opened a 4:30am baptistry session so youth could do baptisms before school (and in a couple cases, seminary).

Grant Emery said...

Hey, so I have a question. I am interviewing for a position in Dhahran, Saudi Arabia. According to, there is a branch in Bahrain. However, doesn't list that branch, putting the closest meetinghouse in Qatar.

Bahrain is about an hour away, Qatar is about 4. Any ideas about this?

Eduardo Clinch said...

I think some branches and groups are kept more private for security reasons. I know there is a couple in Kuwait that might not be listed. Afghanistan was probably the same.

Joseph said...

February 8th 2015

Cahill Ward, Saratoga Springs Utah Israel Canyon Stake (8 Wards)
Circle Cross Ward, Queen Creek Arizona Stake (11 Wards)
Flowery Branch Ward, Sugar Hill Georgia Stake (1 Branch, 9 Wards)
Fort Mill 2nd Ward, Charlotte North Carolina South Stake (1 Branch, 9 Wards)
Framingham 2nd Branch, Boston Massachusetts Stake (3 Branches, 9 wards, 1 Group)
Lake Hodges Ward, Poway California Stake (3 Branches, 12 Wards)
New England Branch, Bo Sierra Leone East District (5 Branches)
Pikeville Branch, McMinnville Tennessee Stake (6 Branches, 8 Wards)
Travessão Branch, São Sebastião Brazil District (6 Branches)
Village Park Ward, Idaho Falls Eagle Rock Stake (9 Wards)
Worcester 3rd Branch, Boston Massachusetts Stake (3 Branches, 9 wards, 1 Group)
Yamoransa 2nd Ward, Cape Coast Ghana Stake(2 Branches, 12 Wards)

This makes a total of 63 Units created since the beginning of the year (Includes 2 Dist and 1 Stake). 17 of which are in Africa
21 in North America (Excluding Utah, Idaho)
15 in Utah and Idaho
7 in Latin America
2 in the Pacific
and 1 in "Europe" (Cape Verde)

I'm not seeing any units discontinued

The Chatelain's said...

What would the one group in the Boston Stake be?

Joseph said...

It's a Group for Church Service Missionaries

NANE Area Boston CS Missionary Group

Mike Johnson said...

The church service missionary groups are not congregations. CDOL also lists the family history libraries in the stake as children of the stake, like congregations and church service missionary groups.

Church service missionary groups are set up to administer the church service missionaries often in several stakes. The church service missionaries remain in their own congregations.

John Pack Lambert said...

In the ongoing observation of new mission presidents, this week only 3 of the 5 new mission presidents whose biographies were published were from outside the US. The other 5 were all from Utah.

John Pack Lambert said...

I have a great uncle who lived in Saudi Arabia for a time, and the Church does have a presence there, but its nature is kept extremely confidential. I would recomend contacting the Middle East/North Africa Area Office, which is in Salt Lake City.

John Pack Lambert said...

The two new branches in the Boston Stake are Spanish speaking branches.

John Pack Lambert said...

Aren't most groups not listed in any official publications, so we have no easy indication of where they are or how many there are?

John Pack Lambert said...

I am encouraged to see a new branch in Sierre Leone. Is there any word on when missionaries will return?

John Pack Lambert said...

According to Wikipedia Sierre Leone plans to reopen schools on March 30th. However on Feb. 5th is was reported that the number of new Ebola cases in the country was greater that week than the last, so they are not out of the thicket yet.

John Pack Lambert said...

For purposes of regional tracking of growth I would consider Cape Verde part of Africa, even though it is in the Europe Area.

Michael said...

John, please don't take offense, but instead of posting 7 different comments in 20 minutes, could you maybe combine all your thoughts into a single comment? Makes the comment thread much easier to read and less disjointed.

Thanks, I appreciate your insights and thoughts!

James Anderson said...

While we're talking Church growth in terms of membership, another facet is exploding that while not a topic of this blog, but is significant nonetheless.

Here in Provo, the temple is so busy that they are short temple workers. At the end of March, those who will be in the new Payson Temple area that presently work at Provo will become part of Payson even though it is not open yet. Would not be surprised if this has to do with the open house.

Then add in about three weeks later they will lose another group of workers, BYU students who are temple workers but now are mvoing on having completed their studies.

That will impact about 40 percent of the temple workers. the worst period will be from the end of March until the 7th of June when the new temple opens up, too few workers, and a temple that is literally running over capacity at times, and more than in just the early morning and after about 4pm either.

The total number is at least 1500.

Pascal said...

A solution to that would be calling one or two new Temple workers from every ward in the new Provo Temple district. That would solve the problem without overburdening current ward calling structures, especially since some of the wards in Utah County are massive and (from what I hear) there is sometimes a shortage of available callings for all active and worthy adult members.

Also, despite Provo`s business, the City Center Temple will take some of that commotion out, just like Payson.

In other news, shout-out to Mozambique for creating its first stake today! And probably a second one within the next few months. Even though the start has been slow, I expect to see a strong year in stake growth.

James Anderson said...

That's exactly what is planned. They think that the new City Center Temple itself is going to need up to 2,000 workers. While small, it will have two 96-seat A rooms and a 100 seat B room (progressive format), and that means that it still will have 1/3 the capacity for endowments as Provo does.

Five sealing rooms, a baptistry,a nd all the rest as well, 85,000 total square feet so it's no small temple, a fair amount is below ground.

Now there are 16 stakes in Provo City Center Temple district when it goes up. That's everything north of Spanish Fork to Provo Center Street with one stake north of that line.

Not sure how many wards but pick an average and you'll see it's going to be more than just one or two more from each ward by far.

Rick said...
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Rick said...

134 wards, 6 branches in the city center temple district. So 2,000 workers would be 15 per ward.

Pascal said...

I was making reference to only newly-called Temple workers in the Provo (not City Center) Temple District. Even with BYU students graduating and Payson being split off, I can hardly imagine that Provo will have a serious shortage because I would assume that a strong basis of workers already exists right now.

Additionally, I would argue that attendance would unavoidably decrease in the old Provo Temple, perhaps eliminating the need for some sessions and thus Temple workers.

Scott S said...

The was a Church News Article on February 13th about the Mormon Battalion commemoration in San Diego. As part of it S. David Holland received an award at the end of the article it says:

"He is currently the president of the California Living History Church Service Mission, a newly organized mission of the Church."

Ray said...
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Ray said...

Thanks for your breakdown of Church unit growth so far in 2015. I usually post monthly growth figures but have been a bit flummoxed for January's totals because so many units reported in January were actually created in 2014, mosty in December, but at least one in Nov. and one in September.

There has even been a branch reported in February in Zambia that dates from December.

As to units discontinued, there are close to a dozen of them. You can find discontinued units as well as the creation dates of newly reported wards and branches on Temple Rick's site,

He does very detailed daily reporting of all reported unit changes, including name changes.

As nearly as I can determine there was a net
increase of 19 units in January plus 12 reported in February but dating from 2014. Thus far in February there are 20 more wards and branches, including one dating from 2014.

That would show 51 net new wards and TNbranches for 2015. Since you're showing 63 new units that would leave a dozen discontinued so far.

Ray said...

Correction: should be "plus 12 reported in January but dating from 2014."

James Anderson said...

On temples and temple activity in Provo after the two temples south of Provo are finished.

Since the two south of the present Provo Temple will take everything from about two miles south of that down, and one stake that has a north boundary of 1230 North between 500 West and 150 East, that means a shift in the temple district to the north as well.

Parts of Orem now in the Mt. Timp district will be shifted to attend Provo. How many and where is not clear yet, I'm hearing several things but nothing formally announced. This will free up some crowding issues at Mt. Timp that I've heard reports of.

And with the things happening in family history, don't expect Provo and Mt. Timp to be under capacity for long, every year they are raising the bar and that means yet more temple and family history every time. A stake president said Saturday his stake had done nothing in 2012, 250 members submitted names in 2013, and now it's up to 400 members in his stake. If it's an average sized stake, that means just up to 1/3 of adults and youth in the stake have now submitted at least one name.

That is also translating over to more temple attendance.

Joseph said...


I base my numbers on the activation dates for each unit in CDOL. My understanding is this is the date the unit is officially organized regardless of when it is reported. My search of the data doesn't show any deactivations since 1 January but I may not have that level of access.

The current recent activity page at only shows three districts and one ward discontinued.

15 Feb 2015
Kimberly 6th Ward, Kimberly Idaho Stake (9 Wards)
Polaris Ward, Columbus Ohio North Stake (11 Wards)

John Pack Lambert said...

I have to say having a temple that needs more temple workers is a good problem to have.

On a note still related to temples, I think I see why the Church is going ahead with a temple in Kinshasa, well besides the obvious fact that there are so many members there. Here is an article by Margaret Blair Young about a couple from Congo who were trying to go to Johannesburg to be sealed just after their wedding. The Government of South Africa has decided to refuse visas to Congolese. The couple ended up going to Accra instead.

Any word on how the building of the temple in Congo is progressing.

This is the third article in a series by Sister Young. They give a lot more context and depth to our understanding of the Church in Congo. Sister Young is currently working on a project to create a film about missionaries in the Congo entitled "Heart of Africa".

gloverbj1979 said...

Regarding "Cape Verde," According to the 2015 World Almanac and Book of Facts the correct name for "Cape Verde" is Cabo Verde. Page 759 of the Almanac says: "In Oct. 2013, the government announced that the country would no longer be known as Cape Verde."
A similar example is the country that many people used to refer to as "Ivory Coast." Even non French speakers are supposed to use Côte d'Ivoire instead of Ivory Coast.
I think its interesting that still shows Cape Verde.