Saturday, March 5, 2016

New Stakes Created in Arizona and Nicaragua; New Districts Created in Cote d'Ivoire and Lesotho; District Reinstated in Russia; District Discontinued in Bolivia

Arizona
The Church organized a new stake in the greater Phoenix metropolitan area on February 28th. The Chandler Arizona South was organized from a division of the Chandler Arizona and Chandler Arizona East Stakes. The new stake includes the following six wards and one branch: the Appleby, Brooks Farm, Grove 1st, Grove 2nd, Grove 3rd, and Lindsay 1st Wards and the San Tan Branch.

There are now 101 stakes in Arizona.

Nicaragua
The Church organized a new stake in the Managua area on February 21st. The Managua Nicaragua Las Americas Stake was organized from the Managua Nicaragua Tipitapa District and a division of the Managua Nicaragua Bello Horizonte Stake. The new stake includes the following three wards and five branches: the Las Américas, Las Mercedes, and Ruben Darío Wards, and the Bocana, Ciudadela, Loma Verde, San Benito, and Tipitapa Branches. It appears that two or more of the branches in the new stake have likely become wards, but the Church has yet to update this information.

There are now 10 stakes and five districts in Nicaragua.

Cote d'Ivoire
The Church organized two new districts in Cote d'Ivoire in February.

The Aboisso Cote d'Ivoire District was organized from four mission branches in the Cote d'Ivoire Abidjan Mission in the cities/towns of Aboisso, Ahoutoue, and Alepe. The new districts includes the following five branches: the Aboisso, Aboisso Cote d'Ivoire District, Ahoutoue, Alepe, and Rive Gauche Branches. The organization of the Aboisso Cote d'Ivoire District Branch suggests that one or more member groups likely operate within the new district. Additionally, the new district covers a sizable geographical area in Comoé District and a small portion of northeastern Lagunes District.

The Adzope Cote d'Ivoire District was organized from five mission branches in the Cote d'Ivoire Abidjan Mission in the cities of Adzoope, Affery, and Akoupé. The new district includes the following six branches: the Adzope 1st, Adzope 2nd, Adzope 3rd, Adzope Cote d'Ivoire District, Affery, and Akoupé Branches. Like the newly organized Aboisso Cote d'Ivoire District, the Adzope Cote d'Ivoire District covers a sizable geographical area. Nearly half of Lagunes District is within the new district and most of this area is serviced by the new Adzope Cote d'Ivoire District Branch. Thus, one or more member groups may operate within towns and villages within this area.

There are now nine stakes and seven districts in Cote d'Ivoire.

Lesotho
The Church organized its first district in Lesotho on February 28th. The Maseru Lesotho District was organized from a division of the Bloemfontein South Africa Stake. The new district includes the following three branches: the Leribe, Maseru, and Masianokeng Branches. The entire country of Lesotho and some adjacent areas of South Africa near Maseru appear serviced by the new district. Missionaries have reported for several years that there have been plans to organize additional branches in the Maseru area. Prior to the organization of the new district, Lesotho was the country with the third most members without a stake or district according to year-end 2014 membership data.

Russia
The Church reinstated the Yekaterinburg Russia District on January 31st. Originally organized in 1999, the Yekaterinburg Russia District was discontinued in 2014. The reinstated district includes the following six branches: the Chelyabinsk, Perm, Ufa, Yekaterinburg 1st, Yekaterinburg 2nd, and Yekaterinburg Russia District Branches.

There are now three stakes and eight districts in Russia.

Bolivia
The Church recently discontinued a district in Bolivia. The Puerto Suárez Bolivia District was discontinued and one of the three branches assigned to the district was discontinued. The two retained branches in the former district now report directly to the Bolivia Santa Cruz Mission.

There are now 27 stakes and eight districts in Bolivia.

37 comments:

Michael Worley said...

Rumors are starting to circulate about a possible Branson MO stake being formed on March 13.

Christopher Nicholson said...

Seems like there hasn't been any real growth in South America for a long time now, even with the missionary surge and all the new missions there. The congregational decline appears to have slowed down a lot, but it's still a decline rather than an increase. Bummer.

Fredrick said...

If a stake is created in Branson, it would surprise me if the Church didn't announce a temple around Bentonville/Rogers, Arkansas in the near future.

Dave said...

I'm a little slow on the uptake. I live in Branson, have been predicting a Branson stake would be formed soon for a couple of years now, knew about the special Stake Conference coming up in addition to the normal one, and it never occurred to me that that might mean a new Branson Stake.

There are 3 Branson Wards and 2 Branson Branches. It would combine with the Harrison, Arkansas Ward. Then those units have to be added to another Ward, and that could maybe be a split of the Branson West ward? I'm not sure about the 5th Ward. Branson Second isn't ready to split yet, but they could do a 2- or 3-way split to carve out another ward easily enough.

Hope it's true. If it is, I won't have to drive up to Springfield as often.

Joseph Heath said...

Great news about Russia. Curious that as the political and economic situations get more scary, the church gets stronger. A lot of stagnant growth as been reversed since the Ukraine conflict.

Tom said...

Temple prediction for April conference: Managua, Nicaragua

Bunko said...

More breaking news out of the Dallas area. Today it was confirmed that a new stake will be created out of the Allen, McKinney and Frisco Shawnee Trail stakes. This was confirmed firsthand and is expected to happen in the Allen stake conference in two weeks. I also received secondhand information that the Weatherford stake is splitting. No details are know on that, however.

Craig said...

Church leadership (The Seventy including Area Presidencies internationally and Area Seventies who head coordinating councils that include every stake, mission, district, and temple in the Church) have started a process to review what the correct size is for wards. Each area presidency has set a target size for wards if travel times to meetinghouses permit.

Meetinghouse planning that used to look at meetinghouse based on number of wards per building, are now looking at number of members per building with a long-range priority. Why? To reduce need for new facilities and help areas with underutilized buildings use them before new ones are built.

Coordinating councils in pilot councils in Utah, Brazil, and elsewhere are looking have looked at ways to eliminate wards and branches where they are too small. They are looking to share buildings better across stake boundaries and to eliminate wards and stakes that have shrunk as membership in inner city and older neighborhoods decline as they become commercialized and young couples move to newer suburbs.

Craig said...

When the Quorum of the Twelve or Area Presidencies' target size for wards and stakes increases, there can be and has been real Church growth in some places-including Latin America--even when number of units is flat or even going down.

This was the case in the decade after 1998 when the minimum number of members and active priesthood leaders for a stake were put in place by a letter from President Packer. It was tested in the early 2000's when Elder Holland was assigned as Area President in Chile, Elder Oaks in the Philippines, and later Elder Perry in Europe. Ward that would have split when lower size-targets were in place, had to grow for a few years before they were ready to split again.

James Anderson said...

We just got done with the Provo City Center Temple open house, and anecdotal reports on-site last night were that we had just shy of 800,000 visitors total, a new record for attendance at an open house event for any temple.

This was also the longest one ever held.

My stake in Provo, right in town, and whose south boundary is right across the road from the new temjple has had a net growth of 300 members since last year. That is even with the hospital grabbing older homes to expand to 800 North, primarily between 500 and 300 West, and the rebuild they are doing also. My stake includes the hospital within its boundaries.

Ryan Searcy said...

The new buildings rule is probably why the Wasilla Alaska Stake hasn't been split, nor a probable 4th Anchorage stake. There are 15, maybe 16 chapels among those 4 stakes that this rule would effect.

ANCHORAGE CHUGACH (8,4) - 8 wards, 1 branch in the Anchorage area
-Alpenglow - 3 wards
-Eagle River - 3 wards
-Muldoon - 2 wards, 1 branch - The Hmong Branch recently got their own time slot.

ANCHORAGE NORTH (10,2) - 10 wards, 1 branch in the Anchorage area
-Lake Hood - 2 wards
-Arctic - 3 wards
-Maplewood - 3 wards
-Baxter - 2 wards, 1 branch - The Spanish Branch does not meet independently

ANCHORAGE (9,3) - 9 wards, 2 branches in the Anchorage area
-Brayton - 3 wards
-Klatt - 3 wards, 1 branch
-Strawberry - 3 wards
-Girdwood - 1 branch - this branch meets at a Catholic Church, and I don't know if the rule applies, Girdwood to the Stake Center is about 40 minutes, give or take.

WASILLA (15,0) - 14 wards in the Mat-Su Valley
-Palmer - 3 wards
-Colony - 3 wards
-Wasilla - 3 wards - shows up on LDS Maps as housing 4 wards
-Knik-Fairview - 3 wards
-Willow - 2 wards - shows up on LDS Maps as housing 1 ward

For these to fill capacity, there needs to be 2 new wards in Anchorage and 1 in the Valley. I know there is land for a chapel in Chugiak. I heard that the Wasilla Stake wanted to build a couple of new chapels, but all of the chapels in the area had to be full first. I heard the estimate was 30 miles, where every chapel within 30 miles has to be full before building a new one.

Michael Worley said...

Re: Branson. I still cannot confirm a new stake will be formed.

Gnesileah said...

Members report the Maple Valley Washington Stake will split next weekend to form the Enumclaw Washington Stake.

Eduardo Clinch said...

The increase of temples in South America seems to indicate real growth. I pray that progress and completion of the Concepcion Temple will impact thousands (maybe 180,000 members?) across southern Chile and greater Patagonia.

Ryan Searcy said...

A prospective district in Tres Rios, Brazil? The area has 3 wards all under the Juiz de Fora Brazil Stake. Obviously these wards would be reverted to branch status, and depending on size, they could split to make 1-3 new branches. I doubt the Petropolis, Teresopolis, and Volta Redonda Stakes would take part. The new district could possibly take part of the Brazil Rio de Janeiro Mission Branch

TempleRick said...

There were actually 870,361 visitors at the Bountiful Utah Temple open house in 1994, which may end up being slightly more than the Provo City Center Temple open house.

http://www.ldschurchnewsarchive.com/articles/25216/870000-tour-open-house-at-temple-in-Bountiful.html

And the open house for the Los Angeles California Temple lasted eight and half weeks, which is a little longer than the seven-week Provo City Center Temple open house.

Still, it certainly ranks among the longest and most well-attended open houses in history. Very exciting!

Ryan Searcy said...

The Wasilla Alaska Stake is getting split in 2 weeks? I haven't heard anything. I'm pretty sure of which wards will go where.

WASILLA ALASKA STAKE (7,0)
-Big Lake Ward
-Knik-Fairview Ward
-Memory Lake Ward
-Settlers Bay Ward
-Susitna YSA Ward
-Wasilla Ward
-Willow Ward

PALMER ALASKA STAKE (8,1)
-Colony Ward
-Cottonwood Ward - could also stay in Wasilla Stake, but is geographically closer to Palmer
-Lazy Mountain Ward
-Matanuska Ward
-Palmer Ward
-Fishhook Ward
-Pioneer Peak Ward
-Valdez Ward
-Cordova Branch - it makes geographical sense to include this branch

James Anderson said...

Two numbers for total missionaries out right now were heard today.

Both were in a news story from a Houston TV station about Russell M. Nelson's visit to Houston, TX, one said 78,000, the other 75,000, so it's safe to say the actual figure is well within that range.

The story was posted to Mormon Newsroom today and the video with it is somewhere close to five minutes.

Deivisas said...

@Bunko that will make 2016 the best year on record for Texas in terms of new Stakes organized in a single year! Making a 5th Temple in Texas sound closer :)

Joseph Heath said...

The list on the right side of the home page shows about 21 stakes to be organized by August this year. If you look at the last 3 years on record, there weren't this many stakes organized until May or June. :) This is great for showing real growth! Let's hope the pace keeps up all year.

Ryan Searcy said...

I have heard that land was secured a while ago for a new stake center in Palmer that will start being built after the stake is split.

Joseph said...

Unit Update
14 Feb
San Francisco Branch, San Jose Mindoro Philippines Occidental District (B:6)

28 Feb
Maseru Lesotho District
Leribe Branch
Maseru Branch
Masianokeng Branch

6 Mar
Etinan Nigeria North District (B:1) More lily to be organized or brought in
Afaha Nsit Branch

Mesa Arizona Red Mountain Stake (W:6)
Adobe Villa Ward
Granite Reef Ward
Mountain Vista Ward
Preston Ward
Red Mountain Ward
Vista Peaks Ward

Barr Lake Ward, Brighton Colorado Stake (B:1, W:8)
Buffalo Run Ward, Brighton Colorado Stake (B:1, W:8)
Cataratas Ward, Cascavel Brazil Stake (B:2, W:9)
Cerro Moreno Ward, Antofagasta Chile La Portada Stake (B:1, W:7)
Fungurume Branch, Likasi Democratic Republic of the Congo District (B:10)
Gesowa Branch, Isumo Papua New Guinea District (B:3) District was newly reinstated
Independence 3rd Ward, Bluffdale Utah South Stake (W:11)
Krofrom Ward, Kumasi Ghana Dichemso Stake (B:7, W:8)
Land O Lakes Ward, Tampa Florida Stake (W:9)
Sagero Branch, Isumo Papua New Guinea District (B:3)
Tengbeh Town Ward, Freetown Sierra Leone Stake (W:10)
Window Rock 2nd Ward, Chinle Arizona Stake (B:5, W:5)


YTD 129(12.9/week*9) +15 - Total 34,287(+8)
Africa 34, 26.4% (+4) - Total 1805 (+4)
Asia 3, 2.3% (0) - Total 934 (0)
America Central 5, 3.9% (0) - Total 3926 (0)
America North 53, 41.1% (+5) - Total 9371 (+5)
America South 8, 6.2% (+2) - Total 6340 (0)
Europe 1, 0.8% (0) - Total 1709 (-5)
Pacific 7, 5.4% (+3) - Total 2737 (+4)
Utah & Idaho 18(14), 14.0(11.4)% (+1) - Total 6924(5713)(0)

Totals no-sensitive (Net +7)
Areas Temples Miss Stakes Dist Wards Branch Totals
Global 25 149 419 3,187 547 22,637 7,346 34,310
Us/Can 10 81 131 1,607 10 12,621 2,057 16,517
US n/a 73 124 1,559 7 12,284 1,908 15,955
Utah n/a 15 10 579 1 4,714 326 5,645
Canada n/a 8 7 48 3 337 149 552
Out 15 68 288 1,580 537 10,0162 5,289 17,793

bwebster said...

OK, it tickles me to see that there's a Ruben Dario Ward in Managua (which is where I served part of my mission back in 1972-74). For those of you who don't know, Ruben Dario is a very famous Nicaraguan poet from the turn of the 20th Century; it would be a bit like have a "Robert Frost" Ward somewhere up in New England. :-) I memorized Dario's poem "Lo Fatal" while I was on my mission and can pretty much still recite it today. (I assume the ward is named for a 'Ruben Dario' neighborhood/district, rather than directly after the poet himself.)

And as per Tom's comment (a new temple announced for Managua) -- that would complete temple coverage for my mission, which comprised Honduras, Nicaragua, Costa Rica, and Panama.

David Todd said...

My father served in the Costa Rica San Jose Mission, too. I want to say it was from 75-77.

As for all of the congregational growth in Texas I am very excited. I grew up in the dfw area and am amazed to see more than a 100% increase in stakes from 2000 until now in the metroplex. While most of the growth has been relocation, you still cannot deny that a great work is being done there, and Texas is quickly becoming a missionary goldmine, similar to California because of the relatively large concentration of strong established members.

Ryan Searcy said...

Not necessarily growth related, but I just read that Ancestry.com has made all of their Irish records available for free for a week starting today. This could be a good missionary opportunity for those of Irish heritage.

Eduardo Clinch said...

One of my MTC teachers in 1989 served half his mission in Costa Rica and the other half in Panama; maybe that was '87 to '88? It is amazing how our missionaries can become so much more familiar with smaller areas and cultures... it must help for trust and effectiveness, right?

John Pack Lambert said...

The situation in South America varries by country. Brazil is definately seeing congregational growth. Peru is beggining to see it as well.

John Pack Lambert said...

You can have a ward membership decline with no members moving out. For example if all your families in the ward had teenaged children, and then all the teenaged children moved out, your membership would be less than one third but no family would move out. Moves are never quite this simple but agining populations often mean fewer people per household even with a stable number of member households. If we take this a step further if later on the husband in half your households died, you would still have the same number of households but only 75% the membership and half the priesthood holders.

Here in Michigan there is one ward in my stake and one ward in the stake to the south where in both cases members have to travel a significant distance to the chapel. A chapel built for these two wards could cut most in not all members travel times. Hopefully looking for chapel solutions across stake boundaries will help in this situation.

John Pack Lambert said...

I think that distance estimates are problematic. In some areas, such as inner-city Detroit, a higher percentage of members will not have cars and rely on public transportation. This is even more the case in New York City. In Detroit on Sundays many some people will do like my girlfriend has on occasion in the past and ride their bike. Others will have to walk. Detroit's public transit system is not very good.

Also, 30 mills drive takes a lot longer in built-up cities with lots of traffic lights than in outer suburb areas. Some areas, such as New York City, you will even see high traffic levels causing slowness on Sundays, or parades blocking the travel. Additionally in some areas maybe the Sunday trip won't be that hard, but it might be much more difficult on weeknights taking the children to achievement days, cub scouts, YM/YW. I remember when I was in cub scouts for a while we had two dens for those below weblows. One was for the north part of the ward, the other for the south part of the ward. And we had no cub scouts in the northern third of the ward, or in the southern quarter. Shortly after that the southern quarter got split off to form a branch with other parts of Detroit, but the northern third remained in our ward and continued to have long travel times to church until the new chapel was built three years later.

Currently no building in the Detroit Mission boundaries has more than two wards/branches assigned to it. My ward's chapel has a parking lot that really is not large enough for two wards to be there at once. So even though my ward seems close to being split I do not see them doing so and having three wards there. At one point though in the north end of my ward the church had purchased a plot of land to build a new chapel, back in about 2006, just before Michigan saw its economy crash. Also, the stake center only has one ward and a YSA branch. The think is the ward that could be moved there, is the one the chapel we meet at is in the boundaries of. One possibility would be to realign ward boundaries at a split.

John Pack Lambert said...

Can't you access most if not all of ancestry.com records if you are a Church member for free already?

How many missions are in Honduras, Nicaragua, Costa Rica and Panama combined today? I know it is at least 7.

To continue my report on new mission presidents, being sent from Lagos to serve over the Owerri Nigeria Mission, we have Solomon and Victoria Aliche. Solomon Aliche was born in Kaduna, Nigeria, a city in the Muslim north which has a large number of Christians as well and was the sight of anti-Christian riots in 2000-2002. President Aliche was born in about 1966.Sister Aliche was born in Lagos. President Aliche served his mission in the Lagos Mission. However since President Aliche probably served his mission around 1986, there was probably only one mission in all of Nigeria then. The Port Harcort (originally Aba) Mission was not split off until 1988.

Lewis Hassell, the president of the new Vietnam Hanoi Mission served his mission in the Hong Kong Mission. He was among the 15 full-time missionaries who served in Vietnam, being sent there on July 14, 1974. This is from page 187 of the otherly long and underedited book "The Light Breaks In Southeast Asia: A History of the LDS Church in Asia's Ancient Kingdom" by Reed B. Haslam and published in 2012 by HTowm-Publishing of Sandy, Utah. At times being overly long is helpful. Still at 796 pages it seems excessive.

Eduardo Clinch said...

I guess that that many pages shouldn't add too much in price while the additional details while seemingly excessive can supply valuable information otherwise lost, for those interested.
Perhaps a highlighter can make some pages or excerpts more
salient.

Eduardo Clinch said...

Just a few stats: of the 6 stakes of the DC South Mission there were 9 convert baptisms in January 2016. Last month that number rose to 39. The mission's goal for the year is 300 so I guess we need to average around 25 per month to make it.
I remember for the Indianapolis Mission years ago in the 90s that 500 was a goal to shoot for. Although that mission then had 8 or 9 stakes.

John Pack Lambert said...

The Deseret News has an article about members of the Oromo community in Utah holding protests seeking to get the US to take actions to stop the Ethiopian governments bloody supression of peaceful protests by Oromo. This caused me to think that the Oromo might be a group ready for missionary outreach starting in Salt Lake City.

On a related note with Nepali and Karen branches in Salt Lake City what are the changes the Book of Mormon will be translated to either language soon.

Lastly does anyone know if the endowment has been translated to Linhala, Swahili, Xhoso or Swana? Actually is there any way to learn which languages the endowment is available in.

John Pack Lambert said...

My ward alone had 5 convert baptisms in November although I dont think we have had any since but we do have a man who is about to get baptized unless he already did and I missed it. 3 of the 5 baptized in November were 12-year old twins and their 9-year-old sister. I do worry about retention in such cases but the boys have been coming out regularly and they did baptisms for the dead with the other youth in our ward last month. Actually it was only half the youth, the other half were at the Chapel doing family history because we have too many youth for all of them to do baptisms at once in the Detroit Temple.

John Pack Lambert said...

My ward alone had 5 convert baptisms in November although I dont think we have had any since but we do have a man who is about to get baptized unless he already did and I missed it. 3 of the 5 baptized in November were 12-year old twins and their 9-year-old sister. I do worry about retention in such cases but the boys have been coming out regularly and they did baptisms for the dead with the other youth in our ward last month. Actually it was only half the youth, the other half were at the Chapel doing family history because we have too many youth for all of them to do baptisms at once in the Detroit Temple.

John Pack Lambert said...

The Deseret News has an article about members of the Oromo community in Utah holding protests seeking to get the US to take actions to stop the Ethiopian governments bloody supression of peaceful protests by Oromo. This caused me to think that the Oromo might be a group ready for missionary outreach starting in Salt Lake City.

On a related note with Nepali and Karen branches in Salt Lake City what are the changes the Book of Mormon will be translated to either language soon.

Lastly does anyone know if the endowment has been translated to Linhala, Swahili, Xhoso or Swana? Actually is there any way to learn which languages the endowment is available in.

Gracie said...

I live in the South Salt Lake Stake with Spanish, Karen/Karenni and Nepali branches.

Nepali translation of the Book of Mormon has been going on for several years by a member of the Nepali branch. We don't know the status of church approval at this time.

Karen and Karenni are both spoken in the Columbus Branch; translation is provived in both languages. Bits and pieces of the Book of Mormon are translated such as sections with scripture mastery scriptures. I don't know of any project to translate the whole book into either language. That's just to my knowledge, there may be. I do know that there is a need to translate descriptively into Karen since many English words and LDS terms have no equivalent. A translation of the Book of Mormon into Karen, like any other language I suppose, needs to be inspired. It would probably be sigificantly longer than the English version.