Tuesday, July 31, 2018

Eight Districts in Mainland China for Mainland Chinese (PRC Citizen) Members

In a recent article posted on the Singapore version of lds.org, Elder Randy D. Funk reported that by the end of his service, there were "38 stakes and 37 districts in the Asia Area." Currently the Church reports 29 districts in the following countries within the Asia Area:
  • Malaysia (6) 
  • China [mainland districts for foreigners] (4)
  • Cambodia (4) 
  • India (3)
  • Pakistan (3)
  • Thailand (2)
  • Vietnam (2)
  • Hong Kong (1)
  • Indonesia (1)
  • Macau (1)
  • Mongolia (1)
  • Sri Lanka (1)
There is a difference of eight districts between the number of districts reported by the Church in these previously noted nations and the overall total provided by Elder Funk. Thus, there are eight districts that appear to function in mainland China that administer to citizens of the People's Republic of China (PRC) as there are no other countries in the Asia area that have a sufficient number of members in order for a district operate. This finding indicates that significant growth has occurred among the PRC Chinese membership to the point that eight districts have been organized even though the first branches to service PRC members were created just 14 years ago. In contrast, the Church in Russia has operated since 1990 with one of the largest full-time proselytism forces of any religious group yet the Church currently reports only three stakes and 10 districts in Russia at present. Roughly speaking, the Church in mainland China has achieved a comparable amount of growth to Russia despite no formal proselytism efforts and within half the amount of time. Member-missionary work among biological relatives, strong proselytism efforts among PRC citizens in countries where full-time missionaries are permitted to serve, local leadership development successes, and a good relationship between the Church and the Chinese government have all appeared to fuel this rapid growth.

Given the sensitive nature of the Church in China, please do not publish comments that provide specific information regarding the location of individual member groups, branches, or districts as this information has not been publicly released.


Chris said...

I'm Guessing that the locations in Pakistan are sensitive issue also, given that on this list it is stated "Pakistan (3)" districts, but on a search on Classic LDS maps website, no locations inside India New Delhi mission (Pakistan area) also. I only have 26 listed Districts in the Asia Area.

L. Chris Jones said...

This growth is amazing. I wonder what the branch count may be. A district can be as low as two or three branches to as much as ten and in few cases more branches. China is a ripe area. If we could get as much growth with member missions work among families in other places as we do in china, the church would be significantly stronger in other places around the world.

Eduardo said...

Nice deductions. Thanks for reporting.

Shia shia ni.

James said...

That is remarkable news, any way it is considered. It is interesting that, with the changes in Area Leadership which have become effective as of today, some of the General Authority Seventies who have served internationally for a number of years are all now returning to Church Headquarters. That is true of Elder fund, and it is also true of Elder Kevin S. Hamilton, who has been presiding over the Afirc Southeast Area. Elder Hamilton's sister is in my parents' ward, and she recently told my mom that her brother has reported some amazing developments that are or will shortly be occurring in the Africa Southeast Area. It is too bad that he is returning to Church headquarters before the next two temples (Harare Zimbabwe and Nairobi Kenya) have a groundbreaking.

In reference to this specific post, 8 districts which we did not previously know about is significant. It is also interesting that Elder Funk rook over responsibility for the Asia Area of the Church from Elder Gong when the latter was called to the Presidency of the Seventy. Now, as an apostle, Elder Gong has the privilege of overseeing the Asia and Asia North Areas of the Church.

I had the privilege of meeting Elder Gong at a Stake Conference while he was an Area Seventy accompanying the presiding authority. His warmth, knowledge, understanding, and love for the scriptures was amazing to see. It sounds like he passed his love of Asia on to his successor, Elder Funk, whom I hope has passed that same love on to Elder David F. Evans, who will now preside over that area.

It is also interesting to me that, with the changes in Area leadership that took effect today, the Church now has more currently-serving members of the Presidency of the Seventy who were born outside North America than there are of those who were born within it. And unless further changes occur in that Presidency in the next two years, the Church could have its' first Senior President of the Seventy born outside of the US. And of the 7 current members of the Presidency, all but the current Senior President have come into the Presidency within the last year.

I have provided some more analysis on this, in addition to other subjects, on my blog recently. With my thanks to Matt for continuing to allow me to do so, I will again share my blog address. By Sunday at the latest, I hope to do a new post on my blog covering the expanded list of prospective cities I am putting together which, in my opinion, have the greatest likelihood of having a temple announced in General Conference in two months. In addition to working on that list, I have also provided an ongoing analysis of Church news and temple developments. If any of you would like to read and comment on any of those posts, I would appreciated hearing your feedback. Thanks.


Unknown said...

I assume “comments” is the method to ask you a question. What details do you have on the Coruna stake in Spain that will be organized this weekend, August 4 and 5?

Chris said...

@Unknown, Do you refer to the Santiago Spain District, which includes the La Coruña locality in the Northwest of the Kingdom? Is the District being upgraded to Stake this weekend?

James Anderson said...

Here is a video of a presentation that Mormon Newsroom referred to early this afternoon MT, about some of the challenges to Church growth, also social media use and why we must all be invilved in some way, also about answering questions about difficult issues with history, doctrine, etc.


Unknown said...

It appears they will combine the Santiago, Leon , and the Asturias districts to form the Coruna stake. Some will need to trave just under three hours by car but it make sense to meet In La Coruna since three major freeways converge there. Elder Paul Johnson will be the presiding authority.

Chris said...

Personally, I believe, if merging the 2 northwest districts of Santiago and Leon into one stake, similar to what was done in northern germany a few months back. I believe a more central city would be Leon, between Santiago, Leon and Salamanca to the south. A Coruña is to far north. But that is just my opinion.

John Pack Lambert said...

I think the claim that 8 districts is the same as 3 stakes and 10 districts underestimates the level to which stakes indicate a lot more Church growth than districts.

Another point to consider, China has about 10 times the population of Russia.

Gnesileah said...

Perhaps we will see some of these eight Chinese districts be upgraded to stakes within the next couple of years. I respect the situation to not disclose details about them, but hopefully it isn't inappropriate to say that there are a "healthy number" of branches in each of those districts. It is inspiring to see these districts grow without traditional missionaries, and within the limits of Chinese law.

John Pack Lambert said...

I just posted at my blog here https://www.blogger.com/blogger.g?blogID=2354667955884728107#editor/target=post;postID=6394019923724556993;onPublishedMenu=allposts;onClosedMenu=allposts;postNum=0;src=postname some thoughts on the growth of the LDS Church in the middle belt of Nigeria.

I am hopeful of stakes being formed in both Pakistan and China. Such a move would not be unprecedented. The Church formed stakes in East Germany when it was under communist control and no fulltime missionaries were allowed.

The stakes in UAE and Bahrain are totally different because they consists entirely of expatriate, most heavily Filipino and then American, with probably various Latin American and European as well as Canadian and maybe some other groups, interspersed.

Gnesileah said...

Mpintsin Ghana Stake
- Eshiem Branch upgraded to Ward

Tarawa Kiribati North District
- Kainaba Branch created

Punilla Argentina District
- Capilla del Monte Branch created

Petrolina Brazil Stake
- Juazeiro 1st Ward discontinued
- Juazeiro 2nd Ward renamed Centro Ward
- Jardim Florida Branch upgraded to Ward

Santa Cruz do Sul Brazil Stake
- Cachoeira do Sul Branch upgraded to Ward
- Marina Branch upgraded to Ward
- Rio Prado Branch upgraded to Ward

Santiago Dominican Republic East Stake
- Tamboril Branch upgraded to Ward

Lima Perú Los Olivos Stake
- Laura Caller Ward created

Lima Perú San Felipe Stake
- Villa Hermoza Branch discontinued

Red Deer Alberta Stake
- Red Deer 4th Branch (Spanish) discontinued

Boynton Beach Florida Stake
- Boco Rio Branch (Portuguese) upgraded to Ward

James said...

@John Pack Lambert: The link you posted is invalid. It appears it may have been meant to access that post through your post list on your blogger account, to which only you (and any other admins of your blog) would have access. I found the actual address to what I believe is the post in question that you wanted to share. I post it below for any who are interested. Hope that information helps you:


Christopher Nicholson said...

A visiting General Authority, I forget who, told us a few years ago that 85% of members in mainland China are active.

El. Álvarez said...

I'm from Spain, from a area not related to Galicia. What I can say about the La Coruña stake is that was the result of merging the Santiago district & the León district. I think Asturias (Gijón, Oviedo & Avilés branches) had its own district but merged with León into a new León district. Because La Coruña & most of the new stake is far away from Valladolid, the Valladolid branch is gonna join one of the Madrid stakes. Valladolid is not far away from the Villalba Collado ward, so I guess Villalba's stake will be Valladolid. Regarding this Celtic Spanish stake of Galicia my guesses are that the branches of La Coruña, El Ferrol, Santiago, Vigo, León, Oviedo & Gijón will be turned into wards. I thought El Ferrol was too little for a ward (even for the European standards) but somebody said that it'll be a ward, which I can't confirm yet. I guess Santiago (former headquarters of the Santiago district) will be big enough for a ward. La Coruña & Vigo are for sure big enough to become wards. I believe León, Oviedo & Gijón are the other wards because otherwise they wouldn't have enough number of wards. The minimum is 5, but in the last several newly created stakes I've seen that the area authorities demanding 6. It makes sense because it's easier to get leadership from more units in order to use them for the stake instead of getting too many leaving some wards almost leaderless. I have heard that the newly created La Coruña stake would discontinue a few little branches. I can't confirm it yet. I guess (if the rumors are right) these branches were consolidated into some of new wards. I can guess that Villagarcía de Arosa could consolidate into the newly Santiago de Compostela ward and Pontevedra consolidate with Vigo. However Vigo is probably big enough to have a ward without discontinueing Pontevedra. I believe Lugo, Orense & Ponferrada will be left despite their size. Avilés might split its members to increase Gijón and Oviedo's size in order to to qualify for ward. I'm not sure about Zamora and Benavente. I believe they will stay in this newly created "estaca de La Coruña" as branches, but they are quite far from La Coruña, so it's possible that they go to one of the three Madrid stakes together with Valladolid. The furthermost points (units) are gonna be 6 hours distant. It seems crazy to settle the stake center in La Coruña. Santiago de Compostela is more central, but now is not central either. This is what logic tells you, but nowadays with broadcast satellite, internet ... it might not be so expedient the distance factor.

Something else about Spain. The Galicia stake will be the 15th stake in the nation. I believe there's only two or three districts in Spain. I don't know if Salamanca belongs now to one of the three stakes in Madrid, to a district with Cáceres, Badajoz, & Mérida or all are just still branches from the Madrid mission. There's a district of La Mancha in Ciudad Real province alone. There's also a district in the Balearic Islands with good prospects to be a stake eventually.

El. Álvarez said...

Also the creation of the La Coruña stake triggers the change of mission boundaries in Spain again. In July the Málaga mission split between Madrid mostly, & Barcelona (just the Cartagena stake). The newly stake of La Coruña will leave Madrid for Barcelona.

Next year Spain will have several anniversaries. Spain's 50th with the LDS Church & 20th of the Madrid temple. By spring the Portuguese & Cape Verdeans will quit attending our temple to go to Lisbon Portugal temple. That means the temple will be mostly for the members living in Spain. Only two wards of the Bordeaux France stake will keep attending Madrid: Bayonne & Pau. The Italian district of Sardinia still comes to Madrid despite the Rome temple. I think those members told me in Madrid that this is because there's better flight connections to Madrid. Perhaps the Moroccan branch (or branches?) keep attending Madrid and the Algerian if there's any. Other than that the temple will be for the members in Spain.

Unknown said...

From my source in Vigo were we served as a senior couple, The Vigo branch was divided and the Pontrvedra branch was merged into one of the divided groups.

El. Álvarez said...

Now I have the exact info regarding the La Coruña Spain stake. As suspected Pontevedra dissolves into Vigo which turns into two wards. Also Avilés dissolves into the Gijón ward. Valladolid goes to Madrid (west probably stake. Benavente dissolves into the León branch. Santiago de Compostela, Orense, Lugo, León and Ponferrada stay as branches. The rest are wards: Vigo 1, Vigo 2, El Ferrol, La Coruña, Gijón y Oviedo.

El. Álvarez said...

Villagarcía was dissolved long before La Coruña stake was created.

El. Álvarez said...

Cumora.com needs a good updating.

Matt said...

El Alvarez-

We are currently updating the Reaching the Nations country profiles for the almanac. We updated 11 profiles last month alone. What else needs updating?

John Pack Lambert said...

Have you considered doing specific entries on missionary outreach per language, covering congregations using it, congregations in areas where it is present, materials available, etc

John Pack Lambert said...

My last statement is fueled by the fact that some of the country profiles cover places like Comoros with well under 1 million people, yet lots and lots of languages in Nigeria have that or more speakers.

El. Álvarez said...

Something elese on the La Coruña Spain stake. Oviedo stays as branch. The Zamora group doesn't exist. The whole state goes to the Barcelona mission. Salamanca stays as part of the Madrid mission but in stake or district whatsoever. Valladolid stays in the Madrid mission & seeems like it goes to the Madrid west stake.