Sunday, January 16, 2022

New Stakes Created in Brazil, Canada, the DR Congo, Idaho, Ohio, Sierra Leone, Utah, and Washington, DC; New District Created in Angola; Two Stakes Discontinued in California; Districts Discontinued in Canada and Russia


The Church organized a new stake in São Paulo State, Brazil on November 14th, 2021. The Carapicuiba Brazil Stake was organized on November 14th, 2021 from a division of the Alphaville Brazil Stake and the Osasco Brazil Stake. The new stake includes the following five wards: the Ariston, Carapicuiba, São Camilo, Vila Dirce, and Nova Granada Wards. There are now 47 stakes in the São Paulo metropolitan area.

There are now 281 stakes and 40 districts in Brazil.


The Church organized its second stake in Manitoba, Canada on November 14th, 2021. The Winnipeg Manitoba West Stake was organized from a division of the Winnipeg Manitoba Stake (originally organized in 1978 and renamed the Winnipeg Manitoba East Stake). The new stake includes the follow five wards and five branches: the Brandon, River Heights, St James, Waverley, and Wellington YSA Wards, and the Dauphin, Neepawa, Portage La Prairie, Selkirk, and Thompson Branches. Also, the Church discontinued the Fort Francis Ontario District (organized in 1970) as part of the new stake creation, and retained branches were reassigned to the Winnipeg Manitoba East Stake.

There are now 53 stakes and four districts in Canada.

DR Congo

The Church organized its second stake in the city of Luputa on December 5th, 2021. The Kabusanga DR Congo Stake was organized from the Luputa DR Congo Stake (originally organized in 2011). The new stake includes the following five wards: the Contoniere, Kabusanga 1st, Kabusanga 2nd, Luputa 1st, and the Mukukuyi Wards. 

There are now 25 stakes and 3 districts in the DR Congo.


The Church organized a new stake in Rexburg, Idaho on December 12th, 2021. The Rexburg Idaho West Stake was organized from a division of the Rexburg Idaho Stake, the Rexburg Idaho Center Stake, and Rexburg Idaho Henry's Fork Stake. The new stake includes the following eight wards: the Hibbard 1st, Burton 2nd, Burton 4th, Oakbrook, Summerfield 1st, Summerfield 2nd, Willowbrook, and the Rexburg 13th Wards. There are now 23 stakes in the Rexburg area, including 11 young single adult stakes and four student married stakes.

There are now 136 stakes in Idaho.


The Church organized its third stake in Dayton, Ohio on November 21st, 2021. The Dayton Ohio North Stake was organized from a division of the Cincinnati Ohio East Stake, the Dayton Ohio Stake, the Dayton Ohio East Stake, and the Toledo Ohio Stake. The new stake includes the following six wards and two branches: the Bellefontaine, Huber Heights, Lima, Piqua, Springfield, and Tipp City Wards, and the Greenville and St Marys Branches. This marks the creation of the first new stake in Dayton since 1979. Moreover, this marks the first time a new stake has been created in Ohio since 2007.

There are now 15 stakes in Ohio.

Sierra Leone

The Church organized a new stake in Sierra Leone on December 5th, 2021. The Kossoh Town Sierra Leone Stake was organized from the Kossoh Town Sierra Leone District. All seven branches in the former district were advanced to wards. The seven wards in the new stake are the Forut, Grafton, Ibo Town, Jui, Kossoh Town, Lumpa, and Waterloo Wards. The Kossoh Town Sierra Leone District was the last remaining district in the Freetown metropolitan area where there are now five stakes. 

There are now nine stakes and one district in Sierra Leone.


The Church organized a new stake in Smithfield, Utah on November 7th, 2021. The Smithfield Utah West Stake was organized from a division of the Smithfield Utah Stake, the Smithfield Utah North Stake, and the Smithfield Utah South Stake. The new stake includes the following seven wards: the Smithfield 1st, Smithfield 2nd, Smithfield 4th, Smithfield 8th, Smithfield 9th, Smithfield 16th, and the Smithfield 25th Wards. The Church announced plans to construct a temple in Smithfield in April 2021. There are now five stakes in Smithfield.

There are now 621 stakes and two districts in Utah

Washington, DC

The Church organized a second young single adult (YSA) stake for the Washington, DC area on November 14th, 2021. The Washington DC YSA North Stake was organized from the Washington DC YSA Stake, and the new stake includes congregations located in Maryland and the District of Columbia. The new stake includes the following five wards: the Annapolis YSA, Eastern Market YSA,
Friendship Heights YSA, Strathmore YSA, and the Waldorf YSA Wards. There are now three Washington DC Stakes, albeit only two of these stakes actually operate within the District of Columbia.


The Church organized a new district on November 21st, 2021. The Huambo Angola District was organized with three branches (one of which was organized on the day the new district was created). Branches in Huambo were previously assigned directly to the Angola Luanda Mission. The new district is a major milestone for the Church's growth in Angola as it marks the first time the Church has created a district outside of Luanda where one stake operates (organized in 2018). The Church initially organized its first branch in Huambo in May 2013, but the mission closed the branch in late 2015 and reverted the congregation back to a member group. The branch was reinstated in February 2018, and a second branch was organized in the city in late 2020. 

There is now one stake and one district in Angola, and it appears likely a second district will be organized in the foreseeable future for branches in the southern city of Lubango.


The Church discontinued two stakes in California in late 2021. The Pleasanton California Stake (organized in 1974) was discontinued, and the four wards and one branch in the former stake were reassigned to the Livermore California Stake. Also, the Jurupa California Stake (organized in 1990) was discontinued, and retained congregations were reassigned to the Ontario California Stake and the Riverside California Stake. 

There are now 147 stakes in California. The Church in California reported an all-time high of 162 stakes in 1995.


The Church discontinued the Moscow Russia District - a district that included small branches in cities surrounding the Moscow metropolitan area where one stake operates. All branches in the former district have been reassigned to the Russia Moscow Mission.

There are now three stakes and eight districts in Russia.


J S A said...

Holland Michigan Stake (2176726)
Active Date: 16 Jan 2022
Allegan Branch (139467)
South Haven Branch (93890)
Hastings Ward (102776)
Holland Ward (104329)
Spring Lake Ward (47120)
St Joseph Ward (42889)
Wyoming 1st Ward (249521)
Wyoming 2nd Ward (2191776)

David Todd said...

Were there any other unit changes in the Grand Rapids or Kalamazoo Stakes in the creation of this Stake?

Сњешко said...


Fredrick said...

Apparently the Wyoming 2nd Ward was created with the creation of this stake.

Melody Nelson Walden said...

There were some ward boundary changes with the creation of the Holland Stake. I believe the Grand Rapids, Grand Valley, and Holland wards had realignments. The Grandville branch (Spanish) will continue to serve members in both stakes although it is part of the GR Stake.

Pascal Friedmann said...

I wonder if Grand Rapids is moving up the ranks for a potential temple announcement. It's a fair ways away from Detroit and may well be able to support a small temple.

Melody Nelson Walden said...

We are certainly hoping for a temple in Grand Rapids. It's a long way to Detroit for those in the Northern portions of the Grand Rapids stake and the Traverse City district. Grand Rapids is closer for many in the Lansing stake, too.

Fredrick said...

With temples announced for places like Grand Junction, CO or Farmington, NM that will serve only four stakes, nothing is off the table. A temple for Grand Rapids is certainly in the realm of possibility.

Eduardo said...

The realities of the Midwest versus the Inter-Mountain West are evident, to me. Only the Nauvoo Temple is a distance from any multi-stake urban center. Well, Pierre is another, I guess. But distances are much more par in the Midwest. Even for wards.

David Todd said...

Thank you to those who shared details about the new Holland Michigan Stake. I served in the Lansing Mission a few years back, including time in units of all three of the stakes affected. It is great to hear good news coming from a place that I love so much but hasn't experienced much tangible growth.

Melody Nelson Walden said...

If you take the long view, there has been considerable growth in Michigan, but there has been a considerable slow down the last three decades. When my great-grandmother moved to Muskegon in the 1880s after joining the church in Sweden,there were no branches for hundreds of miles. My parents married in 1940 and attended the fairly new Grand Rapids branch. In August of 1941, the Muskegon branch was created. It was the sixth branch in Michigan. By 1962, the Lansing Stake was organized, and my mom was called as the Stakes Relief Society President. We lived more than one hundred miles from Lansing. The stake covered roughly the area of the present-day Lansing Mission. Mom and her counselors visited sisters in the entire state of Michigan, except for the Detroit Stake area. My mom's visiting teaching route included sisters living sixty miles from our home. I traveled thousands of miles in the back of Mom's Rambler station wagon. My dad had been a counselor in the district presidency, then called as a stake seventy. I went with him sometimes,too. From this prospective, there has been a lot of growth. That said, I had really hoped there would be a stake in Muskegon, and that doesn't seem likely to happen in my lifetime.

James said...

Melody, your suggestion of a temple for Grand Rapids intrigued me. As others have rightly observed, with several planned US temples being smaller, it may be wise to widen our scope. My initial research on that prospect has led me to list it on my potential temple prospects, possibly for the immediate future. Grand Rapids could be the next "Rexburg Idaho" prospect.

In the months before the October 2021 General Conference, more evidence pointed to the announcement of a second Rexburg temple being imminent.

And sure enough, that happened when Rexburg North Idaho was announced. So an announcement of a second Michigan temple would make sense, and my research verifies Grand Rapids as a great prospect, so I think that may be announced in the next 1-3 General Conferences. Thanks for bringing that prospect to my attention.

Eduardo said...

From my perspective, we need more missionaries with faith in Jesus Christ to go to Michigan.
Shall the youth (and mature members) of Zion falter?
Go on missions— for the Lord and for Zion.

Christopher Duerig said...

Eduardo, I believe the Lord calls those missionaries to the places they are most needed in their time according to his will. Which may include Michigan. We don't choose where.

Eduardo said...

We choose “who”, however. And, of some who choose to serve the Lord full time, some can choose where. There are young singles and older ladies and couples that can pick where to serve. I saw this in Indiana and California, and the Church has become more flexible with 3 month and 6 month missions, too.
More of us need to put on the badge and we don’t.

David Todd said...

Can you clarify what you mean by young singles choosing where to serve?

L. Chris Jones said...

I think it's usually single young adults in service missions that can have flexibility and some limited choice. Many with physical, mental, emotional or other heath concerns may serve short term, part-time or local missions. Couples usually get to choose where but a location may be extended to them based on their skills and needs around the world. Older sisters may have some choice as well. In the past service missions may have been extended by the stake president. But now service missions are done the same for all missions through the first presidency.

John Pack Lambert said...

To be fair though DC is split between 2 geographical stakes and 1 YSA stake. The Suitland, Maryland stake includes about half of DC.

John Pack Lambert said...

A aspanish-speaking branch was recently organized in Clarksburg, West Virginia. An English-speakibg branch was recently organized in Taiwan.

John Pack Lambert said...

Grand Rapids is I believe about a 3 hour drive from the Detroit Temple. With the new stake in metro Detroit last year and Holland stake now I think this is how things would work out.

A Grand Rapids Temple would probably take Lansing, Kalamazoo, GR and Holland stakes and Traverse City District. TC district seems close to stake status, if it was made a stake I would be more sure of a Grand Rapids Temple, but 4 stake temple districts or less exist.

Midland stake I am not sure how it would be assigned, but different parts of the stake would go different ways. Saginaw is 84 miles from the temple, but 92 from Grand Rapids. Mount Plesant is 83 miles from Grand Rapids but 103 from the Detroit Temple.

This will leave all of Grand Blanc, Farmington Hills, Bloomfield Hills, Westland, and Ann Arbor stakes in the Detroit Temple district, plus parts of London Ontario and I believe most of Toledo, Ohio stakes. This seems a doable breakdown of stakes per temple.

John Pack Lambert said...

I could list a whole set of places that serve less than 4 stakes. Grand Rapids will probably serve 4.5 stakes, plus a district. That district may soon be a stake.

How many stakes will McAllen Texas Temple serve? I am thinking 4 or 5.

John Pack Lambert said...

One of the missionaries in my branch was called to Zimbabwe but has not yet gotten authorization to leave the country. We only had 4 missionaries in my branch when the pandemic hit. We peaked during the pandemic at 10, and are currently at 8. Although that is 3 sisters, and sets of 3 and 2 elders so that gives us a total of 3 areas as opposed to 2 pre-pandemic.

John Pack Lambert said...

Actually young singles sent on missions are not asked for input at all in sending in their papers.

Senior couples are allowed to list preferred destinations, but they are not guaranteed what they ask for.

We could benefit from leadership development couples called to assignments in inner city Detroit.

Christopher Duerig said...

Matt said...

To be fair at least for the Farmington NM Temple, Durango CO and Farmington NM Stakes are both on the verge of splitting, plus Chinle AZ Stake will also be in the temple district.

So foresee Farmington NM Temple District being 6 or 7 stakes. Over half of the current Albuquerque Temple workers are from the 4 Corners Area. So I see Farmington Temple being a well utilized Temple.

Eduardo said...

John PL, as mentioned above, some young singles based on special conditions do have input as to where they serve missions, and how. Their priesthood leaders help facilitate those desires. Retired couples can throw their hat in the ring, as my mother and step-father did twice, or they can construct a local call as my mom’s good friend Carol and husband did, to nearby Indianapolis. These policies have become more adaptable over time.

Unknown said...

cumorahlds - can you come onto r/latterdaysaints and discuss the tonga situation from a demographic standpoint? Lots of discussion about the volcano, how many members of the church there are, how many units, etc.... If you come onto reddit and see, you'll notice the threads. We would love your feedback!

James said...

Eduardo, I was one of those with "special conditions" which led to my being excused from full-time missionary service. I chose as my fields of labor 2 shifts at the Mount Timpanogos Temple and working as a humanitarian missionary. The temple president under whom my call became effective let me know I was likely the last young man that would be permitted to serve in the temple without having first served full-time missions. So in my case, that was a choice I could make. But apparently, things have changed and been streamlined, and, insofar as I am aware, all missionaries now apply using the same process, and it is the apostles in Salt Lake who now determine the field of labor and whether to assign each missionary to full-time service or as a service missionary. Once those calls are issued, those who are called on service missions meet with their ecclesiastical leaders to determine the best fits for their service:

In my case, my chosen fields of labor did not involve submitting regular papers to the Missionary Department, whereas that is the process now. There is still an element of choice, but that choice can only be made in cases where the call letter assigns an individual to a service mission. That process wasn't so cut-and-dried in the late 2000s (when I served) as it is now. The one regret I have regarding my service is that I never had the opportunity to be sent a call letter from the Church President, whereas service missionaries now enjoy that blessing. So the choice now comes after undergoing the traditional process, and after Church headquarters makes the call.

Jim Anderson said...

Church News new stake, almost all shown here are on the page for those but one just hit our radar.

Jim Anderson said...

There's a rumor that Layton will be ready to open in October, whether that is completion or dedication was not stated as part of this.

James said...

Jim Anderson, my guess is that October is a completion window, and that the rumor itself may be inaccurate. Right now, the Church Temples site has Layton down for completion in late 2022-early 2023. Since completion generally precedes dedications by several months, if Layton is completed in November, the earliest it could be dedicated would be December-March 2023.

Right now, Quito Ecuador, Praia Cabo Verde, Belem Brazil, San Juan Puerto Rico, Saratoga Springs Utah, Helena Montana, and Abidjan Ivory Coast are all ahead of Richmond in the queue. And although it is possible that some of the temples currently ahead of Richmond may be delayed in their dedications, while there would be less of a hassle for the Church to set opening arrangements for US temples.

Parenthetically, it wouldn't surprise me if the rededication of the Columbus Ohio Temple preceded the dedication of the Richmond Temple as well. It will be interesting to see how the timing for all of this works out.

MainTour said...

Church of Jesus Christ on Fandom is reporting that the church had a total of 3499 stakes as of 12.31.21 and that the first stake organized in 2022 will be the #3500 stake of the church. How accurate am I? (MainTour)

Jim Anderson said...

See my post with the Church News article about new stakes also, that is above. There is one that is not on Matt's sidebar list that is in that article.

Christopher Duerig said...

@Jim Anderson + @MainTour, According to my list the total of active Stakes as of last sunday, 01/16/2022, with the organization of the Holland Michigan Stake, is 3499.

Broken down by Area is :

Africa Central - 34
Africa South - 35
Africa West - 125
Asia - 35
Asia North - 41
Brazil - 281
Caribbean - 33
Central America - 133
Europe - 132
Europe East - 5
Mexico - 222
Middle East/Africa North - 2
North America Central - 286
North America Northeast - 140
North America Southeast - 121
North America Southwest - 273
North America West - 276
Pacific - 141
Philippines - 123
South America Northwest - 251
South America South - 181
Utah - 629

I don't know if Matt concurs with this assessment. If there is any questions about a specific area I can answer them. The complete list of the 3499 would be too lengthy to list here.

Christopher Duerig said...

@MainTour, did you take into account on your list these following 9 Stakes that were consolidated in 2021, for your year end totals?

"Stakes and Districts Discontinued in 2021

1. Pocatello Idaho YSA 2nd
2. Musashino Japan
3. Saitama Japan
4. Fujisawa Japan
5. San Diego California North
6. Santee California
7. Pleasanton California
8. Roy Utah Central
9. Jurupa California"

James said...

The Church of Jesus Christ Temples site showed 3,499 stakes at just after midnight when 2022 began, so that's the likely correct year-end number for 2021, unless I am mistaken.

Christopher Duerig said...

It still shows, as of today, the 3499 totals, including the new 01/16/2022 "Holland Michigan Stake".

Christopher Duerig said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
John Pack Lambert said...

The new female mission leader over the San Diego mission has the maiden name of Ouzonian. She was born in Salt Lake City but I suspect she has Arnenian ancestry.

Eduardo said...

How do you find data for mission leaders? Facebook websites?
I wonder what the one year, or 5 and 10 year growth rates are for the 23 or so Areas of the Church? Christ’s, that is. The Anointed One.

James said...

Eduardo, the Church's original announcement shared the list of mission presidents and spuses:

The Church releases that basic list in early January of each year, which is followed in subsequent weeks by the Church News providiing sets of biographies of the incoming mission leaders, including information about prior Church callings. The first two sets of biographies (featuring 16 couples each)

Based on the timing of the release of those last two articles, we can probably safely assume that subsequent updates will be provided every week on the same day of the week going forward. Since the first two updates were published on Saturday, we can probably expect most other updates to come on Saturdays as well. And with 32 of the 160 new leaders already featured, we can also likely surmise that a minimum of 8 more sets of 16 biographies will be published over the next 8 Saturdays. That being said, as more biographies have been shared in past years, the number of biographies shared weekly dropped at one point or another. So unless all of the remaining 126 are featured in the next 8 weeks, those biographies might only be fully released in March, April, or perhaps May.

My general advice to anyone who wants to track this or any information going forward would be to keep an eye on both the Church News website and the main Newsroom page. Regular updates (not just new callings) are posted in both resources throughout each week, so they are good resources to monitor for that purpose. I have shared general analysis on the new mission leaders in my blog post covering the announcement, and others here are pretty good about sharing any insights from each set of biographies about the new leaders. My recommendation to any of us sharing such analysis here in the future would be to include the web addresses from which the information is pulled so that anyone desiring more information on any of these new leaders can go directly to those sources as they are shared here.

Eduardo said...

Oh, John PL meant the wife of the mission president! I thought he meant the single sister in charge of the others sisters…
Gotcha, thanks for the breakdown James.

Michael Worley said...


The -ian ending to Sister Merritt's maiden name, Ouzounian, typically means Armenian origin by way of Syria. Indeed, her father's obituary indicates he was born in Aleppo, Syria.

John Pack Lambert said...

A note on terminology. The new standard is to call the June meeting the mission leaders conference, so the women leaders involved are the female mission leaders. Mission president's companions might be a more clear term. I do not per se mind mission presidents wife, but I do want to emphasize their leadership role not their relational status.

I am wondering if Sister Merritt's ancestors joined the Church in Syria, or if they did so in what is now Turkey before being forced to flee in the Armenian genocide.

I had multiple Armenian associates in high school. Many were natives of Lebanon who fled the Civil war of the 1980s. How far back their families were in Lebanon I am not clear. In the middle east Arkenianism is an ethno-religious identifier.

James said...

It used to be known as the Mission Presidents' Seminar, and is now known as the "Seminar for New Mission Leadership". The change from using "Mission Presidents" to using "Mission Leadership" appears to be another part of the Church's renewed effort to highlight the important roles taken by women. In this case, it's clarifying that the couples called serve as co-leaders of the mission, rather than just having the wives serve as "companions".

As noted, it's part of the continued effort to highlight the important role of women in the Church. Other parts of that effort have been, as we saw last October, an increased number of female general officers speaking in each General Conference going forward, more regular opportunities for the female General Officers to pray in General Conference, and an expansion of responsibilities given to the female General Officers. It's also worth noting that with their social media accounts, female General Officers have had their published content featured in each edition of "This Week on Social". It used to be that maybe one or two female general officers were featured per week; it has since become unusual to have less than 4 or 5 posts from the female General Officers every week.

In all of these aspects, President Nelson has shown a willingness to highlight and emphasize how much the contributions of the female General Officers are helping the Church to move forward. This is happening to a degree we've not seen before. Not that the contributions were being previously devalued or deemphasized, but that there is more of an emphasis on that now than there has been in the past.

Aside from those changes, and the change to the terminology from "mission presidents and companions" to "mission leadership", the Church has similarly renamed the seminar for new temple presidents to the seminar for new temple leadership. And although the Newsroom still highlights "Latter-day Saints in the News", with Newsroom stories focused on coverage from around the world, there has also been a new semi-regular update on the contributions of women in the Church with another update entitled "Relief Society in Action". I believe that one of many reasons that President Nelson is truly the prophet for our time is because each of the developments I've laid out here have come about in the four years since he became the Church President. It was time for such adjustments, and President Nelson is truly the prophet for the time.