Wednesday, April 10, 2024

Country-by-Country Membership Statistics Released for 2023; Membership Growth in the United States Highest Since 2015

The Church has released year-end 2023 membership and congregation totals for most nations with a reported Church presence. These statistics can be accessed on Church's official website at

Countries with the highest annual membership growth rates for 2023 are listed below. Lists for nations with the most rapid annual membership growth rates are also available for 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019, and 2022. A list of the biennial membership growth rates for countries between year-end 2019 to year-end 2021 can be found here. The percentage next to the country name for the list below is the annual membership growth rate for 2023. Countries in bold experienced a membership increase greater than 200 during 2023.

  1. Mozambique - 34.1% -24,733
  2. Rwanda - 33.2% - 1,537
  3. Tanzania - 32.3% - 3,969
  4. Burundi - 24.3% - 1,541
  5. Angola - 23.9% - 5,898
  6. Malawi - 23.4% - 4,776
  7. Bosnia and Herzegovina - 13.0% - 78
  8. Cameroon - 12.9% - 3,071
  9. DR Congo - 11.8% - 115,027
  10. Zambia - 11.2% - 5,906
  11. Solomon Islands - 10.8% - 1,524
  12. Kenya - 10.1% - 19,206
  13. Republic of the Congo - 10.0% - 12,626

The following is a list of the top 10 countries with the highest negative membership growth rates (i.e., fastest rate of membership decline) during 2023. The percent growth rate is provided next to the country name, and the number to the right of the percentage growth rate is the year-end 2023 membership total for the country. Only three of these countries had at least 1,000 members: Ukraine, Guam, and Estonia.

  1. Kazakhstan - -4.80% - 218
  2. Montenegro - -3.13% - 31
  3. Ukraine - -2.81% - 10,053
  4. Sint Maarten - -2.74% - 284
  5. Israel - -2.66% - 329
  6. Jersey - -2.48% - 275
  7. Estonia - -1.83% - 1,125
  8. Guernsey - -1.67% - 59
  9. Guam - -1.41% - 2,511
  10. Saint Vincent and the Grenadines - -1.24% - 717

Below is a list of the top 10 countries by numerical membership net increase for 2023. Each country is provided with the numerical national increase in membership for the year. Additionally, the percentage of total church membership increase that is accounted for by each country is provided (i.e., a percentage of the world membership increase for 2023 that is within that country). Lists are also available for 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019, and 2022. A list of the biennial period of 2020-2021 is also available. 70.9% of the 2022 net increase in Church membership can be attributed to the following 10 nations. 

  1. United States - 64,765 - 29.1%
  2. Brazil - 22,050 - 9.9%
  3. Philippines - 14,017 - 6.3%
  4. DR Congo - 12,165 - 5.5%
  5. Nigeria - 11,482 - 5.2%
  6. Mexico - 8,686 - 3.9%
  7. Peru - 7,081 - 3.2%
  8. Argentina - 6,533 - 2.9%
  9. Mozambique - 6,290 - 2.8%
  10. Ghana - 4,964 - 2.2%

Below is a list of the top four countries by numerical membership decrease for 2023. Each country is provided with the numerical national decrease in membership during the year 2023. There were only four countries that experienced a net decrease by 100 or more during 2023. 

  1. United Kingdom - -583
  2. Ukraine - -291
  3. Tonga - -196
  4. Japan - -155

Several points to make with the 2023 annual membership growth numbers.

First, the Church continues to experience rapid, unprecedented growth in East Africa - a region of Africa that has been historically underserved with resources with enormous populations and where the Church has generally reported slow or moderate growth despite a Church presence in most nations for decades. All four of the countries with the most rapid membership growth rates in 2023 were in East Africa. Church membership in Tanzania has more than doubled within the past four years to approximately 4,000. In Mozambique, there was a net increase of 6,290 just in 2023 - a remarkable number considering there were only 18,443 Latter-day Saints at the beginning of the year. Rwanda and Burundi remain near the top of the list. Like Tanzania, Church membership in Rwanda and Burundi has doubled within the past four years. The creation of the Africa Central Area in 2020, combined with more aggressive national outreach expansion efforts by mission leadership and using Swahili and local languages for Church meetings and in proselytism, such as Kinyarwanda, appear to have contributed to this acceleration in growth. 

Second, the Church continues to maintain rapid growth in Central Africa, particularly in the DR Congo where membership has surpassed 100,000 and annual membership growth rates remain higher than 10%. The Church in Angola has continued to experience rapid growth, with membership doubling within the past five years to approximately 5,900.

Third, annual membership growth rates have slowed in West Africa - the area of Africa that generally experienced the most rapid membership growth rates in the 2010s. There were no countries in West Africa (with published membership statistics) that experienced an annual membership growth rate of 10% or more during 2023. In contrast, the Church in most West African nations experienced membership growth rates greater than 10% during most years in the 2010s. Togo and Benin are at the top of the list, with membership growth rates of 9.9% and 9.5% in 2023, respectively. Membership growth rates remained significant, albeit less impressive than in the 2010s, for Sierra Leone (7.7%), but were substantially lower for Liberia (5.4%), Nigeria (5.2%), Ghana (4.9%), and Cote d'Ivoire (4.8%). The Church in West Africa in the past 1-2 years has opened far fewer previously unreached cities, towns, and villages to missionary work and organized few congregations than in many of the years in the 2010s when hundreds of locations in West Africa had branches organized for the first time. Mission leaders in West Africa have generally reported an emphasis on improving the quality of prebaptismal teaching, which has resulted in fewer convert baptisms (or at least not accelerating rates of convert baptisms), particularly in locations where there have been more frequent instances of struggling congregations (which has appeared to be due to disrupted church operations and missionary work from the COVID-19 pandemic such as in some areas of Ghana). Even then, missions such as the Liberia Monrovia Mission, have reported a renewed emphasis on quality over quantity for convert baptism goals, and this has resulted in a substantial decrease in the numbers of converts baptized.

Fourth, the Church in the United States reported the highest net increase in membership (64,765) since 2015 and the highest annual membership growth rate (0.95%) since 2015. In contrast, the net increase in Church membership for the United States generally ranged from 39,000-42,000 between 2018 and 2022 (and it was only 41,987 for the two-year period from year-end 2019 to year-end 2021). It is unclear what has driven an increase of more than 20,000 for 2023 compared to the annual average for the several previous years. Some possibilities include fewer deaths, larger numbers of convert baptisms, larger numbers of new children of record, higher rates of children of record being baptized at age 8, and fewer incidents of name removal or excommunication (loss of membership), although I do not have enough information to determine whether it is primarily one variable or a combination of these variables that is responsible for this development. 

Fifth, of the 159 countries/territories with reported membership figures for 2023, 61 experienced near-zero growth (less than 1%) or negative membership growth rates. However, there were only four countries where membership decreased by more than 100 for the year. Most of these nations were in Europe, developed countries in Asia, and the Caribbean.


pressue said...

Compiled the data for congregational and stake growth in the US and it sure aint great-

18 States: Net Congregational Growth, highest was Idaho at +15

17 States + DC: No Change

15 States: Net Congregational Loss, lowest was California at -22

In the United States, we saw a net loss of 21 congregations.

James said...

@pressue, this is exactly where I was going. We saw a jump in ~65,000 members, 20,000 more than most years, and yet shrunk by 21 congregations...something just doesn't add up there.

Matt, I know you stated before that activity rates are extremely sticky/static in the USA, so I'm having a hard time wrapping my mind around the 65,000 number for the US when juxtaposed with a net loss of 21 congregations.

Secondly, I feel like growth rates declining over time is simply mechanical. I can't take too much stock in a doubling of church membership in a third world country with 1,000 members. Nor does it surprise me that growth rates in places like Nigeria will eventually decline because the base denominator of membership is growing year over year.

What I found really fascinating is your commentary on mission presidents in W Africa emphasizing more "quality" conversion over "quantity." I feel like I've heard this before (served in Mexico), and I thought we were approaching African nations differently than Latin America, but it sounds eerily similar.

James said...

Maybe a question framed this way would be helpful:

How many new members each year need to be added to "break even" on congregational growth in the US, on average? How many need to be added through children of record or convert baptisms to offset (1) people who die, (2) people who choose not to attend?

Apparently, the number is greater than 60,000 for the US.

John Pack Lambert said...

I wonder if the British number was caused by some units doing intensive records clean ups, and removing some people who ought to have been removed earlier.

Unit creation is a difficult process. It often is delayed. So 2023 unit creation is the result of 2022 or 2021 growth, not growth in 2023 per se. It is also often a very localized phenomenon. It also happens all at once from gradual changes. So it often has a complex and indirect relationship with membership growth.

The changes in number of units have many very localized reasons, and often multiple units status changes at once, when they would have been better changed more at once.

There is also the fact that unit number decrease does not always reflect less members. SOmetime it is decided it is better to combine 2 branches into one fully functioning ward. The year after they were combined the total number of active members may be greater than the number before they were combined.

My branch used to be 3 branches, but from what I understand those 3 branches combined did not have weekly sacrament meeting attendance as much as my 1 branch does now.

Matt said...

James - Yes, I will be delving into this in coming posts - There are a lot of updates I need to make with all of the data that was just released.

As for what to make of the approximately 105,000 net increase in membership with a decline of 83 congregations during the past 2 years, this is definitely a new trend that we have not seen. However, the average number of members per ward or branch in the United States still remains within historical averages. In 2023, the average ward or branch had 471 members. In 1987 it was 472. The average ward or branch has had a net increase of 10 members between year-end 2021 and 2023. If this were consistent across all of the wards and branches of the Church in the United States, it would not warrant the creation of new units in most places (although this is not usually the case). Congregational growth rates are NOT a perfect measurement of active membership increase, although they are generally correlated with it. We could very well have seen the last two years of net decreases in the number of congregations being due to stake, area, and international leadership holding off to create new units due to high real estate prices in the United States. Also, many of the wards that have closed in the past two years have likely needed to consolidate for some time (such as in older urban areas in Utah and in California), but the process to realign boundaries and stakes is quite laborious and time consuming, taking years to go from start to finish. I will have to delve into the state-by-state statistics when I have the time to see if this reveals more information. My point in emphasizing the membership growth in 2023 in the United States in this post is that it has been a major positive development, as the Church in the United States has experienced decelerating membership growth rates for most of the past decade, and it seems most likely this is due to more new children of record and convert baptisms in 2023 compared to prior years (given both of these statistics were the highest seen in some time for the entire Church).

John Pack Lambert said...

Is the fuller bios of the new general authorities. We get pictures of them with their wives. We now have 3 general authorities of African descent (2 Americans, 1 Ivorian) with wives of European descent (the 2 African-American general authorities have white American wives, the Ivorian has a wife who I am now 95% sure if a British national by birth, since he joined the Church in London in the spring of 1993, they were married "in the London Temple" [this is not technically correct, they were married in a civil ceremony, then sealed in the London Temple, Britain does not recognize Temple marriages], in 1995, and he completed his mechanical engineering degree from London Southbank Univeristy in 1997. However it is possible that Sister Ghory was originally from elsewhere and only recently come to England. She might be Australian, New Zealander, Canadian or American, but I still suspect she is British. I just remembered they were mission leaders of the Benin Coutonou Mission. So I looked up their bios from when they were called to lead that mission back in 2017.

Sister Goury was born in Beverly, England. That is just outside of Hull in the East Riding of Yorkshire. She served her mission in the England London South Mission. This might mean that Elder Ghory is the first general authority who met his wife while she was serving a mission in a case where he was not serving a mission at the time. Maybe, but I do not know that, and I suspect that Sister Ghory (I know this is an anachronistic name of the term, I really should in this case call her Sister Kennington), had moved back to London after her mission.

They were living in the Lekki Ward of the Lagos Nigeria Stake back in 2017, where Elder Ghoury was then bishop. At least one bio from that time says he was born in Yopoue. More recent sources says he was born in Gagnoa. In fact the Church News and other Church sources from that time are the only ones I can find that mention a place called Yopoue at all. I assume it is a very small villag close to Gagnoa. Or maybe it is a neighborhood in Gagnoa. Or maybe it used to be seperate but was annexed to Gagnoa. The most recent article says he was born in Gagnoa, but raised in Lehipa. The little I can find seems to suggest that Lehip is a small village about 30 miles travel distance from Gagnoa. He was also partially raised in Gagnoa and in Oume. All these places are in Gôh-Djiboua District, one of 14 first level sub-divsions of Ivory Coast. Although that system was only created in 2011. Before 2011 those areas were in the Fromager Region. In turn that area was formed in 2000 by combined Oume Department from one region and Gagnoa department from another. Even those departments seem to only date back to 1969, not all the way back to Elder Goury's birth in 1964. Gagnoa has about 160,000 people in 2014, the Gagnoa Department has over 700,000 people in 2011.

Actually Oume Deparment was part of Gagnoa Department until 1980. Ivory Coast seems to like reorganizing its subdivisions a lot.

John Pack Lambert said...

Mozambique is really leading in growth. It is both the fastest growing by percentage, and comes in at 9th largest in absolute total growth.

The fact that until I think it was May 2022 baptisms had been absolutely banned in Moambique means its 2020 and 2021 numbers are way off. However I do not think we have any direct impact from residual delay now, I think this is all new growth.

Mozambique is one of the strong contenders to be the 1st country to have a second temple announced with no operating temple at present, at least since 1875 when the Logan Temple was announced while the St. George Temple was still under construction.

Ivoty Coast and Sierra Leone are also strong contenders for this to happen, while Zimbabwe is a weak contender. Abijjan Temple is almost done, so Ivory Coast may instead beat DR Congo as least time from 1st temple dedicated until second temple is announced. Lumbubashi was announced closer to Kinshasa's dedication than Nauvoo was to Kirtland's dedication. However there has already been 1 dedication announced for after October conference, so it looks increasingly unlikely that Abijan will be dedicated before then.

John Pack Lambert said...

The current set of new general authorities were born in 8 countries. Is that a record high for those called at once? I think there have only been apostles born in 8 countries ever, and that includes Elder Marion G. Romney born in Mexico. It is probably not until sometime in the early 1980s there are ever general authorities from 8 countries serving all at once. Elder Goury is the only one who is the first general authority from the country he is from.

There have been general authorities born in at least 37 countries. I do not think there has ever been a Taiwanese General authority. I believe in Asia we have only had ones from Hong Kong, South Korea, Japan and the Phillippines. The Pacific there have been ones born in Australia, New Zealand, Samoa, Fiji and Tonga. South America there were ones born in Paraguay (Elder Vinas who mainly lived in Uruguay, and was resident his parents native Spain when called as a general authority). Also we have had natives of Uruguay, Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Peru (only 2, one of whom was living in the US when called as a general authority), and Venezuela. From Central America only natives of Guatemala, although both Elder Cardon and Elder Falabella had lived for a time in Coast Rica. There have been I think 4 Guatemalan general authorities. Mexico has I believe 7 right now (Elder Montoya only lived a few months, if even that, in California, before his family returned to Mexico with him as a babe in arms, Elder Ochoa was not in San Francisco as a baby much longer, although he had lived in Utah a few years when he became a general authority). There have been at least # other ethnic Mexican general authorities born in Mexico (Elder Mask was somewhat Mexican in descent, Elder Becerra is fully Mexican in descent, but born and raised entirely in Utah, and lived his whole adult life there, he may have made a visit to Mexico here or there, his parents were immigrants and his grandparents still lived there, but he was never resident there). The US and Canada also come up. I did not count Puerto Rico, since it is not a country per se. In Europe there have been general authorities born in the United Kingdom (Elder Callis was born in Dublin, Ireland when it was part of the UK), France, Portugal, Italy, Germany, Switzerland, the Netherlands, Denmark, Norway and Sweden. President Uchtdorf was born to a German customs employee in area essentially under German control, so the fact that the area is now part of the Czech Republic is not worth adding another country. In Africa we have general authorities from Ghana, Nigeria (2), Kenya (emeritized), Zimbabwe, DR Congo (2), and South Africa (an emeritized white man).

To be fair the ones from Denmark, Norway and Tonga had all been resident most of their lives, at least in the cases of Norway and Tonga since they were roughly around 10, in the US. Elder Lund I do not believe left Denmark until his late teens. Elder Fjelstead, also from Denmark did not leave Denmark until he was 29, but that was 26 years before he was called as a general authority. On the other hand, I am not sure we have a Uruguayan General Authority who was resident in Uruguay when called as a general authority. Elder Gonzalez however was fully raised in Uruguay, so I think no one would describe him as anything except Urugayan. It is only Tonga and Norway where we have no general authority who was raised to adulthood in that country. Other countries who have cases of that also have fully present general authrorities.

John Pack Lambert said...

Elder Buckner the article says he "grew up" in California. They use quotes. He only lived in California from age 11-14 while his dad was mission president there. He was raised in Utah. His wife though is from New York. yes, he has lived a long time in New York because he is a professor at Columbia University, but his wife being from there is key.

Elder Casillas is a Mexican who was sealed in the San Diego California Temple. To be fair this is because he was from Tijuana. This fact may have bearing on the likelihood of those from the Meixcali stakes to go to the Yuma Temple.

Elder Goury's first name is Dalebe, but he goes by his middle name Martin. They succeeded a couple from Quebec as leaders of the Benin Cotonou Mission, and that was the second set of mission leaders, the first were Americans most recently from Fallon, Nevada. Does Togo still not yet have its own mission?

John Pack Lambert said...

I promise this will be the last comment for a time. I noticed that the US percentage of growth jumped from 20% to 29% of the total. That is huge. I strongly suspect this will lead to at least some new units in the future, but with the new rules for creating units, it will be hard to say what are the factors.

Of course, it may have also been decided that the total membership requirements the US was being held to were not reasonable, and that may be one key reason the total membership for new units was reduced. My branch went from really having little prospect of meeting the total membership requirement, to meeting all metrics except the new total participating members for ward status, and we are only about 15 off for total participating members, and we may reach it if we can just get a few more people to have callings. Some of our high numbers of friends of other faiths at sacrament meeting have also been encouraging. It has resulted in a few baptisms this year, but not as many as the numbers would lead one to hope.

Spencer said...

Question about temple announcements. It seems every conference, there's often at least one temple announcement that catches people off-guard and forces us to re-calibrate what factors warrant an area receiving a temple. Matt often acknowledges this surprise in his post-announcement discussion post. Does anyone have a list of such announcements and what made them so surprising? Off the top of my head, I'm thinking Okinawa with one stake, Tula Mexico, Brussels Belgium, and Shanghai. What others should be included?

Adam said...

I noticed that there has been a massive drop in the annual net increase of membership in Mexico during the last 15ish years. Prior to 2013 Mexico was seeing an increase of around 40,000 members a year (similar to Brazil). In 2013, the year I started my mission there, the area presidency changed the sacrament meeting attendance requirement for baptism (from two Sundays to five Sundays in most cases), so from then on it looks like that number has been around 20,000 or 25,000. I think that's been for the best and hopefully has improved retention. However, since Covid, that number went below 10,000 and has not gone back up. About 9,500 in 2022, 8,500 in 2023. Brazil, however, still had a net increase of over 20,000. Does anyone have any insight into what's going on in Mexico?

Jonathon F. said...

I would include Dubai, Winchester Virginia, Harrisburg Pennsylvania, Vienna Austria, and Singapore as announcements that surprised me.

I would not have expected a temple in the Middle East anytime soon if Dubai hadn't been announced. The fact that the Church was expressly invited to build it is surprising but also makes sense.

Winchester is just...a kinda weird spot for a temple. There's only one stake in Winchester and most of the nearby stakes are geographically closer to the DC temple anyway. And the DC temple is huge--comparable capacity to Provo, Ogden, or Jordan River--so it's not like they're hurting for appointment spots. So far as I can tell, there are only about three stakes that would even logically fit into a Winchester temple district. That's just one of those where I have to think the Lord knows better than I do.

More than anything, Harrisburg surprised me because it came so close on the heels of the Pittsburg announcement. I thought it was unusual to announce two temples in the same state so close together when they'll both serve relatively small districts.

Vienna is similar to Winchester for me--there's just not a lot of Church membership in Austria, and Europe being what it is, it's relatively simple for members to visit the Frieberg and Bern temples. This one makes a bit more sense distance-wise, but I never would have predicted it.

Singapore will be unusual in that (assuming no massive membership growth in the next couple years) it will be one of only two temples in the Church with a single stake in its district, the other being Okinawa. Singapore will serve a large number of districts scattered across Malaysia, but it's definitely unusual to see a temple built in a place with such relatively small Church infrastructure--that temple will likely have to be staffed virtually entirely from a single stake, which won't be easy even for a small temple. Even Okinawa has the more concentrated English-speaking district to pull from.

I'm always excited about every temple announcement, but those ones are definitely not ones I would ever have thought would happen now.

Adam said...

I was also very surprised by the Winchester announcement, due to the reasons you stated. However, seeing that the stakes in Buena Vista (two stakes, including a YSA stake), Roanoke, and Blacksburg are about the same distance from Winchester as they are from Richmond (their current temple district), I thought maybe they'll be assigned to Winchester. But then the Roanoke temple was announced, which will take all those stakes. So other than the stakes in Winchester and Martinsburg WV, I can't think of another stake that will be assigned there after the Roanoke Temple gets dedicated. However, I think that temple will benefit a good number of members who may not technically get assigned to its district. The stakes in Gainesville and Ashburn, while closer to the DC Temple, are close enough to Winchester that some members may choose to go there instead to avoid the traffic around DC.

Likewise, in the Fredericksburg Stake where we live, we have two wards in Culpeper, about 45 minutes west of Fredericksburg. I can get to the Richmond Temple sometimes in less than an hour from Fredericksburg. But the trip from Culpeper is at least 30 minutes longer, if not more in the case of members like our stake president who live in the rural areas north of Culpeper. In their case, the Winchester Temple will save them a good amount of travel time.

And due to what's likely to be a small temple district for Winchester, I'm hopeful that means that we may get a temple in Fredericksburg or Stafford or Woodbridge that would serve at least those three stakes, more if built in Woodbridge. That would save lots of members from what can be long-ish trips to DC or Richmond because of traffic.

Pascal Friedmann said...

Vienna was not a surprise for me to be honest, except perhaps that Budapest and Vienna were announced so soon after each other.

Austria and the Balkans have actually been part of the Frankfurt district for as long as I can remember. Eventually the southern Balkans were moved to Rome. However, we still get busloads of patrons from Slovenia and Croatia several times a year. I assume that this whole region will eventually be added to the Vienna district and see its travel time reduced. Austrians also travel between 5 and 8 hours to Frankfurt, assuming they are driving and not flying. Bern and Freiberg are farther away for most Austrian members than Frankfurt so this assignment generally makes sense.

The temple in Frankfurt is also busy, much more so than it was before Covid. We live just down the street but are not able to attend weekly because by the time I have a reasonable overview of my work schedule (2 to 3 weeks in advance generally), most of the sessions are full. I've had very mixed success with going spontaneously. We're also continuing to pull people in who love attending the temple often, sometimes multiple times per week. When the temple was built, there was one small ward that covered the entire northern Frankfurt periphery. We now have five wards immediately north of Frankfurt, four of which are (very) large. This is mostly from move-ins who want to be near the temple to attend at least bi-weekly in my experience. Activity rates in these wards are generally around 90%.

Something similar will likely happen in Vienna and Hamburg when temples are finally completed there. Temples in Europe really pull people in more than they do elsewhere in the world. The members that Hamburg and Vienna seem to be lacking (both regions have sufficient active and engaged membership to staff a small temple now, perhaps with some limited missionary help) will move there as time goes on. It helps that both cities have a significant economic pull as well, but the temple will do much of the "heavy lifting."

Noah said...

Most surpising announcements for me:

April 2018 - Russia
October 2018 - Yigo Guam
April 2019 - Okinawa Japan
October 2019 - Cobán Guatemala
April 2020 - Shanghai China
October 2020 - Tarawa Kiribati
April 2021 - Singapore
October 2021 - Vitória Brazil
April 2022 - Montpelier Idaho
October 2022 - Tula Mexico
April 2023 - Hamburg Germany
October 2023 - Kahului Hawaii
April 2024 - Yuma Arizona

John Pack Lambert said...

Kenya being at 10% is a good percentage for Kenya. I notice that Uganda is nit at the level of other places in East Africa as far as growth. However with 3 stakes and 3 districts, I think it highly likely to have a temple announced in the near future.

I have hopes for a temple in Tanzania, but they will probably get a stake first.

Benin and Togo could both have temples announced in the next 2 years. Elder Goury, their former mission president as a general authority may make this more likely. It is not that long from Elder Silva, a former mission president in Angolan mission president becoming a general authority to the temple announced in Angola.

John Pack Lambert said...

Angola is the fastest growing country outside East Africa. To be fair the church membership growth in DR Congo was more than twice the total membership in Angola.

John Pack Lambert said...

It looks like Mozambique's growth was also larger than the total membership in Angola. The number for Rwanda is also very encouraging, even if the Church is really quite small there.

John Pack Lambert said...

It looks like we might get the new area Presidency assignments posted tomorrow. It will be interesting to see what changes.

Ryan Searcy said...

I'm trying to update my temples map, and with the announcement of the original Provo Utah Temple being renamed to Provo Utah Rock Canyon Temple, I was wondering about potential name changes for other temples like this.

Brisbane, Buenos Aires, and Houston do not have locations announced for their second temples, so I wouldn't consider thinking of new names yet.

Guatemala City, Guatemala - possible name: Hermosa Vista Guatemala City Guatemala Temple (name before city to make it consistent with the Miraflores Guatemala City Guatemala Temple).

Lima, Peru - possible name: Lima Peru La Molina Temple

Mexico City, Mexico - possible name: Mexico City Mexico (San Juan de) Aragon Temple

Santiago, Chile - possible name: Santiago Chile Alcaldesa Temple & Santiago Chile Maipu Temple

Sa~o Paulo, Brazil - possible name: Sa~o Paulo Brazil Jardim Temple & Sa~o Paulo Brazil Vila Carra~o Temple (sorry, not using a keyboard that has the accents).

What are your thoughts on the possibility of renaming these temples?

The Chatelain's said...

I think south Houston would be built in Sugarland.

Andrew said...

For Santiago, the new temple names would be the Santiago Chile Provedencia Temple and the Santiago Chile Maipú Temple.

James G. Stokes said...

I don't believe any other temple renamings can be assumed. Only the Provo renaming has been announced, and of any others were to be renamed, that likely would have occurred in conjunction with the announcement of the new temples in the same areas. Obviously Santiago West and Sao Paulo East, and the two newest temples are not final names. But the Provo renaming seemed to be for a very specific reason, whereas there is not a similar reason for randomly renaming an existing temple outside of renovation periods.

James G. Stokes said...

Here is a new report from the Church News:

My thanks once again to you all.

James G. Stokes said...

Also, it doesn't look like we'll be getting the new area leadership assignments before Monday.

John Pack Lambert said...

If I did my math rightif President Nelson is still alive come October, if he announces 24 new temples half of all temples would have been announced by him.

James G. Stokes said...

I think your math may be off. He has announced 168 of the 350 temples, which, according to my calculations is already 48% of all temples. If he sticks with 35 for this year, he will announce 20 more, meaning he will then have announced 188 of 370 temples, which will take him to 51% of all temples.

Chris D. said...

I know i'm going to get backlash for posting this article here for discussion. It was posted online earlier this morning on the Salt Lake Tribune news site. It is very much Temple and Temple attendance related.

"LDS leaders alter temple recommend questions to make it clear: No room for personal interpretation on garments

Story by Peggy Fletcher Stack • 3hrs"

Ryan Searcy said...

I've seen a different article talking about this same thing, but I am hesitant to comment until the Church officially announces these changes.

twinnumerouno said...

My records show that there were 182 temples announced, under construction or operating when President Nelson became the prophet. (It is 184 if we count the original 1992 announcement of the Hartford Connecticut temple and the 1995 announcement of White Plains New York- later known as Harrison New York- but both of those had been dropped long before 2018 so we should probably leave them out of the equation.) So 14 more temples will put him at exactly half of all temples announced (or 16 if we include the other two I mentioned). That said, I suspect James's forecast for the number that will be announced is probably right.

James said...

Thanks, Matt. I understand there are several factors at play. This recent trend, as you mentioned, now runs multiple years, so I don't see it as anomalous.

I think there is some merit to the idea that there were several wards hanging by a thread for years that are now being consolidated. The move to 2 hour church seemed to give new life to wards that were on life support, albeit temporarily. I know you mentioned that the number of people per ward has been relatively constant, but the active members per ward need not have stayed constant (see 2 hour church and the removal of HP group as examples of a reduction of needed active members per ward).

I know that Champaign 2nd Ward (recently closed) was only able to stay alive for the past 5 years because of those changes. There's not really a doubt in my mind that it would have closed in 2018-2019 if the church hadn't moved to 2 hour church.

David McFadden said...

Utah once consistently led the nation when it came to fertility rate. It's now has the 5th highest fertility rate in the nation behind South Dakota, Alaska, Nebraska, and Louisiana. In 2008, it was 2.6 births per to dropping to its all time low of 1.85 in 2022 (latest release). A minimum of 2.1 children per woman is needed to maintain a population in a developed nation and not a single state in the US are meeting it.

Matt said...

Ryan - A letter was released to church leaders on these temple recommend interview questions being updated on April 12th. I received a copy of it.

Ryan Searcy said...

Strange, I usually get these kinds of emails as they happen. Do Elder's Quorum Secretaries no longer get them?

coachodeeps said...

The letter was sent April 12th to: General Authorities; General Ocers; Area Seventies; Stake, Mission, District, and Temple Presidents; Bishops and Branch Presidents. That is why you didn't receive it.