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    Samoa Click here for the Pacific Mormon Newsroom

    82,092

    Total Church Membership

    41.79% 1-in-3

    Population vs. Church Members

    20

    Stakes

    1010

    158

    Congregations

    147 Wards
    11 Branches

    20

    Family History Centers

    20

    1

    Temples

    1

    Missions

    History

    In May 1843, thirteen years after the Church was organized in the United States, four men were sent to be missionaries in the islands of the Pacific.

    In 1863, two missionaries from Hawaii were sent to Samoa to establish the Church there. The two, Kimo Pelia and Samuela Manoa, labored faithfully for nearly twenty years, isolated from the strength and support of the Church back in the United States.

    Pelia and Samuela baptized a few people on Tutuila, which is now American Samoa. Later, after Elder Joseph H. Dean and his wife, Florence Ridges Dean arrived, the mission was formally organized on 17 June 1888. By 1891 the mission in Samoa, with headquarters near Apia, was developing steadily.

    From 1896, members began to join in greater numbers. Missionaries helped educate youths in small chapel schools. As local members filled leadership positions, they were assigned to distant branches (small congregations), a pattern unique to Samoa. Local members were soon serving missions themselves and were greatly contributing to the growth of the Church.

    Before the turn of the century, 11 branches had been organized on the island. By June 1903, the Book of Mormon: Another Testament of Jesus Christ had been translated. At the end of 1920, membership numbered 3,500, about 5 percent of the total population.

    Missionaries were recalled in 1940 prior to World War II because of troubled conditions, and this became a good opportunity for the local members to assume more leadership. After the war, the work quickened considerably. By 1950, membership had grown to more than 7,000 and by 1961, to more than 16,000. By 1974, the country had six stakes (dioceses) and became the first country of the world to be entirely covered by stakes.

    On 15 October 1977, it was announced that a temple would be built in Apia, Western Samoa. It was dedicated 5 August 1983. At that time, membership reached an estimated 40,000. Six new stakes were created in Samoa from 1994-96. Today, membership stands at more than 55,000 and more than one in four Samoans enjoy membership in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

    The temple in Apia burned down in July 2003. The First Presidency announced a few days later that the temple would be rebuilt using current temple designs.

    For Journalist Use Only

    Richard Hunter
    New Zealand
    Phone:  64(9)488-5572
    Mobile: 64-21-240-7804

    E-mail

    Africa

    Total Church Membership

    Members
    Congregations

    621,448

    Members

    2,150

    Congregations

    Missions

    34Missions

    Family History Centers

    329

    Temples

    3Temples

    Asia

    Total Church Membership

    Members
    Congregations

    1,206,148

    Members

    2,139

    Congregations

    Missions

    45Missions

    Family History Centers

    349

    Temples

    8Temples

    Europe

    Total Church Membership

    Members
    Congregations

    493,970

    Members

    1,382

    Congregations

    Missions

    34Missions

    Family History Centers

    645

    Temples

    12Temples

    North America

    Total Church Membership

    Members
    Congregations

    9,336,465

    Members

    18,071

    Congregations

    Missions

    182Missions

    Family History Centers

    2,542

    Temples

    109Temples

    Oceania (Pacific)

    Total Church Membership

    Members
    Congregations

    562,341

    Members

    1,253

    Congregations

    Missions

    17Missions

    Family History Centers

    302

    Temples

    10Temples

    South America

    Total Church Membership

    Members
    Congregations

    4,093,363

    Members

    5,541

    Congregations

    Missions

    95Missions

    Family History Centers

    971

    Temples

    17Temples