Nigeria
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“Nigeria,” Ensign, June 2010, 70

Church History around the World

Nigeria

During the 1950s, several Nigerians began learning about the Church through magazine articles and Church literature. They sent letters to Church headquarters expressing their desire to learn more about the Church’s teachings.

In response, Church leaders looked into initiating missionary work in the country. However, a civil war, difficulties with visas, and the challenge of having enough local priesthood holders to administer the Church prevented leaders from establishing official Church units in the area.

The Church was finally able to establish a missionary presence in 1978. When the first missionaries arrived, they found large groups of people interested in the gospel. The first baptism was performed in November of that year, and on the same day, the first branch of the Church was organized.

By 1987 Church membership there had reached nearly 10,000, and in 1999, Nigeria had more members of the Church than any other African nation, with membership totaling 42,746. Nigeria now has a temple in Aba, which was dedicated in 2005 by President Gordon B. Hinckley (1910–2008).

The Church in Nigeria

Membership

83,919

Missions

4

Stakes and Districts

32

Wards and Branches

256

Temples

1