LDS apostle makes historic move in Gambia

Christofferson dedicates the nation, with solely 23 Latter-day Saints, to the preaching of the religion’s gospel throughout West African tour.

(The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints)
Apostle D. Todd Christofferson along with his spouse, Kathy, and different senior church leaders make their option to the overlook close to the Atlantic Ocean in Gambia on Thursday, Feb. 24, 2022, the place the Latter-day Saint chief would dedicate the West African nation to the preaching of the religion’s gospel.

The variety of Latter-day Saints in Gambia practically doubled in someday this previous week — to 23.

However leaders of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints count on that tiny tally to multiply now that apostle D. Todd Christofferson has devoted the small West African nation to the preaching of the religion’s gospel.

“Dedication opens the likelihood now for us to be registered to determine the church formally,” Christofferson mentioned in a video, “and to start to plant the seed and to develop.”

In the course of the journey, Christofferson, his spouse, Kathy, and others within the church delegation met with Gambian President Adama Barrow, his spouse, Fatoumatta Bah-Barrow, and Vice President Isatou Touray within the capital of Banjul.

“The assembly is the very best assembly I ever had since I grew to become a primary girl,” Bah-Barrow mentioned in a information launch. “It’s the mighty God [who] works in miracles. I’m completely satisfied about this go to, and I hope it is a starting. … And we are going to proceed in strengthening and altering the lives of individuals of this nation.”

(The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints)
Apostle D. Todd Christofferson and his spouse, Kathy, meet with President Adama Barrow in Gambia’s capital of Banjul on Thursday, Feb. 24, 2022.

On Thursday at daybreak, Christofferson, the primary Latter-day Saint apostle to tour West Africa in two years, provided a prayer at an ocean overlook to formally dedicate Gambia.

“Because the solar begins to come back now, we see it as a brand new dawning for the nation. Not only a new day, however a extremely a brand new day, a brand new period,” Christofferson mentioned within the launch. “I discussed in my dedication prayer that that is an oft occasions unremembered place, nevertheless it’s God’s creation. These are his folks. He remembers them.”

Christofferson and the church delegation additionally attended a baptism for 11 folks, the discharge famous, giving the Utah-based religion 23 members within the nation of about 2.5 million.

Earlier within the week, Christofferson visited a West African nation with exponentially extra members: Nigeria, house to 210,000 Latter-day Saints and three working or deliberate temples.

Within the capital of Abuja, he huddled with Vice President Oluyemi Oluleke Osinbajo.

“You’ve bought to understand a gathering that begins and ends with prayer,” Christofferson mentioned in a separate information launch. “…We talked about a number of the historical past of the church, particularly in Nigeria, mentioning the expansion that we’ve seen.”

The church has targeted its humanitarian efforts within the nation on imaginative and prescient, clear water and neonatal care.

“I recognize the social service works that the church is doing within the space of fresh water, immunization and a number of other different issues,” Osinbajo mentioned within the launch. “For faith-based organizations, it’s an article of religion that you should contribute to the event of society.”

Earlier than the COVID-19 pandemic, apostle Neil L. Andersen toured West Africa, the place the religion has seen a few of its most dramatic development.

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