News Release

Church announces Nairobi, Kenya as home of Africa’s next newest temple

Temple Blessings Spreading Across Africa

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has announced plans to build a temple in Nairobi, Kenya, pushing up the number of temples either planned, operating or under construction in Africa to eight.

The announcement of the Nairobi, Kenya Temple was made by President Thomas S. Monson during the Sunday morning session of the Church’s 187th Annual General Conference in Salt Lake City, Utah.

He also announced four new other temples for the other parts of the world.

Kenya is home to more than 48 million people with over 13,000 members of the Church. The new temple will serve more than 30,000 members in East Africa, a region which includes the territories of Tanzania, Kenya, Uganda, Rwanda and Burundi.

A GREAT DAY

"I was filled with emotion as President Monson announced the temple. I was delighted to hear that we are entering this great era of temple building both in Africa and other nations of the world. This is a great day," said Elder Kevin. S. Hamilton, president of the Africa Southeast Area following the announcement.

Currently, there are three operating temples on the African continent: Aba, Nigeria; Accra, Ghana and Johannesburg, South Africa; two are under construction: Kinshasa, Democratic Republic of the Congo, and Durban, South Africa. Two more were announced recently: Abidjan, Ivory Coast, and Harare, Zimbabwe.

     
 

The building of new temples underscores the rapid growth that the Church is seeing on the continent. For many people, a trip to the temple has proven to be a strenuous exercise because of the need to travel long distances, often at considerable cost.

AFRICA'S TIME

"This is our time," said Elder Joseph W. Sitati, a General Authority Seventy and a Kenyan. He said the announcement of the temple in Nairobi was especially gratifying because of the opportunity that the youth will now have to prepare themselves to serve in the temple and bless the lives of their ancestors through temple ordinances.

"This is exciting news for the youth because now they have the opportunity to truly get involved in family history work and bring the names of their ancestors to this temple when it is built. The time to do it is not when it is built but now. You need to start now, and anticipate this moment because it will be a time of great joy," Elder Sitati added.

     

But now the proliferation of temples is set to make the blessings of the temples accessible to a lot more members of the Church. The Johannesburg Temple was the Church’s first temple on African soil when it was officially opened back in 1985.

Generally, construction of the temple can take anywhere from two to four years from the time that the temple is announced by the First Presidency. Members of the Church regard temples as the houses of the Lord Jesus Christ, where sacred ordinances are performed, including eternal marriages, family sealings and the baptisms for the dead.

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