The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Germany

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An LDS meetinghouse in Annaberg-Buchholz, Germany

As of January 1, 2011, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints reported 38,257 members in 14 stakes and 3 districts, 173 congregations (89 wards[1] and 84 branches[1]), three missions, and two temples in Germany.[2]

History[edit]

The first German to be converted to the LDS Church was an immigrant to the USA named Jakob Zundel in 1836.[3]

Though one British Mormon convert had briefly worked in Germany, the first official of the church to arrive in Germany was Orson Hyde on 27 June 1841 as part of his journey to Palestine. He was delayed in Frankfurt by a visa problem and began to learn German. When he returned to Germany on his trip back from Palestine, he spent 30 January to August 1842 in Regensberg and wrote "Ein Ruf aus der Wüste" ("A Cry out of the Wilderness") whilst he was there. It was published in Frankfurt and was the first LDS Church publication in the German language.[3]

The first converts were baptized in Germany in 1851. Brigham Young sent Daniel Carn to establish the first German mission in 1852 which he did in Hamburg. Carn also oversaw the publication of a German language version of the Book of Mormon which was published in Hamburg 25 May 1852. He was eventually banished from Hamburg, then a sovereign state, due to his attempts to convert Germans to Mormonism but he continued to prostelyse Germans in the then Danish territory of Schleswig-Holstein.[3]

Most early converts emigrated to the United States and, by 1854, the short-lived Hamburg branch was dissolved. Church involvement in Germany resumed in 1860, but was limited due to persecution which continued until World War I. After World War I, the government became more tolerant of religious freedom, and the church received substantial growth.

In the first half of the 20th Century Germany had more converts to Mormonism than any other non-English speaking country.[4] By 1925 there was 6,125 members in the German-Austrian Mission, and 5,305 members in the Swiss-German Mission. The first German LDS meeting house was built in 1929 in Selbongen, East Prussia (now Zełwągi in Poland).[5][6] More restrictions were placed on the church under Nazism, and missionaries were evacuated for the duration of World War II.

Following World War II, members of the church in Germany found themselves divided among two nations. Members continued to maintain contact with the church in the west. In the fall of 1961 three stakes were created in Berlin (Germany's first), Stuttgart and Hamburg. In 1982, the Freiberg German Democratic Republic Stake was created. On June 19, 1985, the Freiberg GDR Temple was dedicated. It is the only temple constructed in a communist bloc country. In 1987, the Frankfurt, West Germany Temple was dedicated.[2][7]

Missions[edit]

  • Germany Berlin Mission
  • Germany Frankfurt Mission
  • Alpine German-speaking Mission (also covers Austria and parts of Switzerland)

Temples[edit]

Freiberg Tempel.JPG

33. Freiberg Germany (Closed for Renovation) edit

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Dedication:
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Freiberg, Germany
9 October 1982
29 June 1985 by Gordon B. Hinckley
7 September 2002 by Gordon B. Hinckley
50°55′20.33399″N 13°19′21.14759″E / 50.9223149972°N 13.3225409972°E / 50.9223149972; 13.3225409972 (Freiberg Germany Temple)
14,125 sq ft (1,312 m2) on a 1 acre (0.4 ha) site
Modern, single-spire design with German influence and use of Gothic-style arches - designed by Emil B. Fetzer and Rolf Metzner
Originally without an angel Moroni statue, one was installed as part of the 2001-2002 renovations. It is the only temple ever to have been located behind the Iron Curtain.[8]

Eingang Frankfurt Tempel 2005 08 26.JPG

41. Frankfurt Germany edit

Location:
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Friedrichsdorf, Germany
1 April 1981
28 August 1987 by Ezra Taft Benson
50°15′29.76839″N 8°38′28.20839″E / 50.2582689972°N 8.6411689972°E / 50.2582689972; 8.6411689972 (Frankfurt Germany Temple)
24,170 sq ft (2,245 m2) and 82 ft (25 m) high on a 5.2 acre (2.1 ha) site
Modern, detached single-spire design - designed by Church A&E Services and Borchers-Metzner-Kramer

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b LDS Meetinghouse Locator.Nearby Congregations (Wards and Branches).
  2. ^ a b "Facts and Statistics: Statistics by Country: Germany", Newsroom (LDS Church), 31 December 2011, retrieved 2012-10-18 
  3. ^ a b c Scharffs, Gilbert W. (2002). "Das Buch Mormon: The German Translation of the Book of Mormon". Journal of Book of Mormon Studies 11 (1): 35–39. Retrieved 30 November 2014. 
  4. ^ Kuehne, Raymond (2007). Mormons As Citizens Of A Communist State. Salt Lake City: The University of Utah Press. p. 1. ISBN 978-0-87480-993-0. 
  5. ^ Minert, Roger P. (2009). In Harm's Way: East German Latter-day Saints in World War II. Provo, Utah: Religious Studies Center, Brigham Young University. Retrieved 30 November 2014. 
  6. ^ Taylor, Scott (Sep 13, 2010). "LDS Church in Poland has had long, hard journey". Deseret News. Retrieved 30 November 2014. 
  7. ^ "Country information: Germany", Church News Online Almanac (Deseret News), January 29, 2010, retrieved 2012-10-18 
  8. ^ "Freiberg Germany Temple to Be Rededicated" (Press release). The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. 16 August 2002. Retrieved 29 September 2006. 

External links[edit]