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

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Accra Ghana Temple

As of January 1, 2014, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints reported 62,031 members, thirteen stakes and 9 districts, 207 congregations (102 wards, 105 branches),[1] four missions, and one temple in Ghana.[2]


Dieter F. Uchtdorf visiting the Accra, Ghana LDS mission in 2007

The LDS Church was not officially established in Ghana until 1978. However, from 1969–1978 there were congregations using this name, following the Book of Mormon and hoping to be able to receive the missionaries and ordinances of the church. One of the main leaders of this group was Billy Johnson. These groups did receive recognition by the government of Ghana in 1969.

In 1978, Spencer W. Kimball received the revelation extending the priesthood to all worthy male members of the church regardless of race or color. After this, the church decided to open missions in West Africa. Merrill J. Bateman, a Brigham Young University economics professor who had often traveled to Ghana to study the cocoa industry, and Edwin Q. "Ted" Cannon made an initial trip to Ghana and Nigeria in the summer of 1978 and contacted many members of these churches that wanted to join with the LDS Church.

In November 1978, Cannon returned to Africa as a missionary with his wife Janath Cannon and in December they went to Ghana. Here they baptized most of the people who had been affiliated with the various groups using the church's name and from this point on congregations under the name The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints located in Ghana were part of the church headquartered in Salt Lake City, Utah.

In 1985 Ghana was made into its own mission, previously it was under the mission headquartered in Nigeria. The government of Ghana outlawed all activities of the LDS Church on 14 June 1989 claiming it was a front for the CIA. During the following period known as "the freeze" Emanuel Abu Kissi headed the Church in Ghana with Billy Johnson and his wife being the only missionaries. Members could hold sacrament meetings in their homes on a family basis, but no regular ward meetings were held and the LDS Church could not collect tithing. In November 1990 the government lifted the freeze having become convinced the Latter-day Saints were loyal citizens. On 21 April 1991 two stakes were organized in Ghana, one in Accra and the other in Cape Coast. From 1991 until 2007 the Ghana mission also covered Sierra Leone and Liberia.[3] In 2005 Ghana was divided into two missions, with a new mission based in Cape Coast also covering Togo and Benin.

There is one temple of the church in Ghana, the Accra Ghana Temple, which was opened in 2004.[4]

Ghana membership history[edit]

Ghana LDS membership history
Year Membership
1979 400
1987a 5,500
1990a 9,000
1993a 12,000
1999b 17,278
2003b 23,738
2005b 29,315
2007b 36,242
2008b 38,224
2009c 40,872
2012c 48,578
2014a 62,031
  • a Estimated membership for December 31 of the respective year
  • b Actual Membership for December 31 of the respective year
  • c Actual Membership for January 1 of the respective year



Main article: Accra Ghana Temple

On January 11, 2004 the Accra Ghana Temple was dedicated by President Gordon B. Hinckley.

Ghana Mission 247.jpg

117. Accra Ghana edit


Cantonments, Accra, Ghana
16 February 1998
11 January 2004 by Gordon B. Hinckley
5°34′2.964000″N 0°11′37.34159″W / 5.56749000000°N 0.1937059972°W / 5.56749000000; -0.1937059972 (Accra Ghana Temple)
17,500 sq ft (1,630 m2) on a 6 acre (2.4 ha) site
Classic modern, single-spire design - designed by ARUP

See also[edit]



External links[edit]