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

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LDS Meetinghouse in Sassari, Italy.

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Italy is the Italian branch of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS Church or, informally, the Mormon Church) is a Christian restorationist denomination.

As of 2016, the LDS Church reported 25,956 members, 103 congregations and two missions in Italy.[1]


19th century[edit]

During the October 1849 general conference, Brigham Young called Lorenzo Snow and Joseph Toronto open missionary work in Italy. While en route to Italy, Snow called T. B. H. Stenhouse and Jabez Woodard to serve in the new mission. They arrived in Genoa on 25 June 1850, and Snow offered a prayer dedicating Italy to the preaching of the gospel and organized the Italian Mission on 19 September on a mountain peak near the city of Torre Pellice. On 27 October, Snow baptized the first convert. The first Italian-language edition of the Book of Mormon was published in London in 1852.[2]

In 1853 a group of approximately 70 Waldensians, including men, women, and children left their homes in the Piedmont Valleys and migrated to Salt Lake City, Utah Territory, after being converted by Lorenzo Snow. These Waldensians maintained their cultural heritage, while passing on their mixture of Mormon and Waldensian faiths to their descendants. Their descendants still consider themselves both Mormon and Waldensian, and have met occasionally over the many decades to celebrate both heritages.[3][4][5][6][7]

The mission closed in 1867, after everyone baptized had either migrated to Utah Territory or left the church.[2]

20th century[edit]

Unsuccessful attempts were made to resume proselytizing, but legal permission was not granted to do so. Members of the church finally returned to Italy during World War II as foreign servicemen: nearly 2,000 LDS military personnel were in the region during the mid-1940s, and there remains a LDS military presence in Italy ever since.[8]

Vincenzo Di Francesca was one of the first converts in Italy in the 20th century, and his story was documented in the 1987 LDS Church film How Rare a Possession.

In 1964 a new Italian-language translation of the Book of Mormon was published, and Ezra Taft Benson successfully negotiated with Italian government officials to allow missionary work to begin again. In early 1965, elders from the Swiss Mission were assigned to cities in Italy, and on August 2, 1966, Benson reestablished the Italian Mission, with headquarters in Florence. By 1971 there was a second mission opened in Italy, and in 1977 there were four missions: Rome, Catania, Milan, and Padova. That same year Spencer W. Kimball visited Italy, the first church president to do so. After many years of effort, formal legal status in Italy was granted to the church in 1993.[2]

21st century[edit]

In 2008, the church announced the planned construction of the Rome Italy Temple, the first temple in Italy.

In 2016, Massimo De Feo became the first Italian national to be appointed a general authority of the church.


  • Alessandria Italy Stake
  • Florence Italy Stake
  • Milan Italy East Stake
  • Milan Italy West Stake
  • Palermo Italy Stake
  • Puglia Italy Stake
  • Rome Italy East Stake
  • Rome Italy West Stake
  • Venice Italy Stake
  • Verona Italy Stake


  • Calabria Italy District



The Rome Italy Temple was announced on October 4, 2008 by President Thomas S. Monson.

Rome Temple by Trodel.JPG

157. Rome Italy (Under Construction) edit


Rome, Lazio, Italy
4 October 2008
23 October 2010 by Thomas S. Monson
41°58′14.2284″N 12°32′44.2752″E / 41.970619000°N 12.545632000°E / 41.970619000; 12.545632000 (Rome Italy Temple)
40,000 sq ft (3,700 m2) on a 14.8 acre (6 ha) site
Announced at the 178th Semiannual General Conference.[9]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Facts and Statistics: Statistics by Country: Italy", Newsroom, LDS Church, retrieved 2016-04-12 
  2. ^ a b c Toronto, James A. (2000). Garr, Arnold K.; Cannon, Donald Q.; Cowan, Richard O, eds. Italy. Encyclopedia of Latter-day Saint History. Salt Lake City: Deseret Book. ISBN 1573458228. OCLC 44634356.  Authorized online reprinted at: "Regions: Europe", Global Mormonism Project, Brigham Young University  |contribution= ignored (help).
  3. ^ Homer, Michael W. (Fall 2000), ""Like the Rose in the Wilderness": The Mormon Mission in the Kingdom of Sardinia" (PDF), Mormon Historical Studies, Mormon Historic Sites Foundation, 1 (2): 25–62 
  4. ^ Homer, Michael W. (2002), "Il Libro di Mormon: Anticipating Growth beyond Italy's Waldensian Valleys", Journal of Book of Mormon Studies, Maxwell Institute For Religious Scholarship, BYU, 11 (1) 
  5. ^ Stoke, Diane (1985), The Mormon Waldensians (MA thesis), Department of History, BYU; Harold B. Lee Library Digital Collections 
  6. ^ Platene, Giuseppe (April 1, 1989), "To A Home in the Land of the Free", Christianity Today 
  7. ^ Homer, Michael W. (May 2006). "Seeking Primitive Christianity in the Waldensian Valleys: Protestants, Mormons, Adventists and Jehovah's Witnesses in Italy". Nova Religio. University of California Press. 9 (4): 8. JSTOR 10.1525/nr.2006.9.4.005. 
  8. ^ "Italy", Deseret News 2010 Church Almanac, Church News, January 29, 2010 
  9. ^ Mikita, Carole (October 4, 2008). "LDS Church plans temples in Rome, 4 other locations". Retrieved 2012-10-31. 


External links[edit]