The face of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is changing. Once consisting mostly of people from northern Europe and concentrated in the state of Utah, the Church’s membership has grown across the world since the mid-1900s. Today that face reflects every race and culture and has more color, more diversity, than ever before.
The mosaic may surprise you. Latter-day Saints live in 190 countries, nations and territories, speak over 120 languages and worship in nearly 30,000 congregations around the world. Brazilians run the Church in Brazil. Japanese organize the work in Japan. Germans teach the gospel to members in Germany. And the Church occasionally creates congregations to address the needs of ethnic communities such as the Polish in Chicago, the Chinese in Salt Lake City and Cambodians in Massachusetts.
Missionaries from around the world serve in more than 400 missions. A young man from Italy might serve in a Mandarin-speaking mission in England; a young woman from Australia may serve in a Hmong-speaking mission in California; a retired couple from Idaho might serve a medical mission in India. These volunteers immerse themselves in foreign cultures and love the people they serve.
But statistics convey just a portion. Much of this story is told through cultural expression.