Latter-day Saints building church

Second location will accommodate rapidly growing congregation

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is moving west.

Officials of the Salt Lake City-based Latter-day Saints purchased an empty field at 18 Donegal Place to build a second church for the rapidly growing congregation. The land was purchased for $750,000, according to the real estate transfer.

Three congregations meet each Sunday at their church at 2730 Bradford Drive, south of Muscatine Avenue – packing in 1,200 members.

The Mormon Church

Given that the theology and practice of the Mormon Church violates essential Christian doctrines, Mormonism does not represent historical, Biblical Christianity, is not a Christian denomination, and is not in any way part of the Christian church.

The congregation has grown 7 percent during the past year, according to Andrew Hall, a local church leader.

“We usually have 200 to 400 people in a congregation,” said Hall, president of the Iowa City Stake, which is similar to a church diocese.

“The Latter-day Saints are building a new church every day in the world because the church is growing so rapidly.”

Church officials have not decided which members will attend services at the building.

They hope to begin construction sometime this year on the single-story 24,000-square-foot building, Hall said.

“We clearly have plenty of people west of the river,” he said. “But we also like to have a mix of demographics.”

New church buildings are designed to blend in with residential areas, Hall said.

“Our leaders try really hard to make the buildings attractive,” he said. “They’re typically built to last 100 years.”

The building will be used for Sunday services, weekday events and morning study times for high school members.

People are yearning for spirituality, Hall said, and that is why the church has been growing so quickly.

“I think they’re just folks looking for simple answers to where we are and where we’re going,” he said.

“They’re also looking for truth and clarity of life and have a desire for stability in a changing world.”

Joseph Smith founded the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in 1820. Later, Brigham Young led church members to Salt Lake City, where the church now is based.

Details

• The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has grown significantly since its founding in 1830. Today, it has more than 11 million members worldwide. More than half of all members live outside the United States. The church currently is growing at an average rate of about 1 million new members every 3 years.
– Source: Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

Membership milestones

• 1 million in 1947
• 2 million in 1963
• 3 million in 1971
• 4 million in 1978
• 5 million in 1982
• 6 million in 1986
• 7 million in 1989
• 8 million in 1991
• 9 million in 1994
• 10 million in 1997
• 11 million in 2000
– Source: Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

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