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In an 'important step forward,' LDS area presidencies created for United States and Canada

The First Presidency has announced changes to the way Church areas in the United States and Canada are administered. Effective Aug. 1, areas in the United States and Canada — previously overseen by members of the Presidency of Seventy — will be administered by area presidencies.

Beginning in 1984, the Church established areas to direct the work in geographic locations. Since 2004, the Presidency of the Seventy has had direct responsibility for Church areas in United States and Canada.

“The creation of area presidencies for the United States and Canada is an important step forward,” said President M. Russell Ballard, Acting President of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles. “It will allow these brethren to focus on the specific needs of each domestic area, providing counsel and direction to regional and local leaders in the U.S. and Canada. It also allows the Presidency of the Seventy greater capacity to assist the Quorum of the Twelve in their work and fulfill other assignments.”

The Church currently has 15 areas outside in the United States and Canada and 10 inside for a total of 25.

Six area presidencies have been created for the Church’s 10 areas in North America. Three area presidencies will oversee multiple areas.

The area presidencies for the United States and Canada will work from Church headquarters; area presidencies outside of the United States and Canada operate from area offices in each assigned area. The Church’s Middle East/North Africa Area is administered from headquarters.

In addition to announcing the creation of new area presidencies, the First Presidency has also announced new area leadership assignments included in the following pages. All members of area presidencies are General Authority Seventies or Area Seventies.

Church members sustained new members of the Presidency of the Seventy during general conference on March 31. President Dallin H. Oaks, first counselor in the First Presidency, announced additional members of the Presidency of the Seventy that will begin their service Aug. 1.

Elder Carl B. Cook and Elder Robert C. Gay immediately replace Elder Gerrit W. Gong and Elder Ulisses Soares — who were sustained to the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles — in the Presidency of the Seventy.

Elder Terence M. Vinson, Elder José A. Teixeira and Elder Carlos A. Godoy will begin service in the Presidency of the Seventy on Aug. 1.

“We are grateful to these brethren for their willingness to serve in these new important assignments.” said President Ballard.

\*The assignments for the Asia North Area are effective immediately.
\*The assignments for the Asia North Area are effective immediately. Photo: Intellectual Reserve, Inc.