(Adapted from the Church News, 15 July 2006)The First Presidency approved the creation of the Marshall Islands Majuro Mission, bringing the total number of missions throughout the world to 344. The mission was created in July and is being organized and staffed. President Nelson Lorell Bleak of Panaca, Nev., was called to preside over the Marshall Islands Majuro Mission.
Approximately 35,000 members reside among the scattered islands and the 1.7 million residents in the Fiji Suva and Micronesia Guam missions, from which the Marshall Islands Marjuro Mission is formed.
Distances and the lack of frequent flights make travel among these islands spread over thousands of miles challenging and time consuming. Mission tours require several weeks to complete.
The Marshall Islands Majuro Mission was created by the realignment of the Fiji Suva and Micronesia Guam missions. The first known members in the Marshall Islands came with the armed forces during World War II. The first missionaries arrived in February 1977. By the end of that year, there were 27 members.
The Marshall Islands Majuro Mission includes the nations of Kiribati and Nauru. Christmas Island, a remote, 140-square-mile atoll located 2,000 miles east, which is 1,160 miles due south of Honolulu, is also part of this mission.