Reaching the Nations

Cote d'Ivoire

By David Stewart and Matt Martinich

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Geography

Area: 322,463 square km.  Located in West Africa, Cote d'Ivoire borders Ghana, Liberia, Guinea, Mali, Burkina Faso, and the Atlantic Ocean.  Terrain primarily consists of plains with the exception of some mountains near the Guinean border.  Coastal areas experience tropical climate whereas the northern interior is semi-arid.  Most areas are forested.  The Bandama, Komoe, and Sassandra are the three major rivers, each of which flow southward and empty into the Atlantic Ocean.  Heavy surf in coastal areas and flooding are natural hazards.  Environmental issues include deforestation and water pollution.  Cote d'Ivoire is divided into 19 administrative regions.  The government insists on the international usage of Cote d'Ivoire instead of Ivory Coast.

Population: 21,058,798 (July 2010)       

Annual Growth Rate: 2.105% (2010)    

Fertility Rate: 4.01 children born per woman (2010)   

Life Expectancy: 55.27 male, 57.13 female (2010)

Peoples

Akan: 42.1%

Voltaiques/Gur: 17.6%

Northern Mandes: 16.5%

Krous: 11%

Southern Mandes: 10%

other: 2.8%

Comprising the largest ethnic group, the Akan are divided into several sub-ethnic groups which speak differing languages and live from the central regions to the southeast towards Ghana.  The largest Akan group is the Baoules.  Voltaiques (Gur) live in northeastern Cote d'Ivoire whereas Northern Mandes and Southern Mandes live in the west and northwest.  Krous live in southwestern Cote d'Ivoire.  There are approximately five million non-Ivoirian Africans, approximately one-third to one-half of which are from Burkina Faso whereas the remainder come from other West African nations.  There may be as many as 60,000 Lebanese and 10,000 French.[1] 

Languages: Senoufo (13%), Baoule (10%), Anyin dialects (4%) Dan (4%), We dialects (2%), Bete (2%), Attie (2%), Guro (1.5%), other (61.5%).  French is the official language and widely spoken as a second language.  Dioula is the most commonly spoken African language although native Ivorian speakers account for less than one percent of the population.  Dioula is commonly spoken among Burkinabe immigrants.  Languages spoken as a first language by over one million speakers include Senoufo dialects (2.7 million) and Baoule (2.1 million).

Literacy: 48.7% (2000)

History

Various West African empires occupied portions of present-day Cote d'Ivoire before European colonization.  The French began occupying and colonizing Cote d'Ivoire during the 1500s and officially established a colony in 1893.  France began granting greater autonomy to Cote d'Ivoire in the mid-twentieth century.  Cote d'Ivoire has maintained close ties with France after independence was achieved in 1960.  Due to foreign investment and political stability, significant economic growth occurred during the 1960s and 1970s.  Much of the economic success, which drew migrant workers from poorer, more unstable nations, was due to cocoa production.  Economic growth slowed as a result of the global economy fell into recession in the 1980s.  In 1983, the government moved the capital city from Abidjan to Yamoussoukro. 

President Félix Houphouët-Boigny served as the first president for 30 years.  Following his death in the mid-1990s, lawlessness increased and culminated in the country's first coup in late 1999.  An election was held the following year and declared the coup leader as the winner.  Many suspected election fraud and Laurent Gbagbo became president in 2000 backed by popular demand.  Instability continued to intensify in the north, plunging Cote d'Ivoire into the Ivorian Civil War in 2002.  Both Gbagbo and the rebels in the north, called the New Forces, came to an agreement to integrate both parties into one government in 2007.  The rebel leader, Guillaume Soro, became Prime Minister under the agreement.  The country still remains divided, with a United Nations presence monitoring the agreement made between Gbagbo and Soro.  From late 2010 through early 2011, political instability worsened as the results of the 2010 presidential election were hotly contested.  Ghagbo, who lost the election, refused to relinquish power, leading to armed conflict between supporters of the two candidates.  Tensions between the rebels in the north and the south are also linked to ethnicity.

Culture 

The highly eclectic culture of Cote d'Ivoire is reflected in its complex ethnic composition which comprises of as many as 60 different people groups.  Immigration of non-Ivorian Africans has further enriched local culture. Tribalism and indigenous beliefs are often intertwined with French culture.  Islam dictates many societal practices and customs in the north.  Traditional cuisine consists of grains, cassava, chicken, fruit, and palm wine.  Music occupies an important social role for most ethnic groups.  Polygamy is illegal.  Cigarette and alcohol consumption rates are low compared to worldaverages.  

Economy

GDP per capita: $1,800 (2010) [3.8% of US]

Human Development Index: 0.484

Corruption Index: 2.2

Cote d'Ivoire was seen as the economic powerhouse of West Africa during the 1960s and 1970s, drawing millions of non-Ivorian Africans for employment and better living conditions.  Economic success during the first two decades following independence was primarily attributed to the production and exportation of cocoa.  Cote d'Ivoire is the world's largest producer and exporter of cocoa today, but the economy's reliance on cocoa export earnings to function has rendered it vulnerable to fluctuations in worldwide demand and prices.  Recently the government has attempted to diversify the economy by trying to attract more foreign investment and develop the country's offshore oil resources.  The Ivorian Civil War significantly damaged the economy by dissuading foreign investment and a destroying much of the country's infrastructure.  42% of the population lives below the poverty line and as much as half of the work force may be unemployed.  Economic growth has slowed dramatically and GDP per capita has fallen from levels attained in the late 1990s.  Oil, natural gas, diamonds, precious metals, industrial metals, minerals, silica sand, clay, and hydropower are natural resources.  68% of the labor force works in agriculture.  Services generate half of the GDP whereas industry and agriculture generate 21% and 28% of the GDP, respectively.  Food products, wood products, oil refining, bus and truck assembly, clothing, fertilizing, construction, electricity, and shipbuilding are major industries.  Common crops include coffee, cocoa, fruit, palm kernels, corn, rice, tapioca, sweet potatoes, sugarcane, and cotton.  Primary trade partners include Nigeria, France, and the Netherlands. 

Corruption is present in all areas of society and has been exacerbated by current political instability and the Ivorian Civil War.  Human trafficking is a major concern as Cote d'Ivoire is a source, transit, and destination country for the trafficking of women and children for commercial sexual exploitation and forced labor.  Cannabis is a major illicit drug crop primarily used for domestic consumption. 

Faiths

Muslim: 38.6%

Christian: 32.8%

indigenous beliefs: 11.9%

none: 16.7%

Christians

Denominations  Members  Congregations

Catholic  2,800,000

Evangelicals  2,256,431

Seventh Day Adventists  11,776  48

Latter-day Saints   14,417  41

Jehovah's Witnesses  8,358  186

Religion

Just over a third of the population is Muslim and a third is Christian.  The south has been traditionally Christian and the north traditionally Muslim, but both religious groups operate throughout the country.  Approximately half the Christian population is Catholic.  Other prominent Christian groups include Seventh Day Adventists, Methodists, Assemblies of God, Southern Baptisms, Copts, Latter-day Saints, and Jehovah's Witnesses.  Those who follow indigenous beliefs make up 11.9% of the population whereas the remaining 16.7% do not identify with a religious group.  Many nominal Christians and Muslims integrate aspects of indigenous religions into their system of beliefs and religious practice.[2] 

Religious Freedom

Persecution Index:

The constitution protects religious freedom which is generally upheld by the government.  There is no state religion, but the government has tended to favor Christianity and Catholicism as the first two Ivorian presidents were both Catholic.   Muslims have been underrepresented in government positions.  Several Christian and Muslim holidays are recognized as national holidays by the government.  Religious groups are required to register with the government.  To register, a religious group must submit an application detailing the group's bylaws, a list of the group's founding and board members, the date the group was founded, and meeting minutes.  Societal instances of abuse of religious freedom have primarily targeted Muslims and the followers of indigenous religions.  Evangelicals have complained of instances of religious discrimination by government officials.  Ongoing political instability has not resulted from religious intolerance or conflict but rather from ethnic and political differences.[3]

Largest Cities

Urban: 49%

Abidjan, Bouake, Daloa, Yamoussoukro, Korhogo, Divo, San-Pedro, Anyama, Man, Gagnoa, Abengourou.

Cities listed in bold have no LDS congregations.

Five of the eleven cities with over 100,000 inhabitants have an LDS congregation.  28% of the population lives in cities with over 100,000 inhabitants.

LDS History

The first LDS members to live in Cote d'Ivoire were expatriates from Europe and North America in the 1970s.  The first Ivorians joined the Church abroad in the early 1980s and returned to Cote d'Ivoire, holding the first sacrament meetings in the village of Ahoutuoe.  Elder Marvin J Ashton dedicated Cote d'Ivoire for missionary work 1987.[4]  The Church established a presence in Bouake in 1988, the same year missionaries began serving in Cote d'Ivoire from the Ghana Accra Mission.  One of the first missionary couples was instrumental in the baptism of around 100 converts.[5]

The Church did not receive official recognition from the government until 1991.  Seminary and institute commenced the same year.  Before legal recognition was granted to the Church, couple missionaries were not allowed to openly proselyte and growth occurred through member referrals.[6]  In 1993, the Cameroon Yaounde Mission was relocated to Abidjan and renamed the Ivory Coast Abidjan Mission.  For a short period during the 1990s, distant French-speaking African countries were included in the mission boundaries, such as Burundi.  In 1998, Cote d'Ivoire was assigned to the Africa West Area.  Non-African missionaries were evacuated due to instability from the civil war in 2004, returned in 2008 and were withdrawn again in late 2010 due to political instability. 

Prior to 2005, the Abidjan Ivory Coast Mission also administered Benin, Cameroon, Central African Republic, and Togo.  These nations were assigned to the Ghana Cape Coast Mission in 2005.[7]  In 2008, Benin and Togo were transferred back to the Ivory Coast Abidjan Mission.  LDS apostle Jeffrey R. Holland visited members in 2010.

Membership Growth

LDS Membership: 14,417 (2009)

The LDS Church has consistently experienced rapid membership growth in Cote d'Ivoire.  There were 16 Latter-day Saints living in Cote d'Ivoire in 1987.[8]  By May of 1991, there were 600 members.[9]  Membership reached 2,500 in 1996 and 6,178 by year-end 2000.  There were 7,840 members in 2002, 9,345 in 2004, 11,341 in 2006, and 13,245 in 2008.  Annual membership growth rates during the 2000s ranged from a low of 6.3% in 2008 to a high of 13.7% in 2002 but averaged around 10%.In 2009, one in 1,461 was LDS.

Congregational Growth

Wards: 30 Branches: 11

The first two LDS branches were organized in Abidjan and Bouake in 1988 and 1989, respectively.  The first district was organized in the fall of 1989.  The number of branches increased from four in 1990 to twelve in 1993.  In 1996, there were 14 branches and two districts based in Abidjan and Abobo.  LDS branches met in Abidjan, Bouake, and Yamoussoukro by 1997 and additional cities had groups operating.[10]  The first stake was created later that year from the Abidjan and Abobo Ivory Coast Districts and included 11 wards, one of the largest number of wards ever included in a new stake.  The wards in the new stake were the Abobo, Agoueta, Anonkoua, Codody, Dokui, Foncier, Koumassi, Niangon, Quatre Etages, Sagbe and Sogefiha Wards.[11]

By year-end 2000 there were 17 congregations, including 13 wards.  The number of congregations increased to 18 in 2001, 24 in 2002, 26 in 2003, and 27 in 2004.  In 2005, the number of congregations declined to 24 as branches in the Bouake area were discontinued or became groups or dependent branches under the Cote d'Ivoire Abidjan Mission Branch.  Consistent congregational growth occurred for the remainder of the 2000s as the number of congregations reached 28 in 2006, 29 in 2007, 32 in 2008, 38 in 2009, and 41 in 2010.  The number of wards steadily increased during the 2000s to 16 in 2002, 20 in 2005, and 23 in 2007.  Additional stakes have been organized in the Abidjan area in Abobo (2000), Cocody (2006), and Abidjan Niangon (2010).  In 2009, a district was formed in Yamoussoukro with four branches.

During the 2000s, branches were established in additional cities.  The first branches in Divo and San-Pedro were opened in the mid-2000s.  In 2009, a second branch was organized in San-Pedro (the Seweke Branch) and branches were organized in two towns nearby Abidjan (Ahoutuoe and Bingerville).  A second branch was created in Grand-Bassam in 2010.  Groups or dependent branches may continue to meet in Bouake.  In early 2011, there were seven wards in the Abidjan Niangon Stake, six wards in the Abidjan Toit Rouge Stake, eight wards in the Abobo Stake, and nine wards and two branches in the Cocody Stake. 

Activity and Retention

The average number of members per congregation increased from 363 in 2000 to 379 in 2009.  Member activity rates have been consistently highas in 1990 200 attended a nationwide district conference at which time there were approximately 350 members.[12]  300 youth attended a youth conference in 1994.[13]  Nearly 500 youth from Abidjan attended youth conference in 1996.[14]  Many of the wards in the Abidjan area are well attended and some have over 200 active members.  In late 2009, the Cocody Cote d'Ivoire Stake with seven wards and two branches had a stake conference attendance of 1,200.  Missionaries report that convert retention is high in most areas, especially in Abidjan, and appears lowest in Yamoussoukro.  3,223 were enrolled in seminary and institute during the 2008-2009 school year.  Active membership in branches generally ranges between 50 and 100.  Nationwide active membership is estimated at 7,000, or 50% of total church membership. 

Language Materials

Languages with LDS Scripture: French

All LDS scriptures and most church materials are available in French.  Only The Prophet Joseph Smith's Testimony is available in Baoule. 

Meetinghouses

The Church began construction on its first meetinghouse in Cote d'Ivoire in 1996 in Yopougon, Abidjan.[15]  There were at least 16 LDS meetinghouses in early 2011, most of which serviced several congregations. 

Health and Safety

Violence and political instability have posed persistent barriers to expanding national outreach and ensuring the safety of foreign missionaries.  The United States Department of State frequently issues travel warnings for Cote d'Ivoire.[16]  Two missionaries have been murdered while serving in Africa in the past 10 years, both in Cote d'Ivoire.  In 1999, a full-time North American missionary died from being stabbed in the chest in a random attack.[17]  In 2002, a senior missionary sister serving with her husband in Yamoussoukro was murdered in her apartment in a robbery attempt.[18]  The Church has taken increased precautions with non-African missionaries over the past decade.  Access to healthcare outside major cities is limited and tropical diseases are endemic.  HIV/AIDS infects 3.9% of the adult population.

Humanitarian and Development Work

In 1991, the Church donated technical auditory equipment used to teach deaf children to speak.[19]  Most LDS congregations in the Abidjan area held literacy classes in the mid-1990s.[20]  The Church offered free vaccinations in a clinic held in Bouake in 2002.[21]  Latter-day Saints in North Carolina donated nearly 60 white dress shirts to needy missionaries and prospective missionaries in Cote d'Ivoire in 2004.[22]

 

Opportunities, Challenges and Prospects

Religious Freedom

Latter-day Saints openly worship, assemble, and proselyte.  Foreign missionaries have served regularly with no noticeable government interference.  The Church has no official presence in rebel-controlled areas.  Political instability and civil disorder continue to prevent a church establishment in many unreached areas and delay potential humanitarian and development work.

Cultural Issues

Widespread, sincere interest in Christianity has fueled growth in most areas with a church presence and has contribute to the high degree of self-sustainability of local leadership and active membership today.  The Ivorian Civil War began in 2002 and still has not officially ended.  The war has led the country into greater poverty and erased much of the earlier economic progress made in previous decades.  High unemployment resulted from the war, leaving many Ivorians unable to provide for themselves.  Despite worsening economic conditions, many remain receptive to the gospel message and have helped to build up the church.  Strong ethno-religious ties to Islam in the north pose cultural challenges for future proselytism efforts in these areas.  Missionary activity may occur only with African missionaries working on member referrals in these regions if a church presence is established one day.  The government ban on polygamy reduces societal challenges found in many other African nations for LDS mission outreach. 

National Outreach

Approximately 26% of the national population resides in cities with an LDS congregation and 41% of the population resides in administrative regions with an LDS congregation. Including the city of Abidjan, the Lagunes Region is the only administrative region in which the majority of the population has access to LDS mission outreach and consequently is home to an estimated 90% of Latter-day Saints in Cote d'Ivoire.  The Church in Cote d'Ivoire yet has to establish itself in most of the largest cities.  Only a few major cities around the capital of Abidjan have a Church presence, such as Bingerville and Grand-Bassam.  With the exception of Yamoussoukro and Divo, there is no church presence in the interior.  Political instability and the ongoing conflict between the central government in Abidjan and rebel forces in the north have deterred any prospects of opening additional cities outside the Abidjan area.  Employing a "centers of strength" strategy to church growth in Cote d'Ivoire resulted in the failure to open additional cities in the interior when political conditions were more stable in the 1990s.  Distance from mission headquarters and limited mission manpower and resources have also dissuaded mission and area leaders from opening additional cities.

Expansion in national outreach will most likely occur in the near term in lesser-reached communities near Abidjan, such as Dabou and Attinguie as these cities likely have small numbers of Latter-day Saint move-ins from Abidjan, are within close proximity to Abidjan, and are within the realm of control of the central government.  Approximately half the national population resides in rural areas and will likely remain unreached for many years to come.  

Literacy programs, clean water projects, and employment training workshops are development projects which can meet local humanitarian needs, provide finding opportunities for members and missionaries, and facilitate expansion in national outreach.  Only literacy programs appear to have been consistently utilized by the Church in recent years. 

Member Activity and Convert Retention

Political instability resulting in reliance on local African full-time missionaries, cultural conditions that have produced high levels of receptivity, the maintenance of consistently high baptismal standards for new converts, and the concentration of members in small geographic areas have each contributed to the high member activity and convert retention levels experienced by the Church in Cote d'Ivoire.  Developed local leadership facilitated by a large number of returned full-time missionaries has led to sustainable membership and congregational growth and perpetuated high member activity.  Emphasis on seminary and institute attendance has also improved retention and activity rates.  The greatest challenge for maintaining high rates of member activity and convert retention are outside Abidjan in congregations with few members and local leaders. 

Ethnic Issues and Integration

Significant ethnic conflicts among Ivorian ethnic groups and between Ivorians and other West African immigrants have been a primary cause of political turmoil since independence.  Full-time missionaries report that many of these issues have not manifested themselves at church.  The large non-Ivorian African immigrant community generates many opportunities for the Church to introduce the gospel to peoples which are unreached in their native countries.  Most non-Ivorian Africans in Cote d'Ivoire are Muslim (70%), speak French, and originate from Burkina Faso.  Although common usage of French may facilitate integration with Ivorian LDS congregations, ethnic tensions and cultural differences may make non-Ivorians more vulnerable to lower convert retention rates.  Proselytism approaches will need to be tailored to those with a Muslim background and separate congregations for non-Ivorians may be needed to reduce ethnic integration challenges. 

Language Issues

The Church has only one pamphlet translated into a single indigenous language of Cote d'Ivoire.  Otherwise there are no Church materials available in any of the other of the most widely spoken native languages.  Low literacy rates reduce the need for translating written materials into additional languages at present.  Widespread use of French has contributed to the lack of translations into additional languages.  Expansion in national outreach may necessitate the translation of additional materials over time.

Missionary Service

Young North American missionaries began serving in Cote d'Ivoire during the 1990s.  There were nearly 100 full-time missionaries in the Cote d'Ivoire Abidjan Mission in 1999.[23]  Ivorian full-time missionaries have received missionary training at the Ghana Missionary Training Center since the center opened in 2002.[24]  Non-African missionaries were evacuated in 2004 due to escalating violence and instability resulting from the Ivorian Civil War.  The war resulted in a major setback in missionary work in the interior as missionaries were withdrawn from Bouake and Yamoussoukro.  Most evacuated missionaries were transferred to the neighboring Ghana Accra Mission.  The full-time missionary force was reduced from 64 to 22 missionaries.  In 2008, North American missionaries returned to the Ivory Coast Abidjan Mission as a result of the reassignment of Benin and Togo to the mission, each of which previously had non-African missionaries.  North American missionaries also began serving in Cote d'Ivoire that same year.  In 2009, there were four zones in Abidjan and a district in Yamoussoukro.  Two additional zones were also functioning in the Ivory Coast Abidjan Mission in 2009 in Benin and Togo.  Non-African full-time missionaries were again removed in late 2010 and reassigned to Benin and Togo.

The number of full-time Ivorian missionaries has exceeded the number of missionaries serving in Cote d'Ivoire for several years.  The Cocody Cote d'Ivoire Stake alone had 30 members serving full-time missions in 2007.[25]  Ivorian missionaries frequently serve in many African nations. 

Leadership

Strong, abundant local leadership in Abidjan supported four stakes in early 2011 and has its roots in the first years of the Church in Cote d'Ivoire.  In 1990, there were 35 Melchizedek Priesthood holders nationwide at a time when total church membership totaled 350.[26]  Cote d'Ivoire is one of the few African nations with fewer than 20,000 members that has had local members serve in a regional leadership position.  In 2005, Norbert Kalogo Ounleu from Abidjan was called to preside over the Ivory Coast Abidjan Mission.[27]  Distance from mission headquarters in Abidjan challenges mission efforts to spur greater leadership development elsewhere in congregation with few qualified leaders.  The assignment of Latter-day Saint Ivorian couples or families from Abidjan to live and work in smaller congregations with leadership challenges create mentoring opportunities that may lead to greater leadership sustainability outside of Abidjan.

Temple

Cote d'Ivoire is assigned to the Accra Ghana Temple district.  Ivorian members generally travel to the temple by bus, which can take up to 18 hours one way.  In 2004, over 200 members from the Abobo Cote d'Ivoire Stake traveled to the temple and performed over 4,000 temple ordinances over a four day period.[28]  In 2007, 150 youth from the Cocody Cote d'Ivoire Stake traveled to the temple on a special temple trip.  To qualify, the youth had to regularly attend seminary, participate in weekly young men/young women activities, and achieve personal goals.[29]  Prospects for a future temple in Abidjan are uncertain in 2011 due to ongoing political instability, but local membership appears capable of adequately staffing and utilizing a temple at present as evidenced by good member activity rates, regular temple trips to the Accra Ghana Temple, and ongoing membership growth largely fueled by the efforts of native African full-time missionary and local member-missionary efforts. 

Comparative Growth

Cote d'Ivoire has experienced one of the most rapid membership growth rates for the LDS Church between 1990 and 2010 and may be the country that experienced the most rapid growth and highest member activity and convert retention rates among countries which had an LDS presence established later than 1985.  Member activity and convert retention rates are higher than most nations.  The extent of national outreach is comparable to most West African nations with an LDS presence, such as Sierra Leone and Liberia.  Cote d'Ivoire possesses one of the highest percentages of members enrolled in seminary or institute among countries with over 10,000 members (22%).

Other Christian churches which have active missionary programs have experienced limited success in Cote d'Ivoire compared to other African nations.  Jehovah's Witnesses had nearly 8,000 active members organized in 180 congregations in 2008 and had nearly 500 convert baptisms.  Seventh Day Adventists had 11,345 members in 48 churches in 2008.  Both of these churches are about the same size as the LDS Church in Cote d'Ivoire, but the LDS Church has seen more rapid growth in recent years.  Adventists generally baptize between 300 and 700 new converts annually.[30]  Evangelical groups experienced strong growth between independence and the outbreak of the Ivorian Civil War, but today report slower membership growth. 

Future Prospects

One of the greatest successes for the LDS Church in Africa in the 1990s and 2000s, Cote d'Ivoire has demonstrated sustained membership and congregational growth rates that have been maintained regardless of fluctuating political instability, poverty, and low literacy rates.  Aspects of real church growth that are most impressive in Cote d'Ivoire include high rates of seminary and institute participation, well-attended, regularly organized temple trips, the development of a self-sufficient  native full-time missionary force that services Cote d'Ivoire and many African nations, abundant, well-trained local leadership in Abidjan that has led to the organization of four stakes within a thirteen-year period, and sustained rapid membership growth that has maintained good levels of member activity and convert retention.  Prospects for the organization of additional stakes in the Abidjan area are favorable in the near future.  Additional districts may be organized in San-Pedro and Grand-Bassam in the coming years once additional congregations are organized and greater numbers of self-sustaining leadership are developed.  However, outreach is much needed to other regions of the country as the vast majority of LDS membership is concentrated in the Abidjan area, and most other large cities remain unreached.  A temple may be constructed in Abidjan one day if political conditions improve.  Cote d'Ivoire will likely become a significant contributor to the growth and expansion missionary outreach of the LDS Church throughout Francophone West Africa for years to come.


[1]  "Background Note: Cote d'Ivoire," Bureau of African Affairs, 16 July 2010.  http://www.state.gov/r/pa/ei/bgn/2846.htm

[2]  "Cote d'Ivoire," International Religious Freedom Report 2010.  http://www.state.gov/g/drl/rls/irf/2010/148681.htm

[3]  "Cote d'Ivoire," International Religious Freedom Report 2010.  http://www.state.gov/g/drl/rls/irf/2010/148681.htm

[4]  "Gospel spreads forth," LDS Church News, 30 December 1989.  http://www.ldschurchnews.com/articles/19190/Gospel-spreads-forth.html

[5]  Arnold, Chirley Roundy.  "Legal recognition granted in Church in Ivory Coast," LDS Church News, 25 May 1991.  http://www.ldschurchnews.com/articles/21269/Legal-recognition-granted-to-Church-in-Ivory-Coast.html

[6]  Arnold, Chirley Roundy.  "Legal recognition granted to Church in Ivory Coast," LDS Church News, 25 May 1991.  http://www.ldschurchnews.com/articles/21269/Legal-recognition-granted-to-Church-in-Ivory-Coast.html

[7]  Stahle, Shaun D.  "Missions created on opposite sides of Africa," LDS Church News, 11 June 2005.  http://www.ldschurchnews.com/articles/47427/Missions-created-on-opposite-sides-of-Africa.html

[8]  Mercer, Robert L.  "Pioneers in Ivory Coast", Ensign, Sept. 1997, 25

[9]  Arnold, Chirley Roundy.  "Legal recognition granted to Church in Ivory Coast," LDS Church News, 25 May 1991.  http://www.ldschurchnews.com/articles/21269/Legal-recognition-granted-to-Church-in-Ivory-Coast.html

[10]  Mercer, Robert L.  "Pioneers in Ivory Coast", Ensign, Sept. 1997, 25

[11]  "New stake presidencies," LDS Church News, 27 September 1997.  http://www.ldschurchnews.com/articles/29786/New-stake-presidencies.html

[12]  "First conference held: United Kingdom - Ireland - Africa area," LDS Church News, 28 April 1990.  http://www.ldschurchnews.com/articles/20298/First-conference-held--United-Kingdom---Ireland---Africa-area.html

[13]  "From around the world," LDS Church News, 12 March 1994.  http://www.ldschurchnews.com/articles/24401/From-around-the-world.html

[14]  "From around the world," LDS Church News, 21 December 1996.  http://www.ldschurchnews.com/articles/28099/From-around-the-world.html

[15]  "From around the world," LDS Church News, 24 February 1996.  http://www.ldschurchnews.com/articles/27219/From-around-the-world.html

[16]  "Cote d'Ivoire," Travel Warning U.S. Department of State Bureau of Consular Affairs, 19 December 2010.  http://travel.state.gov/travel/cis_pa_tw/tw/tw_915.html

[17]  "Slain missionary stood tall spiritually and physically," LDS Church News, 1 May 1999.  http://www.ldschurchnews.com/articles/35703/Slain-missionary-stood-tall-spiritually-and-physically.html

[18]  "Missionary death," LDS Church News, 10 August 2002.  http://www.ldschurchnews.com/articles/42260/Missionary-death.html

[19]  "Equipment for teaching speech to deaf given to African school," LDS Church News, 25 May 1991.  http://www.ldschurchnews.com/articles/21203/Equipment-for-teaching-speech-to-deaf-given-to-African-school.html

[20]  Horman, Hermine B.  "Gospel literacy: 'Coming out of darkness into marvelous light'," LDS Church News, 30 December 1995.  http://www.ldschurchnews.com/articles/26947/Gospel-literacy-Coming-out-of-darkness-into-marvelous-light.html

[21]  Hatch, Elder Howard; Hatch, Sister Diane.  "Missionaries go door to door inviting villagers to clinic," LDS Church News, 30 March 2002.  http://www.ldschurchnews.com/articles/41525/Missionaries-go-door-to-door-inviting-villagers-to-clinic.html

[22]  "White shirts and ties donated," LDS Church News, 16 October 2004.  http://www.ldschurchnews.com/articles/46360/White-shirts-and-ties-donated.html

[23]  "Slain missionary stood tall spiritually and physically," LDS Church News, 1 May 1999.  http://www.ldschurchnews.com/articles/35703/Slain-missionary-stood-tall-spiritually-and-physically.html

[24]  Stahle, Shaun D.  "First 54 missionaries enter first training center in Africa," LDS Church News, 25 May 2002.  http://www.ldschurchnews.com/articles/41860/First-54-missionaries-enter-first-training-center-in-Africa.html

[25]  Bingham, Sister Jo.  "Ivory Coast youth work for temple trip," LDS Church News, 8 September 2007.  http://www.ldschurchnews.com/articles/51017/Ivory-Coast-youth-work-for-temple-trip.html

[26]  "First conference held: United Kingdom - Ireland - Africa area," LDS Church News, 28 April 1990.  http://www.ldschurchnews.com/articles/20298/First-conference-held--United-Kingdom---Ireland---Africa-area.html

[27]  "New mission presidents," LDS Church News, 25 June 2005.  http://www.ldschurchnews.com/articles/47475/New-mission-presidents.html

[28]  Whisenant, Elder Vern.  "Ivory Coast LDS travel to temple," LDS Church News, 28 August 2004.  http://www.ldschurchnews.com/articles/46062/Ivory-Coast-LDS-travel-to-temple.html

[29]  Bingham, Sister Jo.  "Ivory Coast youth work for temple trip," LDS Church News, 8 September 2007.  http://www.ldschurchnews.com/articles/51017/Ivory-Coast-youth-work-for-temple-trip.html

[30]  "Cote d'Ivoire Conference (2002-present)," www.adventiststatistics.org, retrieved 19 January 2011.  http://www.adventiststatistics.org/view_Summary.asp?FieldInstID=1494163