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Posted by: Brother Of Jerry ( )
Date: January 10, 2021 06:32PM


BTW, I've never bought the excuse that "Mormons can't afford to live in CA anymore". The population of the state is not going down, so somebody seems to be able to afford to live there. Also, I know BYU grads who land jobs in CA. Again, somebody is moving there. And there are plenty of Hispanics in CA. They manage to afford to live there.

I'm not buying the "too expensive" schtick. Yeah, it's expensive, and it helps to be rich to live in Silicon Valley, and parts of LA. But lots of not-rich people still live in CA.

As for LDS status in CA, looks pretty anemic. Read on.


A stake was discontinued in southern California. The Placentia California Stake (organized in 1954) was discontinued and retained wards were reassigned to neighboring stakes. There were five stakes in the stake prior to its discontinuation. This marked the second time in 2020 when a stake in California was discontinued as the Granada Hills California Stake closed earlier in the year. The closure of the stake in southern California is unsurprising and has been long overdue due to the steady decline in the number of active members in the area (northern Orange County). Tens of thousands of active Latter-day Saints have moved away from southern California in the past several decades. Few new converts have joined the Church and remained active to replace departing members. Moreover, non-White converts appear to comprise the majority of new members in the area, particularly among Spanish-speakers, which has further hampered efforts to strengthen existent English-speaking congregations. The Church in southern California has discontinued approximately one stake per year within the past decade. Additional stakes that have been discontinued in California in recent years include the Torrance California Stake (discontinued in 2019), the Garden Grove California Stake (discontinued in 2017), the San Diego California Sweetwater Stake (discontinued in 2016), Covina California (Spanish) Stake (discontinued in 2015), Huntington Park California West (Spanish) Stake (discontinued in 2012), and the Escondido California South Stake (discontinued in 2011).

There are now 151 stakes in California. The Church in California reached its all-time high for the number of stakes in 1995 when there were 162 stakes. The last time a new stake was organized in California was the Lake Elsinore California Stake back in 2013. The Church in California reached its all-time high for the number of congregations (i.e., wards and branches) in 2005 and 2006 when there were 1,386 congregations. There were 1,229 congregations in California as of year-end 2019. There were at least three new congregations organized in California in 2020 (all Spanish-speaking branches), whereas there were 13 wards and three branches discontinued in California in 2020 (most of which were English-speaking wards).

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Posted by: Sharapata ( )
Date: January 10, 2021 07:15PM

Actually, if you google recent stories about California's population, it is either barely growing at all or is now declining for the very first time, depending on the source. I am a Californian, and what is clear to me is that A LOT of long time WHITE members with $$ ARE fleeing for places like Utah and Idaho. Now, with working from home being increasingly tenable for the long term, I fully expect this trend to continue as location, thanks to technology, becomes increasingly irrelevant. I am in the SF Bay Area,and I am surprised there kinds of stake consolidations aren't happening here as well. I know some stakes, such as San Rafael, San Mateo and Hayward are hanging on like threads.

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Posted by: Villager ( )
Date: October 23, 2021 07:34PM

The very rich mormons are trying to squeeze themselves into Orange County.

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Posted by: elderolddog ( )
Date: January 10, 2021 07:21PM

If it wasn't for the price of gasoline, my slice of California (North Disneyland) would be celestial...

I paid 13 cents less than the lowest 'street' price at Costco the other day, $2.73/gallon.

With the lockdown we're going through right now, the warm, cuddly feeling that mormonism supposedly gives to its faithful members is totally lacking. It's gotta be that the younger the member, the less the cuddly feeling is missed.

Imagine what our current situation would be like, absent the internet!!

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Posted by: Mordor, not logged in ( )
Date: January 10, 2021 07:50PM

"This marked the second time in 2020 when a stake in California was discontinued as the Granada Hills California Stake closed earlier in the year."

This affects my old ward in Sherman Oaks, and marks the second time it's been consolidated out to another stake. When I was there in the 1970's, it was part of the Van Nuys Stake. VNS went away, apparently c. 1996, and was absorbed into the Granada Hills Stake.

The VNS Center had the softball field (I guess they don't teach that any more) where I participated in quite a few games, usually on the losing end. There were games where:

1. We fell behind big early, then came roaring back to win;
2. We fell behind big early, then came roaring back to take the lead, only to lose in the last half-inning;
3. I dislocated a finger diving back to first after being caught off base;
4. I nearly got into a fistfight with *my own bishop*. Those were the days.

And now Granada Hills is gone too. It looks like Sherman Oaks has been taken in by the North Hollywood Stake, which happens to be the stake where "my current" ward meets.

I found a Google map of the several stake boundaries with their respective wards, if anyone cares to take a quick look:

The stone continues to roll down the mountain, plunging off cliff after cliff.

Book of Mordor
Studio City, CA

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Posted by: summer ( )
Date: January 10, 2021 08:05PM

The Mormon growth in my area is mostly Latin immigrants as well, generally from Central America.

As for affordability, IMO a lot of it comes down to the ability to buy a home when people are ready. Lifestyle is also a consideration. When I lived in NYC, I had an office job that I enjoyed, but I lived an hour away, in a run-down walkup in a marginal neighborhood, with a string of mostly undesirable roommates. I was not very often able to afford the things that make NYC fun, such as the theater or dinner out. Buying a home would have been out of the question. It got to a point where the math was not adding up.

It was pretty much the same for my nephew (NYC) and my niece (San Francisco.) My nephew and his wife were paying $3,400 a month for a small apartment in Brooklyn. They both had decent jobs, but would not have been able to buy a home there. My niece was renting an apartment with a huge number of other people, at least eight. That is not a sustainable situation for the long run.

The people I know who can make California work long term either live well outside of the major cities, or they bought at the right time. The people who can make NYC work either have *very* high paying jobs, or they have decent jobs and rent-controlled apartments that were acquired decades ago.

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Posted by: Sharapata ( )
Date: January 10, 2021 08:17PM

Thanks to the pandemic, rents are down, in some cases WAY down, in San Francisco now. I am actually shocked how quickly and sharply the bottom fell out last year for the SF rental market.

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Posted by: summer ( )
Date: January 10, 2021 08:54PM

Same for NYC, but I don't think it will last. My nephew and his wife fled the city when Covid advanced, and now they just bought their first home...somewhere else.

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Posted by: oneWayJay ( )
Date: January 10, 2021 09:37PM

Spanish Branch.

Do they organize any Spanish Wards or Spanish Stakes?

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Posted by: Humberto ( )
Date: January 11, 2021 12:53PM

When I was in Toronto on the mission, there were spanish wards in Toronto, Scarborough and Etobicoke. But that was a long time ago.

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Posted by: messygoop ( )
Date: January 11, 2021 02:26AM

My observation from the 1990s from a CA ward. Many older members had their children/grandsons come for a visit, but never to the ward; save for a blessing of the baby. I strongly felt that these adult children had long checked out of the church. I suspect that it has become even worse. So many of the church's prized teachings and so called "sound doctrines" just don't work. Try paying tithing when your power company is cutting off your utilities.

I no longer reside there and many of my classmates have moved out of state because it's too hard to make a living.

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Posted by: Elder Berry ( )
Date: January 11, 2021 12:29PM

My 2cents. My kids are recently returned missionaries. The 2 younger from stints in the States (one had to flee a foreign country.)

My anecdotal info is that most Stateside conversions are from immigrants and people from them.

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Posted by: GNPE ( )
Date: January 11, 2021 02:18PM

Around the PNW, people selling real estate & businesses welcome ppl (actually their $$$) from California who have profited from increased values & sold - moved away;

People here who have seen their equities increased can then be in the sell & profit cohort also by moving to less expensive locations.
Those who Don't want to sell & move observe their assessments & taxes increased and many resent this.

Around Sequim there's a constant sight of out-of-state license plates and the chamber of commerce types enjoy catering to move-ins & refuse to enforce Washington licensing laws that require new residents to license within 30 days...
That's an insult to people who pay to license Honestly.

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 01/11/2021 02:19PM by GNPE.

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Posted by: Brother Of Jerry ( )
Date: October 22, 2021 12:19AM

You’ve brought this license plate thing up before. You seem to think it is a big deal. It is not. It looks like WA registration is about $400 depending on where you live in the state. The average car moving into the state will have an out of state registration with six months left before it expires, and they have thirty more days to change plates, so they are “getting out of” paying WA auto registration for five months, something less than $200.

It will cost money to figure out who is in the state temporarily, and who has made a permanent move. That costs money. If a person appeals it, saying they are in the state temporarily, that would cost the state hundreds of dollars to process the appeal. The state might well lose money on trying to enforce a law over less than $200.

Meanwhile, the people are paying gas tax, property tax, sales tax, alcohol tax, which will dwarf the money for car registration. And when the out of state registration expires, which will only happen once, and within on average five months after they were legally required to register, they will register their car in WA. Why would they reregister their car in CA? CA registration fees are higher than in WA.

This is petty cash. They don’t enforce the law because it is not worth the trouble and expense.

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Posted by: donbagley ( )
Date: January 14, 2021 06:34PM

I live in California, and I have noticed fewer and fewer missionaries in the streets over the last few years. A local mission center closed down, and its staff moved into a stake center.

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Posted by: blindguy ( )
Date: October 23, 2021 08:16PM

The sentence from the original that struck me most:

"Moreover, non-White converts appear to comprise the majority of new members in the area, particularly among Spanish-speakers, which has further hampered efforts to strengthen existent English-speaking congregations."

Notice that no mention is made of the large Asian population that now lives in northern Orange County. Anyway, I guess it's goodbye to the white and delightsome church in southern California. And please don't slam the door on the way out--I'd hate to have to replace it!

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Posted by: Nuggett ( )
Date: October 24, 2021 02:25AM

The stake I grew up in (Pleasanton, bay area) was just merged with a neighboring stake (Livermore), a comment in the thread said that 400 families are off the roles, but it is unknown how many have lift the church vs left California

Here is the thread;,2394998,2396419#msg-2396419

Anyone have any updates on this?

Anyone here from Pleasanton or Livermore leave recently?

It is worth pointing out that a lot of people are leaving California, there are several FB groups devoted to this

I am leaving for New Hampshire at the end of the year myself.

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