The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has indefinitely
closed its Aba Nigeria Temple as a precautionary measure because of
recent violence and has evacuated temple workers to other areas.
safety of our temple visitors and workers is always our first concern,"
said LDS Church spokesman Scott Trotter. "Incidents of violence in
recent months in the area where the temple is situated are not
necessarily related to the temple but could put church members at risk.
As a precautionary measure, temple workers have been moved to other
areas, and the temple has been closed while the situation is being
In its Wednesday
edition, the Ogden Standard-Examiner reported receiving a mid-June
e-mail from a Nigeria temple worker reporting four gunmen carrying
AK-47s and shooting in the area of the temple.
Bullets from the shooting struck the guard house on the temple grounds.
The temple has been closed since the mid-June incident.
in the outskirts of Aba, the temple's complex includes a stake center
and administration office. The temple was dedicated Aug. 7, 2005, by
President Gordon B. Hinckley.
years ago, the LDS Church was the target of another round of violence
in Nigeria, as four missionaries were kidnapped near Port Harcourt.
With scores of foreign oil company employees kidnapped for ransom in
early 2007, the four Nigerian missionaries were soon released with the
help of local church leaders.
LDS Church first began proselytizing in Nigeria in 1978. Less than a
decade later, membership approached 10,000 in 1987. Ten years after
that, as the church was approaching having 100,000 members on the
African continent, Nigeria's LDS membership was 30,300.