Abstract and Keywords
The global center of the Mormon faith is Salt Lake City, which since its earliest days has been the headquarters of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (often called the LDS Church). What visitors to the city now find mirrors a new religious reality: the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has become an international institution. Historically, the greatest proportion of the church's membership resided in the United States. In 2003, out of a total membership of 11,340,522, slightly more than 53 percent (6,029,924) lived outside the United States. Mormons are keenly aware of the reality of their church's global presence. Two events would eventually have immense significance for the globalization of Mormonism. The first was the construction of the Kirtland Temple and its dedication in 1836. The second was the revelation on priesthood that included the organization of the Council of the Twelve, a body that would serve as a “Traveling High Council” that could preside over the church in regions where Saints were not gathered into stakes and wards.
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