The local congregation of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints saw record attendance at last Sunday’s worship service as members all met together for the last time while witnessing a historic day for the church in Los Alamos — a splitting of the ward.
Membership had grown to 603 members, including 110 in the children’s organization, and with approval of church leaders in Salt Lake City, Utah, it was time for a change. Starting this week, two separate congregations will meet in the same building at different times.
“We grow by dividing,” Stake President Michael Zollinger said, who presides over about a dozen LDS congregations in Northern New Mexico. “Today is a testimony of what it means to be a member of the church.”
Membership of each congregation is based on geographic location of residence. Zollinger revealed the boundaries for the two new congregations, the Los Alamos Ward and Pajarito Ward, to members for the first time Sunday morning with lines on a projected map during the service.
The Los Alamos Ward divided once before in 1978 to form the Los Alamos and White Rock wards. Including the White Rock congregation, countywide membership today is about 1,000.