Mormon Newsroom
News Release

Pacific Latter-day Saints Celebrate Christmas Season 

Half a million members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter--day Saints around Australia, New Zealand and the islands of the South Pacific are joining with others in their communities this Christmas season to celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ.  

"Christmas provides an opportunity to reach out to others,” said Robert J Dudfield, a senior church leader based in Melbourne who travels across the Pacific on church assignments.

“A lending hand, a kind word or a deed done all emulate the true spirit of Christmas, or in other words, the Spirit of Christ.”

To that end Church members have organised lighting displays in Hamilton, New Zealand; Sydney, Australia; and Apia, Samoa.

Choirs have sung carols for audiences in 
church meeting houses, shopping centres, parks and other community venues.

In many locations Latter-day Saints have invited neighbours and friends of other faiths to interfaith concerts and other events. 

In all cases, the focus has been on remembering and celebrating the birth of Jesus Christ, in ways that are respectful of those with differing beliefs. 

“Christmas is all about the birth of our Saviour Jesus Christ. It is a lovely time for our family, a special time when we can express the love we have for Him,” said Janet Tuinekuafe, a young adult Church member in New Zealand.

The first Mormon missionary, William James Barratt age 17 from England, arrived in Australia 175 years ago. There are now over 1180 congregations across the South Pacific region.  Church membership grew by nearly 12,000 in the Pacific during 2015.

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