The Church’s full-time missionaries were evacuated from Nicaragua in September amid political strife, but that didn’t stop missionary work.
Some fifty full-time missionaries of the Costa Rica San Jose Mission were evacuated as violence broke out between Nicaraguan government and insurgent forces. Later that fall, Mission President Joseph C. Muren sent eight missionaries back into Nicaragua for a brief period to help train district missionaries—part-time missionaries who are local members. Subsequently, in one two-week period, forty-three persons were baptized, many of them having been taught by the local missionaries.
The work has been bolstered by a Nicaraguan who recently completed his labors in the Costa Rica San Jose Mission. Elder Jose Boza, the first Latin American assistant to the mission president in his mission, accompanied the eight missionaries as he returned home to Nicaragua. He is now helping the sixty-six local district missionaries.
The local missionaries had a great challenge, since the month the full-time missionaries were pulled out of the country, their baptisms reached an all-time high. “But the local missionaries have high goals,” says a current assistant to the president.
During November, the local missionaries baptized fifty-six persons.
Not only are new converts joining the Church, but members are continuing with Church activities as normally as possible. Recently members attended a district conference in Nicaragua.
And President Muren has returned to Nicaragua several times.
Church leaders are unsure how soon full-time missionaries will be able to return to Nicaragua. But in the meantime, the work goes on.