Country Profile


Elder Heber J. Grant, then a member of the Church's Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, and three missionaries arrived in Japan in August 1901. On September 1, on a hill in Yokohama, they dedicated the Church's first mission in Asia. The Book of Mormon was translated by young Alma O. Taylor over a five-year period and published in 1909. Missionary work was discontinued not long after the great Tokyo earthquake of 1923. It was resumed in 1948 after the end of World War II. Prior to the arrival of the missionaries, LDS servicemen in the occupation forces, including Boyd K. Packer, president of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, had planted many seeds and baptized a handful of members, such as Tatsui Sato, who did a revised translation of the Book of Mormon that was published in 1957.

Church membership grew rapidly after the war. The first Latter-day Saint meetinghouse constructed by the Church in Asia was dedicated in April 1964 by Elder Gordon B. Hinckley, then of the Church's Quorum of the Twelve Apostles. In August 1975, construction of the Tokyo Temple was announced by Church President Spencer W. Kimball at an all-Japan conference in Tokyo to 9,800 members, who responded with spontaneous applause. The temple was the first temple in Asia and was dedicated in October 1980. The Fukuoka Temple was dedicated in 2000, and a third temple to be built in Sapporo was announced in October 2009. At the end of 2010, Church membership in Japan was 125,419. The Sapporo Japan Temple was dedicated on August 21, 2016, by Elder Russell M. Nelson, then of the Church's Quorum of the Twelve Apostles.

For Journalist Use Only

Takanori Mochizuki
Tokyo, Japan

Office: +81-3-3440-5689

Fax: +81-3-3440-2485


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