News Story

Strengthening Congregations and Communities in Kiribati

Local senior couple complete missionary service, inspire others to also serve

Last month an important milestone was reached for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in the Republic of Kiribati when Elder and Sister Kitione completed their 18 month mission within their own country of Kiribati.  

The Kitione’s are long-time members of the Church in Kiribati and following Elder Kitione’s retirement from work, he and his wife decided to serve a mission—and they both had a strong desire to serve the Kiribati people.


President John Larkin of the Marshall Islands/Kiribati Mission spoke with the Kitione’s and suggested a Church Service mission would be ideal, and preparations were made almost immediately.

Their key assignment was to spend one month on each of the Kiribati outer islands to provide training for local Church leaders—both men and women.

Elder Kitione has served in a number of Church positions including as bishop and district president. In his professional career, Elder Kitione has been a teacher at the Moroni High School and an accountant in his own practice—so he was well-qualified to carry out his training role on the outer islands.

Sister Kitione has also served in many Church positions within the women's and youth auxiliaries.

Since Elder and Sister Kitione have pioneered missionary service for senior members in Kiribati, several other couples are now preparing to serve a similar mission in their own country. 

Currently there are over 22,000 Church members in Kiribati (21% of the total population), in two stakes and two districts.

The Republic of Kiribati is now ranked sixth in the world in terms of the number of Church members per capita.      


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