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It is impossible to travel to Africa and not return a better person, said Elder Neil L. Andersen after visiting the Church’s Africa Southeast Area this November.

“You see their enormous faith despite the challenges that beset them, and you realize their happiness without all the things you think will bring happiness,” said Elder Andersen of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles. “You sense a peace and a simplicity that you admire and envy.”

During the visit to South Africa and Zimbabwe from November 9–18, Elder Andersen addressed members, held leadership meetings, participated in an area review, and spoke at a mission presidents’ seminar. He also met with Zimbabwe Vice President K. Mohadi.

The Church’s Africa Southeast Area has a membership of 226,000 with 17 missions and 735 congregations. The only temple in the area—the Johannesburg South Africa Temple—was dedicated on August 24, 1985. However, two additional temples—the Durban South Africa Temple and the Kinshasa Democratic Republic of Congo Temple—are under construction, with two additional temples announced for Nairobi, Kenya, and Harare, Zimbabwe.

“What a marvelous blessing the people of South Africa and Zimbabwe have been given to hear the Lord’s Prophet declare that their countries would each have a new temple, in addition to the currently operating Johannesburg Temple,” said Elder Terence M. Vinson of the Presidency of the Seventy, who accompanied Elder Andersen on the trip.

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