Mormon church announces closure of missionary training centers in Chile and Spain

Mormon Missionary Training Center in Madrid.

The Mormon church announced Thursday that it plans to close two missionary training centers — one in Santiago, Chile, and the other in Madrid, Spain — in January.

A news release from The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints said ecclesiastical leaders “continue to seek the best use of resources worldwide according to the needs and demands of each area.”

Starting in January, missionaries who would have attended either of these centers will be trained at one of the remaining 13 missionary training centers around the world, including the flagship facility in Provo.

Both training centers are in church-owned buildings that also serve other church functions, such as temple patron housing, and the church will decide the best use of this space in the future, according to the release.

Word of the closures comes in the wake of recent revelations that a former president of the Provo MTC has admitted to sexual misconduct with female missionaries in the 1980s.

MTCs are boot camps, of sorts, where Mormons undergo intensive language study and gospel grounding before shipping out to stations around the globe in an effort to gain converts. About 71,000 LDS missionaries are now serving throughout the world.