In The Field

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image from deseretnews.com

“Nobody told me my mission would be hard.”

My ears perked at this as I sat in a chapel filled with members. It was full to the point that there must be a baby blessing, homecoming, or farewell.

In this case, it was a farewell.

The speaker wasn’t the missionary-to-be. He was a member in my ward who had completed his mission some time ago.

As the speaker continued, relating the difficult parts of his mission—companions he didn’t get along with, people who were rude to him because his was a missionary—I wondered where he was going with this, especially during a farewell.

Then I understood. He wasn’t just sharing some of the difficulties he encountered on his mission; he was sharing how these experiences later strengthened his testimony or benefitted him in some way.

As I thought more about this, I decided to ask a few returned missionaries how they overcame difficulties on their mission and how it benefitted them later on.

Learning to Trust in the Lord

“Different things become hard at different times depending on where you are in your mission,” returned missionary Garrett Myers says.

READ FULL ARTICLE at LDS LIVING.

As I contemplated serving a mission, I made a mental list of all the fears that could possibly plight me and my fears nearly buried my desire to serve. The list included having to be with another sister 24/7, never having alone time, never taking a nap, and finding myself stuck in a place or situation that made me sad. I had this strange vision and expectation of tear-stained pillows and prayers every day—the picture of hardship. What I didn’t expect was how much joy I would find in the midst of great challenge.

My Mission President once said about missions, “If it is not trying, it is not complete.” That one line got me through my initial fears and helped me overcome the number one fear we all have—rejection.

Rejection is one thing you can absolutely count on when you serve a mission. But the secret is that rejection is not a bad thing, it’s just part of the experience that actually ends up blessing you in numerous ways. Here are some ways you can turn rejection into refinement:

1.Say a prayer with your companion for the person that rejected you. The natural man’s reaction to rejection is to get angry or annoyed at someone who has just treated you rudely, but pausing to pray for that person is a reminder that they are not just an obstacle disguised as an investigator but they are a child of God and they are loved, no matter how rudely they turned you and your message away. “But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you,” (Matthew 5:44).

2.Take a moment to invite the Spirit again. Christ said, “he that hath the spirit of contention is not of me,” (3 Nephi 11:29). Contention puts a pit in your stomach that makes it hard to teach any other person with the Spirit. It’s ok to take a moment of silence to read a few verses of the scriptures, pray, or share thoughts with your companion. Sticking to a schedule is important, but having the Spirit is more important than anything else.

Read the full article at She Traveled.

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A few weeks ago six missionaries were detained by local authorities in the Russia Samara mission. In light of the recent new law affecting missionaries in Russia, Church official Eric Hawkins released the following statement:

“Approximately two weeks ago, six volunteers from the Russia Samara Mission were detained by local authorities for a brief period, seeking information about the status of their visas. They were released few hours later. Three of the volunteers have been reassigned to another Russian-speaking mission outside of the country because of technicalities related to their visas.”

Russia recently enacted a new law aimed at combatting terrorism restricting the ability of religious organizations, like the LDS Church to preach anywhere but inside houses of worship.

Because of this law, missionaries in Russia are now actually called “volunteers” and the Church made an official statement, saying, “The Church will honor, sustain and obey the law. Missionaries will remain in Russia and will work within the requirements of these changes. The Church will further study and analyze the law and its impact as it goes into effect.”

This is an epic story about a rebellious missionary who was swallowed by a figurative “whale”, turned around and successfully finished his mission.

Enjoy the story!

*Watch videos about crazy/dangerous missionary stories.

*Watch videos about spiritual missionary stories.

*Watch videos for early returned missionaries.

Check out this new mission prep promo “What If” featuring JamesTheMormon. If you served a mission, you’ll totally be able to relate.

Derrick Trotman, a BYU student and former intern of Prepare to Serve produced this video in the style of Nike’s well-known Michael Jordan commercial “Maybe It’s My Fault“.

*Subscribe to JamesTheMormon’s YouTube channel.

via LDS Living Youtube Channel

Recently, an athlete in the CrossFit games, Mandi Janowitz, noticed three missionaries at her gym. As a joke she told the missionaries if one of them could do a full clean and jerk with a 315-pound bar then she’d convert. (A clean and jerk requires raising the bar from the ground to above your head in three movements: moving from a squat to a position where the bar rests at shoulder height then driving it above your head.)

One of the Elders stepped up to take the challenge:


 

CrossFit recently posted this video to their Facebook page, along with Janowitz’s praise for the missionaries:

“Three missionaries walk into the gym…
“One of them takes me up on my bet.
“This was awesome!”

In the comments the praise continued. Read all the commentary at LDS Living.

image from wikimedia commons

In the early 1900s, anti-Mormon hysteria reached a new pitch. The media railed against LDS missionaries, some even warning people that the missionaries were simply trying to convert or kidnap women to provide more wives for Mormon men back in Utah, despite the Church having ended the practice of plural marriage in 1890.

Because of this bias and false information, LDS missionaries were expelled from Germany in July 1910. At that same time, missionaries in England were experiencing increasing prejudice and aggression—mobs disrupted meeting, threw stones through windows, and even tarred and feathered one missionary.

This prompted the British Parliament to investigate the LDS missionaries, and they appointed Winston Churchill to head up the investigation. Churchill’s detailed report seems to have gone lost or forgotten until researcher Ardis Parshall recently discovered it, talking about it at length at the Mormon History Association conference.

“Churchill’s inquiry took several forms. First was an investigation of actual Mormon proselyting activities in England. How extensive were those activities? Who were the men who conducted them? What did they teach?” Parshall explains.

Full story at LDS LIVING >>

A man had an incredible vision of the world while hiking in Russia. In his vision he saw white men with nametags and blue books. After the vision he searched online to try to discover who were the white men with nametags.  After a while of searching the man came across Mormon.org and referred himself to the missionaries.

Such a cool story!  God is a God of miracles and can be in our lives, if we let Him. Enjoy the video!

*Watch the rest of Ryen’s Mission Interview.

*Watch a video about two missionaries in Africa whose prayer ended a drought.

*More resources about LDS Missions in Russia.

Muhammad Ali missionary
Image from KUTV.com

Did you know Mormon missionaries tracted at Muhammad Ali’s house? And did you know they got invited back several times to talk with the champ?

A former LDS missionary has quite the memory of Muhammad Ali.

Craig Proffitt says he and his mission companion visited the boxer three times while serving in the Indiana Indianapolis Mission in January 1992. The two were assigned to serve in the Niles, Michigan area. Ali lived in nearby Berrien Springs, Michigan.

“I always told everybody that was my claim to fame,” Proffitt told 2News from his home in California. “I met Muhammad Ali.”

READ FULL ARTICLE at KUTV.

Image via Missionary Geek

There’s a secret every missionary learns and mission prep just can’t teach it. It’s a super-awesome-secret that the best missionaries figure out pretty early on their missions, but most missionaries learn this secret through hard times, big trials, and rough patches. And I’m sure you’d prefer avoiding them. (You really would, I’ve been there).

Before I left on my mission I didn’t really get this. I thought I was a pro because I’d grown up with brothers and sisters and I was the oldest But until I’d lived with someone (and I don’t mean a one night sleepover with a few friends), I just didn’t get it.

So what is this one must-know secret every missionary should master before entering the mission field?

It’ actually really simple: companionship is all about communications, including missionary companions.

In this day of digital discussion, we’ve all found a way of communicating with people we’d rather not talk to face-to-face. We reply six hours later and give them the one-liner private message on Facebook, or in a text, or on iMessageor Viber.

But what do you do when this person is standing right in front of you? What happens when they do something you don’t agree with or like? What if they really irritate you? Like a companion who walks really slow, never lets you talk, makes you consistently late, or drinks that refreshing can of ice cold ginger ale you were saving in the back of the fridge as remedy for a bad day.

You can’t just ‘block’ them, hide them from your timeline, or ‘thumbs down’ their activities. It’s all face-to-face and sometimes that can be hard. Without talking, these negative feelings towards your companion can churn up and leave you without the spirit.

So, what’s the trick to better communication? Here are some tips to help you learn how to avoid some simple communication problems in the mission field, at home, or anywhere:

1. Seek to Understand

First try and understand that your companion might not have been brought up the same way as you and that they might do things differently to attain the same results. My mission president always told me. “Take the best and leave the rest”. Their culture, language and food maybe different than yours. It’s just different, not wrong. Appreciate their differences and try to learn from them.

2. Talk openly (Like the white handbook states)

Read full article at Mission Geek.