Mormon missions

Missionaries from the Salt Lake City Mission sit in front of the temple during the Sunday morning session of 177th annual Conference of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints April 1, 2007.

Keith Johnson, Deseret News archives

According to Jan. 1, 2012 data released in the 2013 LDS Church almanac, there are approximately 14,441,346 members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Of these members, some 55,410 were serving full-time missions in 347 missions at the time of publication. In February 2013, the LDS Church released a list of 58 new missions, which boosted the total number of missions from 347 to 405.

Traditionally, LDS missionaries served at different ages depending on gender. For males, the mission age of eligibility was set at 19, while women served at age 21. Young men serve for two years, and women serve for 18 months.

However, during the Saturday morning session of the LDS Church's 182nd Semiannual General Conference, Oct. 6, 2012, President Thomas S. Monson announced changes to the church's missionary policy. According to the announcement, effective immediately, young men were eligibility to begin full-time missionary service following their graduation from high school, even if they were only 18 at the time, and young women were eligible to being service at age 19.

Changes tied the new missionary policies have been far-reaching, touching everything from an increase in missionary applications to tuition policies for Utah universities, college enrollment and even sports recruiting.

According to an Oct. 2012 Deseret News article, in the two weeks following the mission age policy changes, LDS missionary applications jumped 471 percent.

'Why I Believe' events give recent LDS converts a chance to share faith

Missionaries from across the Washington D.C. North Mission and recent converts to The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints gather on the third Sunday of each... Read more »

May 11, 2015

1 comment

Q-and-A with Kim Burningham, a true elder statesman

After all he's seen in his decades in politics, Kim Burningham has a lot to say about the status quo. Read more »

May 10, 2015


$15K reward in case of Mexican woman who disappeared in Utah

It has been three weeks since a 26-year-old Mexican woman who was studying in Utah mysteriously went missing, and now police are raising the reward for help finding... Read more »

May 7, 2015


LDS artist J. Kirk Richards says leaps of faith, prayer helped him find success

It’s taken more than a decade of leaps of faith, frugal living, earnest prayer and hard work, but things are working out for artist J. Kirk Richards. Read more »

May 3, 2015


'Come, Follow Me' graduates thrive in missionary service

A self-proclaimed "first graduate" of my "Come, Follow Me" Sunday School class just returned from serving a two-year mission with gratitude for how the program helped... Read more »

March 7, 2015

1 comment

Canadian hockey player Tyler Hansen gives up sport for LDS mission

Tyler Hansen, a defenseman for the Kamloops Blazers, has decided to leave hockey to serve an LDS mission. Read more »

May 2, 2013


  • Oldest first
  • Newest first
  • Most recommended
to comment

DeseretNews.com encourages a civil dialogue among its readers. We welcome your thoughtful comments.
About comments