Comments about ‘Mormon church's Provo MTC: Exclusive look of the largest missionary training facility in the world’

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Published: Sunday, March 20 2011 9:00 p.m. MDT

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California Steve
Hanford, CA

Anybody remember the old mission home in downtown SLC? That's where I went. Five days and it was off to Australia. Never set foot in Provo. But we got to hear Legrand Richards speak.

logan, utah

Come on people...Is it possible to have a thread that is free BYU sports???
Just when I was basking in the spirit of the article.

BTW, we checked in to the Old Mission home before being transferred down to the LTM. We were told that we were the last group that would go through the SLC MH. Great memories. Loved LeGrande Richards' unstoppable monotone zeal in his talks. Does anyone remember seeing him slap away the hand of one of the 1st Prescy. tugging on his pant leg when they were trying to get him to stop talking in conference?

Layton, UT

My MTC experience wasn't too bad. Not great, but not too bad. My subsequent experience in Basic Training and Technical School thereafter had in many ways more of a deep impact though. That's just my take. All of it really is dependent upon how a young Elder of Sister approaches the experience. Nonconformists probably have a difficult time, and those who aren't socially active may suffer as well seeing as they are now thrust into a setting that requires much interaction with others.
My son has absolutely no inclination to serve a mission and I will never, ever make it an issue with him. We've said that it would be nice but ultimately the decision is his and his alone. Period. And yes, the cultural aspect of being a Utah LDS member and not serving is entirely an animal in and of itself.

Ephraim, UT

I remember the MTC very well. I have a good story for it as well. I entered on February 2nd (Groundhog Day). It was the movie to a tee. Every day the exact same as the day before. I loved the food, the Spirit enveloping us, seeing 2 or 3 of my cousins in there at the same time.

Saint George, UT

The greatest thing I ever heard about the MTC went like this: "It was a great place - not as spiritual as home - but a very good place"

Ted H.
Midvale, UT


I don't blame your lack of faith, it indeed has been a long drought. And just as in life sometimes our lack of faith gets smacked....... I simply wanted to remind you your new favorite team got worked.

And hopefully history DOES repeat itself this year, with a trip to the Elite 8. And hopefully its not another 30.

Roy, UT

At the SLC MH, 1970, I was not enjoying the experience, but really loved my time in the LTM of Laie, Hawaii to study Japanese. It is amazing at how a soul can be so lonely, feel so isolated, lost, even unimportant while surrounded by Christian missionaries in training...even missionaries need love, a friend, some tangible human soul to sincerely care about their success. I am grateful for the Hawaiian LTM, but have a feeling I would not have liked the Provo MTC. The article needs to emphasize the gifts of the Holy Ghost supercede any technological approach to learning and speaking a new language, succeeding in a totally new culture and environment.

Fresno, CA

While I learned a lot in the MTC, I found the actual mission field to be a far better experience. The Elders were A LOT more comfortable around the sisters by that time and stopped trying to A) Talk down to us or B) Avoid us and treat us as temptresses. Not all Elders had hang-ups with the sisters, but enough that it made the MTC a pretty miserable experience for me.

It is nice to see that the daily regimen has changed. It seems more like the actual schedule they will follow while out in the field.

Kyle loves BYU/Jazz
Provo, UT

I taught at the MTC for three years before moving on after graduating last April. I have great memories of the MTC and it is a very special place to me.

As a missionary I found it difficult even though I was well prepared. Having three older brothers helped me to be somewhat familiar with what goes on there. I had a very difficult time with my companion but still enjoyed the devotionals and weekly temple trips very much.

As a teacher I worked very hard to make sure my missionaries not only learned the language and how to teach, but learned how to love others and become selfless representatives of Christ. I'm sure I learned far more teaching the missionaries than they learned from me. There are so many amazing young men and women serving missions! It was a pleasure to meet and try and help so many of them.

The MTC has made so many efforts to make the MTC experience more effective in preparing missionaries. Language learning is focused on teaching and teaching is focused on helping people instead of just sharing a nice message.

Still the MTC is only what missionaries make it.

Holladay, UT

No matter what you do in life, the experiences that we have with whatever we choose to do is all about our attitudes, and what we make of it. The MTC and my mission were by far the most spiritual, and incredible experiences of my life. I would never have left my mission if there was some way I could have stayed. The other missionaries that I met in the MTC are brothers to me and some of my hero's. How grateful I am that I was able to be a part of the greatest work on this earth.

Maricopa, AZ

The comments above remind me of President Uchdorf's message in this month' Ensign.
Those who look for long enough for negativism will always find it.
Those who look for the good, will always find it.
No one says a mission is fun or easy.
My mission 35 years ago in Central America was very rugged and rustic
compared to the conditions of today.
Most missionaries go for the right reason.
Those who don't, will never feel it was a worth while experience unless they
at some point "choose" to do the Lord's will and not theirs.
It's all about what you put into it and what you're willing to give up for those two years.

I absolutely LOVED my mission and can't wait to go again.

Riverton, UT

You get out of it EXACTLY what you put into it...nothing more, nothing less.

Idaho Falls, ID

I spent 3 months in the mtc during the last 3 months of 78. I was sent 3 days before the Utah deer hunt. I can remember the pain of watching 4x4s driving by with hunter orange. Then came the operation a week before I was to go to Spain. My foot became infected (severely) and I was about to call it quits and go home. Then some BYU chorallers(sp) stop by my room and sang a couple of christmas songs. I would like to thank them. Hard thing for an Aggie to do. I ended up in California instead of Spain. Being shot twice, spit on, beer bottles thrown at me were the fun and memorable points of my mission.

Salt Lake City, ut

MTC is there basically to weed out those who arent ready. It was fun and considered it good practice before we got the real thing. Loved my mission, I think about it everyday.

Stockton, UT

"If they don't go, they get badgering from church fellows, relatives, parents; "when are you going to go", "why aren't you going"..."

This is an interesting claim: that 19 year olds might make major life choices based not on their own personal interests or best judgment, but out of "badgering" from others.

I wonder how those who make such a claim feel about 18 year olds being allowed to join the military, sign legally binding contracts, and voting. Are these decisions being made of their own free will? Or are 18 year olds subject to "badgering" in terms of educational and career choices, signing contracts, and even how they cast their vote?

If 19 year olds are going on 2 year LDS missions for reasons other than their free choice, we can only imagine what 18 year olds are doing relative to casting votes, using tobacco, signing contracts, and joining the military.

Layton, UT

My experience at the LTM was "unforgettable", mainly because I entered in November 1963, with a call to one of the Mexican missions and eventually ended up (with five other Elders) going to the Central American Mission. Obtaining a Mexican visa was at times challenging, in those days, for missionaries called to serve there. After "23 weeks" at the LTM waiting for a visa to Mexico, and not knowing if or when a visa was forthcoming, the six of us were offered the opportunity to serve in another mission. ... and yes, did we ever jump at the chance to finally leave the LTM. By that time we were living in one of the homes on 900 East (there should be a photo included of those homes). After the initial 12 weeks of training at the LTM there was no formal program for those waiting on visas. Without a doubt, my time there, was MORE than I expected!

Salt Lake City, ut

When I was 19 I made the choice to serve because I had a testimony of it. Yes members ask 19 year olds if they are going constantly, yes they do strongly encourage it, but no they dont force anyone to serve. I was grateful for those who encouraged me but most grateful for Heavenly Father giving me a chance to be an instrument in His hands. I wouldnt trade my experiences and friendships on my mission for the world. Yes it was hard but nothing thats worthwile in this life comes easy. Like someone said above you get what you put into it. If you are not ready to serve at 19 please dont. Gain a testimony of it first, make prayer a priority asking God what you should do. Missions are hardwork but in the end one of the greatest blessing of your life. Dont let the opportunity pass you by.

Provo, UT

I also went to the SLC Mission, second week in October, 1978 and we were told we were the next to the last week before it closed. Meals in the 'White Tower', two sessions in the SLC Temple and a meeting in the Solemn Assembly Room, the President forgetting that those going across the International Date Line were leaving a day early, and a bunch Elders Panicked because they still had stuff to get at Mr. Mac- the time rushed by and then you are in the field, having to learn while you go. My sons were far more prepared when they arrived in their field of labor. The MTC is not perfect, but neither are the leaders and the missionaries blessed to live there for a short while. Think it's not a very special place- try being in the same room with over 200 voices singing 'Called To Serve' and the spirit just en-robes you like warm chocolate.

Tooele, UT

Don't drink the Orange Juice! Bad things man, bad things.

Vancouver, WA

I mentioned my experience was tough but wonderful. Here are some experiences that stood out.

1. I was the first in my family to serve a mission. I told all my friends I would call them and let them know how I was doing. What!? Surprise, there are no phones!

2. My assigned companion didn't show up at the MTC and I was placed as an orphan in a three-person companionship, then called as DL.

3. I had always been in church choir and my mom played the organ. At the first devotional, the missionaries all stood up and began singing a song I had never heard before in my life - Called To Serve - which wasn't in the old hymnbook! Right then I wondered if I was raised in the same church as everyone else?? (I was not from Utah)

4. One day when I was a bit frustrated, another missionary said "Elder, you can't have the Spirit with that attitude" which bugged me. I responded curtly "I did something wrong this morning and the Spirit left then! He's not coming back till tomorrow!" :)

Man, what great memories!

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