Comments about ‘High school graduation different this year for many LDS students’

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Published: Saturday, June 1 2013 11:10 p.m. MDT

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Richmond, VA

It's my utmost prayer and desire that all those young people called are well prepared for the task at hand. Missionary work is very hard and requires total commitment, dedication, and a burning desire to serve the Lord even in the face of difficult opposition. It's the kind of work that tries men's soul let alone teenagers still in their youth. I know the Lord calls the weak things of the world to confound the wise but I had still witnessed a few young men who I thought were not quite prepared enough, eg...weak testimony, difficulty adjusting to missionary life, easily frustrated and want to go home, etc, etc. The work is not for the faint at heart so I hope the kids are made to be aware of that and not just be caught up in the excitement of the moment just because their friends are going. It's serious business and the Lord needs the best, the willing, and the totally committed! May our noble youths are made to understand that during their preparation. God bless the youth of this Church!

Mom Johnson
West Jordan, UT

I do not have mission age children, as they are all married, but I feel the energy, too. It's all encompassing. I am so happy that the youth are able to go after their time spent in Seminary. It gives them a great jump start. May God bless the Seminary teachers who inspire these young people by their teachings. And may God bless the missionaries so that they absolutely know the Lord is mindful of each one of them and they have a great purpose in His plan.

Vernal Mom
Vernal, UT

I love this article! Having a Sophomore Boy, we have seen a great change in our high school - especially the Senior boys. Where there used to be initiations, teasing, and even slight hazing in the three sports my son plays - we instead watched these fine young men take the younger boys under their wing and be great examples and mentors. As Seniors, they decided as a group that they did not want to treat the younger boys the way they were treated in the past. I'm so proud of them! Four boys who just graduated have already entered the MTC.

Cache county, USA

This is one of the greatest changes I've witnessed in my life. Super!

Dietrich, ID

President Monson said you don't have to go at 18 can. I do know one kid that finished one year of Schooling first. That said I think most will go at 18. For sisters I don't think every sister will go however a higher percentage will go than did before. Not all are fit for missionary service. For worthy and able men for the last several decades it has been expected though.

Our stake will have seminary graduation tonight and I would like to see how many of the Seniors already have mission calls. One kid in our ward does. Some kids may have had distractions between now and High School but will go now that may not have. Interesting how the Lord hastens his work.

Cache county, USA

Kids these days are more mature, and then much less mature then even 20 years ago. This new program will push parents to focus more on training there kids faster.

george of the jungle
goshen, UT

Necessity is the mother of invention. No jobs, can't afford collage. What's there to do.

james d. morrison
Boise, CA

remember, when they said that they could go at 18, they also said that not everyone should go at 18 and some might be better off waiting until they are 19.

orem, UT

George of the jungle - you are right, necessity is the mother of invention. In this self indulgent world older teenagers and young adults need to learn:
the world doesn't revolve around them
a good life takes hard work
there are people who are looking for more meaning in their lives,
appreciation for their parents,
to sacrifice their own interest for others,
to really cement what they believe,
to serve,
respect for authority,
respect and love of other cultures and people

Most return missionaries have learned these things - and more - at such a young age. Thank goodness for missions in the LDS church.

Westbank, BC

Out of the 18 year olds that have entered the MTC, nothing is mentioned about those who have been sent home because of immaturity or are missing family, specifically their mothers. I think there are definitely some 18 year olds that are ready, but probably just as many that are not. Same applies to the women
Mission presidents or senior companions, at the best of times, don't need to babysit these immature missionaries. This is a serious work. I've encountered too many immature missionaries that are an embarrassment.

Bountiful, UT

My son is graduating from high school and has received his mission call. He is excited and understands it is not going to be all fun. I served a mission many many many (really, many!) years ago. I never sugar-coated my mission experiences. It was a great experiences but it was not easy. I have told my son about my wonderful experiences and my miserable times when my testimony was rattled. I have another son who served a faithful mission and he has also been upfront about the good and tough times of being a missionary. My sons have also grown up knowing missions are not for everyone and a person who does not serve a mission is as valuable to this world and to God as those who do serve. In short, the only times my sons got in serious trouble in their lives was if they were disrespectful or did not stand up against bullies. I am not an active LDS person for a bunch of reasons, but I know the gospel is true and pray for success of those who serve an those who do not.

Cache county, USA

I hope money isn't the main reason, but we need way more elder couples I think. Lots of older couples waste so much time in retirement. They are bored. A mission is so rewarding.

Powell, OH

Most would be much better off going into the Military than the future sales training program that is Mormon missionary duty. The Nation would be much better off as well.

Those who are top athletes will lose out the most on fulfilling the potential they have in sport because of the two years off.

Mom of 8
Hyrum, UT

I find it fascinating that while much of our society is struggling with young adults "failing to launch," the church is "launching" its youth even earlier.

No sports, education, military training, or any other silly so-called equivalent training, as some here recommend, can compare to giving up everything that you are to become something even greater.

Sure, there will be problems with missionaries sent home early--that's always been the case. Every mission has the kid who wasn't ready, or is there because dad promised him a car when he gets home.

But having taught college freshmen for many years, I've also seen young men completely lose their ways in that limbo-stage between high school graduation and missions. Now, that wasted phase is eliminated, and I predict that in 5-10 years we'll see more young men ready to launch into a real world of adulthood, having gone straight to missions after high school.

Awesome thing that, being led by the Lord . . . He always gets it right.


This is a fantastic idea. My only concern is the sisters are close enough in age to the elders that there may be too much fraternization. The typical 21-year-old woman will not find an 18-year-old man interesting.


I must say that I am impressed with the maturity and commitment of young men I am aware of who are about to enter the mission field.

One young man, with whose parents my wife and I were friendly years ago but from whose neighborhood we had moved, recognized me at a store where he was then working. He came up to me and,after having confirmed I was who he though I was, excitedly informed me he was going to the MTC in a few weeks. The young man was courteous, genuine, and showed no signs at all of egotism. He was on fire with his call and wanted to share it with those he knew.

Another two young men at our ward came up to me, at different times,each telling me he was going to go on a mission. They had the same excitement and exhibited great maturity. There was no swagger or sense of self importance apparent, just enthusiasm that could hardly be contained. Two of the three told me where they were going, and one said he did not know but would go anywhere he was sent.

No room to talk of grandsons!

Bountiful, UT

Dektol, just like a mission is not for everyone, neither is the military. I bow to those who give us the freedom so others can serve missions. I hope I'm wrong, but I sense you are putting down missions. Both offer service. No one can ever take anything away from our brave men and women of the military. I also wish no one will take anything away from missionaries. After disasters, missionaries off thousands of hours of free assistance and service to people. Looks to me that everyone wins.

Twin Lights
Louisville, KY


Reference the military being a good option, that depends on the individual. It was not for me and certainly was not an option for my son (now on a mission).

The mission is not a sales training program. Yes, there are aspects of it that are that way. But there is serving, and studying, loving the people, teaching and learning yourself.

I had been to college for a year and my own experience was that college was a lot easier to handle when I returned. I knew how to study, how to organize my time (a lot better than I did before) and I had much more maturity than just two more years would indicate.

I don't know about top athletes - but there are really very few of them. Those I have known who had athletic ability were glad they went no matter how things worked out later regarding playing or scholarships.

Perhaps the most personally valuable attribute one gains on a mission is perspective. What is important and what is not. Returned missionaries are hardly perfect, but the mission does give them a leg up on life and its challenges.

City, Ut

Loved Vernal Mom's post.

Broken Arrow, OK

To go to a foreign mission you need to insure you complete all years of seminary. Most country's require this. What an inspired change. I can think of many young men that didn't go on a mission because of the timing. There is no question in my mind that the leaders of the church received revelation from God on the subject. I have worked with the youth for many years and know they are ready to go strait out of high school as long as they are participating in the youth program of the church. It is our responsibility as leaders to insure they complete the duty to god requirements and help them early in life.

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