Comments about ‘LDS Church's Provo MTC will expand south into BYU campus’

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Published: Thursday, Nov. 14 2013 6:35 p.m. MST

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Lancaster, CA

This whole process of changing the age was done with absolutely NO planning. Then, with the surge of missionaries, the Church has had to figure stuff out piecemeal. My daughter was in the Wyview apartments for her MTC experience. It was rather pathetic accomodations. Now, the Church is taking away more student housing. Provo is becoming such a mess as it is and real challenging for students to find housing. And then, the Church is reacting to a temporary surge of missionaries. They have now captured the 3 additional years of missionaries. I'm betting the numbers taper off this next year of those going out. Unfortuantely the missions are inundated and there is not much work to do in some of the areas because they have become so small. This whole situation could have been planned much better and executed much more efficiently. How sad it would be for the students who have to leave Wyview to make room for the additional space at the MTC, then to have the MTC underutilized in the future. My husband always says "proper prior planning prevents poor performance." I think this is "poor planning and performance" on the part of the Chruch.

Woodland Hills, UT

So I am just wondering, who would have more facts to base decisions on, Milton or the LDS church? Humm

Lindon, UT

When the Lord reveals his will to the Prophet, he does not tell him how he wants it done. He can reveal some of that by answering prayers, but he expects the Prophet and the Church to figure things out. The Church is trying to be aware of the feelings of the people in the neighborhood around the MTC, and have come up with another plan, using resources they already have. It will all be worked out, and, we will see that it will a better situation for BYU, the MTC, and the neighborhood. We just need to have faith in our Heavenly Father and His servants, our Prophet and the 12, etc. It's not a real good idea to be critical of the Church. Let's support them instead.

Taylorsville, UT


"This whole process of changing the age was done with absolutely NO planning."

In August of 2011, the church announced plans to build a new larger MTC building to be completed in the fall of 2013. However, after complaints from neighbors, the church saw the need to withdrew their plans. That decision came at the same time as the announcement to lower the age was made. I believe that, while they underestimated the reaction of the neighbors, plans were in place for the lowering of the age and the increase in missionaries that it would bring. They knew what the needs by this time would be and were prepared for it. Should the Lord have had them delay the announcement because of this?

I'm sorry that your daughter's MTC housing experience was in "rather pathetic conditions." I hope she was called to serve where she could experience better living conditions, as this is not always the case.

In addition, perhaps the student housing challenge could be relieved if BYU would recognize they are dealing with young adults who have signed an honor code, and not require them to live in BYU contracted housing.

Cedar City, UT

Don't worry mhilton. It will all work out in the end.

Magna, UT


You stated, "Unfortunately the missions are inundated and there is not much work to do in some of the areas because they have become so small." I will respectfully disagree with your sentiment. I live within the SLC West mission where it is the goal for every ward to have its own set of full time missionaries. Currently, we have 5 sets in our 7 unit stake and the effect has been truly miraculous. We've housed the missionaries for 4 years now so we know first hand how they perform.

Much of the work they do is service and they teach continually the less active as well as those who are investigating the church. They rarely come home before 9:00 PM. Convert baptisms have increased and families are going to the temple for the first time and many are returning after long periods away.

You also stated, "This whole process of changing the age was done with absolutely NO planning." How wrong you are. The SLC West mission has been a model for 3 years and 2 of those years were before the age change. I know because I have been in the counsels.

Magna, UT

@ mhilton continued.

You stated: "My daughter was in the Wyview apartments for her MTC experience. It was rather pathetic accommodations." I believe its all in the perspective but is it your perspective or your daughters perspective? My first mission experience was 5 days in the old school turned dorms north of the Church Office Building. I was not a fan of bunk beds but I survived and thrived all the same. There were many pathetic accommodations I had to endure in the "mission field" but every one of them, is now in retrospect, a choice memory.

One of my favorite early church stories is that of Heber C. Kimball and his companions prone and sick in the wagon as they were leaving Nauvoo and their families for missions, leaning on their elbows, removing their hats and shouting Hurrah for Israel. I echo that shout.

The planning for hastening the work in our day was completed before the foundation of the world and included working around the opposition to the MTC in Provo Utah.

Orem Parent
Orem, UT


When the Lord reveals the brethren follow.

Provo is anything but a mess. There is more student housing than they know what to do with.

My son was at Wyview and loved his MTC experience there. He said the food situation could have been better (he was there in the first couple of weeks even before the cafeteria was finished) but said he loved the set up. It wasn't crowded, nice apts. I guess it is what you make of it.

I don't know of many areas without much work due to the size of the area. That is pretty much a myth except maybe here in Utah. But even in our stake here in Orem, they are finding plenty to do. Teaching part member families or just strengthening the wards they work with.

By the way, this isn't a "temporary surge". It is a great time to be a missionary and a great time to be a member of the Lord's church.

Liberal Ted
Salt Lake City, UT

@ mhilton
Lancaster, CA

Have you been there for the planning? If you paid attention the church changed the school in Mexico to an MTC. Have been expanding other MTC's around the world. I know for a fact they have been working on plans on the Provo MTC for some time now. The first plan was tossed when residents voiced concern on the height. Yes that is a set back. You can't always plan every single possible scenario. Otherwise the people in the Philippines wouldn't have been sitting where the storm surge was.

I'm not sure what you're talking about as far as a temporary surge of missionaries. It was just a generation ago, that a few thousand missionaries were out. Ten years ago it was around 40-50 thousand. Now it's around 80 thousand. Ten years from now, who knows....

Why don't you go ahead and give us your projected numbers. Since you seem to see into the future.

Poor planning is the obamacare website and obamacare itself. They knew they wanted 30 million plus people to sign up, and made it to accommodate a few thousand.


I've long wondered if the neighbors felt guilty that they had raised protests about the 9 story building which was in the works long before the age change? That created a waste of time and money for the Church and created considerable hassle for people involved in the patchwork housing accomodations. The neighbors concerned about their unobstructed views of the mountain sounds pretty shallow and even selfish in comparison, don't you think?

mhilton, I don't know how you know that there isn't enough work to do because out here in the "mission field" (actually I reside in a different mission but this is true for both) we see lots of investigators and interest in general. I've yet to meet a missionary that is bored or feels their efforts are wasted! Besides, missions are only about the people missionaries teach; there is real maturation that happens for those missionaries as they serve selflessly.

Liberal Ted
Salt Lake City, UT

Ross Andersen (Rocky) the former mayor of SLC, lectured the church about a glass sky bridge between City Creek.

I wonder why that same mayor didn't lecture his own government and the County when they built a solid bridge over the road for the Salt Palace. That obstructed the view of the mountains more than the smaller glass bridge....

If that's the hardest thing your daughter has endured, then she's doing just fine.

Pickerington, OH

Mhilton - we have three sets of missionaries in ONE ward. Every ward in our stake here in central ohio has at least 2 sets of missionaries. There is plenty of work to do. And missionaries shouldn't expect 5 star accomodations while training to be a missionary or while in the mission field.


I thought the MTC was overcrowded when I was there all the way back in 1998, and now with the upsurge in the number of missionaries, yes it will be more crowded. On the other hand, I don't know why they aren't building more MTCs around the world. For example, why don't they have an MTC on the European continent? Certainly there's plenty of work to be done there, and if the missionaries coming from the European nations could go there somewhere closer to home, that would be a great boon to the missionary effort in Europe. Two European MTCs - one in Frankfurt and one in Kiev - would certainly lead to a rise of new missionaries in that part of the world, no?

us, CA

"The neighbors concerned about their unobstructed views of the mountain sounds pretty shallow and even selfish in comparison, don't you think?"

Not everybody in the world or in Utah or even in Provo is LDS. The goal is to coexist peacefully, not to cram down the throats of the non=believers what the church wants no matter what. To expect everything and everyone to bow down and go the way of the LDS church with no give and take is what is really shallow and selfish. If the Muslims wanted to build a 20 story mosque in the same area would you be so vehemint in your unconditional support? I don't even hesitate when I type a resounding NO on your behalf. In the end the church has brought down the size of that building in question and everyone lived and is still breathing. The building has gone on with a few changes and both sides giving a little works out just fine in the long run and both sides have emerged victors. The mature POV accepts that both sides of an issue can meet in a happy middle...the church is not sacrasanct in all things.

Medical Lake, Washington

I've heard it said that -

Constant criticism of church counsel
Often leads to certain calamity.

My experience from the past suggests to follow the Brethren and things work out. It will be fun to see how this project is carried out.

Castleknock, Dublin

Although the MTC at the Preston Temple in England is not "on the European continent" or continental Europe, it is available for missionaries "coming from the European nations" if they are serving in Europe.
When I was called to serve in Scotland, back in 1990, I was sent to the small MTC at the London Temple. What I would like to see in Europe, in a coming day, is some sort of European BYU and a sustained rise in the number of member missionaries in Europe generally.
The Book of Mormon shows that the pre-millenial growth of the church, while taking place in all the world, is only the beginning to the work that will be accelerated during his 1,000 year reign.

Salt Lake City, UT


There are 15 MTCs throughout the world. One is located I England, and another in Spain. This comment page doesn't allow me to post a link to the church's MTC page where all 15 are listed, and you can learn about each MTC. At the Madrid MTC, there are programs for Spanish, Portugese, Italian, French, and Russian speaking missionaries. At the Preston, England MTC there are programs for English and German speaking missionaries. Also, a ESL program. It's pretty clear that the church is expanding the footprint of MTCs.


@RBN -

Oh, that's right. I overlooked the one in Spain. And I didn't realize that the Spain MTC covered Russian speaking missionaries and the Preston MTC covered German speaking missionaries.

Do we know what the visa requirements are between Spain and Russia? My wife is Russian, and I just remember before we were married, we were trying to find some place where we could meet in person where neither one of us needed a tourist visa. It seemed like I needed a tourist visa just to set foot in Russia, and she would have needed a tourist visa for most of the other countries in Europe. We finally settled on Ukraine as a country that would accept both of us just for a week. :-)

If Spain does have a visa requirement for citizens of Russia, then that would seem to make more of an argument for an MTC in Kiev - especially with tightened restrictions against North American missionaries in countries from the former Soviet Union.

Glendale, AZ

Re: mhilton's post

Murmur, murmur, murmur, murmur...

Sure takes a lot of audacity to say that there was (all caps) no planning on the church's part for the new missionary ages. Really quite absurd, actually. There are not many organizations on the planet that plans as well as the church does. The Prophet and the Quorum of the Twelve do not plan? Oh, please...

Not enough work for the missionaries to do? In my home ward, they added a companionship, in the ward that shares the same building, they added TWO companionships, in the YSA ward in which I serve, they added a sister companionship--and the work has exploded!

To the mhilton's of the church who want to continually complain and find fault about any aspect about the new age limits of missionaries: The Lord knows what He is doing. Your murmurings are merely a mortal, miniscule, and myopic viewpoint of His vision.

Riverton, UT


There are pilot programs being tested in different areas for missionary preparation. I knew a missionary couple getting ready to go to Germany in the summer 2012 (before the age change). They were doing language training via Skype with an MTC instructor prior to going to Provo, then spent less time at the MTC.

Interesting that you can speak for all the missions world-wide, that they are so inundated and there isn't much work to do. Missionaries are way more creative than that. I served in a very low baptizing mission and often we had to find things to do. I don't think there is one spot in the world that will refuse willing hearts and hands to pitch in and help with anything.

Have some faith in the leaders. They know what they are doing, and we certainly don't see the whole picture like they do. I've never been disappointed in how they manage logistics, organization, and planning. I've even seen critics of the church be complimentary in this aspect.

I hope your daughter has a great mission!

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