Comments about ‘Ask Angela: I'm embarrassed about my mission call to Utah, and so are my parents’

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Published: Tuesday, May 13 2014 1:25 p.m. MDT

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In, UT

Twenty years ago, I had a college roommate who was called to Detroit. He was so appalled that he actually threw the mission call down and left the room. I mean, who wants to serve in dumpy, crime-ridden, burned out Detroit. After a few days, he calmed down and determined that he would serve where he was called, and bloom where he was planted. Fast forward two and a half years--he and I were talking about our mission calls and he told me he loved his mission, he loved the people, and if he could turn back the clock and choose a different mission, he wouldn't change a thing. President Hinckley's dad gave him advice that is excellent for all of us, especially in this situation: "Forget yourself and go to work." If you take that advice, you will love your mission, love where you serve, and looking back, won't want to change a thing. Thank you for your faith and willingness to serve! Best of luck to you!

Salt Lake City, UT

Called 2 Serve,

Thank you for coming to our city! We look forward to you coming and serving here. We love you for committing to serve the Lord. The same honesty that you're showing now will serve you well as those you teach will feel of that honesty. We'll be glad that you are on Temple Square as we bring our friends there because we know your honesty and goodness will shine.

Midvale, UT

I LOVE your honest question! Please know that there are people here who need to be taught the gospel and who need your love! My husband is a convert who joined in another state, but who was first contacted by missionaries while living here in Utah. More than anything we wish we could contact those sweet sisters who first planted his seeds of faith.

Utes Fan
Salt Lake City, UT

Trust me. You WILL want to serve in Utah. I got called to a foreign speaking mission in Europe. My friends that were sent stateside were jealous, and I was on cloud 9. Well, two years later when I returned home, while I was glad I served in Europe, I was jealous of my stateside friends who served in the USA who had lots of success, while I had very, very little success. Not to mention that I spent 2 years knocking on thousands of doors speaking to atheists and others who were never interested. Also, learning the foreign language to me was extremely difficult, and I felt like the first 9 months of my mission was far less productive than I wanted it to be.

You will find lots of success in Utah. Trust me, you will appreciate this. While any mission is never easy, you will be glad for having served in Utah.

Brigham City, UT

Close friend of mine decided not to serve after receiving a call stateside. Sad. "Forget yourself and go to work."

Mike Johnson
Stafford, VA

My wife's niece is serving in the Salt Lake City East Mission. My parents and a sister and her family live in that mission. Our niece loves it. A few weeks ago, she indicated that she and her companion only had 30 discussions that week, which was the lowest number for a week on her mission. She has taught a number of people to progress into the waters of baptism and beyond.

There are people who need the Gospel everywhere.

Niskayuna, NY

My son is there now and has 90 days left. It was a great mission in a great area.

Boise, ID

What if you opened your mission call and found that (a) your mission was going to be three years instead of two, (b) you were going to a very small mission geographically not far from your home and family, (c) the mission was full of people who were very set in their ways, and (d) at the end of your mission you would be betrayed by one of your converts and killed. Would you still go?

liberty or ...?
Ogden, UT

I was hoping for a foreign mission at first as well. I remember holding my envelope and getting the feeling nope I am going to the Eastern states like New York or Pennsylvania. I ended up smack in the middle in New Jersey. I found my testimony in the leadrship of this church growing stronger after having been out 10 months I realized I had been sent exactly where I needed to be. You will never be sent where you want. You will be sent exactly where the savior needs you to be. I was blessed to recieve a confirmation from the spirit as my mission came to a close that I had found people I had promised in the Pre-existance I would find and share the gospel with. I remember them to this day.

Danbury, CT

Maybe you can get excited about this...Temple Square is full of sisters from other countries who are pioneers and great ambassadors for the Church. There's a story on the church website about the Rome Temple about how LDS church leaders went to the Italian minister over religious affairs in Rome to get a new level of recognition for the church. The official told them he had gone to SLC and visited Temple Square and was so impressed by the Italian Sister Missionaries that he would gladly endorse their request.

I invite you to write Angela when you return and tell us what you found in serving in SLC. I think you will have lots of amazing stories...

Pleasant Grove, UT

I was called less than 5 years ago to the Utah Salt Lake City mission. I had prayed to Heavenly Father to send me anywhere but Utah. I thought it would be a terrible experience. BOY WAS I WRONG!!!! Besides marriage, it was the most amazing experience of my life. It is a place where you can see how the Church runs on the upper levels, what 100% home teaching looks like, and find out that Utahns aren't weird. Most of all, your testimony grows because you see so many witnesses of the truth from the members. There are so many strong people in Utah and their influence will make a wonderful effect on the lives of the missionaries that serve. No one should ever feel jilted when they are called to serve somewhere like Utah or Idaho or Arizona.

B ob
Richmond, CA

Receiving a mission call isn't having winning lottery tickets called out; you don't win or loose.

Mapleton, UT

While serving a mission is a wonderful milestone in a young person's life, I think that the big production that has come to be expected in recent decades when "opening the call" is misguided. When I received my call many years ago, I was in college far away from home. My call came in the mail one day. I opened it. I saw where I was going and then I called my parents. Same deal with my siblings who served.

Nowadays, it is a huge emotional buildup. Everyone waits for the appointed hour. Family and friends gather. Speculations run rampant. Video cameras roll. Skype sessions spin up. Everyone waits. Suspense builds. Fingers and tweets at the ready. The envelope is opened and it is...Boise Idaho.

Can be anticlimactic.

Las Vegas, NV

Heavenly father has a plan for you by having you serve "wherever He wants you to go". about 20 yrs ago, my husband served his mission in my city (He served his mission in my city which was only 4 hrs drive from where he's from). He wasn't thrilled at first when he found out he was going to serve in a nearby city. But he committed that he is going to go wherever He wants him to go. If it weren't for his mission, we wouldn't have met and happily married for 16 years now. when you go on a mission, sometimes the soul that you are saving are your own soul.

Mont Belvieu, TX

I was called and served in the Spain, Barcelona mission. After I returned, I was able to serve as a tour guide at Temple Square (that was before it was staffed with sister missionaries). Both were wonderful experiences. In Spain we spent a great deal of time seeking out people who were prepared to hear the gospel. At Temple Square, they came willingly. You will have the benefit of the wonderful spirit that is always there. In the shadow of the beautiful temple you will share your testimony. As you do so, your love for the Savior will grow and your joy will be more than you could ever anticipate.

Sasha Pachev
Provo, UT

I served a mission in Salt Lake. It was a regular mission - we had baptisms, a lot of them. In fact, at the time we were the highest baptizing English speaking mission in the world. If you serve in a Utah mission, chances are you will see the rate of conversions comparable to Latin America, but you will do this with the convenience of living in the US. Perhaps missions in Utah are unique in that regard - I am not aware of anywhere else where this is happening. Blessings without sacrifice, almost - as long as you can get over "this is not a real mission, the mission field is somewhere out there" misconception.

Spanish Fork, UT

Are you going on a mission to see the world or to serve the Lord? As bishop in Utah, I can tell you we work closely with the Elders and Sisters that serve in our ward and stake and we keep them very busy. Sister Trusty, we happen to have a certain Elder Trusty serving in our area right now and we are very grateful for his service and great attitude. I very grateful he was called to serve here in Utah. The people in our neighborhood who have not yet found the gospel have the same need to have an opportunity to be taught the gospel as do people in "exotic" missions. I've worked with some extraordinary missionaries over the last few years, right here in Utah, and I've seen them have great success.

Sandy, UT

My son suffered from severe language disorders and had undergone language therapy for 11+ years in his childhood. He disclosed all of this on his mission application and indicated he did not want to learn a foreign language because of these difficulties. We about fainted when he opened his mission call and had been assigned to Santiago Chile. But he went forward with faith, eventually mastered the language, and had an incredible mission.

He just got married in March, and he and his wife now live in downtown Salt Lake City. They have just been called as Ward Missionaries, assigned to work with the full-time missionaries. They have had 5 convert baptisms since the first of the year in their ward. They and the full-time missionaries are struggling to keep up with all of the people who want and need to be taught the gospel. My son says he feels like he is on his full-time mission again.

I hope you get to work with my son and his wife. I have full confidence you will be an effective missionary. You will be blessed for your commitment and your honesty.

Mormon Ute
Kaysville, UT

As far as opening the call is concerned, I think that is a personal choice. I do think more is made of it than needs to be and for some it should probably be a more personal experience alone or just with close family. Too many are making it a huge social event that lends itself to embarrassment when raw, honest emotions come out. Some young people are excited no matter where they go. Others are not. Maybe those who are dreading going to certain places would be better off opening their calls alone or with their close family so they can deal with whatever emotions arise surrounded by those who are most understanding and then tell the world when they have gained their composure and a testimony of their call.

Provo, UT

I know beyond a shadow of a doubt you go where you are supposed to go. I served in New Zealand, and while it was not a high baptizing mission, we helped bring into the church a man who we believe was the first member of the church from his country- and besides it was New Zealand. My sons expected exotic and ended up less so, but with experiences they will treasure. Your call was an inspired one- let the Lord show you why!

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