Amen to that my brother. I agree with you completely. I have three son's and I
will NOT put the kind of presure on them to be a missionary that was put on me
as a young man. I am raising them to become good men, good husbands, good
fathers, and good productive mebers of society. I served an honorable mission
and I have since served 15 honorable years in the USAF. My service to my country
has been by far more challenging and fulfilling.
I am a female convert. Immediately upon finding out about missions, I wanted
to go. I really felt like I owed something to God for the Atonement of His Son
and for bringing me this great gospel. I love the church. I love the story of
the restoration. It is very tender to me. I was more than happy to serve. I
loved talking to people and helping them gain a testimony.God gives
us guidelines and rules. Young men are told to prepare themselves to serve. I
think the problem is many young men don't invest in preparation and therefore
cheat themselves out of the experience they could have had. I knew a young man
who had no clue why he was even out there, (his words, not mine!) He went
because his dad said he would not pay for school and Suzie Q wouldn't marry him
if he didn't go. He had never read the BoM and had no idea what was in it. He
was challenged to read, he gained a great testimony and became a fully
functioning, baptizing, great missionary. He realized he should have prepared
earlier. Great would have come sooner with prior preparation.
Is he nice to his mom?"A better question would be: "Is his father
nice to his mom."
"Judge not least ye be judged" I wonder what will actually happen
when faced at the judgment bar of God and all of you who are supposed "faithful"
members of the church who have spurned those who didn't go on a mission, or who
circumstances caused them to get a divorced, or have various disabilities or
come from a large, but poor family, etc, etc. The members of the
church in this state have much to answer for before God. I am just interested in
what their reactions will be; "Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name?
and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful
works?"And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: Depart
from me ye that work iniquity." Mathew 7: 22-23
The reason many have issues with members of the church is this kind of
treatment. Educate those in and around you to behave towards those who have not
served missions the same way they treat those who have. Is that not how our
Lord and Savior would have us treat one another? Just because a person doesn't
serve a mission doesn't mean there is serious sin involved.I agree
that young men should be counseled to prepare, while young, to serve a mission
for the Lord. If they choose not to do so, it is their choice and they must
deal with any consequences from said choice. Some of those will live happy,
full lives and walk among us in our wards as bishops, stake presidents, general
authorities, and more. Some will digress and go down sinful roads and will have
difficult lives full of misery. The rest are likely normal folk just like the
rest of us!
The message is directed to young men who have a mission before them.They
should be encouraged and guided into that path of service and growth.Sending mixed signals, that "so-and-so did not serve a mission and turned out
just fine"; is not helpful or instructive. It only assuages the evidently deep
raw resentments of nonRMs over their perceived crummy treatment. It is the old:
"don't have sex but if you do use a condom" line of persuasion. Young men
deserve undivided positive counsel and support. It is not about you, Bro
"brooding nonRM"; it is about the young man with that choice before him.Of
course some men who do not serve missions live full lives.Some fornicators
repent and live full lives. Some substance abusers repent and live full lives.
Some dabble in homosexuality and repent and live full lives.Do we then
counsel youth "the gospel is not a one-size-fits-all doctrine, and it is not the
right choice for everybody"?Of course not.We diligently and
uncompromisingly teach them the right thing to do. If they make a mistake we
help them recover and move on.Sorry if your Ward treats you
crummy.They shouldn't.Move on.
Some of you people need to get a grip. I did not serve a mission. I served my
country in the US Air Force when my friends were all on missions. I also got
married in the temple, put my wife through college, graduated from college
myself, retired from the military after 20 years, and provided a good life for
myself and my family. I am pretty tired, though, of being treated
like a second-class citizen in my ward by all the holier-than-thou men who did
serve missions. I can hold my head up high and know that my I am an active,
worthy member, and don't their approval to be a good member of this church. I know many RMs who have cheated on their wives, committed crimes
against society, and have treated others despicably throughout their adult
lives. My younger brother, a RM apostatized from the churh when he was 35. So to all you judgmental people out there, get a life and take care of
yourselves and quit worrying about who around you is a RM and who is not.
The post you find mean spirited does not differentiate between full or part or
service missions; they are all missions. The posts points out that there is an
honorable mission opportunity for any and everyone. The post refutes the notion
that some people are not "right" for a mission, whatever that means.The
post's message is hopeful and encouraging to every LDS young man. Thank you for
your suggestion but I shall not be finding shame in it. Have a nice evening.
seize the opportunity: "Though it is a great challenge and some young men will
have to stretch their native abilities more than others to succeed any young man
who makes it his goal and works toward it can succeed and his life will be
greatly blessed for it. There are various types of service available for young
men depending on their abilities."I have no idea what you mean by
"depending on their ability" but it is clearly offensive to those who don't
serve or who are forced to serve part-time or service missions. Why
don't you say "there are full-time mission opportunities available for those who
don't have the ability to serve part-time service missions?" What about those
who don't succeed in a full-time mission? Do you tell them that it wasn't their
"goal" and that they didn't "work" towards it?You should be truly
ashamed of your post.
"LDS missions are not a one-size-fits-all event, and they are not the right
choice for everybody."I disagree.All young men in the
Church are counseled to prepare for and serve missions.Though it is
a great challenge and some young men will have to stretch their native abilities
more than others to succeed any young man who makes it his goal and works toward
it can succeed and his life will be greatly blessed for it.There are
various types of service available for young men depending on their
abilities."I will go and do the things which the Lord hath
commanded, for I know that the Lord giveth no commandments unto the children of
men, save he shall prepare a way for them that they may accomplish the thing
which he commandeth them."
I should have clarified more by saying that it is the title I'm critical of, not
the mission itself. I fully appreciate that many men, but not all as you claim,
do go for the right reasons and grow both spiritually and personally. But that
is not a trait of missions alone, a man who does not go also can grow in those
ways.A problem does exist in Mormon culture when former missionaries
enjoy an exalted position merely because they went.You said,
"certainly there are young men...(who) did not serve missions and went on to
have fulfilled lives."Yes, examples include Elders Uchtdorf, Eyring,
and Monson.My whole point, and I'm sure the letter writer's, is that
it's the title that means nothing. Yes, returned missionaries CAN be good men,
but so can those who are not returned missionaries.Judging someone
based on the title alone is folly.
a touching story, if true."as the title means nothing as to the
quality of the man""solely based on the fact he lacks a title which means
nothing."Serving a two year mission serving your fellow man doesn't
qualify one for Sainthood, granted, but it is more than "nothing".
Sourgrapes?It does say something about a young man's discipline,
obedience, willingness, among other traits. All good starting points.And
everyone who serves a mission will tell you that they grew greatly from the
experience, and are much better for having done so.Certainly there
are young men who had the opportunity but did not serve missions and went on to
have fulfilled lives. Anecdotally.But, I would repeat, if a young
man had an opportunity to serve a mission and did not I would be very concerned
for him and for my daughter.
If you have not served a mission (which I have) I really don't think anyone
really knows how difficult a mission can be and no it is not for everyone. I can
recall a few who should have never been out there. If you have not served one
you do not know what it is like and it is not an easy thing to do. I do not
regret my mission. I married a returned missionary and he is wonderful but I
knew him before and loved him before his mission. It comes down to free agency!
No one has the right to judge anyone whether or not they served! We don't know
why they chose not to and we are not to judge anyways. Love one another y'all!
I went on a mission and I will never regret having done it. The things I
learned while on a mission gave me a firm foundation to start my life as an
adult and of course it strengthen my own personal testimony after all the years
of piggy banking on my parents testimonies.Having said that, I also
understand that there is a need to have balance and not go too extreme on
certain principles. I for one don't have a "holier than thou" attitude towards
my friends and relatives who did not serve missions and I'm not going to rub it
in their faces that they need to serve. We all have our Free Agency...
Actually,I am one of the many men who are fully active in the
Church, have a testimony, was married in the temple to a beautiful woman, and
all while not having served a full mission.What a shame the young
women of this Church are facing if they isolate potential partners to those of
RMs, as the title means nothing as to the quality of the man. And what a shame
if parents judge a man as being of lesser quality solely based on the fact he
lacks a title which means nothing.Instead of putting expectations on
all young men that just going is what's important, and that the title somehow
sets you above others, perhaps it would be better to actually encourage men to
go for the right reasons, and respecting them if they feel differently.The writer of this letter is spot on.
....young man, is get off you fanny; prepare and serve a mission.Don't
spend the rest of your life regretting a poor decision.
a sad story, if trueSure, lots of RMs are jerks and worse.Limiting your consideration to RM (along with other criteria) is just a
STARTING point.You will still winnow the group down a lot more.However if you consider the universe of RMs vs nonRM you're going to have
better odds with the RM group.And I would repeat, if a young man had
an opportunity to serve a mission and did not I would be very concerned for my
Be warey of the RM. I am an RM and I was excommunicated a few years ago. I too
am glad that I served but just because I am an RM does not mean that I was the
best choice out there. To tell you Daughter that she should only marry and RM is
really handcuffing her to an inflexable gidline. You would be better off help
I was a bit reluctant about serving a mission, but I'm glad I went. I learned
things that I would have had difficulty learning anywhere else.That being
said, many returned missionaries are still idiots or jerks, and many who don't
serve (or who don't complete) their missions are excellent and mature people.
If I was a young lady looking for a spouse I would have a checklist of
qualifications my potential beaus would have to meet before I would even
consider them.Is he nice to his mom?etcetcOn the
list would be "Did he serve a mission? (assuming he was a member at an age when
he could have)Of course there are RMs who are jerks and remember the
list is just a starting point but serving a mission would definitely be on the
list.Our Heavenly Father has given us everything we are blessed
with and and the Savior has done more for us than we can comprehend.In return they ask very very little.Tithing Obey the
commandments (which instantly brings us joy and happiness and blessings)Serve a mission (if you are a young man)If a young man is
unwilling to respond to the call from his Savior who has done everything for him
to give a measly two years service then I would wonder how he would treat me and
our children.What kind of husband and father would he be?Yes.A mission would definitely be on the list.
has been serving a mission his whole life.
Several years ago, I was on a date with a a young lady whom I had known only for
a short time. The plan was for dinner and a movie. However, before we had even
had a chance to place our order with the waitress, my date asked me where I went
on my mission. When I told her I hadn't served one, she rerponded with a
disgusted sounding, "Oh." The date was essentially over. We went through the
motions of pretending we both still wanted to be there for the rest of dinner
and the movie, but I would have been better off taking her home at that point.
The indoctrination of our young women that they should only marry an
RM does a disservice to a lot of good men, and only raises the expectation for
the women that they won't end up with a jerk. Well, they are welcome to a lot of
the RM's I've known that turned out to be jerks, losers, and worse.
It amazes me that people often forget that NONE of the current members of the
First Presidency served missions, and it appears they all turned out to be fine
men. Yes, young men should try and live good lives as preparation, but missions
are not for everyone because of thousands of variable circumstances.
Good missionaries will be thinking about their future. They should be getting
the post-mission life in order while ON their missions.To not do so
would be a disaster.Judge not that ye be not judged.
Wasn't Steve Young from CT?Good point. But best of luck in hoping that
anyone will buy into it.
I could't agree with you more. the church could't agree with you more. Heck,
nowadays the church is a lot more strick on readiness to serve a mission. I
think it should be between the person and God.If the stars align and you
go it can be a very fulfilling experience. If you are not ready and don't go,
well you'll be just like every body else and every returned missionary. you'll
have to work out life one day at a time and endure to the end.
Every LDS young man should have as his goal preparing and qualifying himself
(morally, physically and intellectually) to serve a mission and doing so
honorably if called.To suggest that a young man "should be focused
on whatever it is he has his heart set on to do" is flippant and shallow. Older
wiser figures (parents, teachers, etc) should be counseling a young man into
paths that will serve him well, not merely observing and cheering as he flitters
from one fancy to another.Unfortunately not every young man will
receive appropriate guidance or respond to it; but most,if given the
opportunity, will find a mission will be a life changing and defining service
opportunity.Don't penalize young men with the "prejudice of low
expectations".They deserve to be challenged.