@raybies, plenty of people didn't serve missions, myself included, but
still had no problem in the dating world, or getting married. The whole idea
that somehow serving a mission alone guarantees some sort of impressive miracle
in dating is a myth, and a rediculous one at that. It's also
true, and which you conveniently left out, that if you are excused from a
mission, but otherwise worthy, you receive an honorable release, which is just
as good as saying that you served a mission.There are also special
missions that people with issues of health can serve in alternate means to
proselyting, such as family history or temple attendance, which was a call to me
given my own health conditions. The church and priesthood leaders are far more
caring and evaluating at finding ways for young adults to serve missions than it
I suspect their are a lot of individuals like me, who wished this policy would
have been in effect earlier. I was one who lost my way after high school, and
will forever regret not serving a mission in my youth. My immature mistakes
resulted in significant spiritual delays. I believe the change is inspired.And by the way, my freshman daughter at BYU has announced she will be
leaving for her mission after she completes her Freshman year. Yea!
This change will help the young men through a very difficult transition from
Priests to Elders by giving the young men a purpose and higher adventure. If you consider, many young men give up High School, the Seminary
Program, High Adventure Scouts, Young Men Activities, Varsity Sports, and
suddenly they transistion to the Elder's Quorum (which in my experience is
not nearly as activity centered)--there's a huge disconnect there. Some bishops encourage their young men to stay in Young Men, but
that's got an almost "We're holding you back" sort of feel to
it. Some bishops send them off to Single's Wards, but then
there's an even greater disconnect--and that's if they actually GO to
their assigned ward, which many don't. And if they do, they're sort of
stuck in a holding pattern due to the fact that they can't reasonably
expect to form a single's relationship without losing a chance to serve a
mission. Some bishops give them a calling, often in the Primary... but
that's only a Sunday thing. It's better that they be
allowed to go serve. Very inspired change...
Does anyone know if young men planning on serving a mission the summer after
they graduate...do they still apply for college or would they have to wait until
they return from their mission to apply for college?
RE: Kevin J. Kirkham So, If he or his wife is infertile, that disqualifies him
too. Is this what you are claiming. NO,1 …Elders in every city as I
commanded you. if a man is blameless, the husband of *ONE wife, having faithful
children not accused of dissipation or insubordination.(1 Titus 5-6).
Elders should be married but, No polygamy, Like the Apostles, “Don't
we have the right to take a believing Wife along with us, as do the other
apostles and the Lord's brothers and Cephas?”)(1 Cor 9:5 NIV)
2. Elder qualifications defined, (4245,* presbyteros)=Presbyterian, among
the Jews members of the great council or Sanhedrin (because in early times the
rulers of the people, judges, etc., were selected from elderly men.
Christians, those who presided over the assemblies (or churches) The NT uses the
term bishop, elders, and *presbyters interchangeably.
I remember when the age was 21, and then lowered to 19 for young men.18 should be no problem.If they're old enough to carry an
M-16 and be shot at 1/2 way around the world,Their certianly old enought
to carry a BofM and be shouted at 1/2 way around the world.
Jazzledazzle wrote:"So you are right, as LDS members, we are
judgemental, but this just in...... So are Catholics, Baptists, atheists,
etc."So that makes it OK? Is this an attempt at rationalization?
Sure looks that way.And there is an important difference with
atheists being judgmental: atheists are not under any divine obligation, or
covenant, to be otherwise.But whatever helps you sleep at night...
sharronaQualifications for Elders, nd appoint elders in every city as I
commanded you. if a man is blameless, the husband of ONE wife, having faithful
children not accused of dissipation or insubordination.(1 Titus 5-6).KJKSo, in order to be an Elder, a man MUST be married to one woman (if
he loses his wife to death or divorce, he can't be an elder because he
won't have a wife and he can't remarry since that would give him 2
wives) and he must have children too per the scripture. If he or his wife is
infertile, that disqualifies him too. Is this what you are claiming?
Everyone questioning the age of 18 for young men should really listen to the
News Conference that was held on Saturday. You can find it on the LDS.ORG page.
In the news conference we were told that for the past decade in 48 countries,
18 year old men have been called on missions. In each case, it was requested by
the young man's bishop or stake president due to military requirement
rules, education/scholarship issues, and other reasons. So for the past 10
years, many 18 year olds have been called on missions and done well. In the
news conference it was also stated that many of the mission presidents where
these 18 years olds have served, request more all the time. The decision to
lower the age from 19 to 18, has been a matter of prayer for a long time. I
think my son would have been thrilled to have been able to serve at 18. He
couldn't wait to go and he turned 19, 15 months after HS graduation.
Perhaps we will see modifications in the YM curriculum, and possibly limitations
on involvement with Scouting. Maybe it will become only a deacons quorum
activity, which for the most part is has, a long time ago..
Sharrona again you have no play in this. It doesn't apply to you nor do
the scriptures. As Elder Hales said on Sunday, The Church of Jesus Christ of
Latter-Day Saints is Christian and in many ways more than any other on the face
of the earth.Those feeling wow this is going to fail do not realize
Jesus Christ is the head of the LDS Church and he has determined just as Peter,
James, John and the other Apostles at the time of his death were just as
immature in the faith as any 18 year old. They were sent into the world to
teach the doctrine of Jesus Christ just as we will send our young men into the
world to teach the doctrine of Jesus Christ today. As the Doctrine and
Covenants state, "The lord will on the right hand and on their left and the
angels will be there to bouy them up." The work is increasing and the time
is right and the time is now.Jump for joy as the Lord is in charge,
not a mere man.
RE: O'really, Sharonna, nice scriptures but they don't apply to this
discussion. Church lowers age requirement. Qualifications for
Elders, nd appoint elders in every city as I commanded you. if a man is
blameless, the husband of ONE wife, having faithful children not accused of
dissipation or insubordination.(1 Titus 5-6).From the Christian
point of view, They do apply. The timing is interesting, right after the Romney
wins the debate with, Obama. But realize this, that in the last days[there
will be men] holding to a form of godliness who do not belong to God (2 Timothy
@ A ScientistI think it is funny how LDS members are called
judgemental. We are no more or less judgemental than any other group of
people.There is gossip between Hollywood Stars, pro athletes, and
people from all walks of life. I will say that if I see someone with multiple
tattoos and piercings, I will form an opinion of that person. On the other side
if I see someone well groomed and nicely dressed, I will also form an opinion of
that person. Now, maybe the person with the tattoos and piercings is a person
with character, and maybe the well groomed person is a criminal. Bottom line,
we all are guilty of being judgemental. I am not saying it is right, but it is
true. It is why we need the gospel. We all have our hypocrisies and faults.
Sometimes being judgemental is not bad though. We trust some people, others we
don't, sometimes for good reason.So you are right, as LDS
members, we are judgemental, but this just in...... So are Catholics, Baptists,
atheists, etc. etc. etc
@ DennisAbsolutely ridiculous. 19 is a stretch for the maturity
level of young men. This will backfire for sure.I am glad you are
more competent than President Monson and the Lord. If 19 is such a stretch, how
have so many people joined the church? There are also very little incidents that
happen from these so called "immature" 19 year olds.
@Furry 1993A mission has a funny way of making you grow up. I
don't think maturity will be a problem. Those who are worthy and able to
go at age 18 will go. If not, they will wait, but they can still go. Better
late than never. That is awesome though that your sons both went, the 21 year
old, the important thing is not when he went, it is that he went.
@ SSYour comment makes sense about more immature missionaries since
they can go at younger ages. However, I believe it will decrease the amount of
immature missionaries. Instead of having a year where they are just waiting to
go, or deciding if they want to go, I think we are going to get missionaries
that are fired up and excited to go. Same with the sisters. Now they can go
sooner, and I think we might see more sisters going now, and marrying after.
Either way though, you got it right, President Monson did not make this choice,
the Lord did, and President Monson listened to Him. Exciting news. I was actually at this session, and the sound of the crowd when President
Monson announced this is something I will never forget, especially when he
announced that sisters can go at age 19. There was a buzz and an excitement for
a brief couple seconds. Conference was awesome as always.
The world has 7 billion inhabitants for the LDS Church to contact and teach. The
Church has 14 million members, with something like 40 percent active. A
percentage of the young men become atheistic, agnostic, or indifferent in the
year between high school graduation and their 19th birthdays and decide not to
serve missions. Parents and leaders have not figured out a way to keep them from
turning away from the Church. We can blame information on the Internet, but
other things work into the equation. Military analysts always say that when a
nation is losing the war, the age of the soldiers goes down. And like the US
Military, the LDS Missionary Department will now get boys at 18 so that fewer
people will have influenced / corrupted them before they get trained in the
OK, here is something to think about. I would imagine that logically there
won't be that many young men that will go the day they turn 18. Most turn
18 sometime during their senior year of high school (in the US anyway). They
wouldn't go till they graduate. That would make many of them 18+. And then
if some don't want to think about it till after graduation, there would be
some lag time between getting their papers in, getting their call and actually
going. Most of these young men will be well over 18 by the time they go- not
that different from 19. Sharonna- nice scriptures but they
don't apply to this discussion. Kevin Kirkham- Glass half
@Dennis,None, but we did have guys go over the wall and screw around
quite a bit. I'm guessing you didn't actual spend time in basic if
you think that doesn't occur?Swing on by sometime and we can
swap stories, both mission and military. I didn't spend any months in the
mission office, so can't say whether or not other missionaries slept in or
asked for days off. I was out in the field my whole time so can only speak for
myself and the guys in the houses I was with. Don't recall any more
sleeping in or gold bricking than when I was in the military. Not exactly sure
why that means anything in regards to serving a mission at age 19 or 18 though.
My guess is your mission experience was with 19+ elders, not 18 yr old elders.
Why can't they both go at 18?Some countries missionaries are
older because of mandatory military requirement, like South Korea which is still
technically at war, they go after and after college. It makes sense to go free
of family responsibilities but an older person who had lived life can be a more
reasonable person to connect to for many.
From playing video games in the basement to teaching the gospel in South Africa
- only separated by a couple months now. Wow! One thing is for sure - the Young
Mens program is going to have to get ALOT more serious to get these kids ready
by 18. No more goof off night in the ward gym - now there is going to have to be
some SERIOUS effort to mature these boy both mentally and spiritually in an
Way too much pressure for a young man to wait til 19 and watch all all his
friends go in the mission field. I suspect there is going to an adjustment
period that will be really hard for mission presidents who are going to be
dealing with some really young green homesick kids. I hope bishops in ward
really take an active role and advise young men with mission finances as well as
their maturity level. Bishops shouldn't sign the papers unless the young
man is really ready to go. Having a young man feel forced into the field at 18
when he isn't ready is a disaster. Allowing a young man to go into the
field thinking he is ready - when is really isn't is an equally bad
18 - wow that is pretty young! It will work but it will take some adjustment
with members and their boys. First off many young men work for a year after HS
to earn a good chunk of their mission money. That is no more. Parents will have
to now foot the entire mission for the most part. A committed savings plan
when kids are young will be the best way forward. Second, BYU freshman wards are
no more. Can't have a ward of just girls! Third, young men need to REALLY
get mission ready a lot earlier. No more waiting and taking the mission prep
classes after graduation. 18 is really young and there are probably some who are
ready at that age but most aren't. Having NEVER been away from home before
to college or work until they land in South Africa as a fresh 18 year old is
going to be a real eye opener. Everything is possible and when the prophet speak
you just do it and let the Lord take care of the rest.
This morning while I was watching President Monson online, my 16-year-old
daughter walked into the room. She asked what she had missed and I told her that
President Monson had just reduced the mission age for women to 19. She screamed
in excitement.This evening, I have been wondering about another
young person, who now has another option. I am referring to Jabari Parker,
recruited by top basketball programs across the country. They know they would
only have him for a year, because he will be eligible for the 2014 draft or he
might go on a mission. Now, he has the option of going on a mission this coming
summer. I look forward to seeing what he decides. I wonder if he does go, if an
NBA team would draft him in 2015, with a few months left on his mission. I
wonder if that would be a first--drafted into a major sport while serving a
@GuisseppeG....how many times at basic training did you sleep in and tell the
drill instructor you were going to take the day off? I spent 11 months in the
Mission Home running the Mission with the Mission President. Want to share
stories some time?
Again, those who have concerns really didn't see or listen to the Press
Conference held after the first session. Attending were Elder Holland and Elder
Nelson of the Missionary Executive Committee along with Elder Evans of the
Seventy. In that press conference they touched upon each and every questioned
mentioned here. They stated emphatically that not all 18 year olds would be
able to go but would wait until they are ready to go. For some this will allow
them to fulfill their responsibilities of a mission before starting school and
preparing for their lives after a mission. They also stated that the time in
the MTC will be cut to allow more missionaries into the MTC. Also, this was not
a whim but something that has already been going on in 48 countries through out
the world. This was a matter of prayer. Sharrona you have no play in this at
all.The Lord, Jesus Christ, has directed this and we as members must
accept it. If you haven't then you need to get on your knees until you do.
RE: Kevin J. Kirkham I hope this works out, but this reminds me of when the
Church, in order to boost the numbers of missionaries serving.The
increasing of Mormon missionaries may sour the Christian vote. Jesus tells us
in Matthew 7:15 that false prophets will come in sheep’s clothing,
He’s telling us they will look like His followers: they will look like
Christians. The apostle Paul also warned that false apostles and deceitful
workers “disguise themselves” as apostles of Christ (2 Corinthians
I hope this works out, but this reminds me of when the Church, in order to boost
the numbers of missionaries serving, shortened missions for men to 18 months.
The theory was that if there was less of a time and financial burden to serve a
mission, more would go. They didn't. Since missionaries were returning
after 18 months vs. 24, it meant that they were leaving just as they had
mastered the languages, scriptures and discussions. Since they were returning
quicker and we weren't getting more in, the number of missionaries out at
any given point shrank. Each mission received fewer missionaries and so areas
in the missions were closed. With fewer missionaries and with those
missionaries being less experienced, baptisms plummeted. Once this was
realized, the 18 month policy was abandoned. It was a huge failure.Let's hope that this new policy doesn't have similar unintended
consequences. In my stake, young men are encouraged to leave home for awhile
before leaving on missions to help them gain experience being away from home.
This helps prevent homesick missionaries wanting to return home. This
won't happen now. Could this unforeseen consequence doom this change too?
The reason I'm not a Mormonis that all the missionaries
coming to my door were too old. This could change everything for me.
@DennisI went to boot camp as an 18 yr old a week or two after
graduating high school. Nobody had to "kick me in the teeth" to get me
to fulfill and meet the stringent discipline required. Just my personal
obligation and oath to do it. Likewise nobody had to threaten me with sending
me home from my mission to get me to meet the very demanding requirements of a
mission. Just my personal obligation and oath to do it. I'm sure a great
many service men and missionaries fall in the same boat. And yes, military
service is more the same as missionary service in this regard than not. SOME or
MANY 18 yr olds are perfectly capable of the maturity and self-discipline
required to serve either in the military OR on a full-time mission.
I have five sons one is now serving one who is 18 and is ready to serve and who
himself has made it possible to pay his own way. I have another who is sixteen
who I feel would be better to wait till nineteen to server and two other sons
who the jury is still out on do to age. I feel that for the majority it will be
good for them to serve at 18 then 19 If I had that chance at 18 I would have
gone but I went Military first then mission. I am pleased to see the age for
sisters in now lower and I hope to see a influx in sisters serving as well they
bring a spirit to the mission field that elders can not. And last I support the
Prophet and the debate ends with hiim.
I, too, am very excited and optimistic about this revelation. That said, one
component I haven't heard referenced is the financial one. For those ready
and choosing to leave at 18 and 19, their window of earning income to support
themselves is now dramatically reduced (especially young women and their
families). It will definitely be more of a strain on family budgets, but a
completely worthy one. Our 17 year old turns 18 in March, and we thought he and
we would have another 18 months to prepare financially.That being
said, I know the Lord will provide...
@runnerguy50.....Parris Island didn't have 'options'. Once the
Marines have you the opportunity to sleep in, talk back, take a day off, relax
etc. etc. doesn't exist. Missionaries can do whatever they want whenever
they want. It's simply personal obligation to do the work and live the
life. Nobody is going to kick you in the teeth or make you walk 15 miles with a
loaded pack because you filled out your paperwork late. It's not near the
Furry 1993: You are right about timing for different individuals. That is why I
think this is such a great announcement! I have known so many who were ready at
18, or 19,or 20, or 21, or older. That is terrible that your son was given
grief because he didn't go, "when they decided he should have." I
am 58 and just now getting my bachelor's degree ( I did have my associates
degree years ago.) does that mean something is wrong with me because I chose a
different path than to get all my education when younger? And your son was smart
to chose to wait until he was ready. I also hope no one judges youth who go at
18 as being too young, I think an 18 year old who is ready, willing, and able,
will make just as valiant and awesome a missionary as a young man of 21 who is
ready, willing and able and choses to wait until then!
Young LDS women between 19 and 21 who don’t feel they have found their
place will be blessed.Many more young women will serve as missionaries.These young women will add tremendously to the spirituality of the missions to
which they are sent.Reluctant pre-mission young men, seeing their female
peers and dates leaving on missions, may get with it and go.More
missionaries will serve simply because the tendency will be to go earlier rather
than later. It’s long been demonstrated that the longer a young man waits
to go, the less likely he is to serve at all. Satan takes down or clips
off many young men between the ages of 16 and 19. Now there will be something of
a shield in place to help preserve these precious young men. Now, with a focus
to be prepared by one’s high school graduation date – now that is
something not so “far-off” and vague in the teenage mind!I
believe this move will strengthen young marriages and families, because the
young men will be better prepared for marriage, and the young women who serve
will bring into the marriage many advantages for themselves and their families.
@A Scientist:"... the reality is, those who do not go
immediately when they turn 18 and graduate HS will be looked down upon, judged
by their fellow 'Saints,' as less worthy."It will
provide an excuse for the 'less worthy' to use age/maturity as an
excuse while getting their lives squared away.
I'm surprised that the President didn't preface the announcement with
a statement that this was made a matter of prayer. It more than likely was, but
members need to have this assurance.
Some have genuine concern about the younger age to which the missionaries can no
go. This has already been mentioned in some of the comments, but Elder Holland
did say that leaving at the earlier age is "optional".
Forward, pressing forward... :)
I wanted to say my 13 year-old daughter is very excited about the reduced age of
going on a mission.
JParkerfan said:"One question I have is that logistically it
could be difficult. All of these 18 yr. olds wanting to go right after
graduation. How does the church handle all of the missionaries going to MTC in
June?"I would think that callings will be extended to avoid just
that. So they are not overloaded in June.Also, I just can't see
someone graduating from high school. And immediately go right to the MTC. Who
knows. It just seems like some time in between to prepare would be helpful.
For Furry1993: That's too bad that that happened in your family.
However, I believe this new "option" will reduce the stigma of elders
going at different times. The policy seems to be more "go when you are
ready and when the circumstances are best for you, your family and the
Spirit." It's more flexible that "go when you are 19."I
have 3 daughters--better start saving money.
I don't think I was ever "ridiculed" for not going on a mission but
definitely was pressured (not by parents who were inactive). Going to BYU I
entered a dating wasteland past the age of 20. Over time, women in the church
start to judge you by the person you are or have become rather than the
decisions you make at age 19. There is still some amount of judging even now
than I'm in my mid 40's about "not serving" but for the most
part I was never ridiculed or made fun of per se but quietly judged in later
life and pressured (somewhat in a positive and loving way as I look back) when I
was around missionary age).P.S. My 13 year-old daughter seems ver
Now High chool Sweethearts can both be RM's with out spending all those
years waiting. Great DAy!!!
Great Joy. Molly can Now Serve A Mission without having to wait till age
21.Which was to long await and to unrealistic for most. Also an Elder can get
out on his Mission with out interrupting his College Education. As for the
Tucson Temple Congrads and its long needed and awaited. I hope many Sessions are
in Spanish. I would like to see that Temple District lines and see if Northern
Mexico is evolved in anyway. The Goal being to keep illegals out and not ease
entry in anyway. However Mexican Citizens come over and trade on the U.S. side,
just as we do on their side. Something could be worked out in regard to day
passes. It might bring some freedom of Religion Questions to light. In both we
will have to wait and see.
How exciting that the option to serve at a younger age has been extended to the
young men and women of the church!
To:Bill in Nebraska, This is great news and one can see that Jesus Christ is at
the Head of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints.Church lowers
age requirement. Qualifications Elders, … and appoint elders in every
city as I commanded you. if a man is blameless, the husband of ONE wife, having
faithful children not accused of dissipation or insubordination.(1 Titus 5-6) “But realize this, that in the last days…[there will be men]
holding to a form of godliness” who do not belong to God (2 Timothy
MoJules: You are so right that the missionary is the one whose life is
changed and blessed the most! In our family, we sent out five missionaries,
including one daughter. I think the benefits remain with them always.
One question I have is that logistically it could be difficult. All of these 18
yr. olds wanting to go right after graduation. How does the church handle all
of the missionaries going to MTC in June?
I was nearly 22 when I went on a mission, it was very challenging but it is the
core of who I am over 35 years later. Was I the best or most mature missionary,
not at all. But did it help to prepare me to be married to a man in a
wheelchair and his early death, for sure. Did it help to prepare me for
motherhood and my only child leaving the church, yes, the Gospel is my core and
that came from my mission and has helped me through many trials and choices. I
think that missions are also there for the youth to help them to gain a better
understanding of the Gospel. So the bonus is helping to bring others into the
church, but it also is to help bring them into the church.
Like so many of you, I think this is exciting news! Granted not all 18 year
olds are mature enough. Some reach 40 and still aren't mature enough.
Revelations are given and then it is up to us to decide how best to follow them;
as has been stated here, President Monson didn't say 18 was mandatory, but
a possibility now. While on my mission there was a young man who entered the
mission field when he was 17. This was in Germany and he was mature enough and
serving early allowed him to also complete his military requirements before age
25. He got special permission and was an outstanding missionary.As
Elder Holland stated "He is hastening his work" and indicated this was
a part of that mandate. I thought it also interesting - he mentioned that it
works better when young men and young women are serving together to have the
sisters older than the guys; thus, sister missionaries wait until they are 19 --
apparently is solves many potential problems.
To those who have reservations. One I never served a mission. I went straight
into the military and stayed for 20 years. However, it can be said that I would
do it again considering the home life I was under. It is a personal choice for
those who serve a mission. Note that the only major requirement is that they
have graduated from high school. The fact is that NOT every 18 year old is
expected to go on a mission at that age. As has been said on numerous occasions
today. It is based solely on when they feel it is right for them to go. It is
only some LDS who put undo pressure on the Young Men to go at their appointed
time. It is the majority who wants every young man to go when he is ready to
go.Those who feel differently don't understand that this
isn't a decision made lightly but one that has come from great wisdom of
the one who leads the Church, JESUS CHRIST and him a lone. You must get on
board with this decision and accept it with all integretity.It is
When I was in boot camp at Parris Island there were a couple of 17 year olds and
they were fine. Guys will just grow up a little quicker.As the father of a
17 year old male I think it makes sense to leave out of high school. It also
makes sense if you dont think your kid is ready to use free agency and wait or
dont go if you dont want to.
As many LDS "Good Intentioned" moms earn their Eagle Scout for their
sons, now see the number of young men (still boys) forced into the mission
field. The number of homesick boys will easily double, but you never hear the
stats of young men being returned early. This isn't a good call.
@A Scientist"But the reality is, those who do not go immediately when
they turn 18 and graduate HS will be looked down upon, judged by their fellow
"Saints", as less worthy."They'd be judged that way
by SOME fellow Saints. I didn't serve a mission and that led to negative
views by some and probably cost me a few dates, but most members were perfectly
fine with my not having served a mission. "But they all
do"Your suggestion that they all do that is as misrepresentative
as the notion that none of them do that. Some do, some don't. Those who
ignore either category aren't going to help any sort of productive
discussion on the matter move forward.
To A Scientist,This is the 2nd time I've agreed with you within about
3 weeks. Usually I don't. Sad to say, but in many instances, I think your
predictions will come true, although not in every case. I suspect that the
judging mentality of some LDS members may be more pronounced in Utah than it is
outside of Utah. In our stake conference recently a sister gave a great talk
about not judging. I took it to heart and wish everyone else would too, although
in so saying (as well as my thoughts about Utah) I suppose I may sound
@ A ScientistAgreed.re: staypuffinpcYes. It
will. Alot more married 21 yr olds.
"I agree with Furry1993. Missionaries should go only when they are ready,
whatever that age is. And nobody should be ridiculed or questioned for choosing
to go later."Orchoosing to not going at all. There is a lot of pressure on young men within the church to serve a mission.
We need to make more space for young men who choose to not serve a mission.
Many young men leave the church around missionary age. Why? For some it is
because they seek to escape the mission pressure and they feel they don't
"fit" anymore. Personally I would like to see the church offer a
variety of ways for the youth to serve. For example, shorter term service
missions. Or opportunities to teach english. If I were a mission
president I would be concerned about this new standard for young men. Inevitably
there will be more instances of immature young men going out on missions.
"And nobody should be ridiculed or questioned for choosing to go
later."Right. But the reality is, those who do not go
immediately when they turn 18 and graduate HS will be looked down upon, judged
by their fellow "Saints", as less worthy.As an outsider who
is intimately acquainted with the Church in Utah, and attending Church meetings
and activities more frequently than most LDS members, here is what I have
observed.It is the nature of Mormons to do that. It is a culture
that has developed a very strong "righteousness competition", with
everybody competing silently and nonchalantly for recognition and callings, but
feigning humility and pretending they don't judge others and they
don't aspire to positions. But they all do, and the judgement is frequently
very harsh. People are ostracized, children are left out, teens ignore rather
than befriend, and YM and YW refuse to go on dates, or break up with others,
telling them they are less worthy. I have seen it countless times. There is no
doubt this age requirement change will be no different.
Absolutely ridiculous. 19 is a stretch for the maturity level of young men.
This will backfire for sure.
Continued revelation--so exciting. Will be great for many young men and women
to have this option.Furry 1993: You are so right. There is often a
different timing for individuals. I have personally seen this. We all need to
be more supportive and less judgmental of the correct timing for others.
This is great news! But many posters in their exuberance seem to be forgetting a
key statement:"I am not suggesting that all young men will
– or should – serve at this earlier age," President Monson said.
Rather, he said, the option is now available based on individual circumstances
and the recommendation of their local church leaders.I sincerely
hope that those who are not ready to go on missions at these earlier ages do not
go until they are ready. A year away at college right after HS is great
preparation for a mission for those who have never lived away from home. Some
may need to work for a year after HS to earn the necessary mission funds. Many
will be better off with the additional year that brings added maturity and
spirituality.I agree with Furry1993. Missionaries should go only
when they are ready, whatever that age is. And nobody should be ridiculed or
questioned for choosing to go later.
Furry 1993 "We took a lot of grief becuase we alowed our older son to delay
his mission until he was ready to go."That is really sad. My son
didn't go on a mission and we took no grief from others. Hopefully this
option of 18 after high school will give more opportunity to young men and
women, not less. I don't expect there will be pressure for young men not
ready to depart a year earlier. Some men need to live away from mom at college
before jumping into a 2-year mission. I expect more opportunities
for the faithful young women is apparent, plus more options for those that want
to serve the military, mature young men and women that graduate from high school
early, countries that have different graduation years or mandatory military
service, and for sports scholarships. I hope that young women will
get called to 2-year missions soon. 18-month missionaries may get home nearer
the same time as 2-year missions which will help with 20-someting dating too.
This is a good day.
My son will be able to go right out of high school if he chooses.
We were in sort of a decline, so this may be helpful in returning the numbers of
regular full-time missionaries and of convert baptisms to mid-1990s levels, when
they were considerably higher. I think one of the reasons the age is
lower for young men is that church leaders have said it is a
"responsibility" for young men to serve, whereas it is more of an
"opportunity" for young women. It's interesting, though, that young
women at age 18 are considered more mature than young men of the same age.
As a mother who has raised two sons to adulthood, I am divided on this. While
some young men are mature enough at 18 to serve, the majority are not. A lot of
young men aren't mature enough until several years after. Our younger son
began his mission as soon as he turned 19. Our older son wasn't ready
until he was almost 21. We took a lot of grief becuase we alowed our older son
to delay his mission until he was ready to go. Both had wonderful missions, but
that is in large part because they went when they were ready to go and when
Heavenly Father wanted them to go.I trust the Bishops and Stake
Presidents properly to evauate the maturity of prospective missionaries. I do
not, however, trust that parents of young men will not try to push them out on a
mission before they are ready to go. There is enough pressure to serve now,
when the age of service is 19. I can see it getting worse when the age is
lowered. A year between school and service gives the young men an opportunity
to achieve the necessary maturity.
I'm not LDS but I have many friends who are including one who served as an
LDS Mission President. My feeling is that the most significant part of this
announcement is the fact that women no longer have to wait until age 21 to
serve. I suspect that is where the biggest increase in missionaries is going to
come from. They certainly represent the Church well and I wish them all the best
in their new adventure.
Huge news. Wow !
@dr. bridell"It would not surprise me if the number of missionaries
serving were to double!"For the first year probably since two
years worth of guys (19 and 18 year old guys) will be starting the same year. I
suspect it'd probably drop back down afterwards to something slightly
higher than current levels. For women serving missions it might even triple at
first (since 21 20 and 19 year olds might all start at the same time that first
year) and then will drift down to whatever the more stable level going forward
is. I suspect growth in missionaries will be most pronounced with women.
Bill in Nebraska,Agreed! Jeffrey R. Holland just barely exclaimed
how "giddy" this makes him feel. Who couldn't be giddy? This is
This is great news and one can see that Jesus Christ is at the Head of The
Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. It goes to show that the truth of
the Doctrine & Covenants that by the weak things of the earth the Gospel of
the Lord will go forth and be taught. What greater news than this and two new
temples? As the bar has been raised so also has the greater need for the gospel
to be taught and brought to the four corners of the earth.
This makes it easier to serve a mission before U.S. military service too.
Don't they have enough missionaries already?
It is official. The new age for young men to go on missions is now 18. The age
at which young women can go is not 19. Isn't that great. Conference is so
great. With the darkness in the world, it is so wonderful to see the strength
of the gospel being set as a candle on a hill and not hid under a bushel. It is
So many young men get 'lost' in that time from when they graduate from
high school and turn 19.This is a great a change!Changing the age for women will greatly change and expand the missionary
efforts as well.These are historic changes and the shift of the
demographic of single and married students will be significant moving forward at
the BYU campuses. For those young men that were typically college
bound at 18 or were focusing on work before their mission, this will now keep
the majority focus of that mission with their ward bishop, not the singles ward
bishop, as it should be.I'm sure the home ward and singles
wards bishop are ecstatic about these changes!
This is great for some, it's exciting news. It will also increase the
amount of immature missionaries in the field. But, I believe the church knows
what they are doing.
If a young man's excuse for not going on a mission was his girlfriend, it
won't be any longer. She'll be on a mission!
This is great news for certain countries. For example, Brazilians will have
more opportunities to work a mission around mandatory military service.
Wow, this is fantastic.I doubt that many of us can imagine the impact this
will have.It would not surprise me if the number of missionaries serving
were to double!It will dramatically increase the number of sisters
serving, and in turn will strengthen so many marriages between two equal-feeling
returned missionaries.Mark this landmark day. Remember where you were
when you heard it. Start thinking about your kids and grandkids and recounting
BYU campus is going to look very different in the future.