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Culture · Dating · Pets · Subscription Boxes This was , and, as far as most Mormons knew, what he was doing was completely forbidden. Despite the suits and ties, missionaries are still year-old boys away from . If you are a brand new missionary, home is always on your mind, and it is easy to. I hesitate to ask his mission office for fear he will be branded as trunky or fixated on going home, when he has over a year to go. letters that will allow you to figure out when a transfer takes place (new companions, etc.) don't want football to be the reason a young man misses one day of missionary work!. I love this video. I felt the spirit as I watched it and I know the councils it teaches is true. It amazing to hear the testimonies of other youths around the world. Date.

Two missionaries I met on a test mission in Utah got a woman in Texas baptized baptism is the ritual that formally confirms one into the faith a mission president in Moscow told me that two sister missionaries were able to baptize a woman by keeping in touch through Skype. Online dictionaries and digital maps especially can seem like a godsend for missionaries learning foreign languages. Training lasts two to 12 weeks, depending on the language.

Given the complex topics and specialized vocabulary needed, every missionary schedule includes mandatory daily language study for foreign-language missions. Stephen Sorenson, who didn't even own a cell phone before becoming missionary president, was quickly won over to the blessings of technology.

Mission president in Russia from tohe will never forget the day a missionary showed him how to search Russian terms on an iPod. I can't imagine doing work here now without this iPod capability. When he received the call to serve as mission president, he began creating a series of websites in Russian, and advertising on Russian social-media sites.

Along with his wife Athelia they bought 25 iPod Touches for their 50 missionaries, and loaded them with regional maps, a Russian dictionary, the Mormon scriptures in both English and Russian, lectures from General Conference, and more than one thousand songs — permissible music must "invite the spirit," which usually means Mormon Tabernacle Choir and anything over years old.

InWoolley approached his area presidency about the new technology; the area presidency called in to the Missionary Department in Salt Lake City, which never responded. At that point, his area president — Elder Greg Schwitzer — gave him the green light. This wasn't indefinite permission however, and so Woolley, a numbers guy with a background in the sciences, set out to test the effectiveness of his ideas.

He divided his four zones in two, giving half the iPods and leaving half without. The results were incredible. While the iPods didn't help missionaries find new people, they were very useful in bringing to baptism people who had already expressed interest. Woolley believes this is because the iPod material made missionaries more effective teachers.

They had professional videos illustrating their lessons, and language support. Like many Mormons I spoke with, Woolley felt strongly about the role of the Internet in spreading pornography, which he described as "cybersin" and incredibly destructive to healthy relationships. He was also sensitive to hard rock music or music with vulgar lyrics, which he believed to be spiritually harmful, and felt that many young men waste tremendous time on video games, becoming addicted instead of getting on with their lives.

But ultimately, none of these concerns seemed to him substantial enough to ban technology from the mission field, especially when it proved so effective at reaching converts.

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Brown worried that he was "going to spend more time inside a room rather than face to face" teaching people, like his father's mission. For many missionaries the difficult lifestyle comes drenched in virtue.

Most come to the field with hopes of — in addition to preaching the gospel — improving their discipline, concentration, and obedience. Basically, traits the Internet is said to destroy. Younger Mormons, particularly from test missions, are cautious.

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If you are a brand new missionary, home is always on your mind, and it is easy to be tempted to look at home and see what people are doing and what friends are doing," making it a particularly vulnerable time for Facebook. I don't want to let technology get in the way of my being a parent.

For him, staring at screens "Kind of dims you from the world. Different Mormons have different emphases.

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Sheldon Child was adamant that bringing others to the Gospel must be the principal goal of one serving a mission. If you had a missionary who went on mission to become a better person or be a better speaker he would be a less effective missionary," he said.

From this perspective, the only hesitations one would have about technology would be whether it would result in fewer converts. For many missionaries and their families, however, the personal process of the missionary is equally important.

It is a classic coming of age experience, and one that ideally cements traits of discipline and obedience. When Ken Woolley was being trained as a mission president, the message was "beat into" him that "your primary success as a mission president would be manifest by the lives of your missionaries five, 10, 15, 20 years after the fact [ In President Spencer Kimball called on every young man in the Church to serve a mission.

As it became more common for Mormon men of all sorts to serve missions, mission rules became stricter. Mormons who served in the '60s describe it as more adventurous, and certainly less structured.

Overseas missionaries never called home, and could go months without hearing from their mission president. Up through the s, missionaries generally were allowed to see movies, read books, write letters on days other than their designated day of the week, and use technology as dictated by their own common sense, including phone calls. They also had a full day off once a week, as opposed to the weekly 11am to 6pm time currently allowed missionaries to do laundry, write letters, go grocery shopping, or get their hair cut.

Calling home twice a year became standard only in the late '70s. Today's missionaries also email their mission president once a week. Erlend Peterson, like many Mormons I interviewed from this generation, owes his faith to his mission. When he began, he woke up every morning at 5: He didn't need to be up until 6: For Peterson, his mission enabled him to gain a firm testimony.

As the Church continued to grow and expand, it was announced that while the call to serve a mission would still be universal, the opportunity to do so would be even more conditional.

In an oft-quoted address titled "The Greatest Generation of Missionaries," Elder Russell Ballard said, "The day of the 'repent and go' missionary is over. We cannot send you on a mission to be reactivated, reformed, or to receive a testimony. We just don't have time for that.

By all accounts, and despite general societal despair of the current youth, today's missionaries are likely the most well vetted, and most committed, cadre that the church has ever sent forth. While younger — the church lowered the age minimum for service in October to 18 for men and 19 for women — they are certainly the most thoroughly trained. Language, maturity, good judgment, willingness to work hard and be focused on missionary work and not other things.

It is undeniable that Facebook and iPads and multimedia will change the mission field; it has never been easier to sift out the hostile or ignore the uninterested though, in other ways, it has become easier to attract the hostile.

Missionaries using social media as outreach will face a lot less rejection in their daily work and connect more readily with those interested in hearing their message. They will hear more anti-Mormon messages as well, and have greater access to alternative Mormon histories.

They will spend more time staring at screens. Their missions will probably lose some of the adventure of their fathers, walking miles down a dark road on nothing more than a feeling that a house down there was waiting for them. Future missionaries might only visit homes they've already called, texted, and confirmed a meeting time with. But for the romanticism lost, a much more effective system is gained.

They may yet be the first generation to reinvent the foundational experience of Mormon proselytizing. There is a recurring joke that every returned missionary refers to his mission as "the happiest years of his life.

The first time, I had asked one of my missionaries who was a few months away from the end of his service, if he was looking forward to returning home. These kids pay out of pocket to serve, are allowed almost no entertainment, and no break from their work. And yet, technology advances or not, most lit up when discussing their mission. This was certainly not the case for everyone, and many Mormons have serious grievances about the conditions under which they served.

But for Mormons today with faith intact, coming home is hard. The advice, often, is to get busy immediately upon returning home. Many Mormons begin school or work mere weeks after coming back from a two-year mission, a turnover rate that surprised me.

Farthingham served in England from toand as a mission president in Colorado from to By the time he said this, I wasn't surprised. It was the sentiment I heard from countless missionaries, regardless of decade. There are a number of reasons given. Some Mormons attribute it to a spiritual change in status, that missionaries have a special closeness to the Holy Ghost that leaves when they return.

In speaking with missionaries, however, it seems there is something inherently powerful about knowing what to do with every moment of your day, and the confidence that comes from sincere conviction that you are doing important work.

Most missionaries are motivated by altruism, believing they are in the field to help other people find the happiness they have found as Mormons. After two years of pushing yourself in the fight, it can be hard to feel you are abandoning the field for more trivial matters. For recently returned missionaries, Facebook provides a slight antidote to the pain of losing one's missionary status. Most missionaries today keep in touch with their investigators — individuals considering conversion — through Facebook.

Though like many emerging adults constructing a Facebook identity, some returned missionaries worried about their investigators seeing them living non-missionary lifestyles, such as going to concerts. When I began interviewing Mormon missionaries, I assumed the technology innovations would be eroding their productivity, exposing them to temptation and doubt.

Instead, I found surprisingly similar stories of struggles and rule-breaking and temptations told across the decades, technology notwithstanding, from men who served in the '70s and boys still in the field. I didn't find my last tribe of Western kids who had tasted life before laptops, who could tell me what I wanted to hear, which was that they were happier without their devices, and that they had deeper friendships because they hand-wrote letters to one another; that superficial communication and splintered attention spans are modern problems, easily attributable to technology.

Ask the young women what questions they have about dating and write them on the board. Invite them to look for answers to their questions throughout the lesson. Add to the list as they learn more about these standards throughout the lesson. Learn together See other learning and teaching ideas. Following the guidance of the Spirit, select one or more that will work best in your class: Invite each young woman to write a personal list of qualities that she wants her future husband to have.

Invite the young women to share their lists, as appropriate, with the class.

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Ask one of the young women to read the following statement by Elder Robert D. As the young women review the lists that they made, you might ask them how they would feel if their future husband had a comparable list about them. What are they doing now to be the kind of person that their future husband would want to marry? Invite the young women to discuss how they can personally develop these qualities now and how these qualities will affect the kind of people they date. Ask the young women to share how the principles in the thirteenth article of faith should influence their interactions with young men.

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Read the paragraph of Sister Elaine S. Invite the young women to read Alma Invite them to answer questions such as the following: Invite them to share what they will do to keep these standards.

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Invite a panel of older young men and young women to answer their questions and discuss the standards of dating.

Encourage the panel members to include examples of how they have lived the standards as they have dated, such as dressing modestly, choosing appropriate activities, and dating those with high standards.

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Ask the young women to share what they learned today.