Many people remember where they were when President Thomas S. Monson stood in General Conference and announced that sister missionaries would be able to serve at 19 years old. In all the excitement, they may have missed this important thought from him:
“We assure the young sisters of the Church . . . that they make a valuable contribution as missionaries, and we welcome their service.”
Deciding to serve a mission takes lots of prayer, fasting, and counsel with parents, family, friends, and trusted leaders. Then there is the weeks of doing the paperwork and visits to the doctor and dentist. Add a few more interviews, paperwork submitted and then finally the envelope arrives.
You open it to read:
“You are hereby called as a missionary for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.”
After that letter, you are pretty much stepping into the unknown. No matter what people tell you, there’s nothing that really prepares you for the mission. You may buy a bunch of clothes that just don’t work when you get to your area. Or maybe you leave in July, but by November there is snow on the ground and you are wishing that you had some scarves. That is just the start. You won’t know how to react when you have a door slammed in your face or when you are trying to teach a mother and her baby starts crying. It’s just something you learn.
No matter how crazy it gets, it’s an amazing opportunity to serve a mission. The contributors to this blog know it because we are a group of returned sister missionaries. We also convinced a few of our amazing moms to write a few things to help you prepare.
We’ll not only provide you tips to prepare for your mission, we’ll also give you some ideas of what to write home and some advice from a former mission president’s wife. We’ll also show you how you can rotate your wardrobe to make sure you’re getting the most out of your limited options.
Most of all, we want to hear from you. We want to know when you’re leaving on your mission and where you’re assigned to labor. We want to celebrate this milestone and support you. There is a sisterhood among sister missionaries — no matter where you serve. We want to be there with you.