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Posted by: summer ( )
Date: May 11, 2019 09:05AM

I think that it is important for our young board members and readers to understand that four out of the current Q15 never served missions. Others who did not serve missions include:

Dallin Oaks
Henry Eyring
Dieter Uchtdorf

That makes more than a quarter of the top church leadership who never served missions. I believe that historically, the number has been even higher. Former church president Thomas Monson never served a mission either. Instead, he served in the military during WWII for approximately four months at the tail end of the war, then proceeded to enroll at the LDS Business College. There is precedent among the church's top leadership for not serving missions.

https://ldsminds.com/current-apostles-missionary-service/

Young people in the church are often highly pressured to serve missions at a time in their lives that might be better utilized in work, job training, trade school, college, or the military. It is not unusual for Mormon youth to drain their personal savings to serve missions, and then come back to nothing with which to start their adult lives.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 05/11/2019 03:54PM by summer.

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Posted by: RPackham ( )
Date: May 11, 2019 10:24AM

As I have pointed out before, whenever this kind of comment is posted, you can't fault those men for not serving a mission. When they were of mission age, it was not semi-required for a young man to serve a mission. I am about the same age, and was never pressured to go on a mission, even though I'm sure I would have qualified. I would guess that in my stake growing up, only about 5% of my devout mormon contemporaries served a mission, and it was no blot on their reputations. My family were all devout Mormons, and yet none of my uncles or cousins served.

I think it wasn't until the 1960s or 70s that the Brethren decided that every eligible young Mormon male should go on a mission.

I am not saying this to defend Nelson or the others, but to put the fact into proper perspective.

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Posted by: summer ( )
Date: May 11, 2019 10:31AM

I'm not faulting them, I'm pointing out a fact -- a fact of which young, mission-age Mormon youth may not be aware.

From what I recall, the number of early return missionaries (for whatever reason) is now in excess of 25%. That tells me that a number of missionaries never wanted to go out in the first place, but felt pressure to do so. Perhaps if young people realize that more than a quarter of the top leadership never went out, that will give them the courage to say, "No."

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Posted by: CrispingPin ( )
Date: May 11, 2019 10:47AM

From an ex-mo perspective, you're on the money, but I believe that a TBM could (and arguably should) have a different perspective. Yes, back when Nelson, Monson, and others were missionary age, the Joe average Mormon wasn't expected to serve a mission, but these aren't your average Mormons. Mormon believe that their leaders were chosen in pre-earth existence and foreordained to be leaders. If I still believed, I'd wonder why these guys weren't above average in every step of their spiritual development.

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Posted by: thedesertrat1 ( )
Date: May 11, 2019 01:09PM

If my memory serves me correctly it was Spencer Kimble who started the "every member a missionary" craze.

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Posted by: Lot's Wife ( )
Date: May 11, 2019 01:52PM

Yes, in the middle 1970s.

Kimball thought everyone could, and should, fit into the same mold. I suspect he too was a square peg hammered into a round hole and thought that if he could live that way, so too could the rest of the church.

He was a hateful little man with no respect for God's greatest creation, individuality.

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Posted by: cl2 ( )
Date: May 11, 2019 10:26AM

In the prior first presidency, none of them served?

So these men send missionaries out and have NO CLUE what they are going through. Then they go out and speak to them and tell them what losers they are and it is their fault they aren't getting converts.

I find it odd that the prior bishop's children, the last 3 of 4 have served missions, they all came home and gained an extreme amount of weight. Their older sister, who didn't serve a mission, didn't gain an extreme amount of weight. Their father didn't serve a mission.



Edited 3 time(s). Last edit at 05/11/2019 10:28AM by cl2.

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Posted by: bobofitz ( )
Date: May 11, 2019 10:52AM

In other words, the entire First Presidency!!

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Posted by: Heartless ( )
Date: May 11, 2019 11:40AM

Nelson came of missionary age during WWII.

He as well as Uchtdorf and Eyring served in the military.

No idea what Oaks deal was.

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Posted by: Elyse ( )
Date: May 13, 2019 12:59PM

Uchtdorf did not serve in any military.

He was a child in East Germany during WWII and came of age during the postwar years of Coca Cola and Elvis Presley.

His family re-located into West Germany and enjoyed the generous benefits of free education & health care in Germany under the Marshall plan.

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Posted by: Nelson did not serve in WWII ( )
Date: May 14, 2019 07:24PM

Nelson was the exact same age as my father. In 1942 all of the guys who had graduated from high school in Utah were being drafted, many for the Navy and sent to be Marines. My dad joined the Air Force to avoid being drafted, so he could serve how he wanted. It's a bit of a puzzle how Nelson avoided the draft for all of WWII, when he was much older he served as a doctor in Japan during the Korean war. There was recently a report that a book that says he was in Korea, is wrong and he only served for a few months in Japan.

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Posted by: GNPE ( )
Date: May 11, 2019 12:07PM

WWII was an entirely different project than Korea or Viet Nam, wasn't it?

the Germans were a world-wide threat, & Japan attacked the U.S., neither of those applied to Korea or VNam.

Even tho I was working in an essential industry (transportation), I was scared poop-less of being drafted (was the 'essential industry' mentality still in use?), so I went on a mission. If you like, you might label me (Mitt Romney, others) as a draft-dodger, that's up to U.

Someone said that the U.S. has lost more military deaths to undeclared wars (Korea was called a 'police action') than to all others previously. What a shame to us & to our Constitution...

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Posted by: elderolddog ( )
Date: May 11, 2019 12:41PM

I went out in 1965, which is later than the years the first presidency would have served.

My grandson went in 2016.

I submit that there is very little similarity between his mission and my mission, other than the time served.

The FP (first presidency) would have had D-day rather than P-day. D-day (diversion day) lasted from the end of Sac meeting until Tuesday morning in my mission. We dressed in civies and back then there was no Name Tag. We were anonymous in our civies.

Day time tracting was the rule. None of this tracting until 9:00 pm. We went to movies during the week. We did not have DLs and ZLs, just the APs, and as I've mentioned before, when the APs in my mission showed up, they came to the door with their guitars.

I have likened the contrast between my mission and my grandson's mission as what you'd expect between the treatment given to volunteers v. slaves.

I had a great (for me, not so much for the church) mission. And my MP was part of that package...for the simple reason that he was in his 60s and this was his final calling. Today's MPs get the calling and imagine it's their first step up the GA ladder, so to many of them go out trying to make a name for themselves. Huge difference!

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Posted by: Lot's Wife ( )
Date: May 11, 2019 01:58PM

I have a close relative who served as a mission president in the 1990s. He says what you do: namely, that there is absolutely no comparison between what he experienced as a missionary a few years before you and the missions he oversaw as an MP.

He thought the freedom and respect missionaries experienced in the 1950s and 1960s, the ability to experience local cultures and learn from them, was uniquely valuable. The church grew weaker, he thinks, as it suppressed individuality in the mission field in the 1970s and thereafter.

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Posted by: Cheryl ( )
Date: May 11, 2019 01:37PM

They look lame sending out so many kids to harass people who have to turn them away because they resent the intrusions.

If only those who were interested served, they'd have more enthusiasm and get higher numbers to make up for fewer missionaries. They'd have a better feeling among those serving and wouldn't have to constantly spy on those more likely to slouch from lack of interest.

Forcing everyone to serve is counter productive any way you look at it in my opinion.

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Posted by: GNPE ( )
Date: May 11, 2019 01:46PM

Are we 'forgetting'?

members are always supposed to 'Follow the Prophet'; if the prophet didn't serve on a mission, why would later members/youth?

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Posted by: heartbroken ( )
Date: May 11, 2019 05:06PM

Todays missionaries are the church's version of the military. The mission is very strict, rigid, structured and controlled. The missionaries are enlisted to learn obedience and are often nothing more than cannon fodder, which is why so many return home early. Many of those who make it to the end suffer from PTSD.

I think the Q15 should spend at least one month knocking doors and following the rigid mission rules before forcing 18 year olds to waste 2 years of their lives "serving". They should have to walk up to random people on the street and see how far they get before people give them a cross look and walk away.

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Posted by: babyloncansuckit ( )
Date: May 11, 2019 05:40PM

That’s no way to run a cult. Abuse builds character and strengthens faith. The MPs should paddle on a regular basis.

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Posted by: mel ( )
Date: May 11, 2019 08:25PM

Ok, the 1970’s were 50 years ago, if that was when the mission emphasis began, its been ignored a long time by these church leaders.

I do fault them for requiring something they didn’t do. Military service is paid and had student loan or college benefits, missions don’t. If they are truly chosen I agree they should have gone on a mission in addition to military service or business or medical school, or what about at least a senior mission???



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 05/11/2019 08:26PM by mel.

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Posted by: cl2 ( )
Date: May 11, 2019 09:00PM

each ward. During Vietnam, I believe the wards were only allowed to send 2 missionaries. I know my dad always thought that my uncle making sure his son went on a mission and not to Vietnam was horrible as my uncle had influence.

Whether they served or not, they have NO EMPATHY whatsoever for the missionaries. These men act like they don't have a caring bone in their bodies.

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Posted by: montanadude ( )
Date: May 12, 2019 10:33AM

I believe the primary reason there is so much pressure for youth to serve missions is that it keeps them active and on the path of a long time tithing payer. They pressure them to get married when they return and start popping out kids. They've even admitted that youth are leaving in droves.

Outside of Africa, many missionaries come home without baptizing anyone especially in the U.S. I hear from family members, friends that missionaries know spend most of their time volunteering or "trying to find something to do."

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Posted by: Shummy ( )
Date: May 12, 2019 10:57AM

I would hasten add another name to the list of non mission serving slackers, that of Gordon B Hinckley.

I happen to have a warm place in my heart for the little weasel who inadvertently assured my own place on the list of shirkers.

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