I hope they call me on a mission
When I have grown a foot or two.
I hope by then I will be ready
To teach and preach and work as missionaries do.
I hope that I can share the gospel
With those who want to know the truth.
I want to be a missionary
And serve and help the Lord while I am in my youth.
-Newel Kay Brown, Children's Songbook, page 169
This is my youngest brother, Andrew. There are three sisters, one brother and 18½ years between us.
Andrew just received his mission call yesterday. By way of explanation, every single young man is encouraged to serve a two-year mission at the age of 19. Single young women may also serve a mission at the age of 21. Service is voluntary and you are not paid for the time you spend teaching the gospel. Additionally, you must meet certain requirements in order to serve a mission and the standard is very high. Once you have decided that you'd like to serve a mission, you fill out some papers and submit them to the Church leaders who then review them and assign you an area to serve. It is anybody's guess where you'll go until you receive your call in the mail.
Every mission call is worded the same . . . You are hereby called to serve as a missionary of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. You are assigned to labor in the . . .
Missouri St. Louis Mission!After the reading of the call, then there is the checking of the maps to see exactly where you'll be headed.
Andrew invited lots of friends and family to be with him when he opened his call.
Refreshments were provided.
Here are my parents with their youngest child. Their nest will very soon be empty. Our youngest sister is getting married at the end of July and just four days later Andrew will be heading out for his mission.
A mission, in a nutshell, is leaving your family for a little while so that other families can be together forever.