Perhaps you have seen two Mormon missionaries out on the street, walking, or riding their bikes. Many people have wondered why do Mormons go on missions? Mormons go on missions to share the gospel and thereby help others follow Christ. Mormons have to prepare carefully before going on a mission, which are rewarding, even though they involve sacrifice.
After my first year in college, I went on a two-year mission to San Fernando California. On my mission, I watched how the gospel had the ability to transform lives for the better. My mission was pivotal in strengthening my faith and clarifying what I personally believe.
Mormons go on missions to share the gospel.
In the Bible, Christ taught about the importance of sharing the gospel, stating: “Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world.” ~Matthew 28:19-20
There are currently over 74,900 Mormon missionaries serving throughout the globe. Missions last between 18 to 24 months, and take place in over 405 missions throughout the world.
Mormons go on missions to help others follow Christ.
Mormons believe that the gospel has the ability to change lives: “The gospel of Jesus Christ is a gospel of transformation. It takes us as men and women of the earth and refines us into men and women for the eternities.” ~Elder Joseph Wirthlin
Mormons go on missions to teach others about Christ, helping them become better persons.
Former Mormon church leader David O. McKay taught that “the purpose of the gospel is to make bad men good and good men better-to change men’s lives.” Mahatma Gandhi made a similar statement, saying that we “be the change that you wish to see in the world.”
Going on a Mormon mission requires careful preparation. Before Mormons can go on missions and share the gospel, however, they must prepare themselves carefully. This involves making sure they are currently living in accordance with church teachings. By living their beliefs, Mormons can share powerful testimonies that are backed up by an example of a faithful life.
The apostle Paul taught believers that they should be example of living the gospel:
“Let no man despise thy youth; but be though an example of the believers, in word, in conversation, in charity, in spirit, in faith, in purity.” ~1 Timothy 4:12 (Apostle Paul to Timothy)
Going on a Mormon mission is a sacrifice but it also rewarding. On their missions, Mormon missionaries work a lot of hours each week and limit their contact with home in order to stay focused. Missionaries give up things like dating, watching TV, movies and even school and career so that they can devote themselves whole-heartedly to missionary work. Missionary work requires great self-discipline and patience each day.
However, as much of sacrifice as it is, missionaries are greatly rewarded as their personal faith in Jesus Christ grows and they are able to see the gospel change lives for the better.
A good way to learn more is by going to Mormon.org, or by chatting with a missionary the next time they visit your neighborhood.