Coronavirus: Church Announces Multiple Changes For Missionaries In United States, Canada
Mar 16, 2020, 9:09 AM | Updated: 9:20 am
(Photo by George Frey/Getty Images)
SALT LAKE CITY — Latter-day Saint missionaries serving in the United States or Canada may be released after 21 months if their assignments are scheduled to end on or before Sept. 1 because of the global coronavirus pandemic, according to an official church statement about multiple changes to missionary service released Monday morning.
“Sharing the gospel of Jesus Christ remains a sacred priority for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints,” the statement said, “even in the current circumstances related to the COVID-19 pandemic.”
“We are adapting to constantly changing conditions,” it continued. “Missionaries will continue to be called to serve and assigned to labor in missions worldwide. Missionary recommendations will continue to be received, and missionary assignments for worldwide service will continue to be made.”
The statement announced several temporary adjustments to missionary service, most of which are actions taken previously in missions most affected by the spread of the coronavirus.
For example, the church said young missionaries with health issues and senior missionaries may be released from service, something that has been done in the faith’s 22 missions in Europe.
Also, missionaries who begin their service but are unable to travel to their assigned mission may be temporarily reassigned to another mission. This is the case for missionaries who originally received assignments to serve in Cambodia, Singapore, Thailand, Japan and other missions.