Missionaries Face Difficult Choice Of When To Finish Their Assignments

Apr 1, 2020, 7:34 PM | Updated: Jul 1, 2022, 11:25 pm

PLEASANT GROVE, Utah — Thousands of missionaries for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints have some tough and emotional decisions to make following the announcement of new service options that affect their terms of service.

The new options were announced Tuesday.

All U.S. missionaries who were brought home from their foreign missions have been released. They have been asked to wait out the current situation, and then be reassigned, or delay their mission by 12 to 18 months.

“I’m very happy about this opportunity, that they let us choose,” said Elder Braxten Washburn from Pleasant Grove, who has been home from El Salvador for three days.

He has been in self-quarantine along with his brother, Elder Tyrus Washburn, who was at the Missionary Training Center in Mexico when he was sent home.

Both brothers said they were still trying to decide what they will do.

“Honestly, it’s a very, very hard decision what to do, and I can’t decide,” said Elder Braxten Washburn. “It’s really sad to have to leave that and come back early from my mission.”

“It’s honestly a really tough decision. It’s definitely something you got to take time to pray about, really try and figure out what the right thing for me is,” said Elder Tyrus Washburn. “Really deciding how to handle it is really going to take some time; a lot of patience and care to figure out how to handle this.”

Elder Mahonri White said he has already made his decision. He has been self-isolating in a trailer at a neighbor’s house for several days after returning home from Brazil. His family said the trailer was the best option as both his mom and brother have weak immune systems. Elder White said waiting out the coronavirus crisis is his best option.

“I am of the opinion, if I wait the twelve to eighteen months, I won’t want to go back out afterward, and right now, I really have the desire to get back out to serve people, to teach people,” he said. “As soon as I can go back out, I’m going to go back into the mission field.”

Missionaries have until the end of the month to make their decision.

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Missionaries Face Difficult Choice Of When To Finish Their Assignments