Ready to Be a Missionary
March 2023

“Ready to Be a Missionary,” For the Strength of Youth, Mar. 2023.

Ready to Be a Missionary

How do you know you’re prepared to serve a mission?


President Russell M. Nelson has reminded us of the importance of missionary work and has encouraged young men and young women to prepare to serve.1 Being a full-time missionary takes work, but so does becoming one!

Mission preparation can sometimes feel overwhelming because it seems like there are so many things to do:

“I need to save up money.”

“I should study Preach My Gospel.

“How do I cook or do laundry for myself?”

“I should set up an appointment with my bishop.”

“Am I confident enough to share the gospel?”

These thoughts and concerns are valid. However, it’s best to focus on the larger purpose for your service.

Your Reason

It’s helpful to ask yourself: “Why do I want to serve a mission?”

Maybe you feel like it’s your duty. Maybe you’re excited to live in a new place or learn a new language. Perhaps you want to share your testimony of the Atonement of Jesus Christ or the doctrine of eternal families. Or you believe, as President Nelson has said, that “everyone deserves the chance to know about the restored gospel of Jesus Christ.”2

Some reasons for serving a mission are better than others, and there’s more than one good reason to go. Your reasons should ultimately center around your love of the Lord and His restored gospel. Think about your reasons and if they will help you serve the Lord ”with all your heart, might, mind and strength” (Doctrine and Covenants 4:2). And if you don’t have the desire, you can pray to Heavenly Father to help you gain it.

sister missionary giving service

Your Testimony

“Do I have a testimony of the gospel of Jesus Christ? And do I truly believe He has called me to serve?”

A missionary’s purpose is to invite others to come unto Christ. If you’re inviting people to learn about Jesus Christ and His gospel, it’s important to have your own testimony.

Your testimony doesn’t have to be perfect; there will always be room to build on it. What really matters is the foundation: Jesus Christ. You can come to know Him for yourself by studying His words in the scriptures, praying to Heavenly Father in His name, and striving to live like Him.

Being a great missionary doesn’t mean you’re always great at talking to people or have every scripture memorized (although you can always work at improving your skills). As long as you trust in the Lord, believe in Him, and are willing to do His work, He will magnify your efforts and help make you an effective missionary.

sister missionaries

Your Temple Endowment

“Do I feel prepared to go to the temple?”

Before you serve a mission, you’ll likely receive your endowment in the temple if you haven’t already done so.

Temple blessings are “a fundamental but frequently overlooked aspect of preparing for a call to the work.” And “personal worthiness is the single most important requirement for receiving the blessings of the temple.”3 As you prepare and are worthy to go to the temple and make sacred covenants with God, you will also be preparing yourself to be a missionary for Him (see Doctrine and Covenants 105:33; 109:22).

Eventually, you can take a temple preparation class. But in the meantime, you can do your own study and preparation. President Nelson has recommended certain scriptures and gospel topics you can study to learn about the temple.4 You can also learn more at temples.ChurchofJesusChrist.org.

service missionary at a computer

Worthy and Prepared

Again, there are many aspects of mission preparation. Yes, you should save money, keep yourself physically fit, and learn basic skills like mending clothes or cooking. You can still have those goals.

But don’t let the details overwhelm you. The most important preparation you can do is the kind that allows you to be a worthy and effective instrument in the Lord’s hands.

If you feel inadequate, stressed, or unsure about serving, that’s natural. Just remember that the Lord wants you to succeed! As you trust in Him and follow the guidance of the Spirit, He will help you prepare to be the best missionary you can be.