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LDS First Presidency urges missionary contributions

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  • LivinLarge Bountiful, UT
    June 3, 2013 6:42 p.m.

    I'm all for more missionaries. However, what happened to the self-reliant expectation of paying your own way, even if it means delaying your mission by a year or two? I've been taught and continue to believe that self-reliance is no respecter of age and that the Lord will provide a way.

  • BYR Woods Cross, UT
    June 3, 2013 6:56 p.m.

    I think aspect is the time frame to become financially prepared for a mission. Prior to the announcement last October, a young man had an entire year to prepare (or waste), while the young woman had 2-3 years. Now, the young man can submit his papers while in high school. A little more difficult I think. Still, what has the young man/woman been doing since they were 16? A difficult balance between work and school. Tough decisions.

  • Claudio Springville, Ut
    June 3, 2013 7:01 p.m.

    LivinLarge,

    People in other countries are sometimes lucky if they make as much as is required for a mission in their lifetime. Self-reliance yes; selecting missionaries based on the luck of their birthplace, no.

  • Laurels Sandy, UT
    June 3, 2013 7:01 p.m.

    My youngest son served a mission in Chile. Several of his companions came from near poverty circumstances from other South American countries. Most of them received support from the LDS Church's General Missionary Fund. Given their circumstances, it would have been impossible to save enough to pay for their missions. Any money they earned went to feed their family. Taking two years to serve a mission was a tremendous sacrifice on their part, as well as for their family.

    Once they honorably completed their missions, several of them also benefited from the Perpetual Education Fund. What a blessing that has been! These young men learned skills that enabled them to get decent-paying jobs. They are paying back the PEF loans, have the skills to support their families above the poverty level, and will now be able to support their children in the future for their missions as well as make contributions to the Missionary Fund themselves. Self-reliance is a good thing, but sometimes it takes a "pay forward" activity like the Church's Missionary Fund and the PEF to make self-reliance possible.

  • amagnetick AV, CA
    June 3, 2013 8:11 p.m.

    I find it interesting that someone with the screen name of LivinLarge would be whining about how missionaries should be pulling their own weight. If you are "LivinLarge", you of all people should be able to assist those who come from very modest circumstances to fulfill a mission (if you are being truthful about being for more Missionaries). I know how it is though... sometimes your fingers start typing before your brain is engaged.

  • statman Lehi, UT
    June 3, 2013 8:19 p.m.

    livin - the expectation of missionaries paying their own way "even if it takes an extra year or two" went out last October where the advice to prospective missionaries was to not delay for financial reasons. Part of the reason for moving the age of service up was that the church "lost" many potential missionaries in the extra year. Requiring that all missionaries be self-reliant would be counter-productive.

  • Jack Aurora, CO
    June 3, 2013 8:35 p.m.

    What is boils down to is this: for those who can contribute, please do so for there are many who would serve if they could afford it. The old days when most of the missionaries came from the US, where they could earn and save for their missions are over. There are so many in other countries who don't have what we have who can benefit from our contributions. Oh yeah, and the blessings are there too.

  • Barb Wire USA, UT
    June 3, 2013 9:05 p.m.

    Where does all that millions of dollars in tithing money go? Asking a member to pay tithing and contribute to a missionary fund is a little excessive. I would never contribute to a missionary fund. If a high school student wants to go on a mission that bad, then they should find a way to pay for it themselves. I think it's more of the their parent's egos pushing them than really wanting to serve a mission at that age. I believe college or work is a better choice at that age and a mission later when they are more financially able and certainly more mature.

  • DGA28 Monticello, UT
    June 3, 2013 10:03 p.m.

    Really Barb Wire. Did you serve a mission? Do know anybody who did? I did (5th generation missionary), my 2 sons have, 2 warming up in the bullpen, one daughter headed out next week. A mission can be a life changer. I gladly help my kids and pay for other youth who can't afford it. A few hundred bucks a month to change and improve generations, priceless.

  • roberto Moses Lake, WA
    June 3, 2013 10:39 p.m.

    I think that young men and their families should do as much as they can to pay their way. When they can't then its time for guys like me and "living large" to step up to the plate. As for Barb, attitude adjustment comes first then comes the contributions. Its all up to you.

  • common sense in Idaho Pocatello, id
    June 4, 2013 12:16 a.m.

    Just for the record my wife and I have supported three sons on missions. The youngest got home last year. We have noticed that since he has gotten home that we have missed supporting a son on a mission financially and also spiritually. We now help support a full time missionary in our home ward who is from humble circumstances. No, we are not related to this elder and no we weren't asked by the Bishop to help. We do it BECAUSE WE WANT TO. Nothing makes us feel better than to support a missionary in the mission field. It is actually quite an honor. And yes we are full tithe payers also. All the glory be to our heavenly father.

  • mecr Bountiful, UT
    June 4, 2013 12:37 a.m.

    We received a letter from my daughter's mission president asking parents to be considerate on the extra funds and even gifts we sent to our children because there are so many other missionaries who are not american who serve under very humble circunstances. Whoever had served a mission in latinamerica for example can tell about the "local" missionarirs going to the mission field with just the basic. Just going on a mission was a family sacrifice because family lost one of the earners. I know of a girl who worked two full time jobs here to save the money so her parents who are poor don't have a financial burden. I also know of a girl in latinamerica whose mother is selling rice and beans to help her daughter to go on a mission. The girl is cleaning houses. No father figure, she is the only child and will leave her mother who is old behind, They are sacrifizing more than what we can imagine! I think we can give a bit. From bit to bit, great things can be one!

  • Strider303 Salt Lake City, UT
    June 4, 2013 3:09 a.m.

    To me it ain't the money, it's a call to follow the leader's request. I don't know where "all that tithing money goes" and don't really care - it's not my money once I give it. All this means is that there is a need,and we are asked to fill it. As a people we have an opportunity to step up and be part of what we supposedly sing about, pray about and talk about on Sunday.

    Sacrifice brings for the blessings of Heaven, or so the refrain goes. We get a chance to put it to the test.

    Hey, it's only green pieces of paper we all pretend has value, and it's been so since the 1970's.

  • Dennis Harwich, MA
    June 4, 2013 5:41 a.m.

    When the Church sends thousands of 18 year old young men that haven't even had a year to save some money and ready themselves for the mission experience what can they expect other than to help pay for these kids. Seriously, what were they thinking?

  • luv2organize Gainesville, VA
    June 4, 2013 6:47 a.m.

    Dear Barb Wire; read the article today about the service that the pilots give to those in need. Basically this boils down to giving unconditional to the betterment of society. It doesn't have to be to the church or missions - it can be to whatever your heart desires. I hope one day to have enough money to give, give and give some more.

  • elarue NEW YORK, NY
    June 4, 2013 7:24 a.m.

    BYR - I think you bring up something about the level of financial preparation. If a young man graduates from high school and then decides he isn't even going to start college until after his mission, then he can work full time to build up a mission fund. However, in high school, you can't possibly work a full time job, if for no other reason that child labor laws won't allow it. So having a mission savings fund ready and waiting for you on high school graduation based on your own labors is pretty much unrealistic.

  • mhilton Lancaster, CA
    June 4, 2013 7:39 a.m.

    I am ambivelant about this new request. It's not surprising. Yet, I give, and give and give. My tithing, fast offering, supporting a missionary from our ward in part(including clothing expenses), and a missionary from my home (my daughter). Soon, my husband is going to be fuloughed by his employer in July unless there is an act from the federal government. Our ward has not had a ward activity in 6 months because we have no budget for ward activities. I love the Church and try to be true to the covenants I make. But, what about my family and planning for retirement? What about my ward that needs so much help and gets very little? I agree in the wonderment about where all the tithing money goes, because, besides a physical building to meet in and 2 temples within an hour and half drive, I don't see any help for my poor ward that has a library that is practically useless and no activities worth inviting non-members too. And now, were being asked to give to the gen. missionary fund. When will it end?

  • midwestfan Spanish Fork, UT
    June 4, 2013 7:49 a.m.

    We supported 7 children on missions and are now supporting two more--ourselves. Senior Missions Rock!!! Most of the Senior Couples in our mission are serving their 2nd, 3rd, 5th missions; and one is on their 9th mission. They hope to serve #10 after this one. Why?? The blessings far out weigh any inconvenience, and the people here need and appreciate us so much. Our capacity to love others is growing. Our understanding of what it means to be a disciple of the Lord is growing. Our understanding of the scriptures is growing. Our ability to receive revelation is growing. Most of all, our closeness to the Savior is growing. What a way to top off a life-time of part-time service and prepare for the next world by doing what we hope to be doing there.

  • Christmas Carole LAS CRUCES, NM
    June 4, 2013 8:00 a.m.

    "As for me and my house..." SHAME on anyone who would "protect" their wallets above the humble request of our leaders to help those in lesser circumstances. Aren't those of us who have been blessed grateful?...and how gratefully we are asked to give to those who are not, in a "nonjudgmental" way. "...but for the grace of God go I.."

  • GD Syracuse, UT
    June 4, 2013 8:16 a.m.

    The positive of a mission is that it helps these young men who need help prepare for college. I think it helps many of them rise above their circumstances when they get home. I'm glad we can help.

  • Uncle Vic El Dorado Hills, CA
    June 4, 2013 8:36 a.m.

    I'm not surprised or displeased that the First Presidency is asking for more contributions. The Deseret News recently reported that the Church is anticipating a 47 percent increase in missionaries. I doubt that tithing receipts have risen by 47 percent. True, not all of our tithing goes to support missionary work, but I'll bet a lot of it does. With this additional expense, the Church needs to make up the difference, or perhaps, rather, we do. The $400 each young missionary pays monthly does not completely cover the cost of the mission, I am sure.

    My wife and I are serving a couples mission right now, and loving it. But I think we'll also have to increase our contribution to the General Missionary Fund. We don't mind. Seems like I made a promise to do that, some time back. I'm thankful that we have something to contribute, and appreciate those whose circumstances don't allow it.

  • Hutterite American Fork, UT
    June 4, 2013 8:41 a.m.

    The corporation should have anticipated a funding shortfall with it's new policy to staff up.

  • GeoMan SALEM, OR
    June 4, 2013 8:43 a.m.

    The range of reactions on this comment board is remarkable and I'm not even sure I can tell who is being sarcastic or facetious and who is being sincere and direct. I'm going to just give everyone the benefit of the doubt in that regard and assume the best that their words allow.

    One point I would like to add to the discussion is this: In the economy of the past few years, many young men and young women have not been able to get a job to allow them to earn and save money for a mission.

    The request was to give according to ability. Many will not be able to, but there are many others that have great abundance and would benefit greatly by responding to the First Presidency's request.

  • Wiscougarfan River Falls, WI
    June 4, 2013 8:49 a.m.

    Re: Barb Wire

    I agree with the sentiment "If a high school student wants to go on a mission that bad, then they should find a way to pay for it themselves" as well as the notion that too many kids are going on missions to appease their parents or peers (which is easy if the whole thing is paid for anyways).

    However, like others on this thread have suggested, not all of the 65,000+ missionaries that are currently serving come from the privileged background that makes missionary service so easily attainable. The suggestion to contribute to the general missionary fund is one I wholeheartedly support. While I personally try to make opportunities available (i.e. chores) to my own children to make and save money so they pay for their own missions our family is very grateful for the opportunity to help others who would not be able to serve without outside help. When my seven year old contributes a dollar or two to the general mission fund he is furthering his own preparation for missionary service.

  • Allen#2 WEST VALLEY CITY, UT
    June 4, 2013 9:13 a.m.

    I am glad my wife and I began contributing to the General Missionary Fund before the First Presidency letter was read in our ward last Sunday and had started contributing to the Perpetual Education Fund when President Hinckley announced it.

  • JD Books Sulphurdale, UT
    June 4, 2013 9:56 a.m.

    I think a multi billion dollar company should be able to pay for the new missionaries without having to milk the members for more dollars. If a person wants to pay extra to the mission fund, let them but many will think that because the prophet mentioned this in conference that it is a decree from on high. That isn't the case. I can barely afford to make ends meet with tithing being paid. I just don't think the church should go hat in hand to it's members anymore for handouts.

  • Jared Average, SE
    June 4, 2013 9:58 a.m.

    Hutterite, I know you don't have particularly kind feelings towards the LDS Church but the Church is doing exactly what you said. They are anticipating a "funding shortfall" and are asking for donations to prevent such a shortfall from causing financial problems down the road. They are also reminding members of the Church that they covenanted with God that they would use their means and abilities to support others and further the Lord's work. Besides, those who give freely are blessed - that's not why we do it but it's what happens when we do.

  • ImABeliever Provo, UT
    June 4, 2013 10:03 a.m.

    All these comments about whether to give or not, where the money goes is absolutely ridiculous. God said to use good judgement in all things and the General Authorities would say the same thing.
    The statement is "IF" you are in a position to give to the missionary fund then please do so. The Prophet would never tell you to sacrifice shelter, food and clothing to give to the missionary fund. Just like the Prophet would never tell you to run up your credit cards, get in debt to buy food storage.
    C'mon brothers and sisters; stop squabbling and use the brain that God gave you.

  • Craig Clark Boulder, CO
    June 4, 2013 10:05 a.m.

    The single greatest contribution to missionary work is that of the young men and women who contribute two years of their lives to serving and don't receive a dime in compensation for their dedicated service. Surely a church that spends billions building opulent temples and visitors centers could loosen its own purse strings before asking church membership to dig deeper into its pockets.

  • OHBU Columbus, OH
    June 4, 2013 10:30 a.m.

    statman: "Part of the reason for moving the age of service up was that the church "lost" many potential missionaries in the extra year. Requiring that all missionaries be self-reliant would be counter-productive."

    This is the most troubling aspect of the policy change to me. In other words, too many young men, once they were finally adults and out the house, had time to really analyze their beliefs and decided that a mission was not for them. The church's solution? Get them out on a mission before they're out from underneath their parents' thumb. Feels a bit like a desperation move by a church whose missionary force has remained the same for over twenty years. I remember on my mission in 1999 our area authority talked quite frankly about how the church was worried about the fact that the number of missionaries hadn't increased in over a decade. Today, it is the same number.

  • Obama10 SYRACUSE, UT
    June 4, 2013 10:33 a.m.

    Law of Consecration. Enough said.

  • Thinkman Provo, UT
    June 4, 2013 10:45 a.m.

    I guess the 10% from the members isn't enough to fund the added missionaries?

    Time to start paying double tithing, which isn't tithing afterall. We need a new word for 20% ... how about twentthing?

  • Craig Clark Boulder, CO
    June 4, 2013 10:57 a.m.

    Obama10,

    "Law of Consecration. Enough said."
    ______________________________

    The Law of Consecration was discontinued in the 19th century. Were you aware that it asked members to deed their property to the Church?

    Let's keep in mind that when missionaries make converts they're also potentially expanding the tithing base of the Church in addition to spreading the Gospel.

  • Thinkman Provo, UT
    June 4, 2013 11:02 a.m.

    I'm glad to see a healthy debate and discussion on this topic.

    My son decided to go on a mission. I am helping him with it, even though I don't believe the LDS church to be God's one and only true church. I served a mission in a foreign land many moons ago and paid for it by working and earning my own money.

    My son is also receiving some help (even though it isn't needed) by some generous members in his ward. They willingly give to him directly because they chose on their own to contribute. I think the LDS church leaders asking the general membership to contribute above tithing, fast offerings and to the Perpetual Education Fund, to the Temple Fund and now once again, to the General Missionary Fund, is an overreach.

    LDS Church leaders are just men by the way who are business savy and who know that many, possibly 40-45% of the general membership will just go ahead and dig deeper in their pockets to contribute to yet another LDS church money stream.

    Contribute if you like, but know that the LDS church has several revenue streams already to fund more missionaries.

  • JP71 Ogden, UT
    June 4, 2013 11:17 a.m.

    When I originally read this I though it was another thing to add to tithing and fast offering. But, as I thought about it I thought of how easy we have it now compared to the Saints 100, 50, or even 30 years ago. If the Prophet asks for our help we need to step up.

  • terra nova Park City, UT
    June 4, 2013 11:25 a.m.

    If ye judge the [missionary] who putteth up his petition to you for your substance that he perish not, and condemn him, how much more just will be your condemnation for withholding your substance, which doth not belong to you but to God... wo be unto (you), for (your) substance shall perish with (you)... I say (this to) those who are rich as pertaining to the things of this world. (But if you are) poor (and) have not and yet have sufficient, that ye remain from day to day; I mean all you who deny the [missionary], because ye have not; I would that ye say in your hearts that: I give not because I have not, but if I had I would give. If you do so with a pure heart, you remain guiltless... Mosiah 5:21-24

    The earth is full... and I have given unto the children of men to be agents unto themselves. Therefore, if any man shall take of the abundance which I have made, and impart not his portion, according to the law of my gospel, unto the poor and the needy, he shall (suffer) with the wicked. (D&C 104:15-17)

  • terra nova Park City, UT
    June 4, 2013 11:32 a.m.

    But the rich should take pride in their humiliation — since they will pass away like a wild flower. (James 1:10 NIV)

    We blossom like a flower and then wither. Like a passing shadow, we quickly disappear. (Job 14:2)

    We are merely moving shadows, and all our busy rushing ends in nothing. We heap up wealth, not knowing who will spend it. Psalm 39:6

    Our days on earth are like grass; like wildflowers, we bloom and die. Psalm 103:15

    The grass withers and the flowers fade beneath the breath of the LORD. And so it is with people. Isaiah 40:7

    And if God cares so wonderfully for wildflowers that are here today and thrown into the fire tomorrow, he will certainly care for you. Why do you have so little faith? Matthew 6:30

    Those who use the things of the world should not become attached to them. For this world as we know it will soon pass away. 1 Corinthians 7:31

    Let us give what we can. It may not be much. But we are blessed if we do.

  • sammyg Springville, UT
    June 4, 2013 11:33 a.m.

    Happy to do it.

  • GeoMan SALEM, OR
    June 4, 2013 11:45 a.m.

    OHBU,
    No, you have it completely backwards. Too many young men were being led down paths that would bring them unhappiness and emptiness before they were "finally adults" (your choice of words, not mine). The fact is that we are all subject to many, many influences as we go through life. Those that choose to follow the path of Christ only urge, admonish, and try to live so as to be an example. Many of those that choose other paths freely indulge in other, more deceptive and coercive, methods of influence. It is always harder work to preserve and protect than it is to attack and destroy. Encouraging missionary service is an effort to preserve and protect. The best things in life don't come easy.
    In the words of the Savior: "For unto whomsoever much is given, of him shall be much required: and to whom men have committed much, of him they will ask the more."

  • BYU&UW FAN West Jordan, UT
    June 4, 2013 11:54 a.m.

    I am more than happy to donate what I can. I am a federal employee, and will be facing furlough days like many people. I think it is important to donate something even if it is a small amount. The donations can go a long way. Especially in places like Latin America (Where I Served as a missionary). Many people in the United States don't truly understand what "Modest circumstances” means. Many potential missionaries work to survive, and have no way of saving enough for a mission. I am grateful for the chance I had to go on a mission, and hopefully my donation can help someone else.

  • Tajemnica West Valley, Utah
    June 4, 2013 11:58 a.m.

    @Barb Wire
    Shame on you if you are a member of the church. Jesus Christ himself commanded everyone to help and assist people in any way possible. If you are refusing to help missionaries by donating to the missionary fund than you had better not have the means to do it in the first place. Plus according to my knowledge of the LDS church (being a non-member with great respect for the church) when your prophet tells you to do something you do it! It becomes a commandment from God himself. Also, in all my dealings with friends that I have who are members, not ONCE has a prospective missionary felt forced by his or her parents to serve. It has always been their choice and a choice they are excited about. And while you can have your opinions about what is best, if you are in fact a member you would know that the prophet speaks God's word as if it came from God's mouth himself. Thus God has said that if a young man or woman is worthy, able, and desirous to serve at 18 or 19 it becomes the 'best' thing that they should do.

  • alabama moundville,hale, AL
    June 4, 2013 12:00 p.m.

    "...we encourage members, as they are able..." If you are able, great, if not, then don't. The First Presidency wants us to take care of ourselves first. If you are facing a job loss, then save up for months/year of unemployment first, make sure you have food storage etc. It is simple, common sense.....you can always pray for the missionaries if you cannot help financially. Please don't feel resentment. It is a request, if you are able. I cannot because of present financial constraints but that does not mean I cannot be a member missionary and support and encourage our local missionaries. Blessings to all....

  • Tajemnica West Valley, Utah
    June 4, 2013 12:03 p.m.

    In addition, everything we have monetary or otherwise comes from God. Are we really so prideful that we are not willing to give back to God what is rightfully his? What about the church's teachings regarding the law of consecration? Those who have more money donate to those who have less. Those who have more time donate to those who have less. Those who have more humility donate to those who have less. God created everyone equally and he will have them treated as such. God made these decisions not man. God knew exactly what he was thinking. He is perfect. We are not.

  • crawfordzoo Barstow, CA
    June 4, 2013 12:05 p.m.

    I will be forever grateful for the General Missionary Fund. Although I thought I had adequately prepared, I found out after I arrived in the field, that my bishop & I had worked from an old currency conversion sheet which showed outdated monthly funds needed. I have since helped support other missionaries and am trying to help my children save for their missions. My husband also expects to be furloughed next month. So this is not our time & season to give and I don't feel guilty. The time will come when I can give again. I don't look at it as a burden, but an opportunity.

  • Craig Clark Boulder, CO
    June 4, 2013 12:09 p.m.

    "No, you have it completely backwards. Too many young men were being led down paths that would bring them unhappiness and emptiness before they were "finally adults"
    ______________________________

    The mission field is not a juvenile rehabilitation program. The way I read OHBU's post was as an expression of concern that too many young LDS men were being called to the mission field before they were mature enough to make such an adult commitment. That has been my concern as well. You shouldn't go on a mission to please Mom and Dad or because your friends are doing it or when you weren't even sure about your own faith.

  • atl134 Salt Lake City, UT
    June 4, 2013 12:19 p.m.

    @Tajemnica
    "What about the church's teachings regarding the law of consecration? "

    Too close to resembling communism (particularly back when the church basically was the gov't pre-statehood in what is now Utah) for some modern day members to handle.

  • E.S Bountiful, UT
    June 4, 2013 12:53 p.m.

    I am glad we can contribute. It is a privilege. Tithing money goes to both chapel and Temple construction/maintenance, and the publication of Book of Mormon (which is delivered for free to investigators all over the world). The call for contribution is to all - still, I can't help but believe those living in countries less favored will probably contribute more than the many members in the U.S.

  • I Bleed Blue Las Vegas, NV
    June 4, 2013 1:02 p.m.

    A mission was the best thing I ever did. It set me up for life and all of its challenges. Any money to assist with this is money well spent.

  • Woodyff Mapleton, UT
    June 4, 2013 1:14 p.m.

    If everyone just gave $10 a month (if they can afford more than give more) I would think there would be enough, and most everyone wastes more than $10 a month. By some comments there are those that need 'converted'.

  • Barb Wire USA, UT
    June 4, 2013 1:15 p.m.

    @ Tajemnica... Yes I am a member, but not for very much longer. I see too many things wrong with the church and to "fleece" it's members into a poor quality of life is wrong I believe. If more money is needed for missionaries then it can be found elsewhere, say funds for building magnificent temples or profits from City Creek Mall. So Tajemnica, shame on you for judging me.

  • Woodyff Mapleton, UT
    June 4, 2013 1:41 p.m.

    How many remember when you paid tithing, budget, building fund, missionary fund, etc. As it says "if you are able". When I need work done around my home I hire a young man and hopefully that will help with his 'missionary fund' and when I can I donate to the ward mission fund or the general fund. Everything we have is from our Heavenly Father, without Him we have nothing. Remember Matthew 19:24.

  • Craig Clark Boulder, CO
    June 4, 2013 2:04 p.m.

    BYU&UW FAN,

    "....Many potential missionaries work to survive, and have no way of saving enough for a mission. I am grateful for the chance I had to go on a mission, and hopefully my donation can help someone else."
    ______________________________

    That is the true spirit of giving. Money given grudgingly is better not being given at all.

  • KinCO Fort Collins, CO
    June 4, 2013 2:11 p.m.

    mhilton - "besides a physical building to meet in and 2 temples within an hour and half drive" - HA! You poor thing! Two temples within an hour and a half. How would that be? Methinks you might benefit from a trip to Central America or Africa or maybe Southeast Asia, and see how the saints there live. We in the US are rich, even if we are unemployed. We have clean water to drink, we have sewers and electricity and cars to drive, our food is clean, we don't worry about our family members being shot on the streets. We live better than the wealthiest kings did a couple of centuries ago. Be grateful and be helpful-and be wise. We are not being asked to impoverish our own families, but to give what we can. It's called the law of consecration, but instead of the bishop making the decisions about what you need to live, you do (a bigger responsibility, actually).

  • trueblueBYU Provo, UT
    June 4, 2013 2:16 p.m.

    We have done for years and great blessings come!

  • ulvegaard Medical Lake, Washington
    June 4, 2013 2:27 p.m.

    The church is building, on average, nearly one church building every day of the year at an average cost of 1.5 million per building --- that might explain much of the tithing money.

    Reports are that in this country, jobs are hard to find; especially for the high school graduate age group. And maybe some do go because someone else is putting up the money, but make general comments against the many who serve faithfully in spite of not having earned their own way is not appropriate here; nor there.

    My grandparents encouraged their boys to save for their missions; which they did. But when they got out into the field, my grandparents paid for it all and left their sons' savings for them to use for school, marriage, etc., when they got home.

    I think I'm going to chat with my family in FHE next time about what can we do to contribute our meager means towards these missionaries. Call it 'paying it forward', because heaven knows when my kids get to that age we'll probably need financial help too.

  • Thinkman Provo, UT
    June 4, 2013 2:29 p.m.

    If you believe everything you have is from God, then why are you giving your hard earned money to a church?

    I hope that you don't give in hopes of "saving" yourselves or out of fear of retribution from God or from your church leaders or out of fear of being judged (unrighteously) by your fellow church members or worse, your own family.

    Give because YOU want to give freely but know that the LDS church is certainly flush with cash and could pay for any missionary that wanted to go that can't pay for his/her own mission. Keep in mind also (as stated in other comments) that missionary work and temple building and promoting temple attendance are the financial engine for tithing. The more people who are converted (baptized) and who then are required to pay tithing to attend the temple translate into more payers into the system of the LDS church to build even more temples, enter into other money making ventures and continue to build and become more like a business than a religious institution.

    That is the view shared by many, if not most of those of us who no longer are believers.

  • josegomez Spain, 00
    June 4, 2013 2:55 p.m.

    When I was Baptized at the age of 20 years, three months later I was offered a small volunteer mission to serve, because they needed missionaries, and before their first birthday as a member, I was authorized to serve a mission, I am grateful for the people who helped me, and I held the funds as a missionary, where I studied and worked baptized me, I was a Jehovah's Witness, had a strong testimony of the Book of Mormon and baptized into The Church of Jesus Christ, I showed plainly talking and I lost my job the members of my former congregation, if not for those funds, I would not have served a mission, I had not found special people today are leaders of the Church and have contributed to the establishment and strength in Zion but most important is that the Prophet has said that we must help somehow contribute financially, we do, we will be blessed. Remember the covenants we made in the Temple. Excuse my bad English, and a greeting from Spain.

  • GreatScot Eagle Mountain, UT
    June 4, 2013 5:40 p.m.

    You can use the tithing slip or donate online at LDS Philanthropies. It's not well known, but very convenient.

  • snowman Provo, UT
    June 4, 2013 5:47 p.m.

    Uncle Vic: none of the tithing money goes to missionaries.

    JD Books: First off the church is not a company and if you are barely making it while paying tithing maybe you should look deep inside yourself and see if you are paying your tithing with the right spirit.

    OHBU: The youth of the church are not forced to go on missions.

  • kosimov Riverdale, UT
    June 4, 2013 5:52 p.m.

    Dear JoseGomez in Spain:

    Thank you for your wonderful testimony about your mission and your faith.

    I was baptized when I was 18. I grew up in Utah, in a family which disliked the LDS Church and made fun of it as well. I am sad that I joined in sometimes, but at age 18, I was touched by the Spirit of the Lord and knew I had found the true gospel.

    I planned to marry and go to college, but the Spirit touched my heart again and I was filled with the desire to serve a mission, but I had little money and jobs were scarce. I talked to my father, and to my astonishment he agreed to pay $55/month for my mission. I didn't know until then that he was LDS! Seventies in my ward said they would also give $55/month, so I went to California as a missionary. I developed health problems and had to come home for hospitalization twice, but my mission is still blessing me today. I have many health problems but I know the Lord loves me and is helping me endure them. May the Lord bless you for your faith!

  • kosimov Riverdale, UT
    June 4, 2013 5:59 p.m.

    The First Presidency said to members of the Church: "we encourage members, as they are able, to contribute regularly and generously to the General Missionary Fund of the church."

    This is not a commandment! The Presidency, which was sustained as Prophets at every conference since called, ENCOURAGES us to contribute IF WE ARE ABLE. The number of missionaries in the field will be about 85,000 in a couple of months, a 47% increase since the age limit changed. If each missionary needs an average of just $300/month, that comes to over $35 MILLION per year. Which Church program should be cancelled to come up with these funds, so we don't have to contribute more than tithing?

    Sometimes we forget how the Church functions. We are not led by a bunch of guys who have board meetings and decide what to spend, and draw huge paychecks. We are led by Prophets, just as if Joseph Smith or, even more, if Christ were here leading us. Decisions about where to spend funds are made in prayer, with the Spirit of the Lord leading every decision. We would do well to remember this.

  • kosimov Riverdale, UT
    June 4, 2013 6:11 p.m.

    @Barb Wire --

    I grew up in Utah as a Lutheran. My extended family was very anti-Mormon, condemning and making fun of the Church all the time. I joined in as a child, but as I approached adulthood, my feelings changed. My girlfriend asked me if I wanted to take the discussions, I said yes, I was deeply touched by the truth and validity of the Gospel AND THE CHURCH, and I was baptized at age 18. I planned for marriage and college, but the Spirit touched me again and I served a mission.

    I suppose due to my background, I later adopted attitudes such as you mention in your comments. I drew away from the Church over tithing and other offerings. But, I got to know some people who worked for the Church and learned about how the money is handled. Believe me, the Church is not building opulent Temples or Chapels, every penny that comes in gets spent quickly on legitimate expenses. I regret being so money focused; I was humbled to learn what the Church was doing; to this day I don't know how they do so much with "so little". Please, reconsider prayerfully.

  • suzyk#1 Mount Pleasant, UT
    June 4, 2013 6:59 p.m.

    To: Barb Wire - you feel the way you do because evidently you don't understand the Spirit of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. I think it marvelous these young people have a desire to serve the Lord - leave the comforts of their home and families to do what they believe is the right thing to do and they know a way will be provided. There are many who have been saving small amounts for years but at today's cost it is not enough. They will grow spiritually, physically and emotionally with their mission experience. Those who have been faithful members of the church all of their life know and accept the challenges and overcome them with Faith, Perseverance and Love of our Heavenly Father.

  • thefid Kearns, UT
    June 5, 2013 8:38 a.m.

    @mhilton, the widow gave 2 mites and was considered to give the greatest amount. Where will it end? When you are in the Celestial kingdom. This life is a test to see if you will follow Him.

    @Barb, my family couldn't afford sending me either, but the experiences I learned in 2 years has lasted a lifetime. Now my son is out and I can afford to help him more than my parents. I do it gladly because the money somehow comes back to me. I have more extra now, than ever before.

    @Dennis, "what were they thinking?" Close to 90,000 missionaries within 2 years of the announcement... furthering the objective of the church to tell every living soul... That is what they were thinking. So I can now share the family's blessings (financially and spiritually) for helping them... Giving selflessly to encourage personal growth in our children... Priceless.

    Going on a mission a year earlier wouldn't have changed my financial situation, but it would have encouraged me grow up a year earlier.

  • thefid Kearns, UT
    June 5, 2013 8:53 a.m.

    @Thinkman, "I guess the 10% from the members isn't enough to fund the added missionaries?"

    The church already has a name for the "twentything" they call it the "Law of Consecration." I would gladly give 100% if I were asked to. For the mere fact that the Prophet has never asked to give more than what I was capable of without providing a way for me to do so... Imagine a society who "willfully" gave everything (that is really what the church is leading up to). Doctors who did not take money from patients (call it JesusCare), utility companies that did not take pay because their workers did not receive any. Home builders that did not charge money to build a home because they didn't need to pay for the building materials. Everyone has food because the farmers received help in their harvest. Nobody is poor, nobody is hungry. (Oh, and no taxes since nobody earned any money)

    Don't get this confused with socialism where the government controls the food and resources. I'm talking about a society that is willing to give everything from their own free will and choice, not forced to by law.

  • Strider303 Salt Lake City, UT
    June 5, 2013 9:30 a.m.

    Joseph Smith taught that “a religion that does not require the sacrifice of all things never has the power sufficient to produce the faith necessary unto life and salvation.”

    We all have problems, trials and issues. This particular event, requesting more donations for the general missionary fund, is what is on our plate at present. It is hard to part with the currency of the world,because so much of our world is wrapped up in it. We are called to prepare for a better world, and this is how we do it.

    True, not all missionaries are the sterling top notch people we would like to see, but maybe we weren't either when we served missions. For many it is their first exposure to adult life, and the transition may take a while.

    I am of the opinion the ark doesn't need any steadying hands from us, just willing hands to pave the way for it to move along.

    We can sit on the sidelines and gripe and mock or join in and help. Consider the words from Hymn #250 "Come join the ranks! Come join the ranks!" It's our call.

  • rrjensen7 Norfolk, VA
    June 5, 2013 10:32 a.m.

    If you it, you should give. If you don't, don't worry about it. The message does say to only give if you are able.

  • OHBU Columbus, OH
    June 5, 2013 10:43 a.m.

    re:Snowman

    I'm aware the youth aren't forced to go. Pressured? Absolutely. Growing up, you are told that going on a mission is a choice. But, you are also told that you are expected to go, and your future is always spoken of as if it's a foregone conclusion. Then, as a teenager, you sit in Seminary and Sunday School, and hear lesson after lesson about how you are expected to go, and you also hear the girls (who as a teenager you are very interested in) being told that they should not marry a guy unless he's served a mission. So what you end up with is a kid who, if he doesn't want to go, facing the prospect of disappointing and possibly alienating his whole family, not being able to find a spouse, and jeopardizing their eternal salvation and breaking up their eternal family. I know many, many, MANY kids who went on missions for specifically these reasons. My brother-in-law hastily married his highschool girlfriend to mitigate that pressure. It can take years to muster the courage to tell your parents you don't believe the same things they do.

  • Barb Wire USA, UT
    June 5, 2013 11:16 a.m.

    @ OHBU, A lot of kids that age do want to go on missions for whatever reasons, but a lot of kids are pressured by their parents to go that really don't want to. Unfortunately some of it has to do with breaking one of the commandments, don't covet thy neighbor. "You should go on a mission because their son is going on a mission." "We need to keep up with Joneses." Unfortunately having their kids go on a mission seems to be a status thing for some parents and it shouldn't be that way. A kid should go on a mission if they want to, not being pressured.

  • bzmomo6 Carthage, NC
    June 5, 2013 11:39 a.m.

    Every penny I give to the church comes back to me in blessings. We have paid for two sons missions and have 3 more boys and a daughter to go. We have also contributed generously to a young man who joined the church at 19 and his life was so blessed that he gave up a full ride scholarship to West Point Military Academy, spent a semester at BYU, sold what he could to pay everything he could to go on a mission and then left for a mission. We are certainly not wealthy, but I am more than willing to give up material comforts in order to move the gospel forward. I can't imagine my life without it and I want everyone to have those blessings in their lives as well.

  • m.g. scott clearfield, UT
    June 5, 2013 12:35 p.m.

    The Church has apparantly in recent years taken the financial burden off of the missionaires compared to the past. My mission, for instance, was considered pretty expensive, London England, compared to many others in the world. So, my monthly burden, which my Ward helped out a lot with, was out of reach financially without some financial help. Some missionaires were going on 200 dollar a month missions, and others were going on 1000 dollar a month ones. It presented quite a burden on some families. Now the Church has pretty much equalized the pay no matter which mission someone goes to. I suspect that the Church is paying a lot of the extra expense for the more costly missions. And with almost 30 thousand new missionairies coming aboard it will get really costly. Hopefully we as members can provide extra support.

  • Ernest T. Bass Bountiful, UT
    June 5, 2013 2:09 p.m.

    I may take out a home equity loan to help out.

  • snowman Provo, UT
    June 5, 2013 3:02 p.m.

    OHBU:I was never taught that I was expecteed to go on a mission. I was never felt pressured to go on a mission. I was never taught that I shouldn't marry a person who hasn't gone on a mission. My spouse chose serving our country over a mission and there is nothing wrong with that. Our son went went on a mission. He probably didn't go for the right reasons but he served honorably. There are girls out there who tell their boyfriends they won't marry them unless they go on a mission. They say that they will wait for their missionary but then they don't.

  • sparboy Sparwood, 00
    June 5, 2013 5:29 p.m.

    gosh people, relax, some of you get so uptight. Read what was asked "To help maintain this missionary force," President Monson said in early April, "and because many of our missionaries come from modest circumstances, we invite you, as you are able, to contribute generously to the General Missionary Fund of the church.". Did you notice "as you are able". enough said.

  • csmith gilbert, AZ
    June 6, 2013 10:34 a.m.

    My son is 18 years old and just graduated from high school. He will report to the MTC next month. He spent the last 4 years attending a modified year round high school. He only had 7 weeks for summer. There was not an opportunity for him to have a job while in high school. He played four years of football and graduated with an academic scholarship. The decision to defer his scholarship and serve a mission was easy for him. His bank account is nearly empty. However, I have started working and find it a BLESSING to be able to pay for my boys who have a desire to serve the Lord for 2 years. My other son reported to the MTC in February. Two missionaries serving at the same time might be a financial sacrifice but I say bring it on!!! Wouldn't have it any other way!! So sad to see that other don't understand the blessing of the new age change in missionaries. We can all serve together some at home paying for the missions. Other out in the field. Which one are you??

  • mwt New Castle, PA
    June 6, 2013 2:57 p.m.

    I really feel sorry for LivinLarge and Barb Wire. Their lack of faith is showing. There is no commandment, only the presentation of an opportunity for those who can to serve others and most of all the Lord, who held nothing back from them. If you don't want to give, then don't, but be quiet about it. It sounds like tithing is also grudgingly given, in which case you might as well keep it. The Lord doesn't need your money. He needs your heart and faith. Contributions--tithing and all others are all about faith and heart, not money.

  • Still a Mormon Greenfield, IN
    June 8, 2013 8:38 p.m.

    Since i have taken on the goal to finance my mission I have been greatly blessed. I feel much much more confident in my ability to provide since i decided to save up for my mission. Through church I got a great job and I am learning some GREAT stuff. Just like coming to know the Lord I am finding a lot more confidence and Direction in my work life through saving.

    "Knock and it will be opened ask and you shall receive". It is working for me It will work for you. I highly suggest doing all you can to finance your mission you will be greatly blessed.