Read about 9 unique service mission experiences


Elder Caleb Wood with his mission leaders, Sister Julie Atkinson and Elder Mark Atkinson, and Courtney Weaver, front row, operations manager at Trusted World. Photo courtesy of the Wood family, courtesy of Church News.All rights reserved.

At a special banquet on July 21, Brother Caleb Wood was named “Volunteer of the Year” in Dallas, Texas, by D CEO magazine for his work with the non-profit organization Trusted World.

“I have been asked many times why service is so important to me,” Elder Wood said. “The more I answer this question, the more I realize my answer is a bit selfish – I like to make other people happy, and making other people happy makes me happy.”

Elder Wood, 20, has brain tumors and mobility and cognitive issues due to complications from the tumors. But going beyond his limits brings him joy, satisfaction and peace.

3. A missionary wins 3 medals at the 2022 Special Olympics USA

Elder Reynolds Olympics
Elder Reynolds Olympics

Elder Max Reynolds, with his parents, Trent and Pamela Reynolds, shows off his gold medal for the 100-yard butterfly event at the Special Olympics USA Games in Orlando, Florida on June 8, 2022. Photo courtesy of Pamela Reynolds, courtesy of Church News.All rights reserved.

Among the thousands of athletes, coaches, volunteers and spectators in Orlando, Florida, in June for the 2022 Special Olympics USA, one young man stood out – he wore a missionary badge.

Elder Max Reynolds, 22, is on a full-time service mission for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Gilbert, Arizona. He is also a very good swimmer and he was selected to represent Arizona and swim at the Games from June 5-12.

Elder Reynolds is autistic and serves according to his abilities and circumstances, with a personalized mission experience uniquely suited to his talents and skills.

Learn more about bathing and service

4. Almeda, Oregon Fire Service


Seth Cannon of Medford, Oregon served an assignment of service with United Way of Jackson County for a year and a half beginning in August 2020. He was tapped for a key role in interviewing survivors of the Jackson County fire. ‘Almeda to determine fire relief funding, thereby saving United Way from spending money on a full-time employee. Photo courtesy of Seth Cannon, courtesy of Church News.All rights reserved.

Seth Cannon began a Church service assignment in August 2020 at United Way in Jackson County, Oregon. When the Almeda fire hit, CEO Dee Anne Everson asked Elder Cannon to review requests for help under the fire relief program.

Cannon said his mission was unlike anything he expected or thought a mission could be. “There were definitely times when I thought I couldn’t take any more difficult stories, but waking up and spending the whole day at United Way helping fire survivors was a real gift.

Everson hopes more young adults will choose a mission of service: “Our community is only best for good young people. My life is so much better for knowing Seth.

5. How 5 missionaries from one family impacted their community in Arizona


Josh, Caroline, Chad, Hailey, Ashley and Kelly McKendrick are pictured outside the Snowflake Arizona Temple. Photo courtesy of Kelly McKendrick, courtesy of Church News.2022 by Intellectual Reserve, Inc. All rights reserved.

Chad, Ashley, Amy, Caroline, and Hailey McKendrick all served service assignments in Gilbert, Arizona. They are five of Kelly and Christina McKendrick’s 24 children, aged 5 to 40, 17 of whom were adopted.

Some have developmental delays or health issues, and a service assignment has given them flexibility and an experience tailored to their needs. One returned home early from a teaching mission and transferred to a service mission, which taught her to deal with change and have faith.

When asked how seeing her children serve missions has strengthened her testimony, Christina McKendrick said, “Heavenly Father knows these children. He knew where they should be.

6. Getting to know one of Australia’s first service missionaries


Brother Domonic McKendry.© 2022 by Intellectual Reserve, Inc. All rights reserved.

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Domonic McKendry from Ballarat, Australia loves his appeal.

“Our purpose is to help others come to Christ by serving them as the Savior did,” the 23-year-old said.

The missionary serves in a variety of ways, including cooking, gardening, temple ordinance work, indexing, and volunteering at the local family history center and charities. He encourages others who decide to serve a mission not to be afraid, but rather to be open and to rely on the love of Jesus Christ.

7. Serve a service mission with a smile in New Zealand

Brother-Alex-Murphy-with-the-New-Zealand-flag-at-the-temple-in-Hamilton-New-Zealand.-He-always-wanted-to-do-a-mission-in-New-Zealand.- May-2022
Brother-Alex-Murphy-with-the-New-Zealand-flag-at-the-temple-in-Hamilton-New-Zealand.-He-always-wanted-to-do-a-mission-in-New-Zealand.- May-2022

Alex Murphy holds the New Zealand national flag at the Hamilton New Zealand Temple in May 2022. Photo by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.2022 by Intellectual Reserve, Inc. All rights reserved.

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Alex Murphy has always wanted to serve a mission for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Today, despite physical and mental disabilities, he has become what is believed to be the first service missionary for the Church in New Zealand.

He serves in a variety of capacities, such as at the Church’s Camp Tuhikaramea, which was developed by his great-uncle. Here, Brother Murphy takes care of the maintenance and enjoys driving the “buggy” utility vehicle.

Additionally, the eldest New Zealander teaches early-morning seminary alongside his mother, attends weekly classes for the Institute of Religion, sings in the Hamilton Interfaith Choir, takes piano lessons on his backyard piano. grandfather, helped the St. Vincent De Paul organization and his favorite: groundskeeping work at the Hamilton New Zealand Temple.

8. Continue serving after coming home early


Sister Bekki Andrews smiles on a forklift at the Bishops Central Warehouse in Mira Loma, Calif., July 29, 2020. Photo courtesy of Bekki Andrews, courtesy of Church News.All rights reserved.

When Sister Bekki Andrews, then 20, learned she would have to leave the Minnesota Mission in Minneapolis in early March 2020 due to COVID-19 precautions and her asthma, she was devastated.

Before Sister Andrews was released, her stake president in West Covina, Calif., suggested she consider a transfer to a missionary service. She obtained the necessary approvals and began to serve at home.

“She jumped in and she was so excited to serve,” said Elder Rod Hulet, service mission leader in the Arcadia Service Mission Area in California.

9. Missionary Artist Paints Mural for Old Utah Tabernacle Exhibit


Nathan Hale of the Roy Utah Stake stands next to the mural he helped create for an old tabernacle exhibit in Kaysville, Utah, June 4, 2022. Photo courtesy of Kelly L. Taylor, courtesy of Church News .All rights reserved.

Many visitors to an old tabernacle exhibit in northern Utah were drawn to a large mural on the wall in the visitor center section of the tour.

“The Covenant Path,” by Nathan Hale of the Roy Utah Stake, is 8 feet high and 20 feet wide. Hale painted the mural in March while serving a Church service assignment.

President Kelly L. Taylor, Hale Stake President and Mission President, said the mural was completed in just a few days, which was truly miraculous for something of this magnitude. And it shows how the Lord uses his people when they offer their time and talents and get to work.

Copyright 2022 Deseret News Publishing Company.

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