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rongo

Two Anecdotes Re: Most Foreign Missionaries Coming Home

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Posted (edited)

I thought some of you might like this. It's a huge plane full of returning missionaries singing hymns. Very sweet!!

https://photos.google.com/share/AF1QipPB1GJyEucSixWILoVpaBysvsGqm4kiZhiaYKoqI04XkRBzXHnJ479JoqIpBTu8wA/photo/AF1QipNkqymIHWLUewIFbAUvTzuVXKLHvbgBIClaDSAl?key=UW1UMVlmSlZaamlQaTVWOXdlQmp2MWVXSlU2ZEFB

Edited by Tacenda

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16 minutes ago, Tacenda said:

Thank you for sharing this!

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20 minutes ago, Tacenda said:

Any idea where this plane was coming from? It was a chartered plane full of nothing but missionaries, I think.

We'll never know, but I'm really curious a) how many total missionaries were brought back from Africa, Asia, and Central/South America. And b) how many with less than 15/21 months (sister/elder) actually were reassigned to stateside missions.

The preemptive "health condition" missionaries were sent home with a full release prior to this latest development this week. As were those nearing the end of their service. So, ostensibly, most/all of these mass shipments of missionaries in these flights (sans senior couples) are eligible for reassignment (after 14 day quarantine). Anecdotally, there are many instances where this isn't happening. It seems to me that missionaries are being given the option to simply end their mission, and if they choose to, that is fine (more than fine). I just wonder how many would still like to serve and continue, but aren't being allowed to by the Missionary Department.  

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Posted (edited)
22 minutes ago, rongo said:

Any idea where this plane was coming from? It was a chartered plane full of nothing but missionaries, I think.

We'll never know, but I'm really curious a) how many total missionaries were brought back from Africa, Asia, and Central/South America. And b) how many with less than 15/21 months (sister/elder) actually were reassigned to stateside missions.

The preemptive "health condition" missionaries were sent home with a full release prior to this latest development this week. As were those nearing the end of their service. So, ostensibly, most/all of these mass shipments of missionaries in these flights (sans senior couples) are eligible for reassignment (after 14 day quarantine). Anecdotally, there are many instances where this isn't happening. It seems to me that missionaries are being given the option to simply end their mission, and if they choose to, that is fine (more than fine). I just wonder how many would still like to serve and continue, but aren't being allowed to by the Missionary Department.  

I wish I could be more help with your question about the numbers etc. It was posted by a FB friend that teaches at a school I sub at, so I'm sort of bashful to say anything on her FB post. She friended me, which was nice, but I don't know her very well.

Edited by Tacenda

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Posted (edited)
6 hours ago, Hamba Tuhan said:

If I were one of those missionaries, I'd want everyone to go away and shut up. Of course, I'm the sort of person who reads the handbook and knows that we're discouraged from big to-dos in relation to departing and returning missionaries in even normal circumstances ...

But seriously, who wants that crap (wave, sing, be crazy)? This is decidedly not how one makes me feel loved.

Well, those were precisely my thoughts. Is this what you were referring to, or is there more?

Quote

Members should avoid practices that may detract from the sacred nature of a mission call or create unnecessary expense. Such practices include holding open houses for missionaries (except for family gatherings), sending formal printed announcements or invitations, printing special sacrament meeting programs, and forming reception lines at the meetinghouse after sacrament meeting.

 

Edited by Bernard Gui
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3 hours ago, Bernard Gui said:

Is this what you were referring to, or is there more?

There's that and also this:

Quote

Arrivals at Airports

It is recommended that only immediate family members go to the airport to pick up missionaries who are returning at the completion of their missions.

 

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7 hours ago, Bernard Gui said:

Well, those were precisely my thoughts. Is this what you were referring to, or is there more?

 

https://www.ksl.com/article/46735235/how-are-you-responsibly-welcoming-missionaries-home-during-the-covid-19-pandemic

The below comment sounds like some missionaries might be a little embarrassed by all the fanfare. I wonder if this even puts pressure on a missionary that feels they didn't accomplish all that they had hoped for. And I know it was a sacrifice for the missionary to go out, but it's not like they fought in a war or anything. But of course they did put their lives on the line somewhat or a lot. I know missionaries that have been mugged and even women being raped, but they are told not to go public. So in this way they are most definitely warriors.

But to each their own. We picked up my missionary son at the airport with his immediate family and a small poster my young son made. But I remember in the old days going to pick up nephews, nieces and a younger brother-in-law with large groups. And then the church put out the info asking families to not do that anymore. So the large group in the parking lot sure smacked that one out of the park, in a bad way. I have a feeling that one family got out of their vehicle, and then it started the crowd. People thinking, hey I guess it's okay we get out of our vehicles. The airport definitely dropped the ball too.  

 

The below are comments from the article in Deseret News:

"I never understood the hero's welcome for returning missionaries. I served a mission and for me having some big celebration would have taken away from the sacred nature of the calling. I visited with family and friends the first few days after I came home."

And another..

"I saw families standing 10 or more feet apart as a returning missionary drive by. This was awesome! Unfortunately, soon after, there was a line of people that streamed into that missionaries home after the parade. Pretty sure they missed the mark on that one."

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I think it's too bad the missionaries have to come home, but, is the right thing to do.  With all the world wanting to follow social distancing, the missionaries won't have anyone to teach.  Also, no one wants missionaries spreading the corona virus instead of the gospel.

I'm wondering how my niece will deal with coming home early.

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, Tacenda said:

https://www.ksl.com/article/46735235/how-are-you-responsibly-welcoming-missionaries-home-during-the-covid-19-pandemic

The below comment sounds like some missionaries might be a little embarrassed by all the fanfare. I wonder if this even puts pressure on a missionary that feels they didn't accomplish all that they had hoped for. And I know it was a sacrifice for the missionary to go out, but it's not like they fought in a war or anything. But of course they did put their lives on the line somewhat or a lot. I know missionaries that have been mugged and even women being raped, but they are told not to go public. So in this way they are most definitely warriors.

But to each their own. We picked up my missionary son at the airport with his immediate family and a small poster my young son made. But I remember in the old days going to pick up nephews, nieces and a younger brother-in-law with large groups. And then the church put out the info asking families to not do that anymore. So the large group in the parking lot sure smacked that one out of the park, in a bad way. I have a feeling that one family got out of their vehicle, and then it started the crowd. People thinking, hey I guess it's okay we get out of our vehicles. The airport definitely dropped the ball too.  

 

The below are comments from the article in Deseret News:

"I never understood the hero's welcome for returning missionaries. I served a mission and for me having some big celebration would have taken away from the sacred nature of the calling. I visited with family and friends the first few days after I came home."

And another..

"I saw families standing 10 or more feet apart as a returning missionary drive by. This was awesome! Unfortunately, soon after, there was a line of people that streamed into that missionaries home after the parade. Pretty sure they missed the mark on that one."

I couldn't edit because I'm on a "limited" status. I wanted to delete the missionaries shouldn't go public statement coming from the church in bold. I have heard stories of this happening, so it's secondhand information. And I feel that I should not have said it unless I have evidence and a link or two to share about it happening. I apologize, I'm trying to not be so combative in my posts against the church.  

Edited by Tacenda

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28 minutes ago, Robert J Anderson said:

I think it's too bad the missionaries have to come home, but, is the right thing to do.  With all the world wanting to follow social distancing, the missionaries won't have anyone to teach.  Also, no one wants missionaries spreading the corona virus instead of the gospel.

I'm wondering how my niece will deal with coming home early.

Missions in several countries are teaching much more than they ever were before. Some of their moms have reported 10 times more. 

I'm sure when people are not seld-isolated that will probably go down as many of those people will now have to go back to work, but some of that will carry over into teaching in person.

But it really depends on the area.  One missionary reported to his mom that he had over 700 people in his area book. My son has far less. 

Some areas have the means to teach electronically. Some have nothing to do so. 

Then there is what people in the government think of them being there and what the people in the area think of them being there.  For example people may not like missionaries much and not treat them well, but may basically leave them alone. In other areas they may be seen as the people who brought "corona" in and things are all ready unstable there.  

I'm sure there have been mistakes made of missionaries coming home early or staying when they shouldn't. The Lord uses imperfect humans to lead us so that is a given. But I also think that the mission department and our leaders have far more information than the rest of us have as to what is going on in that area and as to missionaries specifically than the rest of us do all together so I'm going to need to trust them for the most part unless the Spirit tells me to do otherwise concerning my son 

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I just learned from a current bishop on a BYU sports board that his son came home from the Mexico City MTC Tuesday night. He was supposed to report to the Dominican Republic this coming week, and is now in the 14 day quarantine at home. They are frustrated because they were told (as everyone was, in the Newsroom release) that missionaries like his son would be reassigned.

https://newsroom.churchofjesuschrist.org/article/coronavirus-update?fbclid=IwAR26-WG_qosqOU97pMulhyat5e-B0MdStz7qfYKFOX6HdWol1rG7NS_vO58#missionary-work

They are frustrated because they haven't heard anything and aren't getting back or responding. His son is raring to go.

If they are just going to end their missions, it would be far better to just tell us that up front (expectations management). To hold out the procedure of stateside reassignment and then to stonewall before taking that away is much worse than the initial bad news. Much worse than simply telling us that missionaries brought home are done; then, the band-aid can just be ripped off and people can go on with their lives, knowing what that's going to entail short-term. 

I'm sure some are being reassigned stateside (anyone aware personally of any who have actually gone to their new stateside assignments?), but it seems really arbitrary and random as to who and when. Keep in mind, the ones with health concerns have already been granted releases; the ones being discussed here are the ones who according to Newsroom should be eligible for reassignment. 

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Another question: The Church said that mission calls would continue to be made apace despite Corona, with online MTC instead. Is anyone aware of **very recent** mission calls? I would especially be interested to know if any very recent calls were foreign (how could they be? No one knows when this ends and things open back up globally), or if they are all stateside. Are reporting dates for even stateside on hold?

The couple we were going to house sit for is convinced that they are still going to get their call to Spain or Portugal --- despite all of the Corona madness and international restrictions. Their call is still "pending," and I would be stunned if any senior couples get calls to foreign countries right now (and for the foreseeable future). Is anyone aware of senior couples **currently** being sent stateside? I would think that the Church would discourage senior couples going anywhere right now, even another U.S. state. 

This puts us in limbo, housing-wise, right now, since we were going to move in June 1 for their mission. We're fine --- my parents are living with my sister, and we can stay where we are indefinitely. We're just really interested to see what ends up happening with this senior couple. I don't think they want to go stateside, and I'm not sure even that is an option right now. 

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12 minutes ago, rongo said:

I just learned from a current bishop on a BYU sports board that his son came home from the Mexico City MTC Tuesday night. He was supposed to report to the Dominican Republic this coming week, and is now in the 14 day quarantine at home. They are frustrated because they were told (as everyone was, in the Newsroom release) that missionaries like his son would be reassigned.

https://newsroom.churchofjesuschrist.org/article/coronavirus-update?fbclid=IwAR26-WG_qosqOU97pMulhyat5e-B0MdStz7qfYKFOX6HdWol1rG7NS_vO58#missionary-work

They are frustrated because they haven't heard anything and aren't getting back or responding. His son is raring to go.

If they are just going to end their missions, it would be far better to just tell us that up front (expectations management). To hold out the procedure of stateside reassignment and then to stonewall before taking that away is much worse than the initial bad news. Much worse than simply telling us that missionaries brought home are done; then, the band-aid can just be ripped off and people can go on with their lives, knowing what that's going to entail short-term. 

I'm sure some are being reassigned stateside (anyone aware personally of any who have actually gone to their new stateside assignments?), but it seems really arbitrary and random as to who and when. Keep in mind, the ones with health concerns have already been granted releases; the ones being discussed here are the ones who according to Newsroom should be eligible for reassignment. 

Maybe they are doing the best they can with the resources they have, and hoping that they can get these missionaries reassigned amid all of the different government and state restrictions happening right now. 

We need need fewer armchair quarterbacks and more patience. 

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Just now, rongo said:

Another question: The Church said that mission calls would continue to be made apace despite Corona, with online MTC instead. Is anyone aware of **very recent** mission calls? I would especially be interested to know if any very recent calls were foreign (how could they be? No one knows when this ends and things open back up globally), or if they are all stateside. Are reporting dates for even stateside on hold?

The couple we were going to house sit for is convinced that they are still going to get their call to Spain or Portugal --- despite all of the Corona madness and international restrictions. Their call is still "pending," and I would be stunned if any senior couples get calls to foreign countries right now (and for the foreseeable future). Is anyone aware of senior couples **currently** being sent stateside? I would think that the Church would discourage senior couples going anywhere right now, even another U.S. state. 

This puts us in limbo, housing-wise, right now, since we were going to move in June 1 for their mission. We're fine --- my parents are living with my sister, and we can stay where we are indefinitely. We're just really interested to see what ends up happening with this senior couple. I don't think they want to go stateside, and I'm not sure even that is an option right now. 

A family friend was called to a Mexican mission, with a start date in September, three days ago. 

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7 minutes ago, rongo said:

I just learned from a current bishop on a BYU sports board that his son came home from the Mexico City MTC Tuesday night. He was supposed to report to the Dominican Republic this coming week, and is now in the 14 day quarantine at home. They are frustrated because they were told (as everyone was, in the Newsroom release) that missionaries like his son would be reassigned.

https://newsroom.churchofjesuschrist.org/article/coronavirus-update?fbclid=IwAR26-WG_qosqOU97pMulhyat5e-B0MdStz7qfYKFOX6HdWol1rG7NS_vO58#missionary-work

They are frustrated because they haven't heard anything and aren't getting back or responding. His son is raring to go.

If they are just going to end their missions, it would be far better to just tell us that up front (expectations management). To hold out the procedure of stateside reassignment and then to stonewall before taking that away is much worse than the initial bad news. Much worse than simply telling us that missionaries brought home are done; then, the band-aid can just be ripped off and people can go on with their lives, knowing what that's going to entail short-term. 

I'm sure some are being reassigned stateside (anyone aware personally of any who have actually gone to their new stateside assignments?),

I don't know them personally, but my son's mission president told us of at least 4 have come and they are expecting more.

I suspect that some may take a little longer because they also have all the new missionaries coming in as well - both those called to the mission and then those reassigned on top of that. 

I think for many it's just going to take some time.  There have been so many changes that it seems like this has been going on a long time, but really it has been pretty quick.  

Transfers in my son's mission are usually done in one day, but now are being done just a few each day.  Normally, the MP wife said it takes them about 40 hours to plan out transfers. Adding all of this will increase things, but hopefully they can also figure out how to streamline it.

On top of that they have all the normal exit interviews for those normally leaving and then 3 months worth of missionaries on top if that, many of them who came with end of school surges.  

So finding places for so many missionaries coming in is on top of all of that. 

I would guess that unless  things really change that in a few weeks we will see more of where the reassigned missionaries are going.

7 minutes ago, rongo said:

but it seems really arbitrary and random as to who and when. Keep in mind, the ones with health concerns have already been granted releases; the ones being discussed here are the ones who according to Newsroom should be eligible for reassignment. 

 

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8 minutes ago, bluebell said:

A family friend was called to a Mexican mission, with a start date in September, three days ago. 

Good to know. And far enough out that it's plausible (hopefully, fingers crossed). 

That's going to be kind of an interesting gap in the pipeline if there's no reporting dates for six months. But, those missions are closed right now, anyway, with no missionaries. My son's mission (Norway) just got five elders and three sisters before the gates closed, so they will lose by attrition until reinforcements can come. Norwegian missionaries have to visa wait during the best of times (our son was in Oregon for six weeks, and loved it!), so there are always pipeline delays. But no new missionaries, for now.  

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17 minutes ago, rongo said:

Another question: The Church said that mission calls would continue to be made apace despite Corona, with online MTC instead. Is anyone aware of **very recent** mission calls?

Yes. The missionary moms group has a number of them posted every day.

17 minutes ago, rongo said:

I would especially be interested to know if any very recent calls were foreign (how could they be?

Yes, quite a few are.  Some as early as April and many in June and July.

17 minutes ago, rongo said:

No one knows when this ends and things open back up globally), or if they are all stateside. Are reporting dates for even stateside on hold?

The couple we were going to house sit for is convinced that they are still going to get their call to Spain or Portugal --- despite all of the Corona madness and international restrictions. Their call is still "pending," and I would be stunned if any senior couples get calls to foreign countries right now (and for the foreseeable future). Is anyone aware of senior couples **currently** being sent stateside? I would think that the Church would discourage senior couples going anywhere right now, even another U.S. state. 

This puts us in limbo, housing-wise, right now, since we were going to move in June 1 for their mission. We're fine --- my parents are living with my sister, and we can stay where we are indefinitely. We're just really interested to see what ends up happening with this senior couple. I don't think they want to go stateside, and I'm not sure even that is an option right now. 

 

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Just now, Rain said:

Yes, quite a few are.  Some as early as April and many in June and July.

How could there be foreign calls reporting in April? There aren't any flights, countries won't let foreigners in, and as for getting visas . . . 

Can you give some examples of places/missions? That's really interesting. April? That's three days away. 

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23 minutes ago, bluebell said:

Maybe they are doing the best they can with the resources they have, and hoping that they can get these missionaries reassigned amid all of the different government and state restrictions happening right now. 

Of course, but wouldn't it have been better to have said that instead of what they said? This isn't the Church's first rodeo with things like this (The Surge --- 30 extra missionaries a month in the Arizona Tempe mission, above and beyond the normal arrivals. Visa waiters are regularly farmed out all over the country all the time. My son was in a group of 30 arrivals in Kennewick, WA, which was swelled with visa waiters), and everyone knew the logistics were going to be very tough. I think you're statement was a much better one than the flowchart, and it didn't take any foresight to know that would be the case. 

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Posted (edited)

Missionaries fill an entire plane on the way home from Africa. See anyone you know in this video?

 

Edited by JAHS

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1 hour ago, rongo said:

Of course, but wouldn't it have been better to have said that instead of what they said? This isn't the Church's first rodeo with things like this (The Surge --- 30 extra missionaries a month in the Arizona Tempe mission, above and beyond the normal arrivals. Visa waiters are regularly farmed out all over the country all the time. My son was in a group of 30 arrivals in Kennewick, WA, which was swelled with visa waiters), and everyone knew the logistics were going to be very tough. I think you're statement was a much better one than the flowchart, and it didn't take any foresight to know that would be the case. 

Maybe, but I don’t see my statement as conflicting with what was said.

To me, my statement is not what the church should have said but more of how the members should be handling everything as the church works to implement the flowchart. 

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1 hour ago, rongo said:

How could there be foreign calls reporting in April? There aren't any flights, countries won't let foreigners in, and as for getting visas . . . 

Can you give some examples of places/missions? That's really interesting. April? That's three days away. 

I will. My memory isn't great on specifics so I will have to go search for them.  Most of them are tucked in threads here and there so I'll get them when I can. 

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14 minutes ago, bluebell said:

Maybe, but I don’t see my statement as conflicting with what was said.

Not conflicting, as in contradicting. But, your phrasing is much better in light of the aftermath (for some, seemingly arbitrarily and at random).

Your statement: "[The Church is] doing the best [it] can with the resources [it has], and hoping that they can get these missionaries reassigned amid all of the different government and state restrictions happening right now"

is quite different, both in tone and certainty, from

"Elders returning to the U.S. or Canada who have more than 180 days (six months) remaining: Remain a missionary, 14 day self-isolation, and then temporarily re-assigned.

Sisters returning to the U.S. or Canada who have more than 90 days (three months) remaining: Remain a missionary, 14 day self-isolation, and then temporarily re-assigned."

When many are not being reassigned and are instead being released. In the case of the last MTC group, this was strongly encouraged for them. They weren't even "returning to the U.S. or Canada."

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On 3/26/2020 at 7:46 PM, Scott Lloyd said:

Unlike with young men in the Church, full time missionary service has never been regarded as an obligation for young women. I should think any young woman who endeavors to render such service but finds that circumstances make it impossible for her to do so should consider that her very desire and attempt will be counted unto her for righteousness as though she had gone on to fulfill a full 18 months of service. She should move forward, confident that her Heavenly Father is pleased with her, and seek other ways to serve Him for the rest of her life. 

A General Authority personally told me a sister may leave their mission at any time and it will be counted as honorably served. They can go home to get married, get home sick, etc., they will return as returned sister missionaries. This is of course is if they were honorably serving at the time.

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11 minutes ago, Anijen said:

A General Authority personally told me a sister may leave their mission at any time and it will be counted as honorably served. They can go home to get married, get home sick, etc., they will return as returned sister missionaries. This is of course is if they were honorably serving at the time.

That applies to elders as well. Anyone who returns not for disciplinary reasons is deemed as having honorably served. 

Many don't know this, but once you receive your mission call, it's on your membership record for life. That's one hook I hang people on in my mind (where and when did you serve your mission, if applicable). Girls who got a mission call but got married before reporting to the MTC still have that listed on their membership record (I can't tell you how many times I've asked new sisters, "So, you served in Argentina, huh? Which mission was that?" Only for them to laugh and reply that they had gotten their call, but got married before they went). Also, men who receive a mission call but never end up going have it listed on their membership record. It's kind of an indelible thing on the MR.  We had a brother who needed to be excommunicated, and when I went to talk to him for the first time (he was very inactive and avoided meetings, but I finally got him to agree to meet with me), I asked him about his mission to Brazil. Oh, he said, I never went. He had confessed things that disqualified him from service, but his call remained on his record. 

It's also restored on the record upon rebaptism or restoration of blessings. 

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