Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Mom's 10 Week Mission Preparation Countdown

Life for a mother of 7 is full of good things. I've just experienced a memorable week with my family. My husband baptized my youngest on Saturday, and my third son shared his mission experiences at church on Sunday. 

One of the special treats of my weekend was hearing my 8 year-old daughter play "I'm Trying to Be Like Jesus," on the piano in sacrament meeting, while two of her friends sang. Having all of my children together to hear my son speak was the icing on the cake. I love my family!

Later this week my 19 year-old daughter will receive her mission call, so I thought I would share a bit about mission preparation for those of you first time mission moms. But first, you may want to read how mission calls are assigned.

It's comforting to know that an apostle of God is given inspiration to know where these young men or young women are needed in this world. Below is a portion of the talk Elder Rasband gave in 2010 entitled, "The Divine Call of a Missionary," which shares his witness of the inspiration of mission calls. He says,

"At the end of the meeting Elder Eyring bore his witness to me of the love of the Savior, which He has for each missionary assigned to go out into the world and preach the restored gospel. He said that it is by the great love of the Savior that His servants know where these wonderful young men and women, senior missionaries, and senior couple missionaries are to serve. I had a further witness that morning that every missionary called in this Church, and assigned or reassigned to a particular mission, is called by revelation from the Lord God Almighty through one of these, His servants."

The Savior knows where our children should serve. He knows their hearts. He knows the needs of others. He know the experiences our children need to go through to strengthen their own testimonies. He knows that it isn't easy. He knows. I trust the apostles, and I trust Him.

Now on to the preparations. Remember, you can only help your son or daughter depending on how willing they are to have you help them. Each young adult is different, so my organizational ideas are just a guide. They can do this in any order they wish. You can email a copy to your son or daughter or use the list to work right alongside them. Hopefully this list will help them pace themselves, so you won't worry too much.

Best wishes,


10 Week Mission Preparation Countdown
Click here for a printable pdf or xls copy

- wisdom teeth pulled (usually when 17 or 18)
- get passport (if you can afford it, get one in advance to save time)
- talk to bishop about desire to serve a mission
- start filling out paperwork
- eye exam (ask for 18 mo. or 2 year prescription)
- physical exam
- dental exam
- submit mission papers
- start temple prep class
- start mission prep class
- mission call comes :-)
Week 10 - As Soon As Possible
- review mission papers
- make copy of mission paper for Mom so she can help you
- Mom make a mission binder to store paperwork & letters
- complete mission immunization shots (if needed)
- complete acceptance letter and mail
- get passport-type pics taken for Visa (if needed)
- complete Visa forms & mail
Week 9 - Temple Prep
- contact Bishop for temple recommend interview 
- call temple to make appointment for endowments
Week 8 - Temple Prep
- contact stake pres. for temple recommend interview
- invite family to temple for endowments
- purchase garments; baptismal clothes
- go through temple for first time
Week 7 - Paperwork
- submit college missionary deferment letter (if needed)
- make 2 copies of mission call to take into the mission
- 2 copies black/white of passport. Leave one home, carry other
- print, reduce and laminate 4-generation pedigree chart
- get driving record from DMV
- get driver's license renewed, if needed
- notify bank you will be out of the country or state for 18 mo. or 2 years so they will understand unusual charges.
- order new debit card so doesn't expire during your mission
Week 6 - Purchases
- purchase copy of Book of Mormon in foreign language (if needed)
- purchase mission clothes. Allow time for alterations.
- order contact lenses & glasses if needed
Week 5 - More Purchases
- purchase luggage, backpack, camera, mission supplies, etc.
- purchase approved church music
- finish clothing shopping/sewing
- mark name on all clothing tags with iron-on labels or fabric marker
Week 4 - Photos
- get mission picture taken
- make mini photo album with family pictures
- set up mission site for family to post letters
Week 3 - Religious Items
- decide on favorite scripture for mission plaque
- give scripture and picture to clerk for mission plaque
- reduce and laminate Patriarchal blessing for scriptures
- reduce and laminate Priesthood line of authority for scriptures
- contact bishop about "farewell" talk date & topic
- get baptism pants hemmed
Week 2 - Last Minute Items
- final purchases
- start packing
- have membership record transferred to home ward, if needed
- write authorization letter & sign it so parents have access to medical records
- label luggage. Use brightly colored tag to make yours stand out.
Week 1 - Last Minute Items
- get mission hair cut
- pack up room
- prepare mission "farewell" talk
- give account passwords to parents
- get cash out for MTC
- give up cell phone, computer, etc.
- have stake president set you apart
Day You Leave
- Report to MTC
- bring immunization card, drivers license, driving record
- have parents make mission payment first day of month entering MTC


  1. Thank you!!! We are getting ready to send in papers for our first missionary, and I never would have thought of some of these things. I hope you will share more tips and helps for preparing missionaries, or how to help them when they are homesick, nervous, etc...

    1. Good luck, Jamie. The rising generation can do it!

  2. This is so helpful! We are sending our first missionary this November! Thanks for putting this list together.

  3. Thanks so much, my missionary will leave in a year, 2015 but I am already in panic mood. This list released a lot of stress, just what I needed!.

  4. My husband and I teach a mission training class for our stake. This list is heaven-sent! I'm so glad I found it. Thanks for being organized so the rest of us can benefit from your gift!

  5. Thank you. I've got 4 weeks to go for my oldest and I've got the added complication of having to wait until he graduates high school to get his ordination done and then his endowments. Plus, I'm doing this by myself (widow) with no family close by. There are a few things I've missed that I need to take care of soon.Thanks for the checklist!! Very helpful.

  6. Thank you for this list! I've been using it to make sure we're making timely progress! I had one question. What is week 1 "make mission address cards and picture home address cards" Thanks

    1. I used to make some address cards for my missionaries to give their companions when they were transferred to stay in touch. Seems obsolete now since they trade emails. :) Picture cards were for investigators as the missionary left an area.

    2. thanks for the explanation! I guess times change....people stay in touch with emails and social media now. I appreciate this list so much! sending out my first missionary :)


Thanks for your comments and suggestions!