Genealogy from the perspective of a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (Mormon, LDS)

Sunday, October 13, 2013

FamilySearch Church Service Missionaries -- A wonderful opportunity

Most of the volunteers at the Mesa FamilySearch Library are Church-service Missionaries of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. There are hundreds of such genealogically oriented missionaries around the world. As explained by the Church website:
Since 1979, the Church-service missionary program has provided a growing and varied number of opportunities to serve. This important missionary workforce helps many Church departments and operations provide needed products and services. Serving others brings great blessings to those who serve and to the Church worldwide.
The general qualifications to serve a Church Service missionary are covered in the Frequently Asked Questions section of the website:
All Church-service missionaries must be worthy to hold a temple recommend and should have no minor children living at home. They must be physically, mentally, and emotionally able to fulfill the specific call and its related duties. Prospective missionaries must also provide their own transportation and financial support. Church-service missionaries are responsible for their own medical and dental needs, including eye-care and prescription-drug expenses.
You will note that there is no upper or lower age limit for serving as a Church-service missionary. We have missionaries in the 80s and others much, much younger.

Most of the missionaries at the Mesa FamilySearch Library work two or more shifts of about seven hours per week. All of this time is donated without monetary compensation. Other Church-service Missionaries help staff the FamilySearch organization and others assist in preserving records through digitization of original records around the world. Here is a video about some experiences of a couple of records preservation missionaries:

Church-service missionaries generally serve for up to 24 months, but can extend for longer periods of time and can renew their mission calls.

I have been serving as a Church-service missionary at the Mesa FamilySearch Library for eight years now and I am already scheduled for another two years. All of the missionaries called to serve at the Mesa FamilySearch Library are trained for a full month before they begin to serve. They attend classes taught by other missionaries five days a week for that month before they begin helping patrons in the Mesa FamilySearch Library.

If you are interested in spending a lot of quality time helping people find their ancestors, you might want to investigate the possibility of serving in Mesa, if you live here or want to serve here, or in some other location around the world. If you would like to serve and are not a member of the Church, you can still volunteer to help at a FamilySearch Center. Please feel free to call a FamilySearch Center and offer to volunteer.

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