You may be surprised to know that FamilySearch offers missionary opportunities. That surprise is what we saw when we talked with many of the visitors to the FamilySearch Missionary booth at RootsTech. Visitors were also amazed to hear that there are over 3,500 missionaries currently serving in more than 60 countries. Missionaries play a key role in supporting the goals of the Family History Department to provide access to historical records, unlocking the possibility of temple blessings and helping to bind families across the generations.
What Missionaries Do
The many available missionary opportunities available that center on several key areas and initiatives. Here’s a sampling of how missionaries are helping to advance the cause of family history:
- Records Preservation–Missionaries preserve historical records from archives, government buildings, and libraries the world over. These records contain evidence that is crucial for learning a family story. This service opportunity is primarily for full-time couples to serve together throughout the world.
- Records Operation Centers (ROC)–Missionaries process records and prepare them for indexing. There are currently six ROC locations where missionaries can serve, and there will soon be a serve-at-home option.
- Patron Support from Home–Missionaries provide research and FamilySearch site assistance from their home to patrons over the phone, online, and via email.
According to Arthur Johnson, workforce development manager for FamilySearch, this opportunity is currently a top priority. “There is a need right now for members to serve from home assisting patrons with their FamilySearch questions,” he says.
- Temple Square–Missionaries provide family history support on Temple Square and work with FamilySearch employees on special projects. They serve in the Family History Library, the Joseph Smith Memorial Building and the Church History Library.
- FamilySearch Libraries–Missionaries provide research assistance and FamilySearch help to patrons in local areas. There are currently 15 locations available.
- Wiki–Missionaries writer or manage family history tips and instruction about areas of research on the FamilySearch Wiki.
Having so many options provides flexibility to fit people’s various situations while still maximizing their impact to the family history effort. “Our missionaries are an invaluable resource,” Johnson said. “Wherever they serve, they are blessing lives on both sides of the veil.”
The best way to learn more about serving a family history mission is to explore the missionary opportunities page. There is information about each of the opportunities available as well as video spotlights of missionaries who have served. On the website you can also request that someone contact you to provide more information and to help determine which of the 10 mission types is the best fit for you.
To Explore If a FamilySearch Mission Is Right for You